No matter the size of boat, designing yacht interiors involves a complicated matrix of innovation, compromise and personal taste. Interior-design specialist Ewa Eidsgaard discusses the return of gold, glassmaking’s evolution and how nailing the initial consultation saves lots of headache down the line.
What are the biggest design challenges when it comes to yacht interiors?
The need for innovation—that’s always a challenge. And a yacht is a place of leisure, so you have to consider how sun cream, saltwater or heat will impact the materials you choose.
Any design meeting with a client is effectively the tip of an iceberg. If you’re considering a large stone sculpture, for example, it needs to be decided in the very early stages in case the walls and floor need to be reinforced. Leave it too late, and it can cause extra costs and delays.
What trends are prominent today?
Ten years ago, white metal finishes like nickel and polished chrome became popular. Now gold is coming back. But yacht design is less about fashion and more an evolution of the lifestyle.
What types of materials are coming to the fore?
What the evolution of glass has done for yacht design is incredible. It’s an old material, but it has hugely progressed. In the not-so-distant past, it wasn’t technically possible to have large glass panels with double curvature like we have today.
Owners often have an appreciation for the noble materials. While new techniques exist for resins and liquid metals, clients lean toward wood, stone and leather. And the sustainability angle is huge. First, we had natural wool carpets, then it was silk—highly luxurious but totally impractical—and then came a wave of synthetic silk. But I think clients will now be more conscious of the impact of having “plastic” carpet. Our client briefs today increasingly request eco credentials for every single material listed.