Starboard - Issue 11

Page 1

STYLE IN TRAVEL @manutti_official outdoor luxury
Muyu. collection designed by Stephane De Winter
003 CONTENTS ISSUE 11 MAIDEN VOYAGE Celebration Key 014 Aroya Cruises 016 Emerald Kaia 018 Galapagos Explorer 020 Ilma 022 VOYAGES Cunard Queen Anne 028 Icon of the Seas 036 Coquelicot, A Belmond Boat 042 Noti Club 048 FEATURES Shipping Forecast 024 From sustainability to spas, Shipping Forecast explores the trends and news from the water. Exploration Through Art 050 Tihany Design and Double Decker differentiate Seabourn’s ships through art-filled interiors. REGULARS Welcome 011 Events 054 Cargo 085 Final Call 090 020 016 ON WATER 022


BMW i5 Flow Nostokana 058

Porsche x Vitra 060

Lancia Ypsilon x Cassina 061

Mercedes-Benz Places 062

Venice Simplon-Orient-Express 064


Eastern & Oriental Express 066


Lunar Habitat Master Plan 072

Jekta PHA-ZE 100 074

Redesigning Private Jets 075

Crystal Cabin Awards 076

The Value of Brand Experience 078

Differentiate by Dining 079


Taking The Scenic Route 080

Halo Space unveils The Aurora, a Space-Age inspired capsule set to take travellers to the stratosphere and beyond.

075 066 036
© Danielle Siobhan © Ludovic Balay


INTERIOR | BRANDING | ARTWORK Asuka III Coming 2025 Shaping brands through design


Slow Down and Savour

Speed and efficiency are often regarded as the most important factors when embarking on a journey, with the primary aim being to reach a destination in good time. But increasingly, the journey itself is becoming part of the experience, so much so that some companies exist to celebrate the art of slow travel.

The idea harks back to the Golden Age of travel, when there was no choice but to spend hours, days or even weeks at a time on board a vessel, travelling across continents by road, rail or sea. It might not have been the most luxurious experience by today’s standards, but the luxury came in taking time. Fast-forward to the 21st century, and humanity has become so caught up in the trappings of modern-day life, that there’s now a growing movement towards a slowdown. In the travel sector, this translates as connection over city-hopping, spending more time in one place and embracing a leisurely approach to life on the move.

At Starboard, we’ve long believed that travel is about the journey as much as the destination; this belief has steered our focus towards various modes of transport – not so much the vehicle, but the spaces within, whether it be a specialty restaurant on a cruise ship or a sleeper cabin on a train. And given that travellers are now choosing to go slow, the design of these spaces has never been so important.

Inside this issue, there are numerous examples of vessels designed to maximise the on-board experience. On water, Seabourn Pursuit features an art collection that encourages a journey of discovery through the ship, while Royal Caribbean’s Icon of the Seas has enough amenities to keep passengers

entertained for weeks, without ever needing to disembark. More leisurely trips see the likes of Belmond’s Coquelicot meander along France’s waterways at a gentle pace, meaning interiors are more residential villa than river barge.

Across the sector, vessels are becoming more spacious and designers are favouring furniture and fabrics made by local artisans – both of which cater to the desire for immersive experiences and deeper connection. This extends to programming and cuisine too, with dishes inspired by destinations en route and ingredients sourced along the way for an authentic taste of the local culture.

For Cunard’s newly launched Queen Anne, the notion of slow travel takes many forms. Interiors are inspired by the heritage of the brand, encouraging passengers to delve into the details and relive the Golden Age, while itineraries are intentionally longer, with transatlantic trips extended to 15 nights as from the usual seven. This brings more opportunities to sample the dining on offer, more opportunities to relax up on deck, and more opportunities to slow down and savour the experience.

Welcome to the new issue of Starboard – a resource for those bringing style to travel. I hope you enjoy the journey.

ON THE COVER Coquelicot, A Belmond Boat © Ludovic Balay





Matt Turner

Managing Editor

Catherine Martin

Assistant Editor

Eleanor Howard

Editorial Assistant Cara Rogers


Business Development (FF&E) Rob Hart

Business Development (FF&E)

Charlotte Gowing

Business Development (FF&E) Kate Borastero

Business Development (OS&E) Rachel Chadwick

Account Manager

Holly Huish

Account Manager Marley Helme


Visit the online store to subscribe and save across all Sleeper Media magazines.

Subscription records are maintained at Sleeper Media. For address changes, email


Commercial Lead

Kirsty Studholme

Marketing & Events

Olivia Mavers


Content & Research

Ellie Foster

Data & Marketing

Lauren Blain


Design Manager

David Bell


Finance Director

Amanda Giles


Damian Walsh


Natural • Renewable • Recyclable

Starboard is printed by Buxton Press on FSC Mix-certified paper using 100% vegetable-based inks. Magazines mailed from Spatial Global are packaged in FSC-certified wrap that is fully recyclable.

Strawberry Studios, Stockport, SK1 3AZ, UK Tel: +44 (0)161 464 4750 •



Set Sail in Style

For 25 years, Ultrafabrics has provided a new wave of possibilities, where innovation meets indulgence. Imagine what we can do together.


Celebration Key

Carnival Cruise Line has revealed plans for Celebration Key, a new port destination on the south coast of Grand Bahama island. Slated to open in 2025, the project comprises five distinct zones known as portals, each offering opportunities for recreation and relaxation. To meet anticipated demand, there’s capacity for multiple Carnival ships to dock simultaneously.

Upon arrival, passengers will be led down a brightly coloured promenade towards Paradise Plaza, where a 10-storey walkthrough sandcastle, complete with an observation deck and racing water slides, will set the scene for the adventure to follow.

To the east, Starfish Lagoon will cater to all ages with a splash pad, shallow pool, sports court and a variety of dining options, as well as the largest freshwater lagoon in the Caribbean. The adultsonly Calypso Lagoon meanwhile will feature floating cabana rentals, a private stretch of beach and a swim-

up bar with DJ, in addition to Bahamian food trucks and two full-service restaurants.

At the end of the promenade is the retail village named Lokono Cove; set against a backdrop of murals painted by local artists, the shopping area will include duty-free stores alongside artisanal boutiques selling authentic Bahamian goods. Rounding out the destination will be the premium Private Club Portal, of which further details are yet to be announced.

“No one does fun like Carnival and we are designing Celebration Key, and its five portals, with endless ways for our guests to unlock their own kind of fun in this incredible paradise that also celebrates the beauty of Grand Bahama,” says Christine Duffy, President of Carnival Cruise Line. “Celebration Key is uniquely positioned to bring an island experience to our diverse range of guests, in a way that lets them choose their slice of ‘paradise’.”


Aroya Cruises


Route: Red Sea, Arabian Gulf

Owner: PIF

Operator: Cruise Saudi

Lead Architect: SMC Design,

Interior Design: SMC Design, Partner Ship Design

Fit-out: DeWave Group, MJM Marine Shipyard: Bremerhaven

As Saudi Arabia edges closer to its goal of becoming a premium cruise destination, Aroya Cruises has unveiled design details of its yetto-be-named debut ship.

The 335m vessel – formerly sailing as World Dream for Genting – is currently undergoing a refit at Bremerhaven shipyard in Germany, with the entirely new interiors set to elevate the onboard experience. London-based studio SMC Design has been appointed as Lead Architect to design the majority of the vessel, with Partner Ship Design taking responsibility for some spaces, alongside renowned outfitters DeWave Group and MJM Marine.

“This is the first of a new brand so expectations are high,” explains Alan Stewart, Director at SMC Design. “Our aim is to create a design that evokes a sense of place, ensuring that guests get a feeling for the region’s unique character as soon as they step aboard.”

Taking inspiration from Saudi Arabia’s diverse cultural and geographical landscape, the

scheme pays close attention to the distinctive characteristics of Arabic design heritage, with geometric patterning and elegant archways making an appearance alongside intricate details and an opulent palette of materials. “There’s a strong emphasis on pattern, texture and shape throughout the ship,” Stewart confirms. “Our brief was to design specifically for the Saudi Arabian market, so it was important to deliver interiors that are authentic.”

Facilities on board include a wide range of F&B options, such as Marka Café, the all-day dining venue Al Waha, and specialty restaurant Irth, which serves authentic Saudi cuisine. Taking into account the local culture, there’s also the open-air Beats Lounge, where guests can enjoy a shisha to a stellar line-up of DJs.

Funded by PIF, the launch marks a milestone in Cruise Saudi’s strategy to promote the region as an on-water destination, supporting its target of welcoming 1.3 million cruise visitors by 2035.


Emerald Kaia


Maiden Voyage: April 2026

Owner: Scenic Group

Operator: Emerald Cruises

Shipyard: Halong Shipbuilding Company

Scenic Group has unveiled designs of Emerald Kaia, its next-generation ocean yacht slated to set sail in April 2026. The ship will increase capacity to accommodate 128 guests, while new innovations are designed to underscore Emerald Cruises’ pioneering spirit.

Of note, the Sky Deck has been expanded, now incorporating a bar and lounge for an indooroutdoor experience, while the Observation Sun Deck has more space with the addition of a spa pool and sunloungers. At sea level, the Marina Deck will make a return to offer a close connection with the water – not to mention easy access to the ship’s array of aquatic toys, ranging from paddleboards and floating mats to an Aquaglide trampoline. Elsewhere, Elements Spa is being reimagined to reflect a broader focus on nurturing mind, body and spirit, and a platform alongside the gym allows for an openair workout followed by a dip in the ocean.

Emerald Kaia will feature multiple food and

beverage venues such as Aqua Pool & Café serving gelato and light refreshments, and signature restaurant La Cucina, now with a more spacious terrace. New additions include a specialty Asian-style grill catering to just eight diners. As for accommodation, cabins will have a 10% larger floorplate than on previous iterations, with the Owner’s Suites set to feature a private pool on the terrace.

“Emerald Kaia, with its significant design and amenity enhancements, marks a pivotal expansion for our fleet,” comments Glen Moroney, Chairman of Scenic Group. “It builds on the strengths of Emerald Sakara and Emerald Azzurra, allowing us to offer unmatched superyacht experiences along the world’s most captivating coastlines.”

Scenic Group recently refreshed 18 of its ships across central Europe and France, reflecting a major investment and ongoing commitment to elevating its fleet.


Create Unforgettable Dining Experiences with Ariane Fine Porcelain Tableware

Galapagos Explorer


Route: Galapagos Islands

Maiden Voyage: June 2024

Operator: andBeyond

Conservation-led luxury travel company andBeyond has announced the launch of Galapagos Explorer, expanding the group’s South America portfolio. Due to set sail in June 2024, the 124ft expedition yacht will operate two routes around the Galapagos Islands.

Featuring four cabins and two luxury suites, the vessel will accommodate a maximum of 12 guests, with two expert guides present on each departure. On board, natural materials and rich textures that celebrate local culture harmonise to create a warm and welcoming atmosphere, with wooden accents and neutral colours throughout. Panoramic floor-to-ceiling windows fill the spacious guest areas with natural light, providing uninterrupted views of the surrounding landscapes and Galapagos wildlife. Spread across four decks, facilities include indoor and outdoor dining, bar and lounge areas, and an al fresco sundeck with a hot tub and sun loungers.

In line with andBeyond’s mission to leave the world a better place, the company plans to extend its Oceans Without Border initiative into the area and implement projects that support the Galapagos’ land and wildlife, as well as train and upskill local residents, highlighting local procurement opportunities.

