What does the future of tender design look like? It’s a big question, and one that we chose to explore with Richard Faulkner and Compass Tenders, the leading custom tender brand.
The superyacht marketplace is constantly evolving: Bigger. Faster. Further. The operations of a tender are inextricably linked to that of the mothership and, as owners push to explore the far-flung corners of the earth, spend more time aboard and in a more sustainably considered way, the tenders they carry must also evolve to meet these changing requirements.
The last 10 years have seen tender design become far more considered and refined, with the mothership-matching limousine tenders becoming a more and more popular choice. This period has also seen tenders increase in size and, for utility craft and open tenders, serve a whole new set of operational needs.
“When it comes to larger superyachts, we find our clients frequently requesting a small fleet of tenders, perhaps three or even four, for the same vessel in order to fulfil an array of roles – the diversity of which simply hasn’t been seen before,” comments Richard Faulkner, Founder and CEO of Compass Tenders.
“Owners want to travel between the superyacht and the shore in luxury, in a tender appointed to the same superlative standards as their superyacht and often in complementary style. They want to spend extended days exploring the coastline or enjoying various water sports and expect premium performance and stability in every instance.”
It’s not only the design that has had to adapt, but construction materials and propulsion methods, too. Faulkner advises that they’ve seen a marked move away from jet propulsion, and the introduction of stabilisers to smooth motion, both underway and at anchor, are now becoming expected as standard. “We are using more elaborate and detailed tooling to produce various components, and each time it’s a refinement and advancement on the last – we are continuously reviewing, researching and progressing in order to remain at the forefront of tender design and build.” Faulkner elaborates further: “You wouldn’t think it, but one of the biggest changes to come about in recent years is lighting. RGB and rope lighting effects can dramatically enhance the onboard ambience and more effective, advanced optics have heightened the possibilities for night-time operation.”