To celebrate the legacy of the late French designer Christian Liaigre, we round-up his greatest interior design successes at sea, including Abeking & Rasmussen explorer Cloudbreak and Perini Navi sailing yacht Seahawk.
Abeking & Rasmussen’s 75.3 metre Cloudbreak was an instant hit when she splashed in 2016, scooping a Neptune at the World Superyacht Awards and the gong for Best Interior at the Showboats Design Awards thanks to the expertise of Christian Liaigre. As a hardy explorer cruising to remote locations, such as the Antarctic, it was important that guests on board were cossetted in a warm and welcoming interior. Liaigre’s vision was to reflect the feel of a chalet – warm and cosy in the evenings and light-filled during the day. Liquidambar veneer contrasts lighter woods such as Hornbeam flooring and brushed or scored pine, while camel-coloured leathers and greys continue throughout.
'Urban at sea' is how Liaigre depicts the interior design of the multi-award-winning sailing yacht Vertigo. The ambition was to turn a state-of-the-art 70 metre sailing yacht into a distinguished work of art. A natural palette of walnut, darkened waxed oak and flashes of steel create a contemporary, loft-style feel throughout, set against crisp white leathers and light soft furnishings. Luxurious, understated and functional too, her interiors are aligned with the owner’s passion for world cruising, with furniture bolted to the floor and storage spaces built in case of rough seas.
Guillaume Rolland, head of Liaigre’s yachting division, pins Seahawk as his favourite project to date. The 60 metre Perini Navi sailing yacht hit the water in 2013 and was designed as a performance-cruiser that could battle her way around a racecourse as well as she could provide five-star comfort and luxury to her owners. The owners approached Liaigre after seeing the interiors on board Rosehearty and wanted to mimic her modern-classic feel. The result: an aesthetic mix of old and new, pairing teak with silver metallics, with modern curves and custom-designed furniture.
The interiors on board Feadship superyacht Letani were the result of a seamless collaboration between Liaigre and Sinot Exclusive Yacht Design. Liaigre handled the interior styling, opting for a calm, warm and contemporary look, with light fabrics, natural leathers and wood tones. Panels on the walls and bulkheads are smoked eucalyptus, with deeply smoked, washed oak underfoot, illuminated by large floor-to-ceiling windows. Liaigre also came up with the idea for a “nook”: a cosy, informal lounge area with discreet sliding doors, neatly slotted between the dining room and saloon on the main deck. The space features a big plush sofa, bookcase and television, and offers a quiet place to kick back isolated from the rest of the boat.
Impressive both inside and out, Perini Navi sailing yacht Rosehearty perfectly captures the spirit of classic yachting with a modern twist. Her Liaigre interiors are traditional and nautical with mahogany, pine and teak, paired with crisp white linen sofas and Hermes leather banquettes. What’s more, almost every piece of furniture on board double as storage space. Rosehearty is often spotted leading the fleet on the racecourse but more recently returned from a navigation of the North-West passage.