On Board Superyacht Aquarius with Henk de Vries
The 92-metre (301’10”ft) superyacht Aquarius emerged from the Feadship shipyard at the close of 2016, bringing a milestone launch to the waters of The Netherlands and another example of true custom to the Feadship fleet. Speaking with Henk de Vries, CEO of Feadship, we find out about the new launch, nineteen upcoming projects and the factors behind the yard's success in America.
“It was exciting to build this boat,” explains Henk de Vries on the fifth deck of Aquarius, overlooking the Palm Beach Boat Show. “The client is a very experienced yachtsman, I’m not sure how many boats he had before this one, several, but he wanted us to create something that’s light and airy and open. It’s very clean, and that’s on purpose. The idea is that you let the experience stream in and don’t get too distracted by all the funky things going on.”
The interiors of the latest Feadship superyacht are clean, welcoming and ‘ooze hospitality’, according to our host on board. Giving us ample space to discuss the shipyard’s current activity in the U.S. following the appointment of Ted McCumber as Commercial Director of Feadship America.
The American Market
“America is still for us around 50% of our business, so it’s important,” adds Henk. “When I look at America, there’s several directions. The client for this boat is the embodiment of my traditional clients, a successful businessman who has worked all his life, knows exactly what he wants and knows the yachting lifestyle.
The other [clients] are new money, from investing who maybe want to show off a bit, which is fine. Then finally there’s the technical guys from Silicone Valley their demands and questions are unorthodox, pushes us way out of our comfort zone every now and then. You know about Venus and how groundbreaking that became. There are more of those in the works, we’re already building a few boats for people like that.”
New Project Previews
Aside from a first look at Aquarius, Henk de Vries left us on a cliffhanger by embellishing on the new interest pushing boundaries at the shipyard, and hinting an interest in large sailing yachts. “We’re looking at sail boats, big sail boats but redefined.”
With a long history, but a focus on the future, Feadship is a truly exciting brand working on ground-breaking custom yachts which, traditionally, keep an air of exclusivity and secrecy to them.
While we were lucky enough to bring you a look on board Aquarius, we’re excited to bring you more news on any future concept developments as and when it emerges.
"Then there's the technical guys from Silicone Valley, their demands and questions are unorthodox, and pushes us way out of our comfort zone every now and then. You know about Venus and how groundbreaking that became. There are more of those in the works, we’re already building a few boats for people like that."