In Search Of The Perfect Yacht Tender [Superyacht Selection]

May 20, 2019 1:44 pm

Four Most Common Types Of Tenders For Superyachts

Today’s yacht tenders run the gamut from open rigid inflatables with inboard engines to fully enclosed custom limousines designed for maximum passenger comfort. In between are classic mahogany tenders, workboats, fast tenders for skiing and towing toys, and simple lightweight tenders like the rigid Zodiacs mostly used on smaller (under 80′) yachts or sailing yachts. With so much to choose from, the question of which tender is right for a particular application can often lead in several directions. In the end, it comes down to a yacht’s needs and that will differ from yacht to yacht.

Listed below are four of the most common types of tenders currently in use by superyachts. In making any decision regarding a tender, it’s necessary to take into consideration such factors as capacity (how many people will be commuting in the tender), purpose (watersports, transportation, etc.) and planning in advance how the tender will be lifted and stored within the yacht.


Limousine Tenders

Custom Limo Tender from Hodgdon Yachts

Limo tenders are primarily used for transporting guests and crew from ship to shore. They are usually large, semi-enclosed vessels with luxury amenities including air-conditioning, posh seating and designer interiors. Many are customized to match the mothership. Limousine tenders offer a comfortable and dry ride and are often capable of speeds in excess of 30 knots.


RIB Tenders

Superyacht RIB Tender from HBD Studios

RIBs (rigid-hulled inflatable boats) are a very popular choice due to their size, versatility and ease of storage. Usually inboard powered and capable of high speeds, RIBs can offer a high-octane blast of waterborne excitement for the superyacht owner and guests. They can also operate in shallow waters where larger tenders must avoid. RIB manufacturers offer many lift options for easy storage.


Vintage (Classic) Tenders

This Hacker-Craft custom limo makes a statement

For owners with an eye for nautical beauty and tradition, custom-built Hacker-Craft tenders serve on some of the world’s most beautiful and famous superyachts. Designed for luxury and utility, some yachts carry vintage tenders like a Riva Aquarma or one of the classic Chris Craft mahogany runabouts. For many superyacht owners the appeal of a classic tender is irresistible.


Workboat Tenders

Highly customized workboat from  Munson Yacht Tenders

Some of the largest superyachts have dedicated workboats used to service the mothership. Designed to transport equipment and supplies, yacht owners can safely make trips to shore delivering vehicles, transporting waste or hauling the gear needed for exploring a remote beach. Those with drop-down bow doors provide access to places traditional tenders can never go.

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