The Dutch yard invited this year’s finalists to its headquarters to see what goes on behind the scenes. The trip began with dinner in Amsterdam and a chance to get to know group marketing manager, Paris Baloumis and brand and events coordinator, Iris Bosschaart.
On the following day, the finalists discussed their designs with director of design and innovation, Dirk de Jong and head of design, Patrick Casanova who gave detailed feedback. Next up was a presentation from Martin Selles, head of fleet support, which discussed operational items and experiences.
The young designers also enjoyed a hands-on experience, experimenting with the Bolidt synthetic system, which is used for flooring on board Oceanco’s yachts. The group were then taken on a tour of Oceanco’s state-of-the-art dry dock and given a chance to see some of the Dutch yard’s unique in-build projects at Alblasserdam.
Started in 2008, the Young Designer of the Year Award aims to celebrate the best superyacht design from trainee and student designers under the age of 26. All entries need to be technically feasible and geared around a superyacht lifestyle, and the 2016 finalists certainly fit the bill.
The 2016 Young Designer of the Year finalists were Baoqi Xiao (who won the €5,000 top prize), Lujac Desautel, Leah Gowoon Park, Ben Hills, Marlena Ratajska and Dave Rowles (who was unable to attend the Oceanco visit).