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How long does it take to design a yacht?

Lead graphic: Van Oossanen Naval Architects

Designing yachts: how long does it take to design a yacht?

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Graphic: Harrison Eidsgaard

In a world where conformity is the norm, the superyacht industry stands apart. Designing a yacht is a wholly personalised process, determined by a wholly personalised brief. How will your yacht be used? Where will you cruise? Will it charter? What hobbies will it cater for? And of course, what’s the budget? After that, all that remains is to sketch out your dream.

Starting the design process

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Beginning the design process is a daunting task, even for the most seasoned yacht owners. But designing a superyacht is a smooth ride with an experienced designer on your side. Preferably one with naval architecture expertise, too. The interior design phase tends to take the longest, but creative flare and knowledge are key to getting it right.

Contact our construction team

Translating your dream superyacht concept to paper is tricky, and this is where our skilled construction team can assist. At Burgess, we understand the building process. We factor in material costs. We project manage the entire process for you. We can even introduce a designer. How long does it take to design a superyacht? As long as you need.

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Graphic: Oceanco

How will your yacht be used?

If you regard your yacht as a boat to sail on, you’ll enjoy the seven seas. But if you design your yacht as a go-anywhere home, you can enjoy the world. Watersports enthusiasts will like a rejuvenating beach club for close-to-the-water action. Intrepid explorers will value amphibious tenders or helicopter capability. If al fresco dining is top of your list, a sprawling sun deck with bar, grill and jacuzzi is a popular option. 

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Where will you be sailing your yacht?

The balmy Bahamian waters are a popular winter cruising ground, but they require a shallow draft. To best experience the cool trade winds of the Caribbean, a sailing yacht is the ticket. For chic but smaller ports, such as Sydney Harbour or Capri, only yachts below 70m will fit. And if the higher latitudes are calling, be sure to build an ice-class vessel.

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What features would you need on your yacht?

Storage can be a contentious issue on board, so if you want to kit the boat out with the latest watertoys and tenders, make sure to leave enough space. Consider crew areas and function, too; their ability to work well under less pressure is best for everyone. Then a cinema on the sun deck for starlit movies, a spa on the lower deck for indulgent relaxation, and an underwater observation lounge can round off a boat design nicely.

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How long does the design process take?

Designing a superyacht is the most critical stage, but there is no right or wrong amount of time. The design needs to meet all your requirements, and only then is it complete. With this in mind, the average length of time to design a yacht is between nine months and a year.

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Starting the build process

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Designing a superyacht that delivers on your dream is one thing, finding a shipyard that can make that design work is another. At Burgess, our expert New Construction team is in constant communication with shipyards around the world and can advise on those best suited to deliver your yacht to the highest build quality, on schedule and to budget.

Building your superyacht

Once the first cut of steel is made, the build has begun. There are several key stages in a yacht build, which include the laying of the keel, joining of the hull and superstructure, and the exterior and interior outfitting. Even the exterior paint job can represent around one third of the total build time.

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Sea trials

Every new yacht will go through sea trials to test its performance. This is the first opportunity to find out if the finished boat can reach its contracted top speed, has great manoeuvrability, and for the yacht owner to make any final requests before final delivery.

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How long does an average build of a yacht take?

It takes an average of three to four years to build a fully-custom superyacht. Boats built on speculation by a shipyard offer shorter delivery times, which is a great option for yacht owners who don’t want to wait. But for those keen on designing their own fully bespoke superyacht, the longer build time pays dividends. 

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Delivery of your yacht

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Taking delivery of your dream yacht is an astonishing experience, and one that yacht owners relish forever. To take receipt of an exquisite boat tailored to you and your family is an exceptional feat. It is the gateway to private exploration, being exposed to once in a lifetime experiences, and cruising areas only accessible by boat or private jet. It is the final stage in creating a yacht that meets your exact needs and having the freedom to enjoy it.

Build your dream yacht with Burgess

Superyacht new builds are as varied as the people who own them. Every person’s dream has its own meaning, and every yacht design satisfies a unique vision. At Burgess, our yacht brokers and new construction team are always on hand to guide and support you throughout the entire process, from the first sketched line to the maiden voyage, and beyond. 

Contact our New Construction team to discuss your options.

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