Benetti’s stylish champion

The Motopanfilo sailed to victory at the Design & Innovation Awards

The Superyacht Design Festival, hosted by media company BOAT International, was held in Milan late last month. It opened with the industry’s Design & Innovation Awards, with all of the nominated yachts having been finished and delivered under challenging circumstances during the pandemic.

The Young Designer of the Year award was one of the more intriguing categories that evening. If you have ever wondered who buys these multimillion-pound boats, the award’s brief gave us a clue. It asked designers to assess how an imaginary client, “a young entrepreneur who had made a fortune in music streaming”, would use their yacht.

The prize went to Spanish designer Ignacio Bourgon for his concept design, AIR. Designed for 65-metre superyachts, AIR seeks to bring on board natural elements over a yacht’s five decks, with, for example, an interior garden in the master suite with two vegetable patches and a centrepiece two-tier waterfall swimming pool on the main deck aft.

Benetti Motopanfilo

© Benetti

A double award-winning yacht

Benetti was also in celebratory mood. The Italian yacht maker picked up two awards for its 37-metre Motopanfilo yacht (pictured), including Best New Series. It scooped the other prize for its exterior design developed with Italian designer Francesco Struglia. “Classic, elegant and austere” in style, the Motopanfilo’s “bold, clean lines… show off the yacht’s contours,” says Benetti.

The yacht is built from composite materials to a “timeless” aesthetic that is inspired by the concept of past and present, along with the smaller, elegant Benetti navetta boats of the 1960s with their focus on light-filled spaces. The Motopanfilo’s wide terraces, for instance, descend to the waterline, “establishing close contact with nature”. The yacht also comes with an observation deck from which to enjoy the view.

Inside, studio Lazzarini & Pickering designed the interior to be “like the skeleton of a huge whale whose bones give the space its structure and rhythm”.

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