With the help of the Superyacht Life Foundation’s latest outlook, Simon Wittenberg explores what the future holds for the superyacht sector in the coming year.
Having experienced first-hand what it is like to sail on a luxury 70-metre superyacht costing millions of pounds, it is a very civilised way of travelling the high seas – vessels which are akin to floating palaces and seven-star hotels. Superyachts are ultimately the reserve or the few who can afford not only to purchase such marvels of engineering but also have a plethora of funds available to run some of the most expensive means of transport in the world.
The Netherlands-based Superyacht Life Foundation’s outlook for 2023 is that it is set to be an exciting year, thanks to advances being made in the spheres of design, sustainability and adventure.
Sustainable design and eco-friendly powertrains
Beginning with the subject of sustainability, superyachts have been known to burn through hundreds of litres of fuel an hour thanks to their high-capacity engines and the weight that needs to be carried through the water. However, as technological advances have been made in recent years, there has been a marked shift to greener alternatives as the environment and protecting the planet become an even hotter topic.
More efficient hull designs to reduce fuel consumption is one example of how this is being tackled, according to the Superyacht Life Foundation. Just like in the car industry, hybrid powertrains are now available for superyachts and are rapidly increasing in popularity.
The Dutch non-profit Foundation also explains that pioneering alternative fuels and hydrogen-powered yachts are part of revolutionary projects that are already in build at key shipyards in collaboration with committed clients.
Greener and more bespoke interiors
The focus on greener yacht interiors is expected to be a top trend for 2023, with “sustainable luxury” fast becoming the new buzzword. With this more environmentally-conscious approach, re-purposed wood and recycled plastic are just a couple of examples of the materials designers will use more frequently when shaping interior cabins and living quarters.
In addition, superyacht owners are also increasingly making their vessels a “home from home”, designing them from a practicality perspective according to their usage whilst adopting a “less is more”, classic, clean and increased open space design approach.
Downsizing to more compact packages
When it comes to superyachts and displaying the extent of wealth, bigger has always been better to surpass what your neighbour or fellow celebrity owns. However, according to the Superyacht Life Foundation, the impression that you need a larger yacht to reach previously untouched and unattainable destinations is being countered with a series of interesting and informed designs in more compact packages.
In fact, smaller yachts of around 30 to 40 metres have the added advantage of being able to access areas that are prohibitive for larger boats, thereby allowing for a greater element of adventure and exploration whilst also delivering reduced running costs and emissions.
Multi-skilled crews becoming highly sought-after
The superyacht industry is seeing a younger demographic purchasing and chartering yachts, which is not surprising given the rise of YouTubers, Instagrammers and influencers who are all keen to be seen in glamorous and envious locations and enjoying a billionaire-grade lifestyle in the sunshine.
The new generation of millennials is therefore seeking yachts that have wellness offerings onboard in the form of saunas, hammams, fully equipped gyms, and yoga studios. As a result, 2023 will see crew attaining secondary certifications to double up as water sports and diving instructors, aromatherapists, as well as other types of health and wellbeing practitioners.
A raft of new destinations on the map
Now that the world has opened up once again after the Covid-19 pandemic, trending destinations in the superyacht sphere include the Raja Ampat islands, French Polynesia, and Antarctica. Trans-Pacific cruising and extended stays in Australasia / Oceania are also likely to grow in appeal. In fact, the Superyacht Life Foundation also explains that there’s an increasing number of owners and charterers seeking “experiences”, as opposed to pursuing a traditional “jet-set lifestyle”.
Benefiting the world of science
Participating in citizen science projects, hosting scientists on board, and getting involved in other marine conservation or community projects is growing in popularity amongst superyacht owners, charter businesses, and crews alike.
This is because superyachts travelling the globe present the ideal platform for extensive research projects, citizen science projects and expeditions. In addition, with a rising number of programmes to facilitate such projects, this is only going to take on more significance as the year progresses.
The Superyacht Life Foundation – Where and How?
For more information on the Superyacht Life Foundation and their outlook for 2023, visit https://thesuperyachtlife.com.
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