From the outside, it is hard to look at the world’s largest superyacht projects with anything other than wonder and amazement, such are the colossal dimensions of each project, their magnificence and the astronomical sums of money required to acquire them. However, when one learns to draw you’ll often hear the expression that ‘learning to draw is learning to see’ and this notion can be applied to many other pursuits and sectors. When one learns to see the superyacht industry for what it is, one quickly discovers that not all large custom projects are, in fact, created equally. In reality, there is a scale of design quality that slides from the mundane to the extraordinary, and even beyond, to the ridiculous (especially if conceptual design is included within the mix).

It seems, at times, that the industry as a whole is not exactly clear on what it wants from the design community. On the one hand, you have a large group of individuals that bemoan with regularity the scourge of the homogenised ‘big white boat’. On the other hand, you have those individuals that turn their noses up at any project that breaks too readily from the status quo and the accepted yachting aesthetic. And, on occasion, you find people that fall within both of these groups without necessarily being aware of their own hypocrisy.

It is fair to say that opinions on the custom design sector are incredibly subjective given differences in personal tastes; consider how utterly unique projects such as S/Y A can divide opinion.

As part of our ongoing research for The Superyacht Owner Report, we want the industry to tell us who they believe to be the market’s strongest and weakest full-service (interior and exterior) custom superyacht design houses from both the build and client side of the spectrum.

To share your anonymous feedback, based on your direct professional experiences, on which studios have improved the efficacy of a custom project, and those that have simply added to their complexity, please complete this short survey.

Survey: Large custom superyacht design


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