Yachting Art Magazine

The world’s most innovative superyachts named by BOAT International at the 2020 Design & Innovation Awards

The BOAT International Superyacht Design Festival kicks off by honouring the world’s most outstanding superyacht designs at the globally acclaimed Design & Innovation Awards. Topping the charts for both their interior and exterior design were 93m Feadship motor yacht Lady S, known for having the world’s first IMAX cinema on board, and 34.1m sailing yacht Liara, each taking home two awards for their clever and sleek aesthetics throughout. 

The world’s most innovative superyachts named by BOAT International at the 2020 Design & Innovation Awards
The world’s most innovative superyachts named by BOAT International at the 2020 Design & Innovation Awards
The world’s most innovative superyachts named by BOAT International at the 2020 Design & Innovation Awards

The awards ceremony is followed by two days of immersive and future-thinking seminars with headline speakers including Kai-Uwe Bergmann from Bjarke Ingels' world-famous architecture studio ‘BIG’, design legend Piero Lissoni, Matthew Cruickshank, Google’s Art Director and the man behind the daily animation, and Bentley Motors’ Head of Exterior Design, John Paul Gregory.

An impressive 151 entries across 14 categories were put to an international jury of design and industry experts for rigorous judging. The judges scored the yachts on a variety of technical excellence and aesthetic criteria, as well as awarding marks for innovation. 

Superyacht designer and judge Donald Starkey, commented: “This year’s entrants have been so varied, demonstrating the scope of what’s possible in the world of superyachts, but making it a tough task to score and award a single winner for each category.”  

This year saw new categories introduced to reflect the evolving and forward-thinking world of superyacht design, including Best New Series, awarded to the clever LeVen 90. Created with intense owner-input with the Dutch design firm Vripak and built by nearby Van der Valk, the judges concluded there is nothing quite like it for an easy-living, no-shoes-required lifestyle. Plus, the new Eco Award, taken by Cerri Cantieri Navali’s 31m Vanadis for its advanced hybrid power system.  

The Outstanding Lifestyle Feature was awarded to SilverYachts’ 85.3m Bold who stood out for showing something totally new and undeniably bold. Designer Espen Øino put a new spin on the typical owner’s deck saloon, creating a multifunction loft-style winter garden incorporating moving floors, sliding glass walls and glass balustrades for indoor and outdoor living with uninterrupted views. 

The awards evening also recognised upcoming talent in which students competed for the title of Young Designer of the Year. The junior designers displayed exceptional design skill and the ability to a look into the future when considering a design brief. The competition was topped by Valentin Weigand who excelled in every aspect of the task with his forward-thinking and wellbeing-focused concept, Plato.   

The final prize of the gala presentation unveiled the Lifetime Achievement Award to British-born designer Martin Francis. Francis’ career took him from furniture design to helping solve the structural support for the Louvre’s glass pyramid to designing some of the most iconic yachts in the world including the groundbreaking 73m Eco.

Marilyn Mower, BOAT International’s Editor-at-Large and co-chair to the awards, commented: “It is a privilege to be surrounded by such imagination and determination to innovate; it lifts the entire genre of superyachts. The designers behind all the entries to this year’s awards deserve to be applauded”. 

The BOAT International Design and Innovation Awards winners hold an important place in the future of yacht design with each one pushing the entire industry ahead. It is a wonderful thing to watch and to celebrate,” added Cecile Gauert, co-chair to the awards and Executive Editor, BOAT International US Edition.

The winners of the BOAT International Design & Innovation Awards and Young Designer Award 2020 :

•    Outstanding Exterior Design Motor Yachts – 24m to 49.9m: Race 
•    Outstanding Exterior Design Motor Yachts – 50m and above: Lady S 
•    Outstanding Exterior Design Sailing Yachts: Liara 
•    Best Motor Yachts Interior Design - below 500GT: Calypso 
•    Best Motor Yachts Interior Design - above 500GT: Lady S 
•    Best Sailing Yachts Interior Design: Liara 
•    Best Naval Architecture Semi-Displacement or Planing Motor Yachts: Zalanka 
•    Best Naval Architecture Displacement Motor Yachts: Najiba 
•    Best Naval Architecture Sailing Yachts: Canova 
•    Best New Series: LeVen 90 
•    Eco Award: Vanadis 
•    Outstanding Lifestyle Feature: Bold 
•    Innovation of the Year: 4-ply complex curve structural glass on board Syzygy 818 
•    Tender of the Year – Limousine: Solas 
•    Tender of the Year – Open: Tender 15 
•    Young Designer of the Year: Valentin Weigand with Plato 
•    Lifetime Achievement Award: Martin Francis 
•    Judges’ Commendation – Holistic Design: Scout 
•    Judges’ Commendation – Lighting: Excellence 

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