The region's lengthy boatbuilding tradition, low-cost skilled workforce, and top European design collaborators combine to produce some of the world's best debuts.
Turkey, famous for its hot springs, desserts, and beautiful leather products, is also a major contender in boat construction. However, because marketing isn't among its strong skills, the country may remain the superyacht world's finest knowledge. A strong maritime tradition, legendary workmanship, and low labor have carved out a niche that places the nation in the center of yacht construction.
Turquoise, Akyacht, Alia, Vicem, Sirena, Dunya, and Bilgin are among the companies spotted around Turkey's European shoreline, along with fewer manufacturers. Dream Symphony, a stunning 462.7-foot schooner constructed by Dream Ship Victory, is becoming the world's biggest sailing yacht when it is completed late in the year, driving the Dutch-built Black Pearl off the platform.
Among the many outstanding names to emerge out of Turkey are the sailing yacht Maltese Falcon, the 348-foot Dream, the 253-foot Go, and the 236-foot Axioma.
*The 279-foot Victorious was delivered to its new owner earlier this summer and made its official debut at the Monaco Yacht Show.
Bilgin debuted the first in its 263 series, Tatiana, at the Monaco Yacht Show two weeks back. Its inside has rich Macassar ebony, oak, and other stones, while its outside has a sleek, seductive appearance. Unique Yacht Design's lead designer, Emrecan Ozgun, claimed his business went to great lengths to eliminate "high-dosage design standards" across the yacht, making it one of the most contemporary, beautiful debuts this year.
Victorious, a 279-footer from Akyachts, a new yard founded by the owner to build the elegant superyacht, was another significant debut in Monaco. The modern interior design was done by London-based H2 Yachts, trying to put an end to the myth that Turkish designers lag behind European manufacturers.
"It is now well acknowledged that Turkey places third in the world for yacht production in relation to total meters, after Italy and Holland," said Alexei Mikhailov, president and chief executive officer of Bering Yachts, to Robb Report. "I believe it will soon be rated second."
*Interiors, like as this salon on Victorious, are frequently created by top European design firms.
Bering's 78.7-foot B77 expedition Veronika was handed to her Australian customer in April 2021. The shipyard plans four exports this year, including a Bering 70, a Bering 92, and a Bering 76. Mikhailov argues that the economic advantages of Turkey's 18 Free Zones (VAT-free, tax-free, and duty-free) make boat construction more affordable.
The Antalya Free Zone is the primary yacht-building center, contributing for around 80% of total production, after with Istanbul's Tuzla area and Bodrum in the Mugla region. In 2019, 47 super yachts totaling 2,630 feet were exported from the Antalya Free Zone, producing $95 million in income. Owners came from the Netherlands, the United States, Qatar, Croatia, the Ivory Coast, Portugal, Jamaica, Russia, Oman, and Djibouti.
But Turkey's allure goes far deeper. It boasts a strong skilled labor, a result of the nation's long tradition of production and customized furniture assembly. And when the possibility of a shipyard going bankrupt is eliminated, the offer becomes much more appealing.
*Bering Boats is well-known for their explorer yachts under 100 feet in length.
Courtesy The Bering Yachts
"Buying new construction
in Turkey is unlike everywhere else in the entire globe," Mikhailov adds. "Because the central government issues the document of ownership to the buyer from the beginning of construction, Turkish shipyards essentially operate for hire." As a result, it's a very safe and transparent method of boat building that puts the owner in charge from the start."
Sirena Yachts is creating pulses in Bursa with its showcase 88, the shipyard's biggest design to date, at its 1.7-million-square-foot yard. Hulls three and four will be delivered to their respective Canadian and Spanish customers in June 2021. The Canadian owner intends to cruise the Bahamas and Caribbean for seven months of the year. In total, eight hulls have been sold to owners from Russia, North America, and Europe.
"The Sirena 88 is not a boat for first-time users," Ali Ongar, CCO at Sirena Yachts, told Robb Report. "It's intended for the owner who understands exactly what they want." It's a true hybrid, mixing the American trawler-style boat with superyacht speed and elegance, as well as a customised interior if desired."
*Tatiana's intricate, multi-deck stern.
Bilgin Yachts provided the images.
Sirena Yachts, which constructs speculative yachts, has a two-year lead time. However, if an owner moves in up to 10 months before construction, they can still alter their yacht's interior. "We never stop developing our hulls," Ongar adds. "We can build a 58-foot yacht from start to finish in four months, which means we can produce one boat every 35 days of the year." That is the allure of constructing on assumption."
Some Turkish shipyards are also partnering with well-known European designers to raise the status of their boats. Dream Symphony was designed by Ken Freivokh and Dykstra Naval Architects, while Sirena 88's interior was designed by Cor D. Rover.
Alia Yachts will shortly unveil the 180-foot superyacht Al Waab, the world's longest steel and aluminum boat under 500GT. Vripack, located in Amsterdam, did the naval architecture and design. Throughout the pandemic, the Turkish shipyard maintained an aggressive build pace of under 24 months, with the building of the Cor D. Rover-designed 118-foot aluminum PHI Phantom, shadow vessel for Royal Huisman's 180-foot Project Phi.
Bow-on, Sirena 88 facing the globe. Likewise, Evadne Yachts in Istanbul has worked with Vripack to create a whole line of Rock models varying in size from 80 to 138 feet. "When you combine world-class design with Turkey's competitive boatbuilding expertise, you have the perfect talent pool," said Ali Sayakci, owner of Evadne Yachts.
If the rising demand for new boats after this year's yacht exhibitions in Cannes and Monaco is any indicator, Turkey's boatbuilding sector might be in for a solid run within next three years. "We have the greatest address for semi-custom yachts in the world," Sayakci said.