The Unique Experience of Building a Bespoke Superyacht

By George Bains

Renowned in the superyacht industry for building the iconic 42.5m trimaran superyacht Adastra, McConaghy Boats has delivered excellence through innovation across a number of different divisions. A specialist in high-quality composite yachts, McConaghy has invested heavily in new materials, technology and expert staff in both its Australia and China-based shipyards. McConaghy Director, Mark Evans, explains the distinct advantages that his shipyards have in delivering bespoke, composite superyachts.

While McConaghy has a proud history in developing high-performance cruisers and race boats, it is in the field of superyachts that the company’s remarkable flair for innovation is most apparent. The superyacht division of McConaghy Boats is dedicated to the build of full custom luxury yachts between 24 and 50m, and has had proven success across all hull forms. With a wealth of expertise at its disposal and the use of advanced composite materials, McConaghy is able to offer owners great flexibility when designing their dream superyacht.

McConaghy’s largest shipyard, located close to Hong Kong in southern China, has significant advantages when it comes to the construction of ground-breaking superyacht projects. “McConaghy is strategically located to offer cost-effective builds at incredibly high quality,” explains Mark Evans, Director and Owner of McConaghy Boats. “We have long-term employees, most with ten years’ plus experience in high tech yacht building, and the level of accrued knowledge and experience within our international team really is quite exceptional.”

The China shipyard has allowed McConaghy to substantially scale its manufacturing capabilities while lowering its overheads. Strong relationships with supply chain partners in both China and internationally ensure McConaghy has access to a wide array of high-quality materials and equipment. Neighbouring world-leading manufacturers such as BMW, Intel and IBM, these businesses have their own talented engineers and technical staff, which McConaghy can leverage in its projects.

As a 100% foreign-owned enterprise operating in China, McConaghy retains full control and ownership of the facility, which like the Sydney shipyard benefits from a team of skilled experts and disciplined craftsmen to deliver the high standards required to build superyachts.

Mark Evans sees one other important advantage in the location of McConaghy’s shipyards – the experience. “Obviously, the locations are very nice to visit for an owner, captain or project manager with a huge array of cultural activities and sight-seeing highlights.” The experience of building your superyacht with McConaghy extends far beyond tourism though. Through acute attention to detail and close engagement with the client, McConaghy delivers a truly personal journey, with a carefully crafted bespoke product to take to the waters at the end.

McConaghy’s exciting and diverse portfolio covers superyachts of all different hull configurations, allowing an owner to tailor a yacht to their needs with the confidence of McConaghy’s extensive experience across all forms. From the BlackCat range of 30 to 50m catamaran superyachts, to the new Makara Series of sailing yachts, McConaghy’s specialisation in lightweight carbon designs and composite engineering has given rise to high-performance yachts which can then be moulded to an owner’s vision.

“Even our production ranges, such as the McConaghy Multihulls, are fully customisable to client wishes,” says Evans. “We really pride ourselves in approaching each build commission as a unique project. We are not building a yacht for a client, we build a yacht together with the client and in doing so we have a very close relationship.”

Pursuing a bespoke superyacht project with McConaghy opens a client up to the immense possibilities that arise through the shipyard’s rigorous and tireless innovation. Research and Development is a key cornerstone of the company’s philosophy. Since being founded in 1967, McConaghy has focused on advancing all aspects of composite technology, which yields significant benefits for superyachts. “We are a builder of high-end composite yachts – it really doesn’t matter what form it takes, as long as it’s beautiful!”

Composite yachts offer exceptional design flexibility for owners, increasing the capacity to build complex geometrics as seen with the award-winning Adastra. These high strength, lightweight and efficient structures are able to carry unusually high loads and provide comfort in even the toughest conditions. McConaghy’s in-house experts are constantly testing, improving and applying new techniques to deliver pioneering designs for adventurous owners.

MC155, a 46.8m trimaran superyacht is the fruit of a two-year development and design phase. With the collaboration of Frers Design, Pure Design and Design Unlimited, McConaghy has devised an exquisite yacht with a tested engineering platform that is ready for production.

For a brand like McConaghy, taking on these ambitious briefs is less about showmanship and more about a deep desire to drive innovation and design forward. “We have been pushing the boundaries of composite construction for over 50 years,” continues Mark Evans. “Designs like Adastra are, quite simply, in the company DNA. We have a history of ‘firsts’ in the yachting sector, building larger 100ft canting keel yachts. We love the challenge!”

Developing a superyacht with McConaghy is a unique experience that gives owners extraordinary possibilities to create their on-the-water dream. With the strategic benefits of shipyards in China and Australia, along with the proven expertise for successfully delivering world-renowned superyachts, McConaghy is a shipyard for those who want to push the boundaries.

"Designs like Adastra are, quite simply, in the company DNA. We have a history of ‘firsts’ in the yachting sector."

Mark Evans, Director of McConaghy

"Designs like Adastra are, quite simply, in the company DNA. We have a history of ‘firsts’ in the yachting sector."

Mark Evans, Director of McConaghy
By George Bains
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