Surveying Superyachts with the Large Yacht Group

Published: 31 August 2023


YBDSA President, Robert Elliott, alongside three other YDSA Members, have been working closely with Italian owned company, The Italian Sea Group.

Earlier in the month, we were delighted to have a chat with Robert to find out more about his and other YDSA Surveyors involvement, and what this could mean for our Members.

Tell us about The Italian Sea Group (TISG)

The Italian Sea Group (TISG) shipyard is located in Marina di Carrara, Italy, and effectively created by Giovanni Constantino (owner of multiple superyacht brands such as Tecnomar, Admiral and Perini Navi). TISG prides itself as an international luxury yacht building company specialising in the construction of superyachts up to and over 100 metres - merging Italian design excellence and engineering in the yachting sector.

As well as working with clients in the design and production of yachts, the company also offers a wide range of refit services. This all takes place in their remarkable facilities, covering an area of 120.000sqm and including two dry docks – one of which is the largest in the Mediterranean Sea. 

How did you become involved with TISG and what is your role?

Many years ago, I supervised the construction of a new build which was located in Giovanni Constantino’s then recently purchased yard, Tecnomar. As the business grew, I became more involved with the clients’ whose boats were being built with the company. Then, a couple of years ago, I received a call from a client asking if I could be involved in the supervision of a unique new build which is currently almost completed with TISG.

My present function on the current project at TISG is specifically to supervise, observe and review a new state-of-the-art motor catamaran during the lengthy construction process. Any issues logged are then reported back to the builders so that they can be addressed by them while at the same time keeping the owners updated.

What is the role of other YDSA Surveyors involved in the project?

It is usual during many of these large yacht constructions to work together with other surveyors and split roles accordingly. In fact, as the size grows, large yachts typically require more supervisors. I am pleased to report that all four surveyors on this project are YDSA members.

I met Matthew Sainz, two years ago when the owner of the vessel asked if I could join Matthew and together with him supervise the construction of this futuristic motor catamaran at TISG.

Although our roles do overlap, Matthew has been focusing on the internal functions of the vessel, and I have been focusing on the hull construction, functional layout, and engineering.

A large part of my work involves negotiating with the yard towards achieving the best possible result.

Shortly after starting to work with Matthew and recognising his skills, I suggested he apply to join the YDSA, and I am delighted that he is now a proud member.

Later, as the owners of the vessel decided on Malta Commercial Registration, we decided to bring in YDSA Surveyor Derek Levy, to survey and manage all the paperwork for Malta Flag. Derek joined the project in the spring of 2023. Later on, recently joined YDSA member Panagiotis Plomaritis, started working with us to supervise the coating process as he has also recently qualified as an RMCI (Registered Marine Coatings Inspector).

How did the YDSA Large Yacht Group (LYG) become involved? 

The skills required to supervise the complexity of building this type of vessel develop over time and by a surveyor who has slowly gained experience in large yachts. Right now, the YDSA is pleased to have approximately 20 surveyors who are part of the LYG and capable of such large yacht surveys. So, it makes sense for our members to be involved in such projects and to offer their experience to other members who wish to enter this field and consequently expand our LYG Membership even further. 

What is on offer for fellow YDSA Members?

I am keen to raise interest within the YDSA Membership in this growing, unique and exciting sector of the industry. There is a wealth of experience and opportunity to be learned from the projects taking place at such yards as TISG.

In pursuit of this objective and following Mr Constantino’s kind invitation, I endeavour to organise a visit to the TISG boatyard available to any YBDSA Member, broker, or surveyor, interested in being exposed to the Large Yacht sector. During this visit, current LYG surveyors and brokers would be able to gain exposure and network on a premier boat building site while offering the opportunity for other members to gain an insight in this sector and decide if they’d like to take it further.

This event will also help extend the YDSA into the overseas market where it is less known than in the UK.

If you are interested and would like to find out more about this opportunity or becoming a LYG surveyor or broker, please contact:


  • Vessel name: Tbc
  • Vessel length: 43.5 metres
  • Construction start date: 2020
  • Construction completion date: Launch September 2023-Completion March 2024
  • Launch location: Marina di Carrara. Can be seen at the Monaco Yacht Show - 27-30 September 2023
  • YDSA LYG Surveyors involved: Robert Elliott, Matthew Sainz, Derek Levy, Panagiotis Plomaritis

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