client stories


A fun and eclectic interior design of a sailboat turned summer home.

Project Partners

Yacht Designer: Ted Fontaine

Yacht Capentry: J. Thompson Marine Carpentry

Sailing yacht Nakupenda interior, by Taste Design.

Sailing Summer Home

Translated, Nakupenda means “I Love You”. And that spirit of love was ever present in the refit of this 109’ custom sailing yacht for a Connecticut-based family.

Designed by Ted Fontaine and built by Danish Yachts in Denmark at their Aarhas shipyard, she was completed in 2005 and previously named Aventura when refitted in 2010. Our clients acquired her in 2017 with a vision to restore Fontaine’s design and create a floating second home for their family.

We had the great pleasure of working with Ted Fontaine on the refit and redecoration of the deck, pilot house, salon and cabins. To brighten and modernize the teak interior, we introduced painted trim, shiplap, grasscloth and even freestanding furnishings to lighten the massing.

And because this was to be a sailing summer home, our stylish client (she’s a trained designer herself) wished to create an interior that was comfortable, casual and eclectic – and steered away from the typical nautical themes. Tropical prints, bamboo, nature-inspired light fixtures and commissioned artwork with a light hearted spirit finished the spaces. Today, the family gathers on Nakupenda to race, relax and most of all, love.

Sailing yacht Nakupenda interior, by Taste Design.

Key Takeaways

Lessons Learned from Nakupenda

Just because your get-away home is a sail boat, doesn’t mean you have to conform to the traditions of nautical interiors. An unexpected palette and interesting mix of materials makes this ‘home’ personal and special to our client family.

Completing a yacht project with a deadline to depart the Northeast before the weather turns bad is far more intense than a home project. Once the captain sets his schedule, the race is on to complete before she sets sail and everyone works alongside each other in a small space to complete their punchlist. Gone are the opportunities to return to the house to tweak one more thing or install a backordered item. When she’s gone, she won’t return until next spring. Game on!