The Harrison Eidsgaard team set out to create a space in which the owners could be at their most comfortable while also ready to entertain, and they delivered. Part of this success was down to the passion and involvement of the yacht owners who were hands on ever since the initial refit of Irisha (former M/Y Petra) in 2014. Ben Harrison, the creative director, reveals how the owners were impressed with the studio’s work on M/Y Tango by Feadship and its rapid refit of Auspicious by Mondo Marine, which in turn led to the studio being awarded the commission for Irisha.
“Our brief was effectively to create a space that reflected the owner’s life aboard; therefore, somewhere that could be formal for dining and entertaining, but was primarily somewhere very relaxed and inviting,” says Harrison.
The dining room, lounges and deck areas succeed in creating a bubble of comfort and luxury. Irisha has a fairly neutral colour palette with warm browns and calming creams and whites fusing together to create the perfect background for the colour pop of the many delicate details throughout.
Several such details include standout artworks from the likes of Alex Turco, whose floor-to-ceiling colourful artwork brings a unique colour scheme to each guest suite. While in the owner’s master bathroom suite a lacquered wooden bathtub adds warmth and a natural touch, as well as the intricate handwoven tapestry above the owner’s bed, created by Claudy Jongstra. Wood, leather and stainless-steel details feature heavily throughout the interior, including Harrison's favourite piece: a deep lacquered wooden bar in the sky lounge.
“At Harrison Eidsgaard, we are always looking to bring something fresh and exciting to yacht interiors to break away from the traditional moulds, and with recent projects like Irisha and more recently Elandess, we have tried to create really distinctive spaces,” says Ewa Eidsgaard, Harrison Eidsgaard Managing Director.
One of the more challenging aspects of the design came from the central atrium — a huge space for a 51m yacht with a winding glass-lined staircase that cuts through each deck. Ben Harrison recounts the engineering challenges in making the central staircase look continuous when taking structural issues into account.
“As the glass had to bend and twist all the way through the atrium, from the lower deck to bridge deck, we had several challenges making sure that it could work to the owner’s specifications.”
DKT London was responsible for cladding the staircase in one continuous piece and creating a textured stucco wall piece that draws the entire space together to achieve a singularly light and airy atrium.
“The exterior of the boat was also a challenge to work around, as we had to work around the impressive glass canopy,” explains Richard Whitehouse, Harrison Eidsgaard project manager for Irisha, “A lot of in-depth structural engineering went into the glass canopy that featured around the wheelhouse. It is the core mark of the exterior design, with its all dark glass cockpit.”
Yacht interiors can be vastly different and can create entirely different moods which will change the feel of the space as well. A recent trend that Whitehouse has observed is the adaptation of split-level spaces, creating different zones in one area by using different levels and varying ceiling heights.
Harrison Eidsgaard has a number of new projects that it is working on, however many are still in the early stages of design. However, we were able to discuss a new 95m superyacht, Fiji, currently under construction at Lurssen for which the studio is in charge of the exterior. Fiji is set to be Harrison Eidsgaard’s biggest yacht to date and is due for launch in 2019. According to Harrison, this yacht will make the most of split-levels, particularly towards the aft deck and around the swimming pools. We look forward to seeing future projects by the British studio and particularly to the delivery of its latest venture.