“We are thrilled to finally have the opportunity to bring our brand of responsible tourism to this precious part of the world, which the Ecuadorian government has protected from over-tourism by strictly limiting the number of operating licences issued,” says Executive Chairman and CEO Joss Kent. “We have long believed that the best way to encourage our guests to help protect the world’s wild places is for our skilled guides to help travellers not only fall in love with those places, but also to gain an understanding of the threats that they are facing. This is what we are aiming to do through the introduction of our luxury yacht.”


Built of harmony

Secto Design is known for its ecological wooden lamps that create a cosy atmosphere and elevate their surroundings.

The lamps are designed by the award-winning architect Seppo Koho and they are handmade in Finland from certified local birch.

Secto Design pendants are also available with metal rods specially designed for cruiselines.



The Ritz-Carlton Yacht Collection has released first look renderings of Ilma, the second addition to its luxury superyacht fleet, set to debut in September 2024. Named after the Maltese word for ‘water’, Ilma will feature a number of new venues, including a Peruvian and pan-Latininspired eatery, and a more expansive pool deck.

The exterior of the 790ft superyacht has been designed by Helsinki-based studio Aivan, while AD Associates is leading on the interiors, and DPA on the lighting scheme. Ilma’s design subtly tells stories of its home flag, with a colour palette, materials and artwork inspired by elements of Maltese history and mythology, as well as its coastline and native fauna.

sunbathing. “With an aesthetic influenced by superyacht design cues, Ilma’s defining feature is its seamless integration of spaces, fostering a profound connection to the sea,” says Nicola Preece, Design Director at AD Associates. “A harmonious flow of geometry and texture between the interior and exterior creates a cohesive and tranquil atmosphere.”


Maiden Voyage: September 2024

Operator: The Ritz-Carlton Yacht Collection Architecture: Aivan

Interior Design: AD Associates, Chapi Chapo Design Shipyard: Chantiers de l’Atlantique

As an evolution of Evrima, Ilma will expand on The Marina and Marina Terrace, where large Panasonic windows draw in natural light and a hydraulic platform connects guests directly with the sea. There will also be a dynamic open-air space for live entertainment and

The vessel will also be home to Beach House, a new indoor-outdoor restaurant envisioned by Chapi Chapo Design. “Our guiding principle was to embrace the diverse flavours and colours that are not only part of Peruvian cuisine but also deeply ingrained in the culture and lifestyle there,” comments Tatiana Sheveleva, Partner at the studio. “We looked to their bold use of patterns, unexpected colour palettes and vivacious spirit for inspiration. We wanted to create a space that lives and breathes these foundations, celebrating and reflecting the culture both aesthetically and atmospherically.”

FLEUR DÉCO - exclusive novelty 2024 WWW.ZIEHER.COM


New Origins

Meyer Group presents a bold new concept for the future of cruise.

In its 225-year history, Meyer Group has been responsible for building some of the world’s most advanced cruise ships, so it’s little wonder that the consortium dedicates a significant proportion of its time to developing innovative new models. There’s the climate-neutral Avatar concept, designed to make cruising more sustainable in the future. And the aerodynamic Reverse ship, which takes its cues from the streamlined profile of the rockhopper penguin.

In its latest initiative, on display at Seatrade Cruise Global, Meyer Group unveiled Origin – a futuristic concept designed as a dramatic departure from the typical cruise liner aesthetic. With its sleek black exterior, the vessel appears at first as an imposing monolith on the horizon.

At 400m-long, its scale is vast; by comparison, Icon of the Seas – the largest cruise ship in the world – measures 365m in length. Yet on closer inspection, angular cut-outs punctuate the asymmetric façade, opening up sightlines to the ocean and allowing natural daylight to flood in. According to developers, the model addresses global concerns such as urbanisation and climate change, and features decentralised public areas to create new passenger experiences. The real innovation however, comes in the passenger flow system, comprising an elevator that not only travels vertically, but horizontally too, meaning that passengers can simply glide from their cabin to the restaurant, without ever having to traverse a corridor.

Sea Breeze

Introducing the sailpowered catamaran; YSA Design presents its vision for sustainable and experiential cruising.

YSA Design has long prioritised environmentally friendly practices across its projects, but since the formation of a dedicated sustainability division, the studio has doubled down on its efforts to lead the way. As the recently appointed Head of Sustainability & Technology, Senior Architect Trond Sigurdsen has been eager to demonstrate his approach, revealing: “I talk about sustainability a lot, so I wanted to put my theories into practice.”

Demonstrating just what’s possible with stateof-the-art technology and a little imagination, Sigurdsen has revealed a design concept for a sail-powered catamaran cruise.

Codenamed Seabreeze, the creation takes the form of a catamaran, its dual hull offering greater stability and spacious living quarters. A fourmetre draft enables access to shallow waters, while up top, four 50m-high foldable sails are mounted on plinths to maximise wind power. The sails are in fact already a market-ready solution, with developers Oceanbird claiming an emissions

reduction of up to 90%. Hotel operations would be powered by engines running on green biomethanol, while the vessel is enabled with a hybrid drive to incorporate silent running on battery power.

The hulls are connected by an inverted U-shaped structure spanning 18.5m, with the two-deck central superstructure incorporating the bridge and public spaces such as restaurants and bars. Each hull has four decks offering a total of 100 dual-occupancy cabins, while the yacht top serves as a leisure space.

Though Seabreeze is, for now, a concept, Sigurdsen believes that the unique approach will appeal to operators and passengers alike. “Sustainability is critical, but cruise shipping also needs to continuously reinvent itself,” the architect concludes. “A sustainable ship that brings environmentally conscious guests closer to the sea and reaches destinations others cannot is a clear opportunity at the premium end of the cruise market.”



Queen Anne CUNARD

Capturing the spirit of the Golden Age of cruising, Cunard’s new Queen makes its much-anticipated debut.

Since the mid-1800s, Cunard has been making waves for its cutting-edge technology and inimitable style.

In the early days of ferrying passengers across the Atlantic, its ships were the first to feature electric lighting and flushing toilets, and at the start of the 20th century, revolutionary steam turbines were introduced to increase speed on the arduous route. In the 1950s came the Golden Age of cruising; the transatlantic crossings became a leisure pursuit, and Cunard’s ships were billed as floating palaces, sharing design features with opulent venues like The Ritz and attracting Hollywood jet-setters such as Judy Garland, Frank Sinatra and Elizabeth Taylor.

Over its 180-year history, Cunard has amassed a wealth of stories, from mechanical feats to world firsts, not to mention the glitz and glamour of life on board. It’s this legacy that has gone on to shape the new age of Cunard. Having joined Carnival Corporation in 1999, the line has been upping its game in recent years, replacing older ships and embarking on comprehensive refurbishments. The big news however came in 2017, when Cunard announced that it would build a new flagship – a state-of-the-art luxury liner that celebrates the spirit of the iconic brand. And after seven years in the making, Queen Anne has made its debut.

“Queen Anne’s maiden voyage signals the dawning of a new era in luxury ocean travel,” explains Katie McAlister, President of Cunard, speaking from onboard the vessel during a special preview event. “Here in the UK and across

Words: Catherine Martin • Photography: © Christopher Ison

the globe, Cunard is famous for our beautiful iconic Queens. With Queen Anne joining our fleet, she marks not just a new icon but the completion of a perfect quartet alongside Queen Mary 2, Queen Elizabeth and Queen Victoria.”

Indeed, the launch of the new Queen marks a special moment in the Cunard story. Its creation has brought together shipbuilders, naval architects and engineers, as well as a stellar line-up of interior designers – all working to a shared goal. “As Cunard always does, we wanted to set new standards so enlisted the very best from across the creative world to help us do that,” explains Lee Powell, Vice President of Brand and Product. “The aim was to create a luxury travel experience that celebrates the heritage of Cunard; our ships have created so many memories since 1840, so we wanted to bring those stories to life through design.”

Taking the lead on design, Adam Tihany was appointed Creative Director in 2018. Over the past five years, his role has to been to drive the development of the creative vision and oversee its translation into an interior design scheme. Seeking to bring a fresh perspective, he enlisted David Collins Studio and Sybille de Margerie, both newcomers to cruise ship interiors, combining their hospitality expertise with that of Richmond, which counts hotels and cruise lines amongst its client.

“Selecting the design team was an interesting process,” reveals Tihany, speaking at a panel discussion onboard the ship. “I wanted to challenge the designers with something they have never done before. David Collins Studio is known for restaurants, so I asked them to first design some cabins. Sybille de Margerie hasn’t done much retail, so I put her in charge

of that. My belief is that a good designer can design anything.”

Several trips to the Cunard archives at the University of Liverpool ensued, along with regular meet-ups in London to encourage a team mentality. “These designers are used to being in competition with one another, so I had to convince them that they are one team,” Tihany explains. “They each had their own areas of responsibility on the ship but needed to work together to ensure cohesion, so that the flow from one space to the next is seamless.”

Having overcome the initial hurdle, Tihany began by setting the overarching vision for the ship, devising a concept that would honour the history of the brand while looking to the future.

Describing the scheme as one that captures the Golden Age of Cunard delivered through the lens of modernity, he reveals that the narrative is “an interplay of heritage, craftsmanship, storytelling, style and innovation”.

The five pillars ultimately became the design DNA and informed every design decision made.

The starting point came in exploring the Cunard archives, which hold a vast array of materials, from photography and advertising posters to invitations, menu cards and logbooks. This posed both challenges and opportunities.

“We didn’t want this to be a pastiche, it’s a ship for the future,” points out Lewis Taylor, Design Director at David Collins Studio. “It was important that we use the archives and details of the past as inspiration, reinterpreting them in a contemporary way to push the design forward.”

The first example of this greets passengers on arrival. “The Grand Lobby, with its Art Decoinspired opulence, epitomises the essence of the Cunard brand, offering a space that

seamlessly blends classic and contemporary,” says Taylor of the triple-height central atrium, one of 18 areas designed by David Collins Studio. Geometric marble flooring and a threedimensional latticework ceiling accompany a sweeping staircase, its polished walnut handrail honouring the past, and brass stud detailing very much of the present. The focal point is a triptych mural by Canadian artist Ian Kirkpatrick, which serves as another nod to past and present. Entitled A Cunard Journey, the mural – one of a vast collection of works curated by Double Decker – tells the story of a vessel’s departure, sailing and arrival at its destination, with the scenes inspired by old photographs from the archives. The brass-etched masterpiece is displayed on 4m-tall lenticular panels, with a dynamic lighting scheme that sees the imagery change depending on viewing angle.

The space also features bespoke armchairs and banquettes upholstered in navy with gold detailling, a palette that takes cues from the archives. “It was an incredible resource to have,” explains Taylor. “Every time we visited, we found new materials that informed our design in different ways; from panel details that provided the basis for an Art-Deco inspired motif in the Queens Grill Suites, to old menu cards that influenced the colour combinations we used in the Pavilion.”

Subtle references to Cunard’s brand heritage continue throughout the suites and public spaces, informing everything from carpet patterns and colour palettes to the finer details of cabinet handles and cornicing, subtly weaving a thread through the ship. David Collins Studio was responsible for the design of the Drawing Room, Library and Commodore Club, as well as

The Grand Lobby seamlessly blends classic and contemporary, while the Golden Lion is characterised by references to traditional British pubs

dining venues such as Japanese restaurant Aji Wa and specialty steakhouse Sir Samuel’s. They also created the dazzling interiors for Britannia Restaurant, a two-deck dining room set around towering columns with bronze fins, that rise to form a starburst effect above; and for the Golden Lion, a signature Cunard venue characterised by references to traditional British pubs. A celebration of the best-of-British continues in the selection of furniture and light fittings; in crew uniforms, designed by Kathryn Sargent –Savile Row’s first and only female Master Tailor; and in the cuisine, thanks to a partnership with chef Michel Roux.

