Superyacht designers at the Superyacht Design Symposium 2015

The Legends

Pictured left to right

It’s a fact often lamented in the superyacht industry: the designers of these spectacular craft don’t get their due. It falls to _Boat Internationa_l, therefore, to lionise these hardy few, who share a patience unrivalled in the world of design. We gathered the top 50 designers for a photo shoot at the Superyacht Design Symposium 2015 to celebrate those who are at the pinnacle of the industry.

Tim Heywood
Tim Heywood Design

The most charming man in yachting, yacht designer Tim Heywood is a true A-lister. He started his career with Jon Bannenberg before branching out on his own in 1996. His prolific output includes the hugely successful Limited Editions series with Amels and Feadship projects such as 808, now named Symphony, at 101m the yard’s biggest boat.
My favourite design… “That’s like asking which my favourite child is!”

Remi tessier
Rémi Tessier Design

When this French former cabinetmaker walks into a room, people nudge each other and whisper: “That’s Rémi Tessier!” Arguably the outstanding interior designer of his day, he’s self-taught when it comes to yachts and defines himself as a craftsman of luxury.
My favourite design… “Every single project is special to me, I love them all!”

Espen Øino
Espen Øino International

Øino’s Monaco-based studio is taking over the world. With projects in build in six countries and a recent output comprising the 140m Ocean Victory, 95.2m Kismet, 89m Infinity and the 77m Silverfast, Øino is at full throttle.
My favourite design… “The latest on the drawing board! But I am very fond of Skat and the Silver series”

Terence Disdale
Terence Disdale Design

Another superyacht designer who started his career under Jon Bannenberg, yacht designer Terence Disdale opened his own firm in 1973 so he could spend more time fishing and less time at a desk. It didn’t quite work out, as hit followed hit for the London studio. It soon became one of the industry’s leading lights, to the point where it has more interior designs in the world’s top 101 superyachts than anyone else.
My favourite design… “The 162.5m Eclipse

Andrew Winch
Andrew Winch Designs

Yacht designer Andrew Winch is one of the few superyacht designers to have successfully moved into more mainstream territories, including jets and architecture. But his boating output hasn’t suffered – quite the opposite, with recent launches such as the 91.5m Equanimity and 99m Madame Gu reinforcing this studio's pedigree.
My favourite design… “Truthfully it is every single one of them”

The sailing greats

Pictured left to right

Bill Dixon
Dixon Yacht Design

Dixon, 57, fronts this eponymous studio, which designs everything from production motor cats to sailing superyachts, but his first is his favourite: the 36m Yanneke Too, launched in 1996.
Sailing icon… The 31m Ron Holland-designed sloop Whirlwind XII

Ed Dubois
Dubois Yachts

Names don’t come much bigger. The 63-year-old yacht designer Ed Dubois has had hit after hit: Escapade, Como (renamed Lady May), Mondango 3, Zefira. But we’re really excited about his 58m performance sloop at Royal Huisman.
Sailing icon… The 1973 Derecktor Salty Goose

Bill tripp
_Tripp Desig_n

The only American in our line-up launched his company in 1984 – and never looked back. Tripp, 60, is the son of a designer and grew up “tinkering on a boat”. His biggest project to date, an 85m in the final stages of completion at Oceanco, is set to break cover soon.
Sailing icon… The 49m Herreshoff Westward

Andre Hoek
Hoek Design Naval Architects

No one does elegance quite like Hoek, who founded his company in 1986. With sleek J Class yachts and timeless sloops, the Dutchman, 60, has cornered the “gentleman’s yacht” market.
Sailing icon… The J Class Endeavour. Own the iconic Endeavour, currently for sale asking €19,950,000

Mario Pedol
Nauta Yachts

Pedol’s name was all over the wires in 2013 when the world first caught a glimpse of Azzam, the biggest superyacht yet constructed. The Italian designer, 60, penned the exterior of the 180m Lürssen, but it’s his Milanese studio’s prolific output of custom and production sailing yachts that makes him a great.
Sailing icon… The 42m Herreshoff Mariette of 1915

The Brit Pack

Pictured left to right

Justin Redman
Redman Whiteley Dixon

Redman, 51, and his co-directors have become a new establishment in British yacht design, with massive projects such as the exteriors of Vava II and Hampshire II under their belts.
USP of British yacht design... “Bespoke Britain: small, niche and very special indeed”

