Starck Motor Yacht "A" Tender's

Just came across this article about Starck’s Motor Yacht A Tender designs.

Two simply beautiful designs to accompany an amazing yacht design as well. Love the front “nose” design as sort of a blunt metal covered tip. Teak is always a nice choice, but it’s so well done here it seems very fresh.
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So the speedboats are actually a part of the $300m Stark yacht? Interesting…

Looks that way.

Those tender boats are awesome. I’m loving them.

never seen a power boat from the 30’s/40’s I guess…not even a good interpretation of a gar wood racer (vintage or new repo from the family factory)

While I like it, I find it curious that the tender for “A” did not reflect any characteristics of her mother… namely the “ram bow”.

“Plumb Stem” bows are all attractive to me, and Gar Wood was a true innovator of the era. The now iconic metal stem cap was more for protection of the soft wood, than for appearance. At the time, the plumb stem was thought to provide superior penetration to oncoming seas, and an increase in speed. But it offered zero flotation in exchange (the flare of a bow provides extra volume and lifts the front of a ship over oncoming waves); the plumb stem augers straight through. Most vessels of this configuration, like the USS Porter; Torpedo Boat 7 (below), were intended for coastal patrol duties.

Designer; L. Francis herreschoff
Builder; Bath Iron Works

But I’m still a Wally Yacht fan. Nontraditional marine architecture that is somehow tradition, and intrinsically seaworthy in appearance. Like the Wally X1; literally a one-off custom tender; 3 x 274 engines, 48 knots. I likey. See my “signature” below…

A great “boaty” website: Alphabetical Index

I too like plumb bows, they are a legacy of displacement hulls where waterline length versus beam was the key to speed. The reverse raked bow is a extreme example of that but in one respect was the forerunner of the bulbous bow’s that are common now on all non planning hulls. Its so common for designs to recycle, I even think “folded paper” auto design will return as people just get tired of the zillions of compound curve jellybeans out there.

And I gotta say… gargantuan “stink boats” are one thing, but gargantuan “stick boats” are a completely different animals.

i.e. at 247 feet, the world’s largest sloop, the Mirabelle V And her transom deck (aka: toy box).

The square rigged, rotating mast, 289 foot clipper yacht, Maltese Falcon.

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Oh, I have. I live near one of Minnesota’s largest and most expensive (real estate wise) lakes. Many 30’s era Chris Crafts to be seen on calm Sunday mornings. And that’s why I like these Starck designs so much. An obvious modern take on such a classic design, including the oversized aesthetic only stem cap.

Starks take is nasty, too much free board, no tumble home, no barrel transom.

Starks take is nasty, too much free board, no tumble home, no barrel transom.

An interesting, unorthodox, boat shape generated by the use of sheet plywood. Not unattractive, just not “nautically pleasing” to me anyway. This is the conundrum; “A” is certainly a nautically pleasing form, in the traditional sense, but why doesn’t her tender reflect her association visually?

Ultimately, it is unusual, which is what "A"s owner wanted when he commissioned her; no one said her tender had to be consistent. The “designer” word we might use would be “continuous”.

Harking back to our recent Designer vs. Engineer discussion, cum brawl, I found it interesting to learn (just now) that the Marine Architect for **“A”**s tender was Patrick Banfield, acclaimed as the designer of the 2008 European Power Boat of the Year; the Fjord 40

Notice any similarities? All Starck has done was throw on some stainless panels, a glamour cap for the stem, a few interior “personal touches”, and viola, he is the “designer” of "A"s tender…

The Fjord 40 [Link]

All Pollock did was drip some paint on a canvas… but in the end, he did it, and it worked for him. I thin what Starck has done here is design some great looking tender boats (better than the actual yacht in my opinion, at least from the pics.) If one of those pulled into a dock, it would get some looks for sure, and that, like you said, was probably the goal. Did it have to be an innovative format to do this? No, he pulled from the best (or at least most recently awarded) nautical engineer, veneered a striking design over top, and bingo, striking design, happy client, big PR splash.

It isn’t what I would do either, I would want to do something, as you put it, more nautically pleasing, but in this case I think it does work.

… and bingo, striking design, happy client, big PR splash.

And there ya go … bing, badda, boom.

Pollock is a great analogy yo. But I question whether Starck actually developed the form (Pollock’s “canvas”) of this vessel without the intimate assistance of Banfield. For the sake of discussion, I could design a similar boat-like form, but as an Industrial Designer untrained in the extremely complicated field of Marine Architecture, I would not be able to guarantee that it would deliver the fuel consumption, cargo capacity, and speed performance that the client called for and float on it’s proper lines . Marine Architecture is so cool … you can’t fool Mother Nature by bolting on heavier springs if your creation isn’t sitting quite like you intended it to.

Without getting into that whole previous designer/engineer (marine architect in this case) discussion, I just found it a bit misleading, perhaps disappointing is the more appropriate word … that Starck was the identified as the “designer” of this admittedly striking little boat; credit, or in this case, co-credit, where it is due I say. But then that’s why I’m not a “Starck”; I’ve never been good at the bang-my-own-drum thing.

It would have been fun to be the proverbial fly-on-the-wall and be a first-hand observer of the Starck/Banfield duo at the board; this is the length you can have, these are the critical surfaces that you may not alter, these you can do with whatever you want; these are the weight restriction, international maritime construction codes, etc.

Is it any different than a car designer working with auto engineers (mechanical, electrical, airflow, etc.)? The designer gets the credit for the most part as the styling and conception is much of what shapes the appeal of the product.

Zippy’s example is case and point.

This is ugly. and may work fine but has little appeal (esp. in the context of a luxury yacht).

Starck’s designs are s3xy. Hence, we are talking about them on a design forum.

Seems pretty simple to me.


I’ve seen Starks mega yacht last year in Rhodes and it is unbelievable. The sheer size is the first thing that hits you closely followed by the design. The white is extremely imposing and is a sight to behold. Just a little ostentatious for me.

However I would still love a 30ft yacht.

I thought I’d bump this for anyone in the San Francisco area.

“A” was moored outside of Morro Bay yesterday en route to SF. A 390+ foot yacht shouldn’t be too hard to spot.

That is one of the better shots I’ve seen of the actual yacht.

Capitalism seems to be alive and well in Russia.

Capitalism… that must be it. :wink: