Superyacht industry gathers in Austria for the 2014 Superyacht Design Symposium

2014-02-23By Risa Merl

The superyacht industry has descended on Kitzbühel, Austria, for the 2014 Superyacht Design Symposium, hosted by Boat International Media.

This year, the Superyacht Design Symposium (SDS) enjoys a new location – with snow-laden Kitzbühel a contrast to previous host city of sunny Miami, Florida – as well as an exciting format. The event runs 24 to 25 February at the Bio-Hotel Stanglwirt. The Superyacht Design Symposium commences on Monday morning with an opening address by Boat International Media CEO Tony Harris and SDS Chairman Nigel Campbell (pictured above, left).

The two-day event, attracting yacht owners and prominent members of the yachting industry, fosters debate and discourse in a dynamic open forum. Industry experts, designers and yacht owners take to the stage to debate on various hot-button topics on superyacht design. Questions and discussion from the audiences is, of course, encouraged.

Discussion topics on day one include ‘Defining Innovation in Design’ and ‘Moving Forward with Interiors.’ In addition, 10 authoritative superyacht owners discuss ‘What Owners Really Want’. Day two tackles topics such as ‘Managing Tonnage with Clever Design’ and ‘Holistic Design’. And for the first time, this year’s SDS programme includes breakout sessions. These technical workshops with will delve deeper into specialized superyacht design subjects, such as: ‘Designing Helipads,’ ‘Greener, Faster Sailing Yachts,’ ‘Designing for the Asian Market,’ and ‘Stability, Comfort & Seakeeping.’

Networking is a focus of the event, and yacht owners and designers will the have the opportunity to meet on a one-on-one basis in the Swarovski ‘Crystal Atelier’ showroom, located in the Stanglwirt Library.

The SDS programme is complemented by first-class social events, including the 2014 ShowBoats Design Awards, which will take place on the evening of 24 February. The gala evening will be held at the stunning Swarovski Crystal Worlds in Wattens, Austria, and will be attended by SDS delegates as well as yacht owners, designers and the teams behind the finalist yachts.

Embracing its new alpine location, the SDS social programme also invites ski enthusiasts to take part in the Blohm + Voss Ski Cup, while non-skiers can enjoy toboggan rides and an après ski party. A themed mountain lodge party, where guests are encouraged to don lederhosen and dirndls, will round off the two days.

The fresh approach to the 2014 Superyacht Design Symposium has been well received by the superyacht industry thus far, and Boat International Media looks forward to a successful event.

Boat International media will be tweeting at @BIM_Events, and our editors will be tweeting via @boatint and @nautiwords on the hashtag #SDS2014 during the Superyacht Design Symposium. Please share your thoughts, experiences and images on this hashtag throughout the event.