Marina Architecture, Yacht Buildings, Keppel Cove Marina China
That’s Yacht All: Marina Architecture Guide
Porto Montenegro & Portofino Yacht Berths – Leisure Port Design Article
6 Nov 2018
That’s Yacht All: Marina Architecture Is In
When it comes to designing a marina, there is literally a world of inspiration to take from. The functions of a marina are basic and form the building blocks of some interesting designs.
From UNStudio’s Keppel Cove Marina in China, which is itself designed to look like a yacht, to Marina di Portofino on the Italian Riviera, which has maintained its minimal number of berths since its inception to give the traditional marina feel, to the Porto Montenegro Marina, which may just be the most luxurious marina in the world, to the historic nature of St Katharine Docks in London that witnessed so many events throughout its time as a trading port. Each marina offers something different from the designer and adds something interesting to the marinas the world has to show.
UNStudio’s Keppel Cove Marina
In Zhongshan, China, the concept of marina architecture and yacht architecture have been neatly blended when it comes to the design of Keppel Cove Marina. Designed by UNStudio, the waterfront clubhouse that is home to a host of naval activities was designed to resemble another maritime pastime: a yacht. The banks of the Xi River plays host to the spectacle, which gives the impression to visitors and passers-by through the wood panelling effects and the bronze exterior of high-quality yachts and boats.
The building has both land and waterside faces, which offer different designs in order to showcase the reason that they are there. The landward offers a huge sculptural tangle with no openings, while the waterside is glazed and open. The inspiration came from luxury yachts and the feelings associated with being aboard one.
As Betway explains, luxurious yachts are often a marvel of architecture – the mansions of the ocean. For example, the $55 million Sarastar has its own beach club and silk-textile decor throughout, showing that these are more than just boats. Large grilles and funnels inside of Keppel Cove Marina give the impression of a boat’s inner mechanisms, while vast staircases resemble those on a cruise ship. Overall, the building resembles a beach yacht and shows that the marina and yacht architecture trends can find a perfect harmony.
Porto Montenegro Marina
Once upon a time, the Mediterranean had a shortage of yacht berths. So, Porto Montenegro was born out of Adriatic architecture. A historic naval base, Porto Montenegro was transformed by Lord Jacob Rothschild and Peter Munk – who together have created brands such as Louis Vuitton, Hennessey, Moet, and Barrick Gold.
The site is close to the UNESCO World Heritage site designed to ensure the stewardship of the area for generations to come. The marina was designed by mariners and is complete with 450 berths and contains the world’s largest yacht berth at 250m. 95,000m2 of residential space is also available in the immersive community. The marina’s design is simple and contains a series of walkways that form the basis of the berths.
The expansive vista is a picture of wealth and extravagance and the yachts themselves are part of the design of the full marina. The Porto Montenegro Marina may comprise itself of a traditional marina look, but it does so to put other traditional marinas to shame with the polished perfection it has to offer.
Marina di Portofino
Jumping from 450 berths to just 14 berths, the Italian Riviera’s Marina di Portofino is nestled in a former fishing village and has played host to some of the world’s biggest celebrities. When it comes to marina design, sometimes the simpler is best.
Instead of extravagant reliance on modes of electricity, concierge services, or intricate designs, the Marina di Portofino hides all the mod-cons of a modern marina in the traditional fishing village. Yet, the marina still retains the feel of a traditional property on the Italian Riviera. The berths look out onto the terracotta houses that scream authentic Italy and have come to become part of the Marina di Portofino’s design.
The berths have been used in the past by stars such as Eva Gardner, Marlon Brando, and Elizabeth Taylor and Richard Burton since the marina’s opening in 1902. Dubbing itself the Eighth Wonder of the World, the Marina di Portofino allows guests to embrace the traditional, while being served by the modern.
St Katharine Docks
London’s very own marina, St Katharina Docks, is located just off the River Thames before the Tower of London and Tower Bridge. The mixed-use development site evokes the nostalgia of the Big Smoke and was once home to the trading port, with spices, rum, materials, and all manner of exotic produce handled on it.
The marina was refurbished in 2017 and can accommodate 170 berths for yachts of 40m. The marina has the honour of the being the sole one to service central London and offers a quaint and sentimental design with stonework and mossy banks. The drawing factor for the marina is the environment it is situated in.
Events and tourist pulls are a stone’s throw away and St Kat’s has developed an edgy attitude to offer almost anything to the weary skipper: from shopping the high street to tasty the latest London food trend. The marina is unlike others in the world due to its proximity to one of the most bustling cities in the world, while it retains the charm and of a Britain long ago.
As long as a marina functions to hold a yacht and a platform onto dry land, the design around it is really up to the architect. You could choose to take inspiration from your environment, attempt to create something truly unique and bizarre, or simply design something workable that builds a strong and loyal yachting community.
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