Martin Francis
Francis Design

The 73-year-old superyacht designer Martin Francis was the technical expert for the 110m yacht A and has a big new Lürssen project in its final stages of completion.
On British yacht design… “Britain’s design USP is a result of great education from places such as Central Saint Martins, the RCA and the AA”

Steve Gresham
Gresham Yacht Design

Once of the Williams F1 team, Gresham, 48, moved on to yachts and went solo in 2013.
On British yacht design... “[It is] like F1, where the teams are mostly based in Britain. The British psyche lends itself to creative design and engineering”

Ken Freivokh
Ken Freivokh Design

A starry back catalogue includes exterior styling and interior design on the iconic 88m sailer Maltese Falcon.
On the British yacht industry... “There are only a few yards, mainly busy with production or smaller yachts. It’s a pity as the skills are still here”

Mark Tucker
Design Unlimited

Tucker, 51, has penned the ultra-modern 30m sailer Hamilton, and refitted the 65m classic motor Shemara.
On British yacht design… “Britain is a nation of seafarers so boats are embedded in our heritage. It is part of our culture to explore their possibilities”

Andrew Langton
Reymond Langton

Langton, 44, and Pascale Reymond set up shop in 2001, and designed the interiors of 134m Serene and 95.2m Kismet.
On British yacht design… “We created industrial design and continue to be world leaders in many [design] fields. This exciting activity brings international design talent to our shores”

Jonny Horsfield
H2 Yacht Design

Horsfield, 48, was the go-to designer for refits, before doing new builds such as 54m Talisman C, 82m _Graceful _and 125m Maryah.
USP of British yacht design… “Our cultural ability to problem-solve as well as not being too rigid or pedantic with rules or conventions”

Dickie Bannenberg
Bannenberg & Rowell Design

Son of famous designer Jon, Dickie, 53, proved himself with yachts such as 60m Bacarellaand the 72m Feadship Predator.
USP of British design... “An unconventional blend of irreverence and tradition, coupled with a pioneering outlook towards new ideas”

Simon Rowell
Bannenberg & Rowell Design

Creative director Rowell, 46, designed the interiors on 85m Lürssen Pacific and 65m Heesen Galactica Star.
On British yacht design… “Jon Bannenberg was an Australian who found London to be creative and receptive in the 1960s. So maybe it is the environment as much as the natives”

Jonathan Rhoades
Rhoades Young Design

Rhoades, 42, started in architecture before turning to the sea at Ken Freivokh Design. Projects include the interior of 48m Royal Huisman sailing yacht Wisp.
On British yacht design… “Perhaps it is the intoxicating history of science, craft, music, art and general irreverence in Britain that creates such a healthy environment in which to design”

The Global Players

Pictured left to right

Malcolm Mckeon
Malcolm Mckeon Yacht Design

Formerly at Dubois, Mckeon, 56, has penned more than 50 30m-plus sail and motor yachts.
Favourite yacht feature… “Carbon fibre masts and rigging. These have dramatically enhanced performance as well as improving the level of comfort while sailing”

Tim Ulrich
Beiderbeck Designs

Ulrich, 42, is one of eight naval architects and designers at the German studio, with sailing yachts Phocea and the Swan 105RS Ti-Coyo in its portfolio.
Favourite yacht feature… “Being close to the water is a most outstanding feature”

Immo Lüdeling
Beiderbeck Designs

Lüdeling, 43, is part of a German studio that has turned out about 50 projects averaging 53m.
Favourite yacht feature... “A terraced or liftable bathing platform. It’s the perfect way of being close to the water, even on big boats”

Jacques Pierrejean
Pierrejean Design

The French studio was set up 35 years ago by Jacques Pierrejean, 62. Most notably he penned 141m Yas, the eighth- largest yacht in the world.
On yacht design… “It is exciting to think about the interior in harmony with the spirit of the external design concept.”

Frank Neubelt
Frank Neubelt Yacht Design of NC2

Neubelt, 54, set up German firm Newcruise in 1990, and a new company in 2012. The 115m Luna is one of his.
Favourite yacht feature… “Characterful design: Luna’s long outdoor pool and Siren’s folding helipad”. Superyacht Siren is for sale.

