In 2014, custom tender builder Yachtwerft Meyer, based in northern Germany, decided to take a new approach to tender design with a line of semi-custom boats that would eventually be known as the Silverline project series. The shipyard then called upon Hamid Bekradi of Milan-based HBD Studios to lead the design collaboration along with the Yachtwerft Meyer in-house team of engineers and craftsmen.
Following the decision to collaborate, Bekradi devised a general design and brand strategy in order to accurately place the design within the shipyard’s existing philosophy and what the shipyard aims for in a design. As Bekradi explains, “The goal was to go beyond the common perception of beauty. Therefore, elegance seemed to be the thing that can encompass both the functionality and aesthetics at the same time, while representing what Yachtwerft Meyer stands for”.
As identified among its design strategy, the shipyard’s core values are trust and quality, and as a result, Bekradi took it upon himself to translate these two values into the design of the new tender project. “The design approach in general also draws inspiration from the field of car design, in terms of paying meticulous attention to the harmony of the proportions, quality of the exterior surfaces and well-designed details,” Bekradi explains.
In addition to Bekradi’s own research, the shipyard has its own methods for airborne and structural noise reduction on board. As a result, the tender’s cabin has been decoupled from the structure, as it is on a superyacht. Furthermore, the new tender has moulded cabin roof grab rails allowing crewmembers to reach the foredeck safely, panoramic full-length lateral windows and a custom-milled champagne cooler.
“A successful tender design, in my opinion, is the one that does not compromise the aesthetics and the elegance of the boat after all the technical and operational issues are addressed in the design process,” says Bekradi. “What we are witnessing today is that tenders are no longer considered as just a boat to get to the shore and back. We can clearly see that tenders are competing in design with the superyachts. Thus, the stakes are set at a higher level, together with the owner's expectations.
During the design process, Bekradi identifies the main challenge of the semi-custom range as providing the owner with the highest level of versatility possible, when it comes to the general arrangement of the boat. Through collaborating with the Yachtwerft Meyer in-house team, the team ensured that compromises were avoided in the styling and design of the tender.
In 2017, the first 9m limousine Silverline tender project was delivered by Yachtwerft Meyer for the 85.3m Lürssen Areti.