David Collins Studio also took charge of The Pavilion, an entertainment and recreation hub with a swimming pool and large LED screen. The space sits beneath a glass roof designed by naval architect Martin Francis, and, in accordance with a drive to innovate, is fully retractable; by day, it serves as a riviera-style pool destination, and by night, can be used for drinks receptions or movie screenings.

The Pavilion is just one example of the design team pushing boundaries to ensure that every space is multi-purpose. For Richmond, responsible for the design of the theatre and various entertainment venues, there was a conscious effort to maximise use of space.

“It’s about getting spaces to work harder and transition from day to night,” explains Fiona Thompson, the studio’s Principal. Carefully considered details such as lighting, artwork and furniture groupings support such transitions, enabling different areas to cater to different uses at different times of the day, whether it be a cosy corner to read a book, or social connection over cocktails.

The guest journey through the ship has also been carefully considered, of particular importance given the number of design studios involved. “Because our spaces sit alongside one another, it was important that we work closely together to ensure a seamless transition between them,” reveals Thompson. “Every venue has its own character and identity, but there’s a subtle

Designed by David Collins Studio, Britannia Restaurant is a two-deck dining room set around towering columns with bronze fins that rise to form a starburst effect above

Cunard design aesthetic that runs through, so nothing feels jarring.”

Also giving each venue its own character is the comprehensive art collection; curated by Double Decker, it is thought to be the largest collection at sea, featuring a body of 4,300 site-specific artworks and over 500 object d’art and artefacts. The London studio’s founders, Wilhelm Finger and Melita Skamnaki, selected a cohort of more than 300 multidisciplinary artists from across the globe, closely guiding them to create unique pieces responding to the timeless luxury of voyages at sea. Some pieces take their cues from the past, others are decidedly contemporary –many combine the two.

In the Queens Room for example, a largescale mural honours the varying landscapes through which the ship sails, brought to life as a digital installation that allows for the scenes to change – look out for the hot-air balloon drifting over. This space – used for dance lessons, afternoon tea and cocktail receptions – has been designed by Sybille de Margerie,

who wanted to tell stories and create memories through her interiors. “The décor features souvenirs brought back from distant journeys, while the chandelier with its planetary spheres recalls a time when sailors were guided by the stars, just as the traveller is guided to the heart of the ship,” she explains. de Margerie was also behind the design of the retail boutiques and Mareel Wellness & Beauty, both of which come with elegance and sophistication through the design – so much so that there’s a real sense of occasion to the shopping experience.

In fact, there’s a sense of occasion to just stepping aboard Queen Anne, not in the formal ways of the past, but in the subtle touches that honour the heritage of the brand, evoking emotion and making guests feel as if they are part of this new era of cruising. “We enlisted an incredible roll call of designers who have created one of the most beautiful ships sea,” concludes Powell. “It’s difficult to capture, but this ship has a feeling of Cunard, and that’s testament to the design team.”


Owner: Carnival Corporation

Operator: Cunard

Architecture: Martin Francis Design

Creative Director: Adam Tihany

Interior Design: David Collins Studio, Sybille de Margerie, Richmond

Art Curation: Double Decker

Lighting Consultant: DPA Lighting

Procurement: Benjamin West

Signage: SMC Design

Branding: For People

Shipyard: Fincantieri

JUNG.GROUP/YACHT © Horizon Yacht MADE TO TOUCH. DESIGNED TO CONTROL. LS 990 IN MATT GRAPHITE BLACK. You are welcome to visit us at: JUNG UK Showroom · 6 / 7 Albemarle Way · Clerkenwell · London Visit by prior arrangement:


Part beach resort, part theme park, Royal Caribbean launches its first Icon-class ship, introducing a new era of cruising.

Words: Rebecca Barnes • Photography: Courtesy of Royal Caribbean International (unless otherwise stated)

How does a design team transition from a blank piece of paper to one of the most innovative mega ships on the ocean, with the presence to literally stop traffic?

This is how Royal Caribbean’s mighty Icon of the Seas – the world’s largest cruise ship to-date – began its inception, and the reaction it received when it finally arrived in PortMiami in early 2024.

“Icon of the Seas is what’s called a white paper ship – there were no boundaries to the ideation,” says Jay Schneider, Chief Product Innovation Officer at Royal Caribbean International.

“We wanted to create the ultimate family holiday – an allencompassing line-up of experiences that combines the best of beach escapes, resort getaways and theme park thrills in one unforgettable trip.”

The ship sees eight diverse neighbourhoods – including five new additions and three old favourites – spread across a total of 20 decks. More than 40 restaurants, bars and lounges are on board, including a duelling pianos bar, casual coffee shop, champagne bar and a traditional English-style pub. The vessel is also home to seven pools and nine whirlpools, as well as 28 types of accommodation, ranging from interior cabins to split-level suites. There are a number of impressive firsts aboard the 7,600-passenger ship, including the brand’s first swim-up bar at sea, the largest waterpark and the tallest free-fall slide, positioned at a 66-degree incline.


Seven years in the making, Icon of the Seas is certainly no shrinking violet: the bold, playful design has been dialled up a notch compared to other ships in the fleet. There’s lots of new features alongside familiar, albeit enhanced, signature venues including Central Park, which has 20% more greenery than predecessors, and the reimagined Royal Promenade with its floorto-ceiling ocean views.

One of the most striking design highlights is The Pearl, the world’s largest kinetic art sculpture located in the Royal Promenade. “The Pearl is not only this incredible experiential installation, but it’s also a superstructure that allows us to open up the side of the ship for natural daylight and connectivity to the water,” explains Jason Liberty, President and CEO of Royal Caribbean Group.

Created by Brooklyn-based new media studio Breakfast, it spans over 46ft in height, with a diameter of 50ft. Inspired by the ocean, it features nearly 3,000 computer-driven kinetic tiles, arranged in a Fibonacci sequence to

echo the patterns found in marine life. “We were shown the rough concept of a sphere with a stairwell, but were given the freedom to conceive a piece we felt would match our artistic voice and style, while ticking the boxes for the client,” says Andrew Zolty, founder of the studio. According to Zolty, this is considered one of the most complex art sculptures ever created. “There were hundreds, if not thousands of challenges and setbacks over the four years it took to develop, but we just took them one at a time,” he reveals. What sets the immersive sculpture apart is its interactivity, and ability to continuously transform and reflect current environmental conditions. “Our approach is to contrast the highly technical and geometric nature of our sculptures with movements that fluidly echo the organic forms of nature,” explains Zolty. “What truly makes this piece special is that it’s pulling in real-time tide and wind data from the Caribbean, and this influences the way the artwork moves. Parts of it are entirely dynamic and ever-changing.”

The interior design scheme across the ship is bold and playful, with plenty of greenery in Central Park, and light fittings throughout created by Chelsom
© Michel Verdure

Another structure, perched at the top of the ship and featuring 12 individual modules that took eight months to assemble, the AquaDome is a versatile space featuring multiple venues – including Royal Caribbean’s first food hall – with wraparound ocean views and a 55ft-tall water curtain. The AquaDome’s theatre meanwhile is complete with all manner of high-tech features, from robotic arms to projection mapping. “The design came from the chairman, who sketched the dome on a napkin, handed it to the shipyard and asked them to build it,” explains Jay Rosser, Manager of Product Development at Royal Caribbean.

Schneider continues the story: “The AquaDome is a transformational design that not only took engineering to a whole new level, but the 363-tonne dome is the largest single structure of glass and steel ever to be lifted onto a cruise ship. There was a whole team assigned just to monitor the weather, planning ahead of time to find the right slot, to make sure that this monumental lift was done safely,” he explains. “Traditionally, our AquaTheaters are located at the back of the ship on the lower levels, and the revolutionary new position towards the top deck at the front added further complexity. The greater the weight is on a ship, the greater the impact on stability and centre of gravity. Luckily, we had an experienced team who could make the vision possible.”

© Michel Verdure

In true mega resort style, the ship really comes into its own outside, where no corners have been cut to deliver non-stop family fun. “Water plays an integral part in the design on the open decks, where we have 62% more water than on Oasis Class ships,” says Schneider. “Instead of putting the pools into the superstructure, the superstructure was designed around the pools. A main objective was bringing the pools toward the outboard, allowing guests to be in the water and look out at the ocean.” Indeed, the ship is home to a whole host of water features for every mood and occasion, including the line’s first swim-up bar at sea, a suspended infinity pool and a multi-level sun terrace with whirlpools.

Thrill Island is the first time Royal Caribbean has themed a full neighbourhood around the idea of adrenaline-fuelled attractions, with decks 16 and 17 featuring a waterpark, surf simulator, rock climbing venue and a sky-high ropes course that takes daredevils 154ft above water level. The process of bringing the vision to life, however, did not come without its challenges.

According to Harri Kulovaara, Executive Vice

President, Maritime & Newbuilding, Royal Caribbean International, a ship normally has a couple of hundred tonnes of water in the pools – Icon is said to have between 500 and 1,000 tonnes of water.

For waterpark Category 6 – which features six record-breaking slides, including the tallest drop slide at sea – Kelly Gonzalez, Senior Vice President of Architectural Design at Royal Caribbean Group, adds that a key consideration was how the team would add the weight to the ship. “We wanted a lot of water, a lot of speed and a lot of height,” she says. “And we did not want to compromise on any one of those things. So we had to bring in a number of experts to ensure we could design this in a way that is technically sound.”

The final word goes to Schneider, who emphasises that when the team set out to create Icon of the Seas, they simply wanted to make the world’s greatest holiday. And with the ship already well sold for 2024 and continuing to break records, it seems they are well on their way to fulfilling their greatest goal yet.


Route: Caribbean Maiden Voyage: January 2024

Owner: Royal Caribbean International

Operator: Royal Caribbean Group

Architecture and Interior Design: Skylab Architecture, Wilson Butler Architects, 3Deluxe and RTKL

Shipyard: Meyer Turku

© Michel Verdure



Taking inspiration from the Champagne countryside, Humbert & Poyet design a new barge for Belmond, enlisting French artisans to craft the details.

Words: Nicola Leigh Stewart

There’s nothing more romantic than a river cruise, and for Belmond – pioneers of the slow travel movement – gliding through the serene waterways of the French countryside is one of the finer things in life, particularly when it comes with a glass of Ruinart’s finest cuvée.

Launched in April 2024, Coquelicot is part of Belmond’s growing fleet of boats, sailing through the Champagne region on meandering week-long journeys between Épernay and Sillery. The vessel, a handsome three-berth barge with an indoor salon and extensive outdoor deck, has been treated to a sensitive and luxurious refurbishment courtesy of Humbert & Poyet. Despite the firm being based in Monaco, the project is the first on water for Emil Humbert and Christophe Poyet, who have worked on a number of hotel, restaurant, retail and residential projects since joining forces in 2007.

The new realm came about after Belmond approached the pair, looking to tap into their French flair and close relationships with some of France’s most esteemed artisans. As their first-ever boat, Coquelicot offered up a new challenge for the designers, which they were happy to rise to. “The very particular space and shape of the boat meant that each element had to be meticulously considered and optimised to meet the needs of the passengers,” explain Humbert and Poyet. “The technical constraints required a creative and ingenious approach to ensure comfort and safety, whilst also maintaining a high level of design and aesthetics.”

Perhaps the best example of designing around these

constraints is the three cabins: although smaller than a typical hotel room, they feel cosy rather than cramped. Wooden furnishings are cleverly fitted to maximise wardrobe space, and the use of noble and natural materials cocoon guests in comfort. Hotel amenities meanwhile are kept to a minimum – there’s a carafe of water, for instance, but tea and coffee are made by staff behind the scenes.

