The concept was developed to create a safe sailing yacht that would deliver more to an owner in a world where the motoryacht is deemed to offer everything.
“Today, looking at the market and recently launched projects, we can see how sailing yachts are now competing with motoryachts, not only with their increased interior volume, but also on deck lifestyle,” says Rob Doyle, principal at Rob Doyle Design. “We wanted to give more of this precious space back to the owner, as not many use it, especially when under sail.”
One of the biggest concerns when you increase the size of a sailing yacht is the increase load on the vessel and its rig, meaning more consideration is needed to sail in strong winds. Ripple looks to address this point by incorporating a simpler way to control sails while also building “a safe family and friendly deck layout”, says the Irishman. To achieve this, the two studios set out to create a Ketch rather than a sloop, and concealed winches, blocs and sheet handling within an automated system that is built into the yacht’s structure.
Lifestyle spaces have been kept to a human scale, but with fully exploited forward and aft decks to allow for small or large gatherings. Doyle’s design merges an impressive performance hull with good sea keeping qualities; extensive internal volume is coupled with the full-length hull chine that provides optimum stability and manages to achieve both speed and comfort.
While Van Geest’s superstructure design has been influenced by natural forms including sandy seabeds and water ripples. The architectural language is natural and organic, with portholes integrated into the hull stripe that disappear into the design from the outside. This feature is accentuated with light to give the yacht a spectacular appearance at night. The open transom achieves the desired effect of being at one with the surrounding ocean, while the sky deck exterior navigation provides 360-degree visibility.
The collaborative partnership between Rob Doyle Design and Van Geest Design is a welcomed opportunity for the studio's principals to work together again, having shared the same office during their time at Ron Holland Design. Among the projects they engaged with was Mirabella V — a sailing yacht that became the largest ever composite built sloop at the time of her launch. At a little over 75m, it is a project among many that gave the two designers the experience and knowledge required to embark on a design as grand as Ripple.