Written by By Michael Sebastian, CNN
As the work of the world’s most prominent yacht designer, Meyer Rijcken has brought some unique features to the luxury megayacht market.
His all-glass hull, for example, was designed to fit into the sea without being seen, and allows guests to be secluded while still enjoying the best of the waterside sunsets.
Recently, the designer was commissioned to design the world’s largest luxury yacht, with a price tag of $600 million.
Featuring 10 infinity swimming pools, a helipad and a cinema, it is estimated to have cost twice the amount of “the island of Mauritius.”
Photographer Gunnar Vikstroem filmed the yacht’s construction in the southern Dutch city of Breda
“It’s a very cool city,” Vikstroem told CNN ahead of the exhibition “Steel and Ice,” opening in New York this month. “It has more castles than most large cities, and it’s like a little Disneyland city — real castles. And there’s more architecture than New York.”
Meyer Rijcken designed the ship to feel like an island. Credit: Courtesy Gunnar Vikstroem
These castles — known as Lurssenking Roten, or small towns in Dutch — are part of a unique architectural style known as Lurssen, which has its roots in Dutch folklore and emerged around 13th century.
Although this style is popular in Holland, it’s rarely been applied to a yacht, but designers such as Meyer believe that the Lurssen design has an ability to transcend even its most traditional surroundings.
Describing the Lurssen designs as a “romantic and idyllic picture of medieval castles combined with the modernity of present-day buildings,” Meyer Rijcken told CNN that the sportscarsque shape of Lurssen can transform a period building into a residential project without losing its charm.
This yacht’s soft dome can change into any type of shape. Credit: Courtesy Gunnar Vikstroem
“For the Lurssen, (the former) castle has the space, but is not going to be quite enough,” the designer said. “So the whole building could be a residence, and could connect a location with the outside environment.”
(The idea of linking a locale to a specific building is nothing new, with medieval cities often divided between one type of urban area and another.)