Philippe Briand
Philippe Briand & Vitruvius

The son of an Olympic sailor, the Frenchman, 57, has penned America’s Cup yachts, big sailers such as 67m Vertigo and tough motor yachts under the Vitruvius brand.
Favourite yacht feature… “The carbon wheel of a 100ft+ sailing yacht – and to be the helmsman”

Luiz de Basto
De Basto Designs

The Miami-based De Basto has designed hundreds of motor boats and superyachts, and was a WSA finalist in 2014 for The Big Blue.
Favourite yacht feature… “Bulkheads and balconies that can lower to open the interior to the outdoors”

Richard Hein
The A Group

Hein, 56, was president of Oceanco until 2004 and has created more than 18 yachts over 50m, including 101m I Dynasty by Kusch Yachts.
Favourite yacht feature… “The use of glass surfaces as construction material, with all the inherent design rules and construction challenges”

Peder Eidsgaard
Eidsgaard Design

The London studio of Norwegian designer Eidsgaard, 43, has risen quickly since it opened in 2005, with 78m Feadship Tango among its triumphs.
Favourite yacht feature... “Open spaces and long vistas”

Gord Galbraith
Gregory C Marshall Naval Architect

The partnership between Galbraith, 46, and Greg Marshall has yielded yachts including iconic explorer Big Fish.
Favourite yacht feature… “The beach club. Despite a superyacht’s size and luxury, yachting for me is always about being close to the water”

The female designers

Pictured left to right

Francesca Muzio
FM Architettura

This Italian house, led by Muzio, crosses disciplines, from refits on superyachts such as the 52m Amore Mio II to designing the Signature Suites in the Shangri-La hotel at the Shard in London.
Do women bring anything different to boat design? “It’s not a matter of sex, but the passion that led each person into that job”

Paola Galeazzi
Zuccon International Project

As one half of the venerable studio, Galeazzi has worked on production sports fishers and the 60m CRN J’ade, featuring the world’s first drive-in tender garage.
Do women bring anything different to boat design? “There’s nothing male designers, provided they are true professionals, don’t or cannot know”

Fiona Diamond
Seymour Diamond

Diamond honed her skills working with Terence Disdale on more than 30 projects, including Eclipse and Pelorus, before going solo in 2010. She worked exclusively on the interior of Feadship’s recently launched 92.5m  Royal Romance.
What men don’t know about boats… “You’d have to ask them!”

Laura Pomponi
Luxury Projects

The Italian founded her company in 2008 and works on anything from yachts and jets to villas and penthouses. She is known for the vibrant interior of 35m Koji.  The luxury yacht Koji is now for sale
Do women bring anything different to boat design? “It’s not about being a man or a woman, but meeting a client’s expectations”

Laura Sessa
Laura Sessa

Spend some time on CRN’s 80m Chopi Chopi and you’ll soon see why Sessa won a ShowBoats Design Award for its interior. More recent is the 60m Madame Kate, the second Amels LE 199.
Do women bring anything different to boat design? “You just have to love the boats and what you create"

The female designers

Pictured left to right

Sandrine Melot
Melot + Trillo

Melot came to yachts after a successful career designing hotels, restaurants and offices – and landed with a bang. Her first interior, on the 34m Blue Princess Star, won a World Superyacht Award. Lately, she designed the interior of ISA’s 43m Philmi.
What men don’t know about boats… “It depends on the man!”

Pascale Reymond
Reymond Langton

Reymond is half of one of the most successful design duos operating today. Since forming the company with Andrew Langton in 2001, she has designed some of the most iconic boats afloat, from the 78m Titan to the 134m Serene.
Do women bring anything different to boat design? “I truly believe women deal with solitude and stress better than men”

Adriana Monk

In a former life, Monk helped shape the interiors of the modern Range Rover and Rolls-Royce Phantom, later becoming chief interior designer for Jaguar Land Rover. With boats, she designed the deck sculpture, colour scheme and graphics for the 30m WallyCento Hamilton.
Do women bring anything different to boat design? “Talent comes in many guises, male or female”

Daniela Zulli
Terence Disdale Design

Italian Zulli headed up her own design company before joining Terence Disdale Design. She has had a big hand in many of the studio’s most notable projects, including the massive 147m Lürssen Topaz.
What men don’t know about boats… “They still haven’t learnt how to put the toilet seat down after using the dayheads!”