In the master bedroom en suite, Humbert & Poyet even found space for a freestanding copper bathtub, chosen to harmonise with the brass accents and cool Calacatta Oro marble mosaics. By contrast, the bedrooms showcase a softer palette with layers of textiles and natural raffia furniture alongside sparkling rose gold finishes that pay homage to the grandeur of the Art Nouveau style.

For the finishing touch, paintings depicting a spring landscape were created especially for Coquelicot by artist Amélie Chassary, one of many artisans involved in crafting the interiors. The poppy – a reference to Coquelicot’s namesake – can be seen in a hand-cut red marble side table, while walls are lined with a textured canvas featuring a stylised take on the colourful flower. The pieces were handcrafted by Atelier de la Torre using building tools to create a surprisingly light effect.

In the salon, which is spacious enough to incorporate a dining area and private bar, the design is based on the elegance of the Art Deco period, which subtly nods to Coquelicot’s famous cousin, the Venice Simplon-Orient-Express. “Our


aim was to encapsulate the essence of journeys where time is not a constraint, such as on board the Orient Express or the transatlantics, whereby the beauty of the experience lies in the journey itself,” Humbert and Poyet explain.

So that guests can truly ease into the slow travel experience, the pair have created a space with a pied-à-terre feel – appropriate, considering not only the size of the boat but that it is also available for private charter. The seasonal shades of the Champagne countryside and the region’s agricultural heritage offered up inspiration for the neutral and earthy palette –think layers of rich wood and fabrics sourced from renowned French houses and Humbert & Poyet’s own Villa Riviera collection for Nobilis in shades of sage, celadon, olive and ochre. “The landscape provided inspiration in that each space has been created like an Impressionist painting, where interiors are layered with carefully selected colours, textures and materials that embody the ever-changing light and views that unfold throughout the journeys,” says the duo.


Adding a splash of colour to the timeless neutral palette – which itslef helps create the illusion of space – a central coffee table is covered entirely in green Japanese Raku ceramics by designer Léa Zeroil and, staying with the nature theme, a green marble dining table “evokes reeds and the tranquility of natural landscapes”.

As elegant as the scheme is, the designers weren’t afraid to have a little fun; note the braided leather details on the salon bar and the jute roping outside – a maritime nod to sailboat rigging. Crowning it all is the boat’s pièce de résistance – a contemporary stained glass skylight – a celebration of Champagne’s water mapping legacy composed of seven textured glass shades, all hand-cut and crafted by the family-owned Ateliers Loire using a traditional technique that dates back to the Middle Ages.

Outside, the boat’s façade has been given a fresh coat of white and red paint and, up on deck, drinks and dinner are served beneath lanterns inspired by Angelo Lelii’s Stelline

lamps, with plants and wildflowers bringing the Champagne countryside on board. “We worked on the exterior décor so that guests feel like they are on a movie set, surrounded by the landscapes of the region that unfolds around them throughout the cruise,” explain Humbert and Poyet. “We wanted guests to feel a suspended, timeless moment of reconnection with nature but also with the heritage, tradition and savoir-faire that the French region offers, and which Coquelicot helps guests to discover and experience.”

Unsurprisingly, the Coquelicot experience involves a deep dive into the region’s namesake thanks to an exclusive partnership with Ruinart, the world’s oldest champagne house. Passengers who charter a journey aboard the vessel are able to visit the vineyard for a behind-the-scenes look at production, then return to the barge for a lunch crafted by the brand’s Chef en Résidence, Valérie Radou. Naturally, this is accompanied by the sommelier’s premiere selection of labels, best enjoyed while taking in the scenery.


Route: Champagne

Operator: Belmond

Interior Design: Humbert & Poyet


Noti Club PARIS

Jordane Arrivetz unveils Art Deco-inspired interiors for a new barge experience on the banks of the Seine.

Words: Cara Rogers • Photography: © Danielle Siobhan

As far as memorable travel experiences go, cruising down the Seine by the twinkling lights of an iconic landmark is a bucket list-worthy item for many. And though the tourist trips shuttling passengers along the river serve their purpose, many rely solely on the view to attract a crowd. Eager to bring something new to the waterfront, Paris Seine – a hospitality group offering premium dinner cruises – has launched Noti Club, where the on-board experience is as alluring as the view.

Located on a floating barge at the foot of the Eiffel Tower, the new multi-purpose venue has been developed to operate as both a public restaurant and a private events space. Capable of hosting up to 350 people, the venue comprises a bar and dining room with outdoor terrace on the upper deck, and a flexible club lounge down below.

Interiors have been envisioned by French designer Jordane Arrivetz, who came to the attention of Paris Seine following her work on the rooftop restaurant at Ennismore’s SO/ Paris. Arrivetz, whose portfolio spans a range of hotel and residential projects, had yet to design for on-water hospitality, so the process was a steep learning curve. “I learned a lot during this project, even the vocabulary is different to land-based projects,” she explains. “We don’t talk about floors, but decks, and there are weight constraints that we have to adhere to.”

The resulting design scheme is inspired by the dawn of the 20th century, with homage paid to the Industrial Revolution

and creation of the Eiffel Tower. Throughout the interiors, the design team opted for a palette of blush, beige and taupe – colours that bring warmth to the industrial structure of the vessel. “We were designing within a steel and glass framework so we chose to work with warmer colours and materials to compensate for the cold architecture,” the designer notes.

Art Deco touches can be found throughout the restaurant’s interiors, with rounded forms, metallic accents and extensive use of walnut. A bespoke carpet meanwhile draws on motifs from the 1930s, its geometric patterns mirroring the steel structure of the ceiling. And furniture has been customdesigned, with armchairs upholstered in tactile mohair alongside dining chairs decked out in a fabric reminiscent of Coco Chanel’s signature tweed. Finishing touches include beautifully crafted walnut cabinetry and table lamps featuring stylish alabaster domes.

On the lower deck, the club lounge has been conceived as a flexible space for cocktail receptions and dinner dances, with rich parquet flooring flanked by bench seating around its perimeter. There’s also space for a DJ and live musicians.

Arguably the best spot however is out on the terrace, where cocktails crafted by in-house mixologists can be sampled as the sun sets. “When guests spend time here, I want them to feel that they’re in an intimate, poetic location,” concludes Arrivetz. “Between the sparkles of the Seine and those of the Eiffel Tower, there’s a magic to Noti Club.”


Exploration Through Art

Tihany Design and Double Decker differentiate Seabourn’s ships through art-filled interiors.

Words: Lauren Jade Hill • Photography: © Eric Laignel

As travellers continue to seek out increasingly farflung destinations, cruise lines are expanding their fleets with specialist vessels that can withstand the diverse conditions of remote regions. As such, the expedition sector has flourished in recent years. For Seabourn Cruises, it’s a key growth area; closely following the 2022 debut of its first purpose-built, ultra-luxury expedition ship, the operator has launched a second, differentiated by its route and design aesthetic.

Like Venture, Seabourn Pursuit was designed and built to PC6 Polar Class standards, with 30,000ft2 of deck space and sleek interiors by Tihany Design. On each ship, social spaces such as the Constellation Lounge and Sky Bar are joined by experiential areas like the Discovery Centre and a wealth of technological features, including two U-Boat Cruise Sub 7 –300 submersibles and a 4K GSS Cineflex Camera broadcasting imagery from up to five miles away.

With each Seabourn ship Tihany Design has worked on –Encore and Ovation, followed by the two expedition vessels – the firm has focused on introducing a yacht aesthetic, which is conveyed across furnishings and finishes through to the finer details. “Venture and Pursuit draw inspiration from the way explorers used to travel, with the design, detail and sensibility all tailored around this research,” says Alessia Genova, Partner at Tihany Design. “And with itineraries going into the Polar environment, we wanted to bring in the cosiness of a mountain resort – recreating what a yacht would look like if it was sailing amid the ice.”

While both expedition ships follow the same design concept, what sets them apart is the art – defined by the integration of 700 works, including installations and murals – many of which were specially commissioned. “On Venture and Pursuit, the art – which is a very important part of the design story – was a way for us to make a point of difference,” Genova confirms. In bringing the idea to life, Tihany Design partnered with art curators Double Decker; together, they have crafted a collection that serves as an enchanting exploration of seascapes, taking in the wonder of water through a range of forms. “The art is not only an addition to the design, it continues to reflect the idea of discovery and pays tribute to the remote locations to which the ship sails,” explains Genova. “With hundreds of pieces of art, the look and feel of the ship changes – the murals in particular create an entirely different sensibility. On Pursuit, it’s bolder and more colourful.”

Wilhelm Finger and Melita Skamnaki, Directors of Double Decker, worked with artists from around the world, drawing much of their inspiration from expeditions across the globe, as well as the ship’s voyages in the Amazon and Antarctica. “We commissioned many of the artists to create work specifically for this ship, always relating to the locations it sails through and early exploration,” explains Skamnaki. “We wanted to bring memories of the outdoor expeditions into the interiors.”

An array of artistic mediums, both singular and mixedmedia, have been used to achieve this, from glasswork and


An array of artistic mediums have been used across the vessel’s art collection, from glasswork and photography to abstract installations

photography, to installations made from recycled materials, making each piece a unique and engaging addition. “Good artwork fosters connections,” explains Finger. “When you play with different mediums, the eye has more to explore and it embeds itself in your memory. With this being an expedition ship, we wanted to create layers of discovery within the interiors.”

Two artworks that define the vessel are in the Expedition Lounge. The set of layered glass installations, ‘Amazonian Moon, Arctic Moon’ by artist Fiaz Elson, depict the skies in vibrant colours. The spa meanwhile makes an impact by way of ‘Botanical Elegance’, a textured mural by John Biggs to celebrate the beauty of Amazonian foliage. Further works from the artist include bas-reliefs with gold leaf, which feature throughout the wellness area.

And at the heart of the atrium, the sculptural ‘Magical Sky’ installation by Double Decker is a focal point, situated at the base of the spiral staircase. Made from black marble, aluminium, glass and mirror, the abstract structure represents the shapes and hues of the star-filled night sky that is visible throughout

the ship’s journeys. Nautical charts have also been transformed with gold leaf to add further interest to the grand central stairways. Elsewhere, a photographic collection by Bruce Boyd presents a captivating dialogue between Amazonian flora and Polar ice. And over in The Colonnade, a series of artworks is equally on-theme, taking inspiration from Paititi – the ‘Lost City of Gold’ from Incan lore, searched for over the centuries by explorers.

Seabourn Square features a contemporary collection inspired by the great Antarctic explorers, and in the Bow Lounge, ‘Sea Reflections’ celebrates the ocean and sky. The Constellation Lounge meanwhile showcases the cosmic ‘Celestial Wonders’ collection, and the Sky Bar is home to colourful creations that provide a playful take on marine archaeology.

Further pieces help to set the interiors apart, with art lining corridors and each of the 132 ocean-view staterooms, including the sumptuous two-level Grand Wintergarden Suites. “Seabourn Pursuit is like a luxury hotel that moves through the ocean,” concludes Genova. “Much like the changing scenery outside, every space on board has its own character.”

Works on board include (clockwise from top left); a glass installation by Fiaz Elson; Bruce Boyd’s photographs of tropical flowers in ice; an Amazonian landscape by Brazilian artist James Kudo; a playful glass installation that welcomes guests to the Expedition Lounge; and graphic glass panels inspired by the winding coastlines of Seabourn destinations

Cruise Ship Interiors Design Expo Europe

4-5 December 2024


Dedicated to fostering growth and innovation, Cruise Ship Interiors Design Expo Europe is set to return to London in December for its most expansive programme to-date. Connecting the entire cruise ship interior design industry, the two-day exhibition and conference comprises revamped features, dynamic panel talks and tailored networking experiences, as well as the newly launched Hospitality@CSI zone.

