Yacht Solutions at Italthai Marine has expanded its facility and tripled its superyacht yard capacity in response to the overwhelming demand for space in Thailand’s first dedicated superyacht facility in Bangkok.
Since the partnership began in January between Yacht Solutions and Italthai Marine (ITM) at Samut Prakarn in Bangkok Yacht Solutions has received more enquiries for shipyard work than ever before and has already undertaken work on 43-meter SY Douce France, 45-meter MY Big Fish, 52-meter MY Elysium, a 60-meter Oceanco MY, 62-meter SY Lamima and 40-meter MY Amoha.
Gareth Twist, managing director of Yacht Solutions commented, “Whilst the larger yachts are now travelling to Bangkok to undertake refit, repair, paint and remedial work; we are still working on yachts in Phuket. Our yard in Bangkok offers a fantastic alternative to yachts considering Singapore or having to travel out of the region to Australia, New Zealand or Europe. We offer the best value for money in terms of superyacht expertise, experience, quality and pricing. By running two Yacht Solutions’ teams in both Phuket and Bangkok, we have the option to run any sized project at any time, giving our clients the flexibility they need.”
This new expansion increases Yacht Solutions’ superyacht facilities by 300% expanding its refit capabilities for hauling-out and opens up a great yard option for any resident yachts and superyachts passing through the Gulf of Thailand. This facility is accessible to all of Southeast Asia being less than 800 nautical miles from Singapore.
Yacht Solutions at Italthai Marine is expanding in response to the demand for more superyacht refit and repair facilities in the Asian region from both owners of superyachts based in Asia and those travelling from Europe and America.
To satisfy this increase in demand for yard time, in addition to increasing its dedicated yard space within ITM, Yacht Solutions has also had to increase the size of its teams. The local area has benefited from the arrival of these luxury yachts, with more crews needing to be housed locally, the restaurants and bars seeing an increase in customers and also more local tradesman are being taken on by Yacht Solutions at ITM.
Gareth Twist commented, “We are very excited to be expanding our yard area to accommodate more yachts. And we have been able to double our workforce in only 6 months and we are still looking to further expand our team and bring in more superyacht professionals to run these teams."
In October, Gareth Lewis joined the team as a highly experienced project manager with over 35 years in the yachting industry. He is currently managing the build of the 62-meter Lamima. This Phinisi, a traditionally built Indonesian two-masted sailing ship and is due for completion in 2014. Gareth has been involved with many high profile projects including SY Mirabella V, which to date still has the tallest rig in the world and SY Sojana, a Farr design 115 foot ketch.
Steve Lodge works as the chief superyacht engineer overseeing all the technical aspects of major refit projects in the yard. He has over 24 years of marine engineering experience on yachts up to 90 meters. Previously he has worked in shipyards such as MB92 Barcelona, as well as others in Malaysia and Australia.
Thailand born Tossapon Mondee is the operations manager for Yacht Solutions at ITM, a highly trained professional, he graduated from Sukhothai Tammathirat University in Construction Management. He has worked in marine related companies in Thailand for over 26 years. He oversees the Thai refit teams working on the large yacht projects in the shipyard.
Rob ‘Doc’ Taylor is a project manager and electrical engineer who has been involved in the superyacht industry for close to 20 years. Doc has a background in marine electrical engineering and a career exposed to all elements of the industry, including chief engineer on various luxury yachts including MY Monaco and Michaela Rose, fleet engineer for yacht manufacturers such as Leight Notika Yachts and project manager for a number of yacht refit companies including Adam Marine.
Gareth Twist added, “Our aim is to create Asia’s best-in-class superyacht refit team. We have a tremendous pool of talented tradesmen here in Thailand and this facility combines European management, standards and quality with the renowned finishing skills of Thai craftsmen. Our unique combination ensures international standards are maintained while owners receive exceptional value for money and service due to the efficiencies of operating out of Thailand. With this facility we are able to compete with the European yards but with the distinct advantage of a lower labour cost base.”
MY Elysium, a 52-meter Benetti was in the yard for 3 weeks undertaking various engineering work, antifouling and woodwork. Captain Andreas Pape commented on his experience “the project management and knowledgeable technical assistance by the western yacht engineers stands out in Asia, we experienced a highly personalized service.” This was “an efficient and cost effective haul-out where every job was done as good and fast as possible and this was greatly appreciated.”
Simon Twist, operations director of Yacht Solutions at ITM is based in Bangkok and said, “Looking to 2014 we already have yard bookings for a 62-meter motor yacht and a 38-meter catamaran. So our future plans are to upgrade the floating dock, continue to develop additional space in the yard for yachts and increase the skill-base and staffing.”
Yacht Solutions at Italthai Marine is determined to create the very best superyacht facility in Asia. This 112,000 square meter facility offering full shipbuilding and repair capabilities plus a bonded warehouse and in-house design office. Yacht Solutions at Italthai Marine is ISO 9001:2000 rated and boasts a lifting capacity up to 95 meters and 3,500 tons. It has access to two 115 meter dry docks, 300 meter alongside berthing, a floating dock up to 160 meters and 5,000 tons lift capacity, making this the largest superyacht repair facility in Asia.
Yacht Solutions said 2013 has been the busiest year yet for the company, and as predicted the ITM yard is full for refits for this year, which the company called great news for the superyacht industry in Thailand and for the Asia-Pacific region.