A guide to the best European shipyards

Yacht shipyards, Superyacht builders, Marine boat construction design, Marina architecture

From sketch board to on the water; the best European shipyards

Author: Joanna Lewis

29 March 2022

Building a yacht is the ultimate lifestyle dream. A custom yacht enables you to bring your wildest yacht dreams to life, and the world’s best shipyards are only too happy to deliver. From striking state-of-the-design to lavish interiors, a custom-built yacht is the ultimate purchase for the world’s most demanding yachting enthusiasts. If you’re interested in building a yacht, then keep on reading. Here we explore some of the best European shipyards that are behind some of the world’s most extravagant superyachts.

The world’s best shipyards

A guide to the best European shipyards


Nobiskrug is a famous German luxury shipyard and a world leader in constructing luxury yachts and extensive refits. The shipbuilder officially started in 1905 and now operates from two state-of-the-art facilities in northern Germany. Nobiskrug is known for pushing the boundaries of excellence, building made-to-measure custom-built superyachts that incorporate innovative ideas and advanced technology. The shipbuilder’s ‘anything is possible’ ethos has resulted in some of the world’s most spectacular yachts. Amongst Nobiskrug’s most famed yachts is M/Y ARTEFACT, which recently won two coveted Boat International’s annual World Superyacht Awards.

A guide to the best European shipyards Nobiskrug

The shipyard’s soon-to-be-completed PROJECT BLACK SHARK is one of the most eagerly anticipated best new yachts, with an expected delivery date of 2023. The five-deck motor yacht is named for its shark-inspired superstructure, which boasts a dorsal-fin-inspired mast structure and a black matte hull to mimic the skin of the black shark. The yacht has been designed by the famed British studio Winch Design with exterior styling by Sinot Exclusive Yacht Design. Reported onboard amenities include two luxury tenders, an on-deck hot tub and a voluminous beach club with spa.


Oceanco is a pedigree shipbuilder based in the Netherlands known for constructing one-of-a-kind, ground-breaking superyachts. The shipbuilder consistently pushes the boundaries of shipbuilding, launching some of the world’s most innovative and pioneering yachts. Take for example M/Y BRAVO EUGENIA, the shipbuilder’s first LIFE Design yacht. Delivered in 2018, she boasts striking design, best-in-class hydrodynamic efficiency, and advanced hybrid propulsion. As well as custom superyachts, Oceanco also provides full refits, lifetime extension services, and superyacht maintenance.

A guide to the best European shipyards Oceanco
image courtesy of Oceanco

The 117-metre M/Y INFINITY by Oceanco was recently spotted on sea trials at the start of 2022. Formerly known as Project Y719, the head-turning five-deck M/Y INFINITY is set to be one of the best new yachts of 2022. She is the largest Oceanco yacht to date, although she will shortly be superseded by yacht Y721. Details on this yacht are sparse, although reports confirm that she features a steel hull and aluminium superstructure.

Another Oceanco vessel set to launch in 2022 is the 127-metre sailing yacht Y721, reportedly commissioned by Amazon founder Jeff Bezos. The three-masted schooner will be the world’s largest sailing yacht, making headlines worldwide when it was revealed that a bridge in Rotterdam would need to be dismantled to allow the sailing yacht to exit the shipyard.

Royal Hakvoort

Family-owned Royal Hakvoort boasts a century of shipbuilding experience combining traditional craftsmanship values passed on through generations coupled with leading yachting technology. The shipyard specialises in building custom and semi-custom motor yachts and sailing yachts up to 65-metres, alongside extensive refits at their state-of-the-art facilities in Holland, Monnickendam. In late 2020, the yard received Royal Designation, recognising its exemplary service levels for more than 100 years.

Royal Hakvoort guide to the best European shipyards
image courtesy of Royal Hakvoort

Iconic yachts such as M/Y LADY M II, delivered in 1994, helped cement Royal Hakvoort as a pedigree shipbuilder capable of building some of the world’s finest yachts. Amongst the shipyard’s most recent projects is the superb M/Y SCOUT, one of the largest Hakvoort yachts at 63.72-metres. Boasting elegant interiors and striking timeless exteriors, the yacht showcases all the expertise of Royal Hakvoort.

The shipyard recently just signed a new build project with luxury yacht brokerage Fraser. At 65-metres, the yacht – which is currently named Project YN254 – will be the largest vessel delivered by Royal Hakvoort, sealing its status as a pedigree European shipbuilder. Limited details are known about the shipyards latest project, although reports state that it will boast naval architecture by Diana Yacht Design and exterior and interior design by Sinot Design. The yacht will boast a careful balance of both interior and exterior space, reports state, along with a superb range of amenities, including a beach club with a gym, Jacuzzi, massage room, and library.

If you wish to build a yacht, consider working with an experienced yacht management company with experience working with the world’s best shipbuilders. Building a yacht is a complex process. An experienced yacht brokerage will expertly guide you through every stage of the build process, from sketch board to on the water.

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