Choosing luxury tableware brands & suppliers for your superyacht
Presentation is key on board a yacht, whether it’s the presentation of the crew, the yacht interior, the furnishings or the flooring; the look, feel and style is paramount to the on-board experience and in reflecting the owner’s unique personality and tastes.
Presentation is never as important as in the dining room, however; the tableware or flatware and decorative accessories can make or break a dinner party, contributing to the ambience and impressing the most prestigious and affluent guests.
With the extensive range of products and brands available from leading superyacht tableware suppliers, there's no excuse for sacrificing quality or not being adventurous. Yachting Pages investigates the industry’s leading brands and suppliers, and provides tips for choosing, storing and maintaining tableware.
No matter whether you are setting a table for a casual lunch on the deck, or an al fresco dinner party in the dining room, monochrome is a look that never goes out of style.
Sophie Burn of Harlequin London said, “Try black and white tableware highlighted with gold metallics for a contemporary, striking look. The Greek Key motif design from Meissen comes in a range of different styles and designs, which allows you to create a dramatic, attention-grabbing look that is individual and sophisticated while remaining coherent.”
Luxury tableware brands
There is an array of luxury tableware brands and suppliers that are well known and loved within the superyacht industry:
- Christofle: One of the world’s leading silverware manufacturers offers a wide selection of cutlery, silver serving items, holloware, porcelain, crystal, china, giftware, glass and Haute Orfevrerie. Christofle annually introduces new collections to its design portfolio
- Legle: Based in Limoges, France specialises in 32 shades of solid -coloured porcelain. Sous le Soleil is one of their most popular dinner collections
- Meissen: Established in 1710, Meissen is Europe’s first porcelain manufactory. Individually handmade, China and porcelain tableware, glassware and interior accessories are imbued with heritage, beauty and sensuousness.
- Saint-Louis: A French fine crystal manufacturer, which produces handmade products from glassware, vases and paperweights, to lighting and chandeliers
- Venini: Renowned for its art pieces, glass design and lighting solutions, each year it introduces two new collections to its range
- Zanetto: An Italian based company, which provides service ware, ice buckets, bowls, vases and a range of other decorative accessories
Choosing a flatware supplier
When it comes to outfitting and stocking a superyacht, it often saves time to use one specialist who can help with the yacht interior and in the finer details of luxury tableware, bringing all these elements together and offering expertise and advice.
There is a lot to think about: Charger plates, side plates, wine glasses, water glasses, salt and pepper shakers, vases, cruets, candelabras, table linen, ashtrays, soup and salad bowls, cups and saucers and napkins, not to mention all the different types of cutlery.
Sophie explained, “It’s important to work with a company you trust that specialises in the yachting industry, because they will understand the unique challenges that crew face on board. For example, accidents do happen and things often get broken, suffer general wear and tear and need to be replaced constantly. Therefore it is important to choose a company that operates a no minimum order policy and ships anywhere in the world, so you can be confident that no matter where your yacht is docked, you can receive that crystal glass to complete the set.
“Timing is also important. In a superyacht build or refit, too often new crew members are brought in at the last moment, which we believe is a mistake. Careful planning is needed not just on the stowage, but also the practicality of the china, crystal and silver tableware chosen.”
How to store and restore tableware
With storage space truly at a premium on board a superyacht, it takes some careful planning and innovative thinking to ensure that plates, crockery and cutlery are properly stored and cared for.
Harlequin London provides some essential tips for storing and maintaining luxury tableware.
Looking after china dinnerware
Unfortunately, breakages come with the territory when it comes to storing and using china tableware. Consider carefully how to store the china: Invest in plate dividers made to help in prolonging the life of your dinnerware, as this protects from scratching and chipping when storing in cupboards and sideboards.
If china does become damaged, act fast. It’s good practice to order replacements as soon as possible, as sadly many manufacturers do sometimes discontinue designs making it difficult to order replacements to make a complete set, or to add to it. If budget allows, it may be a good idea to order a few spares from the off.
Taking care of crystal glassware
It may seem obvious, but it’s vital to ensure that crystal glasses are packed and padded carefully in order to ensure that they are not touching each other and there is no room for shifting.
Lead crystal should be regularly hand washed in warm soapy water and then dried by hand using good quality linen cloths.
Keeping silverware shining
Silver will tarnish when exposed to the environment, but as a general rule the more it is actually used and handled, the less need there will be to get out the polish.
It is oxygen that causes this tarnishing, and so it is recommended that anti-tarnish cutlery rolls are used if silverware is stored away and used infrequently. This is particularly relevant on board when silver is exposed to the salty sea air.
If silver is heavily tarnished, do use a reputable agent to clean it before putting it away. Bear in mind that every time silver is cleaned using a cleaning agent, a small layer of silver is removed from each piece, so this should be carefully managed.