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A peek inside world's largest luxury catamaran

By Emily Smith, CNN
October 6, 2011 -- Updated 1036 GMT (1836 HKT)
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • At 44 meters long (145 ft), Hemisphere is largest sailing catamaran in the world
  • Hemisphere's interior has been tailored specifically to the luxury market
  • 17 different types of granite used inside and 16 leather finishes applied

(CNN) -- At 44 meters long (145 ft), Hemisphere is the largest sailing catamaran in the world. The makers of Hemisphere believe this is first catamaran superyacht to hit the water and could revolutionize the way people think about sailing.

But you'll need deep pockets to afford this kind of luxury -- the "supercat" costs more than $250,000 a week to lease.

It took more than three years for the first sketch of the vessel to become a reality. Hemisphere made her debut on the world stage last week with Monaco as the appropriately lavish backdrop.

While it has taken longer than anticipated to build, those behind the project insist she is worth the wait. "The level of finishing and luxury of Hemisphere brings her to the category of a superyacht," says chief naval architect Marc Van Peteghem.

Peteghem believes those in the superyacht market are increasingly conscious of their environmental image and are turning to sailing vessels as a greener solution to luxury travel. He says the catamaran is far greener than motor boats, making the most of nature, rather than fuel, to move.

Hemisphere's interior has been tailored specifically to the luxury market; 17 different types of granite have been used inside and 16 leather finishes have been applied, according to Burgess, the yacht's charterers.

There are also five spacious ensuite cabins to accommodate passengers with the main cabin featuring complete 360-degree views.

Hemisphere is decked out with a host of toys for the discerning seafarer to play with -- smaller speed boats to go water skiing and wake boarding, water scooters and diving gear, as well as a jacuzzi on the fly bridge.

It also comes fully equipped with the latest in diving gear to make the most of the boat's shallow waters capabilities. The catamaran only has a draft of 3.1 meters, meaning it can explore areas previously out of bounds for superyachts.

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