Feadship sets sail on diamond jubilee celebration

Savannah designed by Feadship

75 years of innovation anchored in a legacy of 404 years.

When thinking about the best luxury yachts in the world today, Feadship is a name that rises to the top. As one of the leading builders of custom luxury superyachts, Feadship has built a legacy of unmatched quality and craftsmanship with their designs and construction expertise that has been perfected over the past 75 years. They are based in the Netherlands with roots dating back to 1849.

Como yacht designed by Feadship
Como © Feadship

“There are yachts and there are Feadships”
Feadship is an elite yacht builder that creates truly custom superyachts. Every new project starts with a blank page. It works to develop a bespoke superyacht that is unlike any other in the world. The Feadship team works confidentially with clients to design a one-off luxury motoryacht that reflects their character and use.

Perhaps these two Feadship statements sum it up best:
“We don’t build yachts quickly; we build them perfectly.”
“We don’t build yachts, we build wants and desires, quirks and eccentricities.”

2024 marks the Feadship diamond jubilee

The year 2024 is the beginning of Feadship’s diamond jubilee, a year-long celebration. While it may be 75 years for Feadship, the combined experience of De Vries (1906), De Voogt (1913) and Van Lent (celebrating its 175th anniversary this year) amounts to a maritime legacy of an astonishing 404 years, a number unmatched in the industry.

Obsidian yacht designed by Feadship
Obsidian © Feadship

Since the modest origins in 1949, today Feadship has an astounding 1,700-meters (5,577 feet) of yachts under construction, including ground-breaking projects like hydrogen fuel cell propulsion: the majestic 118.80-meter (389.76 feet) Project 821. Now Feadship has four shipyards in the Netherlands: Aalsmeer, Amsterdam, Kaag and Makkum and operates in eight other locations: Hoofddorp, Leiden, Papendrecht, Moordrecht, Heiloo, Waddinxveen and in Fort Lauderdale, Florida. Feadship employs over 2,000 people and is seen as a beacon of excellence in superyacht craftsmanship.

How it all began

It’s been a staggering growth curve since the first Feadships appeared at the New York National Boat Show, two years after a group of marine business owners gathered for an organizational meeting at De Roode Leeuw café in Amsterdam in 1949 to devise a plan to sell Dutch-built boats abroad.

Far from the glamour that now surrounds the superyacht industry, Feadship sprung from a pragmatic – perhaps even desperate – post-World War II plan to rescue Dutch industries by kick-starting exports to generate much-needed hard currency. With most of Europe digging out literally and financially, boat builders wishing to prosper, needed to look further afield. The United States represented by far the most attractive potential market. Assured of some government support, six boat builders launched Feadship, the First Export Association of Dutch SHIPbuilders with one purpose: “to promote the export of luxury craft to the United States of America”. Each of the members pledged the sum of 500 Dutch Guilders (purchasing power of € 6038.42 today or $6498.86) to the cause – a significant amount at this impoverished time for a clearly ambitious venture.

Coronet designed by Feadship
Coronet © Feadship

The well-known naval architect and former boat builder Henri de Voogt joined Feadship soon after. His role was to be the designer of the future Feadships and often the chief saleman. It was a simple plan; each yard would contribute a boat designed for export and all would share in the cost of marketing Feadships abroad. All hopes and many jobs shipped along with three small boats – 8-meter (26.24-feet) and 10-meter (32.80-feet) motor cruisers and a 6.50-meter (21.32-feet) daysailer – sent to the January 1951 New York Boat Show. Crowds packed the Feadship stand eager to see the sturdy steel hulls and all yachts were quickly snapped up. With news of custom yachts of 23 and 30-meter (75.49 & 98.42-feet) ordered by prominent Americans in 1952, and 17-meter (55.77-feet) Capri and 19-meter (62.33-feet) Coronet crowned Queens of the 1953 and 1954 New York Boats shows respectively, Feadship was off to the races.

Determination breeds success

The early years were not without teething pains and troubles with agents, cash flow, and the withdrawal of several original members, but with glowing reviews and ninety yachts already sold in America in the first eight years, the potential rewards for persevering in the market were clear. The builders of two of those very first Feadships shown in the US, Royal Van Lent and Koninklijke De Vries, now are juggernauts of the superyacht world and the Feadship brand has delivered over five hundred yachts to date, with another four slated to deliver in 2024.

Just as adding furniture maker, Van der Loo to their team in the 1950s and De Klerk later gave unprecedented quality to their yachts’ interiors, the yards determination to innovate in technical areas with corrosion control, mechanical and electrical systems, aluminum and carbon fiber construction and the use of glass, made Feadship the brand that sets industry standards.

Sussurro designed by Feadship
Sussurro © Feadship

“The best materials for building a Feadship are incredible people”
Feadships such as Sussuro, Ecstasea and Predator sent luxury into the fast lane, while yachts like Savannah and Obsidian showed how luxury could have less impact and launched Feadship on its campaign to net zero by 2030.

“Unrivaled quality throughout the circle of life”
Feadship stands by its ships delivered and is there every step of the way. Throughout the life cycle of a superyacht, upgrades and refits can be custom handled by the shipyards.

The Feadship future looks bright

Cheers to the past, present, and future of Feadship! Many more Feadship beauties are sure to be delivered to proud owners worldwide in the years to come. And attention to sustainability will continue to make Feadship a good citizen of the sea.

Juice yacht designed by Feadship
Juice © Feadship

Hope Gainer

Piscine Castiglione
Atelier Plus Montecarlo
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