Attendees can meet with hundreds of exhibitors from across the sector, ranging from interior design studios and outfitters, to product suppliers and service providers, collectively enabling decision-makers to source everything they need for the creation of new vessels. For 2024, new exhibitors such as Contempo Carpets, Luma Mirrors and Tramo Contract will join the likes of Makinen, Marine Interiors, Roda, Tarkett and Bolidt. The latest innovations will also be highlighted at the popular Pitch & Pint competition in the CSI Pub.

At the all-new Hospitality@CSI – dedicated to hotel operations in the cruise and ferry sector – attendees are invited to explore new products in cabin amenities, galley and catering equipment, with participating brands including Welbilt, Loipart and Marinox. Furthermore, this zone will offer tailored workshops, conference sessions and networking lunches.

Taking place throughout the course of the event, the free-to-attend conference is an opportunity to build knowledge, catch up on the latest trends and hear from industry leaders as they weigh in on today’s most pressing topics. The programme includes panel discussions, breakout talks and Q&As led by leading brands, each with a focus on Europe’s ocean, river and expedition cruise industry. For those looking to improve their environmental footprint, the Sustainable Design Summit’s Working Group Lunch taking place on the second day of the show will be an opportunity to exchange ideas with like-minded peers. There’s also a zerowaste Product Showcase to discover innovative materials and approaches.

Rounding out the event, an array of networking experiences can be enjoyed over the two days, from curated exhibitor tours to speed networking sessions for buyers and suppliers, and the official opening party. The CSI Awards will also make a return to the show floor; the ceremony celebrates the industry’s greatest achievements, recognising the work of design studios, cruise lines and suppliers.

For more information about the upcoming event and to find out how to get involved, visit:


With sustainability becoming an increasing focus in the design, build and procurement of hospitality spaces, interior designers and specifiers are required to make more responsible choices – without compromising on quality, brand identity or guest experience. Sustainable Design Summit brings together all those working in the sector to cross-pollinate ideas and meet with leading sustainability experts through a series of events. Evolved from the yearly summit, the growing community has become a circular calendar of events that facilitate knowledge-sharing, product sourcing and networking; the new format comprises online and in-person Working Groups, as well as bi-annual Summits.

representatives from Six Senses, Air Canada, MSC Cruises, Carnival Cruise Line, Airbus, Hurtigruten, Accor, Embraer Executive Jets, Soho House, Bombardier, Marriott International and many more.

Throughout 2024, Sustainable Design Summit will host two online Working Groups and two in-person Working Groups. The first online Working Group was held in April, and saw representatives from DLR Group, Hyatt Hotel Corporation and MindClick lead a discussion on analytics and how data can be used to drive improvement. The next online Working Group will take place on 25 September 2024.

The in-person events will occur alongside CSI Design Expos, beginning with the Working

Sustainable State of Mind

Sustainable Design Summit evolves into a year-round series of events designed to drive change across the hospitality sector.

The newly-introduced Working Groups build on a need for regular events that provide a platform for the hospitality interiors sector to connect and collaborate, to share approaches and solutions that progress towards a more sustainable future. The topics discussed and questions raised at each meet-up will inform the topics of the following Working Group, creating a synergetic conversation that continues to evolve. The flagship Summit will now take place every other year due to the length of time it can take for sustainability strategies to be implemented and progress to be tracked. The next Sustainable Design Summit is planned for November 2025.

In addition to these format changes, Sustainable Design Summit has also expanded its audience to now include all hospitality travel interiors including cruise, ferry and yacht, hotel and resort, aviation, rail and automotive. The calendar of events will be attended by

Group Breakfast on 7 June 2024 at Miami Beach Convention Center. Entitled Refurbishments: A Circularity State of Mind, the event will begin with a networking breakfast, leading on to the collaboration and learning. Decision-makers and suppliers will have the opportunity to participate in a hands-on workshop centred around developing a circularity mindset, extending lifetimes and improving the recyclability of products.

The following Working Group Lunch will be at ExCeL London on 5 December 2024. This inperson roundtable will cover regulations for critical raw materials and connecting circular economies across the sectors. In addition, the event will include a zero-waste Product Showcase displaying sustainable solutions.

To learn more about participating in upcoming Sustainable Design Summit events, visit:


High-quality and luxury furniture for Ilma

Imagine a smooth project. One with endless possibilities. Your ideas custom-made. Tailored to your wishes.

Collaborative through the entire project. This is why Robos

Contract Furniture and The Ritz-Carlton Yacht Collection

partnered up to work on Ilma, the brand’s second ship. Robos has produced over 300 dining, foldable and side tables for indoor and outdoor use, as well as over 100 metres of banquette sofa seating and nearly 1,500 cushions.

Endless possibilities | Masters in projectmanagement | Creative innovation Visit



Art Meets Innovation

BMW combines colour-changing technology with the artistic language of Esther Mahlangu to show the potential for customised vehicles.

When Hervé Poulain came up with the idea of a racing car that also serves as a work of art, few could have predicted its success. In bringing together his passion for speed with an eye for design, the French racing driver set the wheels in motion for BMW’s Art Car series, a long-running initiative that sees renowned artists tasked with creating a one-of-a-kind vehicle. Over the past 50 years, artists including Alexander Calder, Roy Lichtenstein and Andy Warhol have introduced their signature style to BMW bodywork, with the ‘rolling sculptures’ going on to race at 24 Hours of Le Mans.

In 1991, South African artist Esther Mahlangu became the first female to participate in the programme, coating a BMW 535i with the bold colours and geometric patterns typical of her tribal Ndebele art.

Three decades on, Mahlangu’s design has been given a 21st century makeover, becoming the prototype for BMW’s first colour-changing car. Presented at Frieze Los Angeles, the BMW i5 Flow Nostokana sees strips of E Ink film applied to the roof, bonnet and body of the vehicle, each equipped with several million microcapsules; like an e-book reader, the structure and arrangement of the particles can be changed by applying an electric voltage, generating constantly changing compositions.

To accurately recreate every detail of Mahlangu’s design, the BMW i5 Flow Nostokana has been fitted with 1,349 sections of film, each of which can be individually controlled. According to Stella Clarke, Research Engineer Open Innovations at BMW Group, the 88-yearold artist’s signature style is perfect for bringing the innovative technology to life, while Mahlangu states that it is “fascinating to see how modern technology can expand my art and make it accessible to a completely new audience”.

Adrian van Hooydonk, Head of BMW Group Design, concludes: “The BMW i5 Flow Nostokana honours the history of the BMW brand and continues the story of our global cultural engagement in a unique way. It combines art and design through progressive technology. Here, technology itself becomes art.”

Collector’s Item

Porsche partners with Vitra to expand its lifestyle offering.

Building on the success of Ferdinand Alexander Porsche – designer of the iconic Porsche 911 –Porsche Lifestyle Group has spent the past 50 years building a brand that extends beyond the automotive world. Under its various divisions, the group has created timepieces, sportswear and luggage for avid fans of the car, before venturing into real estate and interior design. The first Porsche branded residences opened in Miami in 2017, followed by a mixed-use development in Stuttgart last year, incorporating a Radisson Blu hotel. There are plans for pre-fabricated floating housing from Studio F. A. Porsche – the interior design division – while the lifestyle division has partnered with Vitra to expand into furniture. Unveiled during Milan Design Week, the collaboration sees three iconic chairs produced as limited editions for Porsche, upholstered in the sports car’s original Pepita fabric.

The collection includes the Eames Plastic Side Chair by Charles & Ray Eames, and the ID Trim and Petit Repos by Milanese architect Antonio Citterio. All three reference sports car classics in their form and innovation, enhanced by the iconic houndstooth print that was first used on Porsche 911 interiors in 1965. The repeating nature of the Pepita pattern has also informed the marketing campaign, with photographer Jonas Lindstroem using the geometry to create his own patterns – this time with Vitra furniture and Porsche models.

Much like the cars themselves, the chairs are expected to become true collectors’ items. Robert Ader, Chief Marketing Officer at Porsche, comments: “The Porsche Pepita Edition by Vitra is a symbiosis of the DNA of our companies: iconic design paired with excellent craftsmanship and compelling function.”


Lancia Living

Lancia enlists Cassina to create car interiors that

resemble a ‘living room’.

Style, comfort and onboard wellbeing are at the core of the new Lancia Ypsilon, which now comes as a limited-edition model featuring interiors by Cassina. As one of a growing number of automobile manufacturers partnering with furniture-makers to elevate the passenger cabin, Turin-based Lancia looked to its home nation for a design partner, eventually selecting Cassina for its shared values.

Combining tradition and innovation, the Lancia Ypsilon Edizione Limitata Cassina reflects the heritage and spirit of both brands. “Its design is inspired by the brand’s glorious past, now reinterpreted in a modern way,” explains Luca Napolitano, CEO of Lancia. “This result was also achieved thanks to the collaboration with Cassina, that together with our Centro Stile in Turin, designed a true living room inspired by welcoming Italian homes.”

Drawing on the world of Italian furnishings, the interiors are characterised by deep-blue soft-touch upholstery made from 100% recycled

yarn, which envelops the seats in a ‘cannelloni’ pattern with a ribbed weave and double stitching. The same colour is used on the door panels and dashboard for harmonious visual impact. Another hallmark of the design is the multifunctional tavolino, or table, thought to be the first of its kind inside a car. Made from bio-based plastic with saddle-leather upholstery, the tavolino has been developed to create a welcoming and hospitable space, resulting in a passenger cabin that becomes a ‘living room’. Heated seats that massage the body make them veritable armchairs, while the innovative SALA (Sound Air Light Augmentation) infotainment system brings together audio, climate and lighting control for personalisation at the touch of a button.

The launch of Lancia Ypsilon Edizione Limitata Cassina is part of a new approach for the car maker, with further initiatives including an updated logo and refurbished showrooms –again with Cassina furniture – for a purchase experience that aligns with the luxury of the car.

© Maxsararotto

Making Places

Mercedes-Benz makes a move into real estate, pursuing its vision of mobility beyond automotive.

As a luxury automotive brand, Mercedes-Benz has long connected people and places in the stylish surrounds of its S-Class sedan cars. Now, with a vision of ‘mobility beyond automotive’, the group is set to become a place-maker, having announced its entry into the real estate market.

Developed in partnership with Binghatti Properties, Mercedes-Benz Places | Binghatti will debut in Dubai, and is described as a state-ofthe-art venture to merge the worlds of automotive and architecture. Due to break ground later this year, the project takes the form of a 65-storey tower that transfers the Mercedes-Benz design DNA to branded residential living spaces.

Occupying a prime site in Downtown Dubai, the 341m tower is characterised by a distinctive elliptical exterior, reminiscent of the flowing lines of the forthcoming fleet of ultra-modern Mercedes-Benz cars. The façade is made up of generous glazing framed by a striking lamella structure, with architectural cladding that enhances the dynamic lines and contributes to the building’s energy efficiency through the integration of photovoltaics.

“Iconic design is what we are striving for; we want to create something that stands out and makes a statement,” explains Gorden Wagener, Chief Design Officer at Mercedes-Benz Group. “We have taken our unique design philosophy of Sensual Purity beyond automotive and shaped an iconic landmark. It looks very different, unique and futuristic and will be associated with the design, technology and luxury appeal that are trademarks of every Mercedes-Benz.”

