The Big Blue


As the world’s first cruise-liner dedicated to health and wellbeing, is due to launch in 2021. We got a sneak peak of what passengers can expect from renowned interior designer Juan Poggi

  • How did you get involved with Blue World Voyages?

Gene Meehan, one of the founders and owners of Blue World Voyages has been my client for several years. When he told me about the concept for a vessel completely dedicated to fitness and wellbeing, I recognised it as a beautiful opportunity to do something fresh and new.

  • What attracted you to the concept?

I imagined being on this cruise and heading to less commercial destinations, absorbing myself in nature and experiencing a health-focused voyage. The concept for an active cruise line, focused totally on doing what is good for the body and the mind, is something ground-breaking. It’s always a bold step to introduce something revolutionary into the marketplace and that hugely appeals.

  • What aspects do you need to consider when designing the interior?

There are many things to consider, material, weight, commercial durability and much more.  It’s crucial that you understand passenger flow and factor it in when designing for all the people who will share the cruise experience. The challenge is to combine maximum functionality with pleasing aesthetics.  I chose to create the design without worrying about touch point details initially, as anything can be readjusted or redesigned to make it work. I like design to have a key language. That way, the objects and colours click because the elements chosen flow seamlessly throughout the ship.

The Big Blue

  • Tell us about the materials you used?

We’ve incorporated a wide array of materials, from white oak to bronze finished surfaces and coloured lacquered panels. For fabrics, I prefer to ones that are inviting and soft. We have many beautiful textures that have been treated so they’re water resistant and durable so they can stand up to life at sea. We’ll use a clean selection of colours, most of which will be borrowed from the natural pigment of the fibre we select. We aim to use off whites and beiges that reflect the cotton and linen fabrics we’ve chosen and select blues from the indigos. Ocean colours are soothing, so we will be using those and adding earth tones for personality. Ocean, land, sky; that’s our palette.

  • How does the finished design incorporate elements to support a wellness philosophy?

Less is more. I like to awaken all the senses, from sensory touch to aromas and subdued lighting. I don’t want to give too much away right now, but the design will be conducive to wellbeing in all senses of the word.

  • Given the number of residences on board, to what extent have you worked to create bespoke living environments?

Poggi Design have created a limited edition collection of beautiful suites starting with the layout concept from the Thomas Tillberg architectural team that features a stunning double high entrance. We capitalised on this detail to make it a focal point. As a result we have a spectacular staircase design for the two-bedroom suites.

  • What were the biggest challenges?

This is our first cruise ship, so everything had to be carefully executed but if we had a specific challenge, it would be apportioning ‘space’. Designing for a ship requires maximum functionality blended with pleasing aesthetics. I feel we’re addressed that supremely well.

  • You worked in Tandem with top marine architects Tomas Tillberg, how was that experience?

Tillberg Design have successfully worked within the cruise industry for many years. They’re masters of their craft, and to be able to work alongside them has been an experience to savour.

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