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A Shipyard Q&A: Amels

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What was the process that helped Amels reach the point it is now?

Amels was established in 1918 by the late Mr Amels in Makkum north of Holland in the Netherlands as a family business. The company began to build commercial vessels as well as fishing boats but as shipbuilding decreased throughout the 70s Europe The company needed to diversify and so they moved into building yachts. The first yacht built was KATALINA that was 48m , which was at the time it was a huge boat. Naturally, Amels is accustomed to build large commercial vessels, and right into the market they were at a high-end degree. Damen purchased Amels in 1991 , recognizing the opportunity to join the market of superyachts. Damen typically rebrands companies they acquire, however Amels was already an established brand name in the world of yachting that it was unwise to let it go and put them into the Damen brand. Therefore, Amels was retained and the company developed from there.

Let us know about the yard’s first boats.

LADY GEORGINA (ex. KATALINA) began operations in the year 1984 and is sailing to this day. It was an interesting project which was our first collaboration in collaboration with Tim Heywood, at the time of the Bannenberg design. KARIMA (1993) was the world’s first purpose-built, Explorer yacht anywhere around the globe. The MONTKAJ (1995) is which was a Terence Disdale design was the largest vessel constructed in the Netherlands at the time . it’s still a stunning vessel and is aging well. The TIGRE DOOR (1999) is the very first MCA conforming vessel around the globe. ILONA (2004 picture left) remains among the most technologically advanced vessels on the sea, just 15 years since her arrival.

What was the origin of the famous yard’s limited editions get their name?

We had completed all custom yachts. In the aftermath of 9/11, less orders were received. Mr Damen was able to achieve his mark by introducing the idea of standardisation in 1969. creating tugs and making them standard. He realized that the fundamentals of shipbuilding are same and he knew the requirements before a contract was signed. He could build these boats and have them in place for the owner to choose the color and name, as well as the engine size and the boat would be ready in just two months. He was also in business He was doing business! Each boat he built, he made improvements, and doing the same thing repeatedly meant that he required less time and resources to construct them. Thus, he gained an advantage over his competitors because he could offer more quickly, at less cost, and with better quality. Many people would appreciate this!

Did you Know? Romeo United Yachts offer Amels yachts for sale

He wondered, why don’t be this happening in the market for yachts? The concept is applicable to any market, why is it not the same for yachting? Naturally, it’s an established concept for smaller vessels, such as such as a Sunseeker and a 43m Benetti however, with vessels that were larger than 500GT, it was unusual. For every model, our team comes together, we draft a GA, we design each of the specifications for technical aspects, locate an exterior designer who is always Tim Heywood, we find an interior designer, then we create. We don’t have a client at this point, but for us to comprehend the market, to identify the perfect spot to design an idea for a boat is the experience of Amels. We now have a selection of six vessels. We have just delivered number 23 of this design, and we are currently working on 12 projects that are under construction right now! Customers can purchase a boat that is in construction, choose to work with an interior design firm and then get their boat (depending on when they enter) within 1.5 years. It’s a solid idea.

What has changed for owners of yachts since Amels was launched?

We have were a full-custom customer that was mostly west European for Amels but then we began to see a shift toward the eastern European market, and I would say we are the market leaders. We are also witnessing an increase in younger owners, however our owners remain family members Not flashy men who love speedboats!

Are owners today exploring more adventurous options?

Absolutely. It just happens we have boats that are suitable for adventures! We believe in making strong, heavy objects because ultimately, we’re an industrial shipbuilding business within our DNA. We do not stand on the edge of our fingers looking to construct a larger vessel. Amels boats are built to be overbuilt. We saw people taking yachts to Antarctica that were not originally designed to travel there, but then returned! A lot of the ocean is gorgeous and it is possible to look out over the ocean in luxurious, safe and comfortable.

We aim to inspire our Owners to be more creative, as the boat is capable of doing it. In 2009, we launched The Damen Yacht Support vessels for an individual who required assistance with logistics for their fleet. This is a massive platform for storage of toys crew, beach landing craft fishing boats, tenders helicopters, trash, and supplies… Then we thought , hey, there’s also a potential to enter the yachting market with the offshore vessels. In 2009, “shadow boats were only operating 8-9 knots, and they could not compete with the larger yachts. Ours operate at 22 knots. They’re purpose-built and are high-end rather than old offshore vessels. They are completely engineered and built to Superyacht standard.

What was the process that led to the SeaXplorer concept come about?

The crowd was awestruck with their Yacht Support vessels – they received more attention over the parent ship! However, there were no guest spaces available onboard. Damen is an extremely business-oriented company, so they came up with develop a unique concept that did not just provide the service of support but could also accommodate customers onboard. The initial SeaXplorer was 90m longand it was able to host parties with up to 300 guests and could wear shoes. The idea perfectly merged Damen’s experience in the building of robust ice-going vessels with Amels know-how in luxury guest rooms.

Also, we introduced Eos the world’s leading outdoor expedition firm, who have taken more than 100 superyachts across the Arctic. This allowed us to design the ultimate expedition vessel with every aspect thought of such as a mudroom for changing into gear for expeditions as well as an observation gear on the bow, where dolphins and whales are and plenty of storage space for waste as well as a double-acting vessel with an ice-breaking stern, something that was never seen before in yachting and the ability to accommodate two submarines, helicopters, and snowmobiles. There are usually only 17 people on a 55m boat, however, SeaXplorer has guides, ice pilots and doctors. These yachts will traverse not only in the Arctic but also , most crucially is they will travel the Amazon River and other remote tropical regions that are far from the infrastructure. This vessel is capable of autonomy for 40 days and no requirement to go back to the port to replenish. The way we think is that the technical areas in the SeaXplorer do not have to be superyacht standards, but rather the owner and guest spaces are to Amels standard. This can save a significant amount of cost.