What Does it Take to Design the World's Finest Superyacht Tenders?

By Jenna Mehdi

Compass Tenders is at the cutting-edge of superyacht tender building. Known for designing and building bespoke tenders for yachts such as Madame Gu, Soaring, Anna, Moonrise and DreAMBoat (to name but a few), packing all of the mothership’s distinctive features into a stylish and seaworthy miniature is the hallmark of this Hamble-based builder. But what exactly does it take to build tenders for the world’s finest superyachts? As Compass Tenders celebrates the addition of a brand-new design suite, we give readers a virtual tour inside the walls of the industry’s most renowned tender designers.

We hear from Richard Faulkner, CEO, and Ed Wingate, Head Designer, on how the dedicated new design suite has helped to sharpen Compass Tenders’ leading edge.  

Q. Tell us about the new design suite - why did you decide to create this dedicated on-site space and what’s the setup?

A. The Design suite is situated overlooking the river and is a long, open plan space which maximises communication and interaction between designers and senior management.  Having the team together expedites projects and fuels creative thinking/discussion.

The office is centrally located between the Compass build sheds which is important, being the hub of information and project management.

Q. Who is in the design team and what are their roles?

A. We have up to 10 designers in the team here at Compass Tenders at any one time, with a full range of skills and experiences to cater for every requirement.  We have dedicated team members working on the design and engineering of moving parts, experts in glass and electronic integration, as well as creative stylists that help clients explore design possibilities.

Each tender build project is allocated its own designer to oversee the final design process and manage the build from a construction & design point of view. 

Also, we proactively train junior designers - this not only helps them with their own career progression, but builds a strong team with specific Compass Tenders knowledge. The design team is led by Ed Wingate, who’s been with Compass for over 12 years and has a wealth of knowledge

Q. How does the design software and technology that you have help you in building world-class tenders that will cater for the superyachts of tomorrow?

A. We have the most advanced software at our fingertips.  We have also invested in 3D printing technology which we use to test some of our own more innovative designs before putting them into practice.

Being able to model a tender to the advanced stages and drill into the hydrodynamics of hull shape etc. has helped us optimise efficiency and explore the effectiveness of new propulsion methods and various equipment.

But we still use pencil and paper successfully as well and sometimes there is no substitute especially during the early design stage!

Q. How important is the design suite in giving Compass Tenders its industry-leading edge?

A. The design capacity we have allows us to react quickly when needed and also allows us to develop designs in more detail, improving the end product's reliability and optimising the aesthetic.

Depending on the project requirements, Compass Tenders is able to both work with the designer of the mothership or produce a design entirely in-house. Although designing for the finest superyachts on the water is no small challenge, Compass is able to tackle almost any design challenge armed with the latest technology and a dedicated team of specialists.

"We have the most advanced software at our fingertips."

Richard Faulkner, CEO of Compass Tenders


"We have the most advanced software at our fingertips."

Richard Faulkner, CEO of Compass Tenders
By Jenna Mehdi
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