By Murielle Gonzalez Oisel
DND Yacht Design, a Chinese studio led by two young Italian and French designers, has teamed up with Chinese newcomer Puccini Yachts for the development of its new Yacht Series. The new portfolio is made of a 62ft, 82ft, and 108ft model. Based in Xiamen city, Puccini Yachts’ portfolio comprises models ranging 55ft to 108ft.
The Yacht Series will be built by Puccini Yachts and the shipyard will also be in charge of sales in the Chinese market. “These yachts are conceived to be semi-custom, to fulfil the needs of clients with different needs and tastes,” Frédéric Bonnet, yacht designer at DND, told Superyacht Business.
The 82-footer is the first model to be engineered and she is on display at a showroom in Wuyuan Bay, Xiamen, China. The 24.9m motoryacht features an aft cabin layout, with multiple choices for the interior distribution. She has a 6.3m beam and 70 tonne displacement. Engine options include 2x MAN v12-1400 HP / 2x CAT C18-1150 HP/ 2x Volvo D13-900 HP.
“The exterior styling is modern and clean and features details and solutions usually found on superyachts, such as the full height windows around the saloon and in the custom version for China even a piano in the saloon,” DND yacht designer Stefano Caruso, told Superyacht Business.
Caruso also confirmed that the 108-footer is at a very preliminary stage of design. “It is not an easy project for a new company as Puccini, but we hope it will make it to the production in two to three years time,” he said.
In addition to the 108ft for Puccini Yachts, DND has worked on a more traditionally styled 110ft model designed for Sea Stella. The moulds of which are almost ready.
DND Yacht Design started operations in 2004 as an architecture design company and began working at yacht interiors projects in 2009. In 2012 the yacht department became more independent and stronger with the collaboration of foreign designers and became able to create complete designs, including hull design, engineering, and styling. The studio specialises in the design and engineering of yachts ranging from 20ft to 200ft.
“Since 2012 we have worked for 24 complete different yacht projects, not including customised versions of standard models, ranging from 30ft’ to 165ft,” Caruso commented.
Headquartered in Xiamen City, DND Yacht Design works for Chinese manufacturers, in particular with Yihong Group, the builder of the Sea Stella brand. The firm developed Yihong’s complete product line, which is made of yachts ranging 37ft-95ft. The studio also assisted through production.
“We designed for them (Yihong) the 63ft, which is the best selling yacht in China; sold in 43 units to date. Each one customised in the interiors and equipment with our assistance,” Caruso told SB.
Yihong took home the “Best Chinese Manufacturer” award at the 2015 Shenzhen Yacht Show for its 68ft project developed by DND.
Yihong’s shipyard is located in Zhangzhou, China. The production facility covers an area of 670,000sq m with 1,400m of coastline. The company claims it is the biggest yacht and RV manufacturing plant in the country.
The shipyard’s annual output reaches 80 yacht units, 300 RV units and 500 caravan units. Sales are operated through six self-owned yacht clubs, 21 distributors, 300 individual agents. According to Yihong, its network is the largest yacht distribution channel across China.