Colossal helipads and towering glass walls may turn heads, but decor has equal impact on a yacht’s personality. While these four designers have radically different visions, each adds a healthy dose of attitude to your boat’s interior. Because you know what they say: It’s what’s on the inside that counts.
Winch Design’s 262-foot Excellence pays homage to owner Herb Chambers’s private car collection, with everything from cabinets to sofas inspired by details found on icons such as the Bugatti Royale and the Ferrari Daytona Spyder. Even the bespoke window mullions subtly echo the dashboard from a 1960s Mercedes.“A custom piece has the ability to tell the story of the concept,” says Winch designer Lizzy Hart. Her favorite: the Cadillac-inspired sofa found on the bridge deck. “The generous proportions, curved form and soft fabrics are inviting, while the metal grilles and embossed leather let you know you’re sitting on something special.”
Italian designer Cristiano Gatto says that furniture not only helps create a story but often becomes a yacht’s focal point. His contemporary designs on the 163-foot Home pay particular attention to elevating what he calls “underestimated objects,” such as a shoe rack that resembles a piece of modern sculpture or a circular bookstand that is both functional and artistic. Gatto says furniture design is about “balanced research between form and function,” which is amply displayed in Home’s sky-lounge bar. The modernist showpiece features RBGW lighting that produces an intense light “to make the bar more socially functional, even if the space was designed as a more intimate, private area,” Gatto says.
Pushing sustainability in unexpected ways, Sam Sorgiovanni’s eclectic collections offer waste products “a second life” as part of his high-design furnishings. Fish skins on the bedside tables of superyacht Nirvana deliver a leather effect, while the bar on board Barbara uses specially treated puffer-fish pelts and toad-skin handles (above) for an entirely original look. “We put the marine fauna in the spotlight by using fish skins,” Sorgiovanni says, noting that his designs—which also incorporate shells, seeds, bark and stones—allow the unorthodox materials to be “seen at their best.”
Even the most functional furniture should have a sense of style. In 2019, Italian design firm Paola Lenti embodied that principle by becoming the exclusive manufacturer of “structural sofas” for San Lorenzo Yachts. Behind the handsome, contemporary look of the furniture are rugged materials and fabrics. Lenti’s firm even devised proprietary high-tech polyolefin-based recyclable yarn for its bespoke upholstery and rugs. “Our quest to constantly improve the durability and sustainability of our products has made us well suited to the harsh demands of a yacht,” says Lenti, adding that every one of her designs balances the needs of the owner with the function and character of the yacht.