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Naval design and architecture firm Oliver Design to showcase latest projects at its stand at NAVALIA

Recent designs include state-of-the-art vessels for diverse sectors,ranging from fishing ships and luxury cruise liners

OLIVER DESIGN's projects for the fishing industry include designing and fitting out a salmon vessel for a Norwegian firm and a tuna boat working the Indian Ocean fisheries.

OLIVER DESIGN will be showcasing some of its latest projects on its stand at the Navalia trade fair, which runs from 22 to 24 May in Vigo (Spain).Recent projects from the Spanish firm, which specialises in naval design and architecture, include new state-of the-art vessels ranging from working vessels to luxury cruise ships. It has also carried out renovation on several existing vessels.

The bienial Navalia is one of the top international fairs for the shipbuilding industry. Nearly 25,000 delegates from around the world will have a chance to see some of the latest innovations, network and close business deals. OLIVER DESIGN is a regular attendee at the event where it has its own stand. This year, it will be showcasing nearly thirty years’ experience in designing and fitting out all kinds of ships, with examples of some of the firm's most recent work and output from its R&D department.

One of the firm’s most recent commissions involved designing the “Scenic Eclipse”, theworld's first luxury discovery cruise ship, which must surely rank as one of the most remarkable ship designs of 2018. Launched on 31 January, the maiden voyage is scheduled for late August. This is a pioneering project, offering passengers top-of-the market tourist facilities and a chance to explore virgin spaces and extreme environments. Among other destinations, guests will have a chance to travel to the Arctic and Antarctic, as well as journeying to the bottom of the ocean. The ship carries its own helicopter, a small submarine and several zodiacs. It can cater to up to 228 passengers in 114 luxury suites and includes all the latest innovations in naval design and technology.

Fishing industry

As proof of OLIVER DESIGN's versatility, it is currently working on a number of projects in an entirely different sector — ships for the fishing industry. The firm recently signed a contract for turnkey design and fitting-out of a tuna ship to be built in the Zamakona Shipyards at Bilbao Port in northern Spain. The “Campolibre Alai”, a freezer shipfeaturing all the latest technology, is bound for the fisheries of the Indian Ocean.

OLIVER DESIGN is also working on turnkey interior fitting-out of the “Norwegian Gannet”, having already completed the design for the interiors, including some unusual features. The ship combines a high-quality work area, double and single crew cabins, a spacious dining room, lounges, changing rooms, a gym with sauna, and a cinema, which can double as a meeting hall. The B deck also contains an impeccably decorated conference room, complete with a bar and recreation area for the crew, which can be used as a reception area for potential clients and distributors. The contract also covers fitting-out of the bridge and part of the fish processing facilities.

The innovations in design, capacity and energy efficiency will make the vessel a trendsetter for other factory-ships. Once delivered, the owners have the option of commissioning a second vessel of the same characteristics, to operate in the same North Sea salmon fish farms.

Eco fast ferries and catamarans for offshore platforms

After winning a design competition, OLIVER DESIGN recently carried out the architectural design for four Eco Fast Ferries for Baleària, the leading Spanish passenger and freight transporter between Mediterranean ports. The first of the four units has already begun service on the Ibiza-Formentera line. With a maximum speed of 28 knots and capacity for 350 passengers, the ship boasts innovating design, ecoefficiency and latest-generation materials. 

In 2017, Oliver Design also delivered the turnkey project for twin high-speed catamarans to service oil rigs off the Angolan coast. The work included interior architecture of the main decks, bridge and the two hulls housing passengers and crew. The two 57-metre catamarans are made in aluminium and have a beam of 12 metres. Key considerations for selecting the materials, furniture and surface treatment include noise reduction and the weight restrictions for this type of vessel.

Ferry renovation

Another recent contract involved renovating four ships for the Spanish firm Trasmediterránea: the “Superfast Galicia” (now renamed the “Ciudad de Ibiza”), the “Juan J. Sister”, the “Fortuny” and the “Sorolla”. The turnkey renovation and rehabilitation project posed an interesting logistical challenge, since the work had to be carried out while the ships were in operation. In the case of the “Ciudad de Ibiza”, the vessel had to be completely remodelled and modernised, including fitting-out over 1,000 square metres of interior areas. The entire job was completed in a record time of just 20 days during a transatlantic run, requiring complex coordination of different tasks.

In the case of the “Fortuny” and the “Sorolla”, which service Trasmediterránea's Melilla-Malaga and Melilla-Almería routes respectively, the improvements consisted of complete renovation of cabins, fitting-out of a new lounge and bar at the stern, and a"food-lounge" catering to a wide variety of tastes. The work also included remodelling the on-board shop and providing a new children's zone.

R&D department

As well as working under contract on specific projects for shipyards and ship owners from around the world, OLIVER DESIGN's R&D department also develops its own innovation projects. These include initiatives linking shipbuilding technology to recreational activities, with some stunning and innovating designs tailored to individual locations. Projects include floating theme parks and onshore structures shaped like ships to house a wide variety of activities, including restaurants, sport and cultural venues, shopping areas, night-time activities, water parks, spas and aquariums.


OLIVER DESIGN is a Spanish naval design and architecture firm, founded in 1990 by naval engineer Jaime Oliver. Based in the northern town of Getxo, it also has offices in Santander and Cadiz. OLIVER DESIGN offers a wide range of services for shipyards and shipping firms, including concept design, outline, architectural design, interior design, construction drawings, fitting-out and comprehensive site management and supervision. Its design catalogue includes almost 400 ships of every kind: training vessels, recreational and tourist sailing ships, carriers, fishing boats, dredgers, ferries, cruisers, etc. The firm has won a large number of international awards and plaudits, including several Shippax Awards for naval design.

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