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New Zealand takes top honours in Superyacht Design Awards

by Des Ryan on 27 Oct 2012
ISS meets frequently - and their awards are influential .. .
New Zealand appears to have creamed the competition in the latest International Superyacht Society(ISS) Design Awards. This week in Fort Lauderdale in Florida they announced the winners of the 2012 Design & Leadership Awards, two of the categories being for sailing boats.

The winner in the category 'Sailing yacht 24-40m' was won by the sloop Antares III, launched in 2011 by New Zealand-based Yachting Developments.



She is a remarkable composite performance sloop designed by Bill Dixon of Dixon Yacht Design, measuring a LOA of 30 metres. She was built to comply with stringent Germanischer Lloyd and MCA classification requirements and 25% - 30% lighter than vessels of a similar size.

She was specifically designed to cruise the world in comfort, able to be self sufficient for an extended period of time.

She has an exterior of slender, modern lines. The superyacht’s classically cozy, blond teak interior was designed by Rhodes Young and then built in-house by Yachting Developments. The owner’s brief was to scale down his previous 40 metre yacht so that he could reduce the number of crew needed.

Comfort and performance were equally significant requirements for this project, while still being able to sail with the relatively small crew he preferred.

She has sizeable aft deck seating in the form of two opposite L-shaped sofas/sunpads, a more intimate yet spacious guest cockpit and additional informal seating arrangements on the foredeck. The raised pilothouse offers maximum all round visibility and the large, opening windows offers perfect means of interacting with guests on deck.

The split-level saloon is a big focus of the interior layout and aft windows and folding doore provide a seamless blend between interior to exterior.

The winner inf the category 'Sailing yacht 40m +' was won by the ketch, Vertigo, launched by New Zealand's Alloy Yachts in 2010.


She is a Philippe Briand designed, Alloy Yachts constructed vessel of 220 foot in length over all with the interior design from Christian Liaigre. Her construction was overseen by the project manager Andrew Senn from Australia.

Vertigo yacht is the first sailing yacht of her size to have an almost vertical bow. She was designed to be large but sensitive to sail, explaining her modern hull lines. Her almost vertical bow allows greater waterline length, thus making for a considerable improvement in speed both under sail and engine power.

With an air clearance restricted to 68m (for access to the Suez Canal) and a draft restriction of 5m, the designer of the AY41 Vertigo Sailing Yacht was particularly concerned with enhancing efficiency of the sail plan and keel.

A Ketch rig was the only option when designing this yacht. Mainsail and mizzen sail include roaches with have never been seen or used on yachts of her size.

More surface area of the sails is exposed up where the wind velocity is greater than it is at the proximity of the water. This led to having sails developing a larger driving force than that of conventional triangular sails.

Therefore runners are used in instead of permanent backstays. This is another first on a boat of this size, made possible via the technology of mast builders Southern Spars. Draft is increased to 9.10 m by a daggerboard extension. Captive winches and vertical winches are custom made by Alloy Yachts.

About the International Superyacht Society:
ISS was founded in 1989 and represents the large yacht industry. Its fundamental mission is to build alliances worldwide with regional associations; to serve as communications conduit for issues affecting the marketplace, owners, crew and industry members; and to recognize achievement as well as provide educational opportunities and networking events.

Each year ISS presents its peer-reviewed Design and Leadership Awards, which recognize individuals and companies for their expertise, leadership and dedication to raising the standards of design, construction, maintenance, repair and operation of large yachts.

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