Inside, the development comprises a collection of 150 residences, ranging from two-bedroom apartments to a sprawling five-bedroom penthouse – each meticulously crafted to align with the Mercedes-Benz experience. Further facilities include restaurants, bars and lounges, as well as sports and wellness zones, nonautomotive retail and exhibition spaces. And, in partnership with local providers, the venture will deliver a number of advanced and innovative mobility solutions, including EV charging, bike and scooter sharing, chauffeur services and automated valet parking.

“Mercedes-Benz Places in Dubai is not merely a real-estate development; it will also place community and mobility at its core, setting a new benchmark for intelligent living,” comments Muhammad BinGhatti, CEO of Binghatti Properties. “Together, we will create something remarkable – a sophisticated living space that mixes iconic design, emotion and innovation into a phenomenal architectural form.”

Britta Seeger, Member of the Board of Management at Mercedes-Benz Group, concludes: “With Mercedes-Benz Places, we are going beyond automotive to create outstanding brand moments. The aim with our first residential tower is to create new, desirable grounds that inherit our brand’s DNA and give our customers a place to arrive, unwind and come home to.”


Exceptional Craft

It’s craftsmanship, from start to finish. Understanding materials and how they work. From steel to silk. Bespoke. Most people don’t realise what goes into creating high-spec, beautifully finished spaces. But we do. That’s why we’re commissioned to fit out the world’s finest cruise liners.

Artwork in Motion

The Venice SimplonOrient-Express invites travellers to experience the artistic creations of JR.

“With L’Observatoire, people can enter my imaginary world,” reveals JR, the acclaimed artist behind a new sleeper carriage on the Venice Simplon-Orient-Express. Joining the rake in 2025, L’Observatoire will be the most spacious accommodation type on board the train, with the interiors conceptualised and designed by JR to showcase his unique style.

Best known for his fly-poster installations made from a collage of black-and-white photography, the street artist is now embarking on a new challenge to restore the interiors of the original carriage. “I would never have dared to imagine this collaboration, because the Venice Simplon-Orient-Express is such a historic train,” JR explains. “Working with artisans and discovering motifs that respect the era in which the train carriages were built was not a constraint, because I was interested in making this a timeless artwork – as if I was an artist from the 1920s.”

The design concept is set to unfold through a series of spaces, from the bedroom with en suite bathroom to the lounge, library and secret tearoom. Each is designed with the utmost respect

for timeless crafts, and features hidden details that drive curiosity and encourage exploration. “I wanted to create so many details and layers that inspire a sense of wonder – whether it’s hidden compartments or secret messages in the marquetry,” the artist continues. “There’s so much in this carriage that it will be impossible to explore in a single trip.”

Inspired by the 1920s creations of René Prou and René Lalique – which still feature on board – JR is using artisanal techniques to preserve the original look and feel of the train, introducing new elements to create an immersive artwork in motion. Guests will be encouraged to explore the design details within, while the rounded windows and oculus skylight on the ceiling allow them to engage with the passing landscapes outside.

“The team and I are thrilled to be working with JR, who shares with us a real passion for the Venice Simplon-Orient-Express,” concludes Gary Franklin, Vice President of Trains & Cruises at Belmond. “L’Observatoire is a testament to our company’s prominent role in reinventing the railway experience as we perpetuate the art of slow luxury across our growing portfolio.”

© Justin Weiler

Eastern & Oriental Express


The storied Eastern & Oriental Express returns to the tracks with refreshed interiors and a culinary programme curated by chef André Chiang.

For over 30 years, Eastern & Oriental Express has been luring in travellers with its romantic nostalgia and evocative itineraries through Southeast Asia. Now, after a five-year hiatus, the train has returned to the tracks with restyled interiors, a new culinary programme and two threenight itineraries that delve deeper into the soul of Malaysia, as well as one-off journeys in partnership with brands like Veuve Clicquot, which include indulgent extras like vintage champagne tastings.

The structure of the train has remained unchanged, including the three different cabin categories - Pullman, State and Presidential - the dining carriages, Piano Bar and the iconic open-air Observation Car. Lined with the same handsome cherrywood and elm burr panelling and ornate marquetry details, the interiors retain the train’s romantic opulence, but with a fresh colour palette inspired by the lush Malaysian landscapes and vibrant cities along the route. “We wanted to evoke a sense of contemporary nostalgia through the design choices, which have been influenced by Asian creativity and local techniques and textiles,” explains Marianne Khan, Belmond’s Interior Design Director for Trains & Cruises.

Words: Lauren Ho Photography: © Ludovic Balay (unless otherwise stated)

With a vision to create a story for each carriage and cabin category, the design team took their cues from local textiles such as Batik, which Khan says informed the way they played with colour and pattern. Using Trevira silks and velvets, the Pullman Cabins – with a daybed that transforms into a cosy room with upper and lower berths at night – for example, were inspired by the radiance of Kuala Lumpur, featuring vibrant red sofas, blue cushions and drapery that reflects the city’s skies. Meanwhile the State Cabins, whose daybeds convert into two single beds at night, reflect Penang’s seaside location and painted shophouses with a vibrant ocean-toned palette.

The Piano Bar and Observation Car – arguably the best spot to spend an afternoon with a glass of champagne – have also had a refresh, with the former featuring a large abstract Tiger Orchid on the carpet, its green and golden hues perfectly offsetting the ochre velvet of the sofas.

It’s the two restaurant carriages however that have seen the most significant overhaul. Both

brighter and airier, Malay unfolds over deep orange velvet chairs and a carpet embellished with Batik swirls and floral motifs, while the refreshing design of Adisorn is inspired by the region’s lush green tea plantations. Transporting guests to a golden age of travel and opulence, the tables are dressed in crisp white tablecloths and topped with ornate lampshades, silverware and crystal glasses. In other words, a refined and lavish setting to sink into and watch the world go by while dining on the cuisine of twoMichelin-starred chef André Chiang.

The train’s new Culinary Curator – who has a placement in the World’s 50 Best Restaurants 2021 for Raw in Taipei – is best known for the creation of Octaphilosophy, a culinary principle of eight elements – Unique, Texture, Memory, Pure, Terroir, Salt, South and Artisan – that form the backbone of his dishes. On board, Chiang brings traditional French techniques to a decidedly Southeast Asian menu using local ingredients and flavour combinations from across the region. “I was drawn to the

The refreshed interiors feature a new colour palette inspired by the lush Malaysian landscapes and vibrant cities along the route

opportunity to relaunch the Eastern & Oriental Express and reimagine a culinary experience that really gives travellers the feeling of a sense of place,” says Chiang. “The train’s reputation as one of the most luxurious in the world –and my experience working with renowned restaurants and groundbreaking projects –make this an exciting collaboration.”

Valentin Waldman, General Manager, Eastern & Oriental Express continues: “André Chiang’s expertise allows him to create a brand new culinary offering that reflects the terroir of Southeast Asia. This elevates the dining experience on the train, providing guests with a memorable journey through local flavours, enhancing the overall elegance and luxury of the Eastern & Oriental Express.”

The result is dishes such as the black-bone chicken consommé, which uses a rare breed of black chicken from Indonesia; the flavoursome ‘nine peppers jus’ 16-hour braised beef cheek; and the Laksa bouillabaisse, which unites the hearty technique of the classic French Provençal

soup with the rich and fragrant spiciness of the iconic Malaysian noodle dish.

With each dish freshly cooked on board, Chiang admits that one of the greatest challenges is the limited kitchen space. “The logistical constraints meant that we had to carefully select dishes that could be executed efficiently on a moving train without compromising on quality,” Chiang notes. He also believes that the cuisine should “interact with the landscape and history”, so when it came to creating the menu, his starting point was the journey, rather than his background in city-centre restaurants. “What do guests see when they eat my food? What excursions have they experienced before sitting at the table? That was key in conceptualising the menu.”

Indeed, Chiang’s appointment has elevated the dining experience on board Eastern & Oriental Express, his food creating a harmonious and picturesque journey as passengers chug through the wilds of Malaysia, reliving the glamour of the golden age of travel.


Route: Southeast Asia

Operator: Belmond

Interior Design: Belmond

in-house design team

Culinary Curator: André Chiang

070 VOYAGE ON LAND © Frankie Lin

Rollcruiser® and laundry trolleys

Optimise your processes with our transport solutions. Facilitate transportation of dirty laundry and clean linen with the agile KT3 laundry trolley. The Wanzl Rollcruiser enables an extremely quick and gentle transportation of luggage from the harbour check-in desk to the vessel. Convince yourself of the different logistics solutions –made in Germany! |

Optimised logistics for cruise ships


Lunar Landing

Hassell unveils a revolutionary new concept to support development of the world’s first lunar habitat.

Great strides have been made in commercial space travel, but what will this influx of space tourists do when they reach their destination? If the Lunar Habitat Master Plan is anything to go by, they will be able to play sports, dine out and kick back in their own living quarters – much in the same way as they do on Earth.

The concept – envisioned by global design practice Hassell – is a groundbreaking modular settlement that will enable communities to not only survive, but thrive on the moon. Developed in collaboration with Cranfield University and Format Engineers as part of the European Space Agency’s Discovery programme, the pioneering proposal takes a radically different approach to the monolithic shell structures previously proposed. Hassell’s design uses 3D-printed modular components that act as a protective shell, combatting lethal levels of radiation around a habitat that can grow to accommodate a community of up to 144 people. The hexapodshaped elements are assembled like building blocks, and can be regenerated using materials sourced directly from the moon – such as lunar soil – and then 3D-printed on site, providing the means for sustainable construction growth.

“Access to space is getting cheaper every year,

so over the next two decades space travel will evolve hugely,” says Xavier De Kestelier, Global Head of Design at Hassell. “We need to start planning for how larger communities can live on the moon. Shipping will always be costly, so we decided to create the habitats out of inflatable modules that are lightweight and compact.”

The human-centric masterplan considers not only the essential elements that make a habitat liveable, but enriching experiences such as restaurants, lounges and sports facilities, resulting in what could be a prosperous permanent community.

Advenit Makaya, Advanced Manufacturing Engineer at the European Space Agency, concludes: “As part of this ESA Discovery study, Hassell has come up with a very interesting design, which combines a good understanding of the lunar environment constraints and a vision for the future of human exploration of the lunar surface. The multidisciplinary team also provided an insightful assessment of how that habitat design could accommodate the range of activities which would be relevant in an established sustainable human settlement. This will be helpful to scope future developments on lunar habitats.”


Amphibious Aviation

Jekta unveils the interiors of its new mode of transport to showcase the future of amphibious flight.

Bringing together marine and aviation, Jekta has unveiled a first look at the interiors of PHA-ZE 100, a zero-emissions amphibious aircraft. Available in economy-class Traveller and executive-class Corporate configurations, the cabins combine passenger comfort with operational durability for the future of amphibious flight.

The scheme has been developed by industrial design studio MBVision and can be adapted to support a range of services, from multi-leg passenger flights and experiential tourism trips to roadshow itineraries for VIPs and corporate clients. According to Jekta, the new mode of transport could seamlessly connect traditional airports with coastal regions, forming a network that simplifies otherwise complex journeys.

Borrowing elements from the worlds of marine and aviation, the spacious cabins feature timberstyle flooring and a galley serving refreshments, as well as expansive panoramic windows – more like those on a cruise ship than an aeroplane – to emulate the at-sea experience and allow natural daylight to flood in. Made from recyclable

materials, the modular seating is slimline and lightweight, while Jekta is working to integrate next-generation flexible screens to the upholstery, facilitating entertainment services and connection between passengers and crew.

