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ICON Yachts Design Challenge: The Judges Choose

Designers’ responses to the ICON Yachts Design Challenge have been scrutinised by the Dutch builder. Dixon Yacht Design, Ivan Erdevicki, H2 Yacht Design and Newcruise each presented their vision for the conversion of 1973 Boele-built HR MS Blommendal, a 59m survey vessel like the one pictured below – and ICON rewarded the strengths of each.

Newcruise: Best contemporary design

Newcruise’s previous conversions include the explorer-style motor yachts 55m Penguin and 62m Absinthe, and it followed the theme here.

‘We see it as an ocean discovery vessel for a private owner, worldwide cruising from Arctic waters to equatorial destinations, under safe and comfortable conditions,’ says Newcruise owner and director Roland Krueger. ‘This picks up from her duties as a training ship for Dutch naval crews.’

The look is contemporary, with natural wave-like curves in the forward superstructure preventing sleek lines veering into aggressiveness.

‘It is a balanced design maintaining the vessel’s history while adjusting the volumes thoughtfully to their new intended purpose,’ says Krueger.

Ivan Erdevicki: Best classic design

Ivan Erdevicki’s completed refit conversions include a 1924 18m wooden sailing yacht and a 38m aluminium crew vessel. Here, he took a conservative approach.

‘The plan was to retain the classical hull lines and integrate the new superstructure,’ he says, ‘to retain the backbone of the old superstructure and with extended decks, achieve spacious accommodation and entertainment decks.’

H2 Yacht Design: Best futuristic design

H2 Yacht Design used a communal exercise, asking members of the design team to draw their vision, then choosing the one design director Jonny Horsfield felt most likely to ‘capture the imagination of a client looking for something different.’

Dixon Yacht Design: Best state-of-the-art design

Dixon turned in a modern interpretation of the explorer yacht lifestyle.

‘Our aim was to complement the classic hull with a low-profile superstructure and enhanced space,’ says Dixon director Bill Dixon. ‘We added promenade decks aft, while extending the superstructure forward allows the bridge to be enlarged and relocated to provide a higher skydeck with panoramic views.’

Citing contemporary trends in architecture and industrial design Dixon also worked with, not against, such features as the funnel.

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