Hakvoort Shipyard has completed the 39 metre luxury ocean-going superyacht SnowbirD. In addition to the first class standards of design, construction, engineering and finish for which this Dutch yard is renowned for, SnowbirD also has the most elaborate art collection assembled on a superyacht to date.
In advance of purchasing their first ever superyacht, the owners of SnowbirD first travelled to visit all the premium yards. “Knowing that the Netherlands builds the best motoryachts in the world, we felt it prudent to take the ‘Yacht Valley’ tour and gauge how the different options felt,” recalls the owner’s son, David Ostrander, principal of the Iluminus Design Group and responsible for the interior design. “We visited most of the pedigree Dutch motoryacht builders and all had the same legendary and meticulous attention to detail.”
The motivation for the owners to ultimately choose for Hakvoort was three-fold. “We liked the fact that Hakvoort is a small yard without the corporate identity found elsewhere. Its location in the ancient port of Monnickendam is truly inspiring and only minutes away from Amsterdam Schiphol Airport. Most importantly of all, perhaps, the personal interaction with the Hakvoort family was immediately welcoming, and they were very open to working with us to create a vessel of world-class calibre. This is undoubtedly what we have achieved with SnowbirD: I’ve been on yachts of every size and type, and am convinced that Hakvoort is one of the top five builders in the world.”
The fact that the owners of SnowbirD are avid art collectors and investors is not in itself a reason why the yacht has so many works onboard. After all, while many superyacht owners share their passion for paintings, sculpture and other aesthetic forms, few if any have ever made art the fulcrum upon which the entire interior style is based.
“Art is the purest form of human expression to our family and it made perfect sense to make this the centrepiece of SnowbirD,” explains Ostrander. “We carried out a lot of research into the best way to deal with the artworks technically, taking into account the diverse environments and temperatures they will experience as SnowbirD cruises the world. With so many fascinating sources of discussion on board, our hope is that SnowbirD will become known as ‘the art boat’.”
Ostrander was highly impressed by the degree of cooperation and support he received from everyone at Hakvoort. “The yard was my greatest advocate as I strived to create an exceptional interior. My list of shipyard works became six times longer as the project progressed and it has been amazing to see the yard’s craftsmen in action. I never heard the word ‘no’ from the management as they helped adapt and improve upon my ideas to create something very special.”
In addition to visual delights, the owners have also ensured that the taste buds of those who step onboard SnowbirD will be in for a treat by employing a two-star Michelin chef. “I don’t know of any other yacht in the 30 to 40 metre bracket that has so many complementary features, materials and amenities,” concludes Ostrander. “SnowbirD has been designed and built so that she can also be offered to the upper echelon of the charter market. And on luxury vacations the food is very important in order to bring the local flavours on board. SnowbirD is a yacht that truly teases each and every one of the senses.”
Designed by Cor de Rover, the round-bilge displacement steel hull features a comfortable deadrise and a flared bow with a fine entrance angle. SnowbirD provides room for ten guests including the owners, and has been built according to Lloyd’s regulations for Special Service Craft. Her propulsion package consists of two Caterpillar diesels, a straight drive and two fixed pitch propellers, offering a top speed of 12.7 knots at full load and a cruising speed of 10.5 knots. The maximum range is 3,800 nautical miles with a fuel capacity of 45,000 litres and freshwater capacity of 10,000 litres in double-bottom tanks.