“We believe these interiors express our ambition of creating a disruptive, original style of travel within a new mode of transport,” explains Max Pinucci, who heads up industrial design at Jekta. “We have created an elegant cabin for airlines flying multiple legs daily alongside a stylish cabin that adheres to the principles of being environmentally friendly internally and externally. This highlights our commitment to providing a zero-emissions airframe that supports many applications.”

He concludes: “Our interiors follow all the necessary certification requirements yet set new standards of elegance and functionality to create an unparalleled on-board experience. We want our customers not just to fly, but to feel that they are travelling in an environment designed around their needs, comfort and safety.”


Home Away From Home

The private jet gets a revamp, as designers push the boundaries of cabin interiors.

Aeroplanes have long been regarded as transitional spaces – a necessary means to travel from A to B, rather than somewhere to relish spending time in. But when it comes to private aviation, travel is a luxury experience, with passenger expectations soaring as high as the jet itself. The challenge for operators and designers then, is to craft interiors that are as decadent as a passenger’s own home.

Designer Naomi Astley Clarke recently took on the challenge with gusto when she developed a concept for a Gulfstream G700 cabin, exploring how the private jet can become an extension of the home. “I really wanted to push the boundaries of what is possible in order to create a glamorous interior space that is a home away from home,” explains the designer.

Described as an exploration of colour, materiality and artisanal details, the cabin features warming jewel tones throughout, from an emerald marble vanity in the bathroom, to plush upholstery in a rich shade of sapphire.

Brass accents add sparkle, while a jungle-themed feature wall depicting wild animals amongst blossoming foliage takes centrestage. “So often, jet interiors are elegant but not cosy,” notes Astley Clarke, adding that the typical aesthetic is often defined by hard finishes. “I have rebalanced the restrictions of safety requirements with colour and pattern, and also used healing crystals to create a sense of calm. I want passengers to feel relaxed when they spend time here.”

Also demonstrating the potential for style in the skies, San Francisco-based designer Mead Quin has taken a different approach. In envisioning the interiors of a Gulfstream 550 for a private client, Quin opted for a neutral palette that brings together cashmere and wool alongside leather and limestone. The decidedly residential aesthetic blends comfort and timeless style, with everything from throws and pillows to accessories selected to suit the client – an attention to detail that is imperative when crafting a luxury home away from home.


Flying into the Future

Finalists for the 2024 Crystal Cabin Awards promise to make flying more comfortable, sustainable and accessible.

Offering a glimpse into the future of flying, the Crystal Cabin Awards – organised annually by Hamburg Aviation – has announced its 2024 finalists. Spread across eight categories, the shortlisted entries take in a wide range of innovative concepts, from revolutionary seating systems to sustainable materials.


In the Cabin Concepts category, the Airspace Cabin Vision 2035+ from Airbus has made the shortlist for its ambitious approach to decarbonisation and circularity. Bringing together innovative solutions from a range of airlines and tech companies, the initiative aims to reduce a cabin’s overall environmental impact during its lifecycle. Measures include selecting materials that can be recycled, reused and repaired, as well as digitisation that enables meals to be ordered in advance, which in turn will reduce food waste and cabin weight.

Also shortlisted in this category is the

BermudAir Aisle Class Suite – a premium class seat for single-aisle aircraft by Factorydesign. Created for Bermuda’s new start-up airline, the cost-effective upgrade sees existing 2-2 seating replaced with a 1-1 configuration suite for a more spacious experience.

The final project to be shortlisted in Cabin Concepts is the JAL A350-1000 Cabin Interior designed by Tangerine for Japan Airlines. Developed to immerse passengers in the elegance of Japanese aesthetics, the interiors are inspired by the sights, sounds and experiences of the nation’s culture. In business class, a translucent room divider, or Shoji, has been incorporated into the sliding doors, while first class seats feature beautifully crafted latticework that is reminiscent of traditional Japanese woodcraft.


Shortlisted in the Passenger Comfort category, the Wellbeing Zone on Qantas is designed to set new standards in ultra-long-haul flights.

Airspace Cabin Vision 2035+

Created by Diehl Aviation as part of Project Sunrise, the concept offers spaces for stretching, as well as a self-serve station with a touchless water dispenser and snacks to address hydration and nutrition.

There’s also the Arise intelligent comfort system from Collins Aerospace, which integrates state-of-the-art technology into seating to mitigate sleep disturbances during flight. Sensors actively monitor seating position, cushion pressure, body temperature and environmental lighting, automatically making real-time adjustments to optimise comfort and increase restfulness.

And finally, Signature Seat from Safran addresses the dual demands of enhanced comfort for passengers and cost-effective solutions for airlines; its patented design guarantees undisturbed personal space through a fixed pre-reclined architecture, flexible adjustments to accommodate various body types and innovative materials that improve comfort.


Aiming to set new standards in environmentally friendly aviation, the shortlisted projects in the Sustainable

Cabin category are developed to minimise waste and reduce CO2 footprint. The R Sphere by Recaro Aircraft Seating uses recyclable materials such as cork, wood and reclaimed fishing nets for an innovative seating solution, while the Eco Sidewall by Diehl Aviation achieves a 10% weight reduction in the sidewall through the use of lightweight materials and creative design. Also on the shortlist is the Onboard Water Dispenser by Safran Cabin, which uses the aircraft’s existing water supply to ensure clean drinking water through UV filter technology, reducing the need for bottles.

Further entries are based around health and safety, materials and components, and in-flight entertainment systems. Highlights include The Zen Privacy Door, a lightweight foldable design from Unum Aircraft Seating and MGR Foamtex; and Adapt by Collins Aerospace, which allows passengers to control their in-flight entertainment system using their personal devices, with advanced settings that support voice control, sign language gesture recognition and audio-visual feedback, enhancing accessibility for all users.

JAL A350-1000 Cabin Interior BermudAir Aisle Class Suite Qantas Wellbeing Zone Arise

In a world where brands vie for attention, the airline industry is atypical. How often do customers choose to be confined to a limited environment beyond their control, often for hours at a time, relying entirely on a single company to cater to all their needs? Airlines have a captive audience; they will be remembered – for better or worse.

Airlines are primarily built around customer experience, so it’s paramount that every aspect –from the design of the seats to the ambient music – is considered. This requires a brand proposition that tells a story and makes the traveller the protagonist. The key to making the leap from the captive to the captivated is memorable brand elements – those that help turn an often

to different needs, expectations and mindsets –in much the same way as any hospitality space.


Technology is impacting every industry, and for airlines it has led to huge enhancements in the experience. Improved entertainment can be seen airline-wide, from larger screens with better resolution to increased entertainment options including blockbuster films and gaming. AI and data have also accelerated personalisation, providing customers with real time information concerning the plane’s location and type of aircraft. This tech has helped improve transparency and the sharing of information between brand and consumer.

The Value of Brand Experience

Airlines need to combine service and technology for a memorable passenger experience, reveals Gabor Schreier, Chief Creative Officer at Saffron Brand Consultants.

uncomfortable experience into something delightful. From the safety video to the tailfin design, from in-flight meals to the captain’s announcements, there are myriad moments that form an impression. Such touchpoints feed into a traveller’s experience as they fly, when the brand has their unrivalled attention.


If brand is the promise of an experience delivered, a culture of hospitality is crucial to an airline. It’s unsurprising that airlines that are consistently ranked highly are those originating from Asia or the Middle East, where service is greatly valued. Furthermore, airlines must cater to a wide range of audiences. Travelling is often part of a holiday, so passengers want it to be enjoyable, with all the associated emotions that will make that brand memorable. Those flying regularly for work need the airline to offer a suitable environment, often a quiet area with space to set up a laptop, with fast in-flight WiFi. Airlines must be prepared to cater


Consistently fulfilling a brand promise through an end-to-end experience is key to an airline’s success. To achieve this, service and technology must work together seamlessly. This truth applies at an even more complex level amongst groups wanting to build frictionless experiences across different carriers and regions. The way travellers are treated across the entire journey has a huge impact on their experience. Technology can feed into the design of the airline experience and raise the stakes – to impress and immerse consumers, to tailor the flight, streamline information, solicit feedback and increase loyalty. But for an airline brand experience to be memorable for the right reasons, service and technology must go beyond the seamless and appeal to a traveller’s emotions. Design and deliver surprise and delight, put the traveller at the centre of their journey, make the brand experience a story worth being told and lived again.

© Dirk Beichert / Airbus / Taylor James

Differentiate by Dining

From Michelin-starred partnerships to plantbased plates, the latest F&B developments in the skies are designed for differentiation.

To meet increased demand, Emirates has added more plant-based dishes to its menu (above left), while AirFrance is elevating its in-flight dining offer with dishes by top chefs (top right)

Along with comfortable seating and an engaging entertainment system, cuisine is a key aspect of the in-flight experience. As such, airlines are increasingly differentiating by dining, whether through menus that embody a destination, or partnerships with Michelin-starred chefs and land-based restaurants.

Air France, for example, is tapping into the culinary heritage of its home nation with a number of high-profile collaborations. For flights departing from the USA, Dominique Crenn – the first female chef to earn three Michelin stars – has created dishes for La Première and Business cabins, while passengers flying from Paris can feast on Provençal cuisine by Glenn Viel, before indulging in Philippe Rigollot’s decadent pastries.

Cathay Pacific meanwhile has extended its partnership with Michelin-starred Hong Kong restaurant, Duddell’s, with the latest iteration of menus showcasing authentic Cantonese and regional Chinese specialties. Highlights include

Sichuan-style poached chicken bathed in a sesame and chilli sauce, and steamed cod layered with Chinese ham and shiitake mushrooms.

And Lufthansa passengers travelling in Business Class on long-haul flights from Germany can now enjoy bread developed exclusively for the airline by baker-sommelier Axel Schmitt.

In devising their culinary offerings, airlines are also keeping track of global dining trends, with Emirates in particular recognising that vegan meal consumption has grown 40% year-on-year across its network. The airline has responded by adding more plant-based dishes to its menus. In Economy class, passengers can enjoy a chickpea crêpe stuffed with peppers and tomato concasse, while first-class diners can tuck in to creamy polenta cake with thyme mushroom ragout.

And finally, Japan Airlines is elevating its omnivore offering through a partnership with Wagyu Restaurant 1129 in Paris, which is now thought to be the world’s first eatery to serve the finest cuts of Japanese beef in the air.


Taking The Scenic Route

Halo Space unveils The Aurora, a Space Ageinspired capsule set to take travellers to the stratosphere and beyond.

Until now, only around 650 humans have had the opportunity to experience the overview effect,” begins Carlos Mira, CEO of Halo Space. “Our aim is to offer this experience to 10,000 people by 2030.”

It’s a bold ambition, but one that is becoming increasingly feasible thanks to major advances in technology that will enable spacecraft to travel safely into the stratosphere. With multiple companies working towards the same goal of making space travel more accessible, attention has now turned to the onboard guest experience. “We want every minute of the journey to be unforgettable for our passengers,” continues Mira, speaking at an event in London to unveil Halo Space’s new capsule. “We have created a capsule that not only embodies luxury and elegance, but also prioritises safety and functionality. It’s a testament to our commitment to providing the ultimate spaceflight experience.”

Named The Aurora, the capsule has been envisioned by Frank Stephenson Design and combines cutting-edge technology with forward-thinking design principles for a luxurious cabin. Taking in every stage of the travel experience, the adventure begins a week before the vessel’s launch, as passengers come together at a base camp – four are under development across the globe, their remote locations chosen for favourable weather conditions and clear skies. In the run-up to departure, guests will have the opportunity to explore the capsule, visit the control centre and review the planned trajectory of the journey.

