Open to the world. Creating transparencies. Breaking down barriers. The contact with nature and the relationship with it has always been important for man and primary in architecture. But never before has it been so vital, thanks to the lockdowns of the pandemic and greater awareness of sustainability. Also (and above all) when it comes to boats.
The sea is at an ancestral level the symbol of freedom , of adventure and travel. The boat is the means to think about them but also to reach them.
More and more people want to have a boat, set sail and indulge in the pleasure of sailing.
With impressive market estimates: according to the Global Order Book prepared by the Boat International magazine, 1024 projects are under construction, more than 40 kilometers of yachts that will arrive in the short term and until 2026. With Italy holding the leadership in terms of creations from 24 meters up.
The leitmotiv in the interiors are spacious and versatile environments, open and in spatial continuity between in and out, comfort and style. Maximum personalization.
"And natural light, as much as possible and everywhere; indoor and outdoor spaces that can be used flexibly. Everything hinges on the distribution of spaces and volumes, on technical factors and on aesthetic standards. But without sacrificing speed and performance. These are the compasses that guide the course of our company ", says Gennaro Candida De Matteo, CEO of Next Yacht Group, which includes the historic brands Maiora, AB Yachts and Cbi Navi.
And there is no lack of attention to lifestyle, to the sensory experience on board. Comfort is a priority, new areas acquire importance.
"The main salon on a megayacht was once the center of attraction, with a formal dining area," says the lawyer. Alberto Galassi, CEO of Ferretti Group, which with the CRN and Custom Line brands decline the wishes of the most demanding owners.
"Today customers prefer comfortable and welcoming areas and ask for the extra space to be dedicated to places such as home theater, gyms or halls massages. And private rooms where you can work, study and hold online meetings, quiet and isolated areas, where you can move around and be pleasantly".
Yachting as an emotional experience above all. "The yacht is a kind of adventure seeking escape" says Jozeph Forakis, artistic director of CL Yachts, "an epic moment in which external exploration coincides with internal contemplation".
Bringing the suggestions of a home on board is no longer enough. Design and construction processes are the focal points of shipbuilding to create boats with the lowest possible environmental impact.
"It is a fundamental topic today, both during construction and during their 'life' at sea and in the years to follow", says Mario Pedol co-founder together with Massimo Gino by Nauta Design.
"As regards the choice of materials for the outfitting, about 30% of our customers have already opted for the use of sustainable or recyclable materials. We are currently working on a motor project above 100 meters where the external decks will be built with a sustainable material instead of teak".
The introduction of eco-friendly materials is a topic on which construction sites are focusing. "VanDutch has always paid a certain attention to eco-sustainability, compatibly with the technologies and materials made available in this last decade", says Fabio Planamente ceo of Cantiere del Pardo, which the Dutch brand belongs to.
"An example is the use of teak synthetic, recyclable at the end of the life of the product. Today, for the production of hulls, we are trying to also use resins that can be partially recovered and reused".
Research is therefore the basis of everything. "Thanks to the relationship between the technical offices, the designers and the style offices, we have gradually introduced materials that satisfy the tastes of the owners while limiting the environmental impact", says Giovanna Vitelli, vice-president of the Group Azimut | Benetti.
"Several types of eco-decking are already available today as an alternative to natural teak and the use of FSC wood has been extended to almost all. We are also experimenting with cork as an alternative but also materials made with natural fibers such as linen, entirely biodegradable".
Finishes produced of organic origin or regenerated is a theme also felt by Giuseppina Arena, interior designer with a consolidated experience in shipbuilding: "Another equally important component is the use of furniture elements made from materials deriving from recycling processes; accuracy in the choice of materials in the design process plays a fundamental role when the goal is to reduce weights to obtain better performance and reduce consumption".
Alberto Galassi in this regard emphasizes that the green turning point on materials is fundamental: "From ecological paints to sustainable teak, up to linen fiber panels, recycled fabrics and leathers or eco-sustainable materials for better sound insulation. A large part of the Group's investments in design and engineering also aim to reduce the share of electricity or air conditioning needed on board ".
Still on the subject of materials Patricia Urquiola called by Sanlorenzo for the interior design for the SD90/s of Sanlorenzo Yachts, has focused its research on the use of raw materials from alternative sources: "In a optics of circularity of the materials, inside the yacht, the boiserie are covered with Paper Factor in ribbed recycled paper", explains Cavalier Fabio Perotti president and CEO of Sanlorenzo, "the details of the ceilings and furnishings are made with bio-resins while the forward wall of the saloon was made of recycled glass".
The hulls project is always the focal point for sustainability: "We are focused on their efficiency on weight containment," says Martin Lo, yachts director of CL Yachts. our goal is attention to consumption". A topic on which all shipyards concentrate their resources.
"For some time", adds Perotti of Sanlorenzo, "the Group has been working for the responsible development of yachts and superyachts, carrying out projects such as the exclusive strategic partnership with Siemens Energy on the methanol fuel cell.
In Azimut | Benetti research has focused in recent years on two parallel tracks. "That is", explains Giovanna Vitelli "reduction of consumption aimed at the progressive reduction of CO2 (carbon dioxide) and NOx (nitrogen oxide) emissions and experimentation in the field of diesel propulsions-electric and hybrid, obtaining concrete results in both cases.
And in a historical moment where the war conflict between Russia and Ukraine unfortunately brings the supply of raw materials of all kinds to its knees, it is now only right to turn our thoughts towards alternative forms of food. "We are focusing on hydrogen", underlines Fabio Ermetto of the yard Baglietto, "but even before the situation in Ukraine. Trying to use green sources is a duty towards the planet.
We must also be realistic: it is unthinkable, in the short / medium term, for boats of our size, a total replacement of classic energy sources ('zero emissions'), but we can work to find hybrid solutions that allow us to reduce the consumption of hydrocarbons as much as possible.
With this in mind, the Bzero project has as its primary objective to increase the electric cruising range of the boat in zero emissions mode.
The system involves the implementation of a hydrogen production module which, starting from filtered and deionized sea water, produces this gas, thanks to an electrolyzers system. This is one of the next nautical destinations. The route is plotted.