GROOT AMMERS – Zeelander Yachts goes to the 2018 Fort Lauderdale International Boat Show keen to make not 1, but 2 big splashes. It will show its flagship 17m Z55, a recent 2000HP version with a 42-knot top speed, courtesy of 2 massive Volvo Penta IPS engines. Zeelander will also talk about its next (still-under-wraps) flagship, the 22m Z72 the first of which will be launched in early 2019.
Construction of the Z72 is well underway, says Zeelander Yachts Marketing Coordinator Floris Koopmans. The painting of the hull of the largest Zeelander – 22 meters _ has begun. The craft will ooze a stylish design, superyacht features and a top speed of 40 knots.
Zeelander Yachts began a decade ago in Fort Lauderdale. The Zeelander fleet by now comprises well over 30 yachts. “About 80% of our clients are in the United States,” Koopmans tells Dutch Yacht Building. “In fact, only 2 years ago we began developing the Dutch market.”
The Zeelander design evokes the so-called 1920s New York commuter yacht. It is a look that is very suited for the high-end US market, one that contrasts sharply with the less sophisticated models that come from American yards these days. Zeelander builds 4 to 5 yachts a year in the Netherlands and gives them deep V-hulls of GRP core infusion vinylester fiberglass.
“We build in small numbers because Zeelanders are very special and very pricey,” says Koopmans. “We serve a niche market for demanding clients. We no longer build the 13.5m Z44. We limited its production to 30. We’ll do the same with the Z55. 30, no more. We have now begun building the Z72 and we’ll only build 30.”
Zeelander offers clients different service packages covering such things as maintenance, cleaning, the services of a captain and winter storage. While limiting production, Zeelander considers ‘evolutionary’ versions of its Z44, Z55 and Z72 yachts.
Zeelander Yachts takes a cue from how car maker Porsche incrementally evolves its designs over time and involves current owners in that process. “One of our closest customers loves a good party,” says Zeelander Commercial Director Leonardo van den Berg. “To accommodate more guests, we collaboratively developed something that fulfilled all of his wishes. That’s how the Z72 was born.” It will be much bigger than the Z55, surpassing 22 meters when the swimming platform is open. It will have a beam of 6 meters, a clean decor, big panoramic windows and social zones.