The capsule itself stands at 3.5 meters tall and is made from aluminium alloy and composite materials. It will rise into space with the aid of a helium-filled balloon, gradually ascending to an altitude of up to 35km – above that of any commercial flight.

Words: Cara Rogers Renderings: © Courtesy of Halo Space and Frank Stephenson Design

With interiors inspired by the Space Age, The Aurora features eight adjustable seats positioned around its perimeter for panoramic views

The journey is expected to take four to six hours, with between one and two hours spent soaking up the intergalactic surroundings. The star of the show will undoubtedly be the view, with vast windows bringing passengers face-to-face with the stratosphere.

Inside, Frank Stephenson Design’s interiors take inspiration from the Space Age, with curved lines and reflective materials making for a futuristic look. The layout has been envisioned to ensure every passenger has optimal viewing opportunities, with eight adjustable seats positioned around the perimeter of the spacecraft – each with its own window. Facilitating socialisation with other passengers, the chairs have been designed to rotate if desired, while integrated compartments can be used for personal storage. There’s also individual display screens and flip-down tables, and the dining experience has been carefully considered; passengers will make their selections prior to take-off, with the gourmet cuisine prepared on land then delivered via a discreet service hatch.

Given the groundbreaking nature of the project, the design team faced a wide range of obstacles, including balancing aesthetic appeal with functionality. “Working

on a project of this magnitude brings about challenges from a design perspective,” confirms Stephenson. “Crafting a beautiful interior for passengers while considering factors like strict safety regulations and weight distribution gave us some challenging hurdles to overcome.”

Indeed, designing within the various constraints yet ensuring a high-quality experience that prospective passengers will likely be accustomed to on land is the ultimate mission. “It’s one thing to design a beautiful interior, it’s another thing to make it work,” states Stephenson. “Aurora has to perform to very high standards, but it also has to be desirable and have the ability to evoke emotion; I am so proud of what we have achieved.”

Halo plans to begin offering commercial flights in 2026, with trips starting at US$164,000 – a fraction of the price of current orbital and suborbital offerings. The multi-day adventure takes in pre- and post-flight activities, as well as branded merchandise such as personalised spacesuits and backpacks. The ultimate take-away however, is the transformative experience of witnessing the spectacle that is the overview effect.


4 – 5 December 2024

ExCeL London

The continent’s only event dedicated to cruise interior design

The boutique exhibition and conference provides a gateway for the cruise interiors supply chain to meet with Europe’s most esteemed cruise lines, designers, and shipyards working on major refurbishment and newbuild projects.

Gain insight and inspiration

Source innovative products & services

Connect with the community

Create new partnerships within the industry



. . . .
over to the website to find out more

CSI+ is the exclusive platform for Members-only networking and product sourcing for the global cruise ship interiors community.

Showcase your business, products, and services to the people that matter

Extend your global network and nurture relationships

Maximise your opportunities in this sector

Scan the QR code to learn more

July August September October May November June December Online In-person In-person Online In-person In-person In-person Online CSI Social: London Cruise Design Insights CSI Social: Hamburg Ship Tour: Southampton New to Cruise IMO Workshop CSI Miami
. . . Member-Exclusive Events Cruise Design Insights CSI London


Ariane Fine Porcelain Lir

Established in 2014, Ariane Fine Porcelain has garnered a strong reputation for its commitment to innovative design and technical expertise. This dedication is exemplified in Lir, a new tableware collection inspired by the legendary Irish sea god of the same name. Emulating a tropical-style motif, the products showcase a unique, island-shaped body upon which a glaze is meticulously applied, resulting in a visually intriguing platform through which chefs can showcase their culinary artistry. Beyond its aesthetics, the series is also built to withstand the rigorous demands of highvolume service environments, ensuring a tableware solution that not only elevates the dining experience but also delivers exceptional durability.

Chelsom Icon of the Seas

Chelsom has crafted a custom lighting scheme for Royal Caribbean’s Icon of the Seas. Working with the cruise line and Meyer Turku, as well as electrical contractors, in-house and external design teams, the manufacturer delivered a programme that includes more than 200 fittings across the ship’s suites, cabins and public areas. The brand’s extensive knowledge of and experience in the marine sector, coupled with a long-standing relationship with Royal Caribbean International, made Chelsom an ideal partner to work on the challenging newbuild project. Following the successful completion of the vessel, Chelsom’s designs have also been specified for Utopia of the Seas, due to set sail in Summer 2024.

Secto Design Secto 4230 Wall Lamp

Forming part of the acclaimed Secto Design collection envisioned by architect Seppo Koho, the Secto 4230 wall lamp is characterised by warm wood and clean architectonic shapes that cast a soft luminosity over any interior. Handmade from PEFCcertified form-pressed local birch, the luminaire is available in two sizes and four different finishes including natural birch, white or black laminated and walnut veneer. Offering further versatility, the lamp can be positioned facing upwards or downwards, with a direct wall mount option or a cable and a switch. Based in Finland, Secto Design is a family-owned company that specialises in premium handmade design lamps. Comprising 29 different models, the collection is sustainably and ecologically manufactured by skilled craftsmen in the brand’s factory in Heinola, after which they are distributed globally.


ID Fine Roots

ID Fine has launched Roots, a new fine stoneware collection that fuses tradition with innovation. Specifically tailored for the horeca sector, the range redefines stoneware, elevating it to new heights of both sophistication and practicality – as exemplified by Celesta (pictured). A testament to 50 years of craftsmanship, Celesta and the accompanying products in the Roots series have been envisioned with unique textures and colours that bring new dynamics to food presentation. Established in 1972, ID Fine is a family-owned company dedicated to the art and craft of porcelain tableware.

Indel B is spotlighting its Mariner T40 thermo-electric mini-bar with a 40-litre capacity. The fridge has no internal or external fans and is equipped with a high quality thermo-electric plate, as well as a sealing made from long-lasting epoxy-resin. The interior compartment meanwhile is well organised and equipped with adjustable shelves and a reversible door. Indel B is a leading supplier of cooling and refrigeration systems for vehicles, hotels, cruise ships and outdoor travel experiences. The brand is able to customise products to suit specifier needs, providing refined design solutions that match the quality of those found in the finest hotel suites.

Indel B Mariner T40

Manutti Explora I

Manutti has supplied outdoor furniture to Explora I, the first ship from MSC Group’s luxury lifestyle brand Explora Journeys. The manufacturer’s stylish furniture finds home on the decks of the vessel’s suites, as well as its penthouses and residences. Manutti’s Radoc dining and lounge chairs are on display, alongside its Flows lounger, square and round variations of its Napoli table, as well as its Torsa dining table. MSC Group has also partnered with Manutti to supply furniture for the forthcoming Explora II, which will embark on its maiden voyage in August 2024. For more than two decades, the Belgian furniture brand has focused on the design and creation of luxury outdoor pieces that incorporate the colours of the natural world, including tables, chairs, footrests, loungers and sofas.

Wanzl KT3 Laundry Trolley

The KT3 laundry trolley from Wanzl facilitates the transport of linen on board. From the deck to storage rooms, the folding push handles allow for comfortable use in confined spaces, with a fifth castor making the KT3 easy to manoeuver. Sliding and folding shelves can be individually adjusted for different uses, allowing linen to be stored in the laundry and efficiently transported to the decks. When the shelves are folded down, the KT3 can be used to return linen and towels to the laundry, ensuring that the cycle is organised through just one trolley.

Splinterworks Hamaca

The Hamaca bathtub by Splinterworks combines the comfort of soaking in a hot bath with the relaxing experience of kicking back in a hammock. Created using carbon fibre, Hamaca’s continuous curved surface offers a design that varies from the flat bottom and steep back of a traditional bathtub. The product is filled to a maxmimum capacity of 200 litres using a floor-standing tap, while waste water is released through the base and discarded through a floor drain positioned directly beneath the tub. Splinterworks offer hammock baths in a range of finishes – the black carbon fibre can also be finished in white to match other sanitaryware, in addition to a number of metal veneers or gilded finishes.


Scala by Zieher is a collection of stylish geometric displays made from refined cast aluminium that is subsequently refined. The raw and industrial character of the products is reminiscent of roughly cast steel parts, giving presentations a rustic yet modern flair. The hexagonal shape allows for efficient and space-saving partitioning of areas into fixed sections, facilitating culinary presentations on up to four levels through a step-like structure. Scala is available in various shades of grey and dark silver, offering diverse nuances in tone and brightness. For an additional touch of glamour, the 10cm tall display can also be specified in a golden variant. Zieher is a name synonymous with innovative design, both in tabletop and buffetware solutions, and the brand counts five-star hotels and top class restaurants in more than 90 countries among its client list.

Infinityglass by Bonna is characterised by a polycarbonate body that mimics the appearance of glass, whilst actually being 250 times stronger, ensuring durability and longevity in busy environments. The impact-resistant and recyclable structure eliminates the risk of breakage that can occur with glassware, providing both a safe and luxurious imbibing experience. In addition to its durable credentials, Infinityglass retains an elegant and sophisticated form, with Bonna offering a selection of vessels that range from champagne flutes and martini glasses to carafes and shot glasses. Founded in 2014, Bonna is the first horeca brand from Turkish heritage company Kar Porselen, offering unique products that elevate the dining and drinking experience.

French floral designer Christian Tortu has created Riviera, a tableware range inspired by the French and Italian Riviera for Costa Nova. By combining the shapes and colours of its landscape, Tortu has produced a captivating collection that recalls the sublime features of this region to complement culinary creations. Born in a small Portuguese fishing village, Costa Nova creates innovative and sustainable stoneware using the country’s finest natural resources. The brand is produced by Grestel, a world-leading stoneware manufacturer that lays claim to more than 25 years of experience working in the hospitality industry.

Bonna Infinityglass Zieher
Costa Nova Riviera

Swinging at Sea

MSC World America promises to take thrillseeking guests on an adventure – both on and above the water.

Standing out from the crowd is by no means an easy feat in a competitive marketplace, but cruise lines seem to have no trouble in dreaming up ever-zanier ways to entertain their passengers. Over the years, MSC Cruises has introduced a range of thrill-seeking pursuits on its growing fleet – from zip lines that soar across the skies above MSC Seaside, to MSC Seascape’s Robotron – a high-tech rollercoaster ride that flips and twists to the beat of music. Now, a newlyannounced addition to the forthcoming MSC World America is set to take adrenaline-junkies swinging over the seas. Perched some 50m above the ocean, the state-of-the-art ride known as Cliffhanger is designed to be as suspenseful as its name suggests. Towering over the top deck in the Family Aventura district, the one-of-a-kind attraction features four swing seats that are lifted

into the air by powered arms, before propelling out over the edge of the ship. Plucky riders can then enjoy the feeling of swinging back and forth, back and forth, gliding through the sky like a bird, with the wind in their hair. The ride remains open while the ship is in motion, making for panoramic viewing of the ever-changing ocean landscape – for those brave enough to keep their eyes open, that is. Though the announcement of Cliffhanger has attracted attention – the cruise line recently reported record sales – daredevils will have to wait in line to get their fix. As the second in MSC’s World Class collection, the vessel will set sail from Miami in Spring 2025, to be followed by MSC World Asia in 2026, and a yet-to-be named fourth ship in 2027. As to what’s in store for the next adventure, we’ll be on the edge of our seats.

MARINE INTERIORS Discovery Bay Book your space now CREATING DREAMS Interior Design, Equipment and Technology for the Cruise & Ferry Industry 3 – 6 September 2024, Hamburg /mi the leading international maritime trade fair

Turn static files into dynamic content formats.

Create a flipbook
Issuu converts static files into: digital portfolios, online yearbooks, online catalogs, digital photo albums and more. Sign up and create your flipbook.