The design was introduced with the master prototype concept, a study of a 128m (420ft) superyacht, at an exhibition of Zaha Hadid’s works at the David Gill Gallery in London.
The main design element of the concept is the exoskeleton structure of the upper section, which consists of an interwoven network of supports that vary in thickness, designed to evoke the organic structural systems found in natural marine formations.
This exoskeleton connects the various levels and decks of the ship via expressive diagonals. Whereas traditional yacht designs adhere to a strict horizontal order, Hadid has created a greater connectivity between the various decks and elements of the design.
The fluid design language of the master prototype will provide the basis for a family of five individual 90m (295ft) yachts – called “Unique Circle Yachts” – each featuring distinctive variations created for their respective owners’ requirements, while maintaining a unified overall design.
The first of these Unique Circle Yachts is the JAZZ, that has been already technically specified and detailed by the naval architects at Blohm+Voss.
Compared to the 128m master prototype, the lineage is evident, with a sharp solid prow that becomes more open towards the back as well as further technical refinements that address the specifications required for ocean crossings.
The design process was very much a collaborative one, with Blohm+Voss and ZHA working together to address the practical challenges of designing a yacht while remaining true to the strong design language of the master prototype.
The resulting designs are the synergy of Hadid’s design vision and the technical expertise of Blohm+Voss, allowing a flexibility and customization in the eventual design of the yacht.
“As a dynamic object that moves in dynamic environments, the design of a yacht must incorporate additional parameters beyond those for architecture – which all become much more extreme on water. Each yacht is an engineered platform that integrates specific hydrodynamic and structural demands together with the highest levels of comfort, spatial quality and safety,” explained Zaha Hadid.
In recent years Blohm+Voss has built some of the world’s most luxury mega yachts. These include the 394-foot “A“ designed by Philippe Starck and the “Eclipse”, designed by Terence Disdale, which at 533 feet (162.5 m), is the world’s second largest private yacht. Other Blohm + Voss superyacht projects include, the “Mayan Queen IV” and the “Palladium”.
Dr. Herbert Aly, CEO and Managing Partner of Blohm+Voss says: “On an aesthetic level a superyacht is a great design task as everything is customised down to the last detail. A superyacht is by definition an exercise in total design, where every detail is looked at with attention and refinement. In the past, in the era of steam liners, there has been an attempt of utilising ship building elements in architecture. Zaha Hadid and her team have taken this ethos and created a bold new vision and a new benchmark in the design of superyachts.
“The idea of the Unique Circle Yachts allows for variation of a genotype and its phenotypes, offering a range of possible solutions based on an cognate platform. As a result Zaha Hadid’s design is malleable to suit the very individual wishes and needs of a potential customer which lies at the heart of Blohm+Voss’ approach to yacht design. The strength of the design lies not just in its functionality and form, but also its effortless adaptability.”