There’s a feature of a yacht that is crucial for the comfort of all those onboard but should neither be seen nor heard. HVAC – heat, ventilation and air conditioning – is a complex part of any new build project and the specialist team at Feadship is dedicated to achieving a seamlessly integrated perfect climate – without compromise.

“The comfort of air conditioning on a Feadship is beyond comparison to the air conditioning of any other boat,” says Chris Cecil-Wright. The HVAC implemented by Feaship is delivered with no breeze and little noise – and is kind to the yacht itself: “A Feadship is pretty much heretically sealed,” Chris says, “The wood doesn’t crack or creak and the furniture remains solid, all because the humidity is constant.” 

On any new build, Feadship works with Heinan & Hopman, a prestigious company that produces air conditioning systems for luxury yachts, commercial vessels and residential interiors. Royal van Lent and Heinan & Hopman have worked together for the last 20 years on 35 yachts, and always with impeccable results. The calculations and the core of the system are devised and developed by 4 key figures at Feadship and 12 engineers from Heinan and Hopman, and installed by a further 35 mechanical engineers. 


The HVAC system works with air that is taken from outside, super heated to get rid of humidity and bugs, and then super chilled. Humidity is added back into the air that is then warmed to the temperature required in the rooms. The inside of a Feadship is over pressured, so that when you open a door the cold air flows out and the warm air doesn’t flow in. There are also different levels of pressure from one room to another, so that air and smells do not seep between them if it’s not desirable. The dining room, for example, will have low pressure so that the aromas of food and cigars don’t travel anywhere else.


It’s the way Feadship lets the air into each room that sets the shipyard apart. “It’s almost impossible to achieve a climate onboard that you don’t see or hear, and yet that is our goal,” says Joris Kroesen, Project Manager at Feadship, “The difficulty is to integrate the AC system into an aesthetically pleasing interior, so we work very closely with the architect to realize this.” 

Slots are needed where the air passes through, so the team will minimize their appearance by creating custom grilles and cleverly located shadow gaps. Mitigating sound is another challenge. “The technical areas where the AC units are located are connected to the rooms with large pipes – in the ceiling, in the walls, under the floor – and if you move air at a certain speed it makes noise,” explains Joris. “So, to minimize this, we ensure that the air travels at a low velocity and that the locations where the air enters and is extracted from the room are spread out across the volume of the room.” 

Naturally, an architect will want to reduce the size and number of the openings to keep the rooms as streamlined as possible, but the Feadship team will not be swayed. “In order to get AC that is top end, Feadship will not compromise,” says Joris, “We try to blend it into the interiors where possible, but when we need optimum positions for the openings an architect will have to work around it.” 

"There are no better or worse projects that we’ve worked on, because we always strive for the highest possible result.” 

Joris Kroesen, Feadship Project Manager

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