Topics for the 2020 Superyacht Design Festival

9 July 2019

The Superyacht Design Festival will cover all aspects of yacht design and its future. From emerging construction trends, cutting-edge technologies, and the latest developments in sustainability, to what the next standout interiors will look like, visitors will hear from globally esteemed experts in the field of architecture, design and innovation.


World-changing design

Speakers at this year’s Superyacht Design Festival will include Kai-Uwe Bergmann, one of the Partners behind Bjarke Ingels Group also known simply as BIG. Famed for producing revolutionary buildings based upon the principles of hedonistic sustainability to product design, BIG has launched projects including the trilogy of yacht inspired residences at Albany Bahamas, Audemars Piguet Musuem and Hotel opening Spring 2020, and the XI Residences adjacent to Chelsea Harbour in New York combining the best of water and on land living. Kai-Uwe will discuss how humans are the greatest force in shaping the planet for today and for the future, showcasing many of the latest material and technological advancements and how humanity will play a direct hand in giving form to our changing world. Kai-Uwe will further discuss the framework and design approaches behind Floating Cities – a UN Habitat backed study into amphibious architecture in response to a changing climate and The BIG U, developed to protect lower Manhattan to futureproof against rising sea levels as well as how to enjoy all this from the safety of your yacht.

What yacht designers can learn from Google

Also speaking will be Matthew Cruickshank, art director of Google, and the man behind the homepage’s famous daily animation. Cruickshank worked for Disney and Warner Bros. prior to joining the Google team in San Francisco. He will reveal never-before-seen animations from behind the scenes at Google, and his talk will focus on “what yacht designers can learn from Google” – including his tried and tested method for keeping ideas simple via PostIt note, how to include movement and animation in static designs, and how and where he finds different inspiration every single day.

Haptic technology: what is it and how can you use it

There will also be cutting-edge technology on show too, in the form of Seattle-based tech start-up HaptX, who recently wowed Jeff Bezos with their haptic technology HaptX gloves. With the ability to feature 130 points of touch feedback, apply 4 lbs. of resistive force feedback per finger, and track hand motions with sub-millimetre precision, the gloves allow the wearer to do everything from touch different textures, to place themselves at the helm of their new superyacht, and feel the wheel turn. Joe Michaels will demonstrate not only how the gloves work, but also how the new technology can be used in the superyacht industry in the immediate and distant future.

Clearly revolutionary: trends in structural glass

Today's most thrilling new yachts use architectural glass in ground-breaking new ways. Marilyn Mower guides our panel through new possibilities and deconstructs the glass design on Syzgy 818. Panel includes Jarkko Jamsen, founding partner, Aivan, Ian Langham, director, Eckersley O'Callaghan, James O'Callaghan, senior director, Eckersley O'Callaghan.

External influences on yacht design

BOAT International editor Stewart Campbell discusses what superyacht designers can learn from outsiders, with design legend Piero Lissoni, and esteemed New York based architects Enrico Bonetti and Dominic Kozerski.

How to build an IMAX

Tom Richardson of SMART Advisers, Ronno Schouten of deVoogt Naval Architects and Pascale Reymond of Reymond Langton Design talk Marilyn Mower through the magnificent new IMAX on Lady S, and how a similar feat can be achieved elsewhere.

Graphene, the invisible hero set to take the superyacht world by storm

Graphene expert Raymond Gibbs joins Charlotte Hogarth-Jones on stage to discuss the possibilities of this exciting new material, including five incredible ways you can incorporate graphene into your next big superyacht project today, and what you need to keep an eye out for in the future.

Style and substance

The mastermind behind Vijonara’s interior, founder and CEO of NACIRA yachts, and design director of special projects at Hermès Axel de Beaufort discusses the triumphs and challenges of his career with BOAT International Editorial Director Sacha Bonsor.

Explorer yachts, hope or hype?

There’s more buzz than ever surrounding the world of explorer yachts – but are owners really acting on their interest? And what hurdles still stand in the way of explorer yacht domination? Stewart Campbell looks at the prospects for this emerging field, along with Rob McCallum, EYOS, and owner Anil Thadani.

The power of design collaboration - why more is more

Two of Venice's most successful brands, Rubelli and WonderGlass, go from strength to strength despite using 500-year-old local materials - Venetian silk and Murano glass. CEOs Nicolò Rubelli and Christian Mussati discuss with Sacha Bonsor how collaboration and innovation lie at the heart of their success.

How do you keep a heritage brand relevant and innovative in a world awash with newness? The heads of two of Venice’s most established brands - Rubelli and Wonderglass - talk to Editorial Director Sacha Bonsor about why collaboration is the secret to their success

Ergonomic design and why it matters

What’s the future of ergonomic design? Is more yacht design being tailored to the human form? If so, how far could it go? How do you balance tailoring to different human forms, if one product will be used by lots of people? We look at the lengths designers and makers are going to for ergonomic perfection and the effects it has upon on board lifestyle.

Caroline White discusses the possibilities with Francesca Muzio, co-founder FM Architettura D’Interni, Carl Sorenson, founder-CEO The Nanz Company, and John Paul Gregory, Head of Exterior Design for Bentley Motors.

Disarming Cyber Threats

Mention cybersecurity and people become nervous at the thought of the invisible enemy. Now, with the International Maritime Organisation's ISM cybersecurity regulation on the horizon, it's time to learn how yacht design and security management can team up to thwart cybercrime at sea. Marilyn Mower hosts a panel with Francesca Bowen, head of partnerships, Darktrace, Mark Oakton, cybersecurity consultant, 360 Maritime Security Alliance and Mike Wills, co-founder and chief data officer of CSS Platinum.

The ten commandments of superyacht design

Design legend Terence Disdale’s employees all abide by his ten commandments of excellent design. But what are they? And how do they work in practice? He shares the method behind the madness with Stewart Campbell.

The sustainable engine room

A closer look at how green technology will shape the engine space, and layouts of the yachts of tomorrow. With the advent of regulations and more tightening of rules regarding emissions, as well as a push from clients, builders have to make room for additives as well as consider alternate technologies, such as hybrid systems. It poses both challenges as well as offer new opportunities to re-invent the engine room and guests spaces. Where do we stand now? And where do builders and engineers will the engine room of tomorrow will look like? Including Marcello Maggi, president Wider Yachts, Hans Konings, director Konings Yacht Consultancy and Simon Brealey, principal mechanical engineer, Lateral Naval Architects.

Make fabric the star

A stand-out, ultra-high-tech textile should be at the heart of every beautiful yacht interior. Caterina and Raffaele Fabrizio, owners of Dedar tell you how – from using fabric on the ceiling to creative new patchwork techniques – and share some of the most exciting new products soon to come to market.

Design challenge

Are you up to designing the next royal yacht? We supply the brief, you bring the wit and wisdom needed to make it a reality. Hosted by Marilyn Mower.