Sweet dreams: The expert’s guide to creating the perfect on board bed
by Zoe Dickens
Your ideal superyacht vacation may be cruising the gently sparkling waters of the Bahamas or exploring the icy passages of the Arctic but, whether it’s relaxation or adventure you have in mind, it’s hard to enjoy yourself without a decent night’s sleep. Between making big decisions about the layout and considering the finer details of art and interior design, it can be easy to let practical matters such as beds and mattresses pass you by.
However, with personal preference playing such a large part, this is a choice worth spending a little time on. Here the experts from Hästens, whose beds are installed on some of the finest superyachts around the world, break down everything you need to know about buying the perfect on board beds for you and your guests.
1. Comfort is key
The most important thing to think about when buying a new bed is comfort. One third of your life is spent in bed sleeping so you need to invest in a bed that will help rebuild and balance your body. We only use what we consider to be the finest natural materials, which are sustainably produced and ethically sourced, so they are as easy on your conscience as they are on your body.
The foundation for Hästens’ beds is horsehair as it has some great properties. Not only does every curled strand of horsehair works as a tiny spring that provides support and pliability, it also comes with its own built-in ventilation system. This means the bed can transport any excess heat and moisture from your body during sleep, enabling you to get uninterrupted, rejuvenating sleep without being too cold or too warm.
2. It’s okay to stick with what you know
There isn't much difference between the beds you use at home and the ones you use on board so if you’ve found a bed you like you can simply buy a second for your yacht. If you do need a bed for a small space or an unusual shape then Hästens can supply bespoke measurements to fit seamlessly in any cabin but, either way, the comfort remains the same.
3. Be sure to leave plenty of time if you’re going bespoke
The very nature of a yacht means many will require bespoke beds and there are many brands that make gorgeous custom pieces. However, be sure to get your order in early. For Hästens, timings depend completely on the request as each one is dealt with individually, and the process can take anywhere between two and 12 weeks. Of course, the upside of going bespoke is that the client can be entirely involved in the size and colour of the finished product.
4. Choose natural for your childrens' cabins
When buying a bed for a child it is important to looking for one that can regulate temperature and absorb moisture. A child's, or anyone’s, perspiration during the night is 98% water so it evaporates very easily if you sleep on a bed that breathes. We use cotton as a key component to wick away moisture and high humidity. Non-porous synthetic materials offer barely any ventilation and actually retain moisture. Cotton, however, allows children to stay dry and comfortable by circulating the air around their bodies.
5. Always try before you buy
It sounds obvious but the best way to choose a mattress really is to try it out first. The comfort of every mattress is individual and, as personal preference is such a huge factor, it’s always best to get a good feel for a mattress before you buy it.
That said, we believe that you get the best night’s sleep in organic, natural materials that support your body completely. The feel of each mattress completely depends upon how you are built. You cannot cheat your way to the perfect sleep so it's worth investing in.
Choosing beds for guest cabins is much the same as hotels. If you are buying non-specifically for an individual it’s best to make sure the bed is comfortable and breathable as this will suit a variety of needs.
6. Make sure your crew know how to care for your bed
Our mattresses evolve organically with time and actually become much more comfortable with age but do need looking after to ensure performance is maintained. We recommend that crew massage beds from the centre out towards the edges at regular intervals, which helps them to retain their comfort for a longer period of time. A particular issue with natural material mattresses that are not cared for properly is the creation of body prints with a lack of cushioning. The only way to try to get the mattress back to its original state once this has happened is to massage it every two weeks for 12 weeks, then turn and flip.
We do our best to help clients by supplying a schedule and emailing crew when its time to massage and flip mattresses. It is like any other luxury product, they always require a bit of TLC to keep them looking and doing their job at their best.