The Dutch Masters

Pictured left to right

Marnix Hoekstra & Bart Bouwhuis

Vripack’s two creative directors lead a team of 80 and a company responsible for more than 7,000 designs since its founding in 1961. 
Why is Holland such a superyacht hub? “Because of our rich related heritage and the drive to constantly innovate and collaborate to improve the end result. It’s in our DNA”

Frank Mulder
Mulder Design

Established in 1979, this family-run studio has designed more than 600 boats, including some iconic craft such as the 35.36m Moonraker and 42.4m The World is Not Enough.
Why is Holland such a superyacht hub? “Because of our abundance of lakes, rivers and other waterways. And the word yacht comes from the Dutch jacht!”

Perry van Oossanen
Van Oossanen Naval Architects

His team are at the cutting edge of hull design. The company’s Hull Vane and Fast Displacement Hull Form are taking efficiency and comfort to the next level.
Why is Holland such a superyacht hub? “Because most of us live below sea level!”

Ronno Schouten
De Voogt Naval Architects

Schouten leads Feadship’s design department and has been busy of late, working on the hulls of the 101m project 808 and 83.5m Savannah.

Guido de Groot
Guido de Groot Design

De Groot fell in love with yachting when he saw the fourth Highlander leaving De Vries in 1986. He launched his own design firm in 1997, and is now working on yachts in Italy, Abu Dhabi and China.
Why is Holland such a superyacht hub? “Our exceptional degree of dedication, expertise, ingenuity, craftsmanship and time management”

Frank Laupman
Omega Architects

Laupman’s team have six nominations at this year’s World Superyacht Awards, for sleek, sporty Heesen yachts such as Galatea Alive and Monaco Wolf.
Why is Holland such a superyacht hub? “We know ships, design, beauty and craftsmanship”

The design duo

Pietro Mingarelli

As a designer, engineer and architect, Mingarelli has worked on more than 120 superyachts. With Tina Green, he is now designing his biggest yet.
Who is your yacht design hero…? “Tim Heywood. His designs are proof that less is more”

Tina Green

An interior designer who started off in the fashion world, Green has designed dozens of superyachts – as well as living on one. She says that it was only when joining forces with Mingarelli that she was really able to grow as a yacht designer.
Who is your yacht design hero…? “Terence Disdale. I love the way he brings together different materials. He has been a great influence on my style”

Italian Flair

Enrico Gobbi
Team For Design

Gobbi, 39, likes aggressive lines and nature-inspired touches, such as the gill-like windows on Rossinavi’s 48m Vellmari.
Italy’s design USP… “Careful attention to every detail that elevates the overall design”

Tommaso Spadolini
Design Studio Spadolini

With more than 200 yachts now afloat – including 70m Rossinavi Numptia – Spadolini, 57, has earned a reputation for classic style.
Italy’s design USP… “Italian design is often more sexy than other design schools”

Giovanni Zuccon
Zuccon International Project

Zuccon, 70, is the Ferretti Group’s designer of choice, with a portfolio that includes the 80m CRN Chopi Chopi.
Italy’s design USP… “A culture that teaches us how to integrate different design knowledge, also allowing us to find the right relationship with history, and thus to understand the present and, above all, to imagine the future”

Italian Flair

Antonio Romano
Hot Lab Yacht & Design

Romano, 36, penned the airy interior of Palumbo’s 40m Columbus Sport Hybrid – but he and his partners also do sweeping exteriors.
Italy’s design USP… “Design is part of our heritage, from industrial products to food”

 Luca Brenta
Brenta Design

Sailing yacht supremo yacht designer Luca Brenta, 60, boasts iconic designs such as the Wallygator in his locker, and picked up the Lifetime Achievement Award at the ShowBoats Design Awards.
On Italian design… “Two thousand years ago we were building Roma while you guys were barbarians!”

Lorenzo Argento
Brenta Design

Brenta’s partner Argento, 52, has penned well-known sailers including Vitters’ 37m Ghos t and now runs the design studio.
On Italian design… “From a beautiful environment to beautiful food, [Italy] educates people to a certain sensibility. Beauty educates!”

Dan Lenard
Nuvolari Lenard

Carlo Nuvolari and Dan Lenard, 47, have worked with Palmer Johnson, Perini Navi and CRN, since they set up shop 15 years ago. They can count the exterior of iconic 82m Oceanco Alfa Nero among their successes.
On Italian design… “It’s not ‘Italian design’ that sells, it’s Italian that sells, even without the design”

Portriats by Dan Annett

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