Build a Yacht: New Yacht Construction

Building a custom yacht from inception to delivery

Northrop & Johnson is proud to be affiliated with some of the world’s most innovative and award-winning yacht builders, refit yards, designers, naval architects and suppliers. Our reliable brokers are able to mediate between future owners and yards in order to help design the perfect custom yacht to suit the owner’s exact needs while maintaining a stress-free environment and seamless build experience. Northrop & Johnson brokers will help new-build owners facilitate every aspect of the new-build process from choosing the right shipyard and designer to advising on legal issues and project management. By drawing on our established relationships with the world’s industry leaders in these sectors, Northrop & Johnson can promise a flawless new-build process from inception to delivery.

Yacht Design and New Build Process

  1. Reconnaissance & Research

    Building a yacht is a long-term project and a major investment – it is, therefore, critical to select the right team for your build. This begins with choosing the right broker. Northrop & Johnson’s team of informed brokers are fully aware of the opportunities at every shipyard and will always find the most suitable yacht project to fit their client’s needs. Your Northrop & Johnson broker will discuss your yachting needs with you to determine your exact requirements and will give advice on the most suitable type of yacht. They will then be able to provide measured guidance on the new construction process, explaining the different types, sizes and materials available, while also discussing the financial and legal aspects of a new build.

  2. Yacht Shipyard and Designer Selection

    Once you have made the decision on what you are looking for, your broker will liaise with a number of suitable shipyards, designers and naval architects for your new build project. They will run a bid/tender process with all parties involved, often with the shipyard, designer and naval architect together. Thanks to an immense amount of knowledge, experience and working relationships with various yards, designers and naval architects, your Northrop & Johnson broker will be able to identify the most suitable solution with total impartiality. Sometimes the designer will be commissioned first so that several shipyards can be approached simultaneously to bid on a client’s specific design brief. Alternatively, some shipyards have naval platforms already associated with a specific naval architect or designer and a proven track record that can be tweaked to fit your requirements, which can have advantages as these projects will be faster and more cost-effective to build. However you wish to approach the project, your broker will be there by your side throughout to guide you.

  3. Contract Negotiations

    Your Northrop & Johnson broker will begin to pull together a team of legal advisors, surveyors, captains and yacht managers for you to meet. Once you have chosen the most suitable build for you, your broker and legal counsel will facilitate negotiations with the selected yard to assure you receive the best value as well as a timely build schedule. Everything from specifications, regulations, warranties, payment and contractual obligations should be decided before you sign any contract. Your Northrop & Johnson broker will be on hand to facilitate throughout all negotiations.

  4. Yacht Construction and Management

    Once the contracts have been signed, the build process will begin. Your Northrop & Johnson broker will play an integral role during the build to mediate between various parties involved. Your build broker will appoint a yacht manager on your behalf who will serve as an invaluable liaison between the broker, client and shipyard. They will supervise the entire new build from start to finish. Together with your yacht manager, your broker will keep you informed as the build progresses and will handle any issues that may arise, always keeping your best interests at the forefront of the build.

  5. Delivery of Your Yacht

    Once the build is complete, your Northrop & Johnson broker will ensure that all contractual obligations have been met. The final stage of the build involves testing the vessel and holding sea trials to ensure the yacht is ready for use. Together with your yacht manager, your Northrop & Johnson broker will facilitate all tests and trials to ensure the vessel is to your complete satisfaction. After delivery, they will liaise with the shipyard for warranty issues and will support you as you take to the water on your prized yacht.

Build a Yacht with N&J
Captain and first mate scouting ahead from bridge
Yacht manager and client looking at yacht designs on desk
Business people going over contract
Shipyard workers painting yacht
Yacht anchored at clear Caribbean waters

Project Management & Building A Custom Yacht

Building a custom yacht is a long-term project and a major investment. It is an enduring undertaking that requires ample time and resources. In order to have a successful custom-build project, it is paramount that the best people, as such your Northrop & Johnson broker, be in key positions as they are instrumental aspects of the process. From liaising with you and builder to keeping up with all the latest news and issues, your Northrop & Johnson broker will be your point person, supervising the build to completion. Your N&J broker is your advocate.

Northrop & Johnson is proud to have close, strategic relationships with the world’s leading designers, yacht manufacturers, builders, naval architects, interior designers, yacht suppliers and captains to assure work is being completed to impeccable standards. Northrop & Johnson brokers have the skills and expertise to provide you with all of the help you need during a custom yacht’s build.

  • Your Personal Concierge
    A keen awareness of the yachting industry and climate of the current market. Your broker will be able to help discern which yard is best for your wants and needs during your new build.
  • Communication
    Constant communication between the client and the builder in order to keep both parties informed with regard to changes, requirements, etc. Your broker also will mediate any situations that may arise.
  • 60+ Years of Experience
    Hands-on, practical experience that is invaluable during the build process in terms of both design and technical aspects.
  • Industry Connections
    An expansive network of resources to your new build thanks to years spent making connections within the yachting industry.
  • Sales Record
    A record of extremely successful new builds and this experience is the key to ensuring your build is on time and on budget.
  • Market Fluctuations
    Keeping an eye on value and resale during the new build process.

From Full Transformations, Total Rebuilds & Maintenance

From full transformations and total rebuilds to yacht updates and maintenance upgrades, refits are an important and necessary part of yacht ownership. Expert advice on planning and executing a smart refit can help you create a near-perfect yacht. With records of success and experience in refits, Northrop & Johnson’s brokers are experts in their field. They have established relationships with the world’s leading shipyards with refit facilities and can help you choose the best yacht manager, the most suitable shipyard for your refit, and the right designer to interpret your brief. They will organize refit availability at the most suitable shipyard and negotiate between both parties to ensure the best value for money is achieved.

Northrop & Johnson has close relationships with yacht managers around the world who act as the liaison between the captain, shipyard and owner throughout the refit period, to ensure the refit is done to specification within the agreed time and on budget. Many of the duties they assume include:

  • Reconnaissance and research
  • Yard and contractor evaluation
  • Negotiating quotes from yards and contractors
  • Advising on technical and design issues
  • Logistics
  • Full-service project management
  • Class and flag state matters

Shipyards & Builders

Northrop & Johnson is proud to be affiliated with the world’s leading yacht builders. Our reliable brokers are able to mediate between future owners and shipyards in order to help design the perfect custom yacht to suit their exact needs while maintaining a stress-free, seamless and enjoyable build experience. Northrop & Johnson brokers serve as an invaluable liaison between the client and the shipyard, maintaining the balance between both parties. Working alongside all parties involved, together with the appointed yacht manager, they supervise every project throughout its entire build to ensure each yacht delivered adheres not only to contractual specifications but to the owner’s expectations.
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