At the Boot Düsseldorf, we met Mathias Ganz, the founder and owner of Ganz Boats, a Swiss shipyard specialized in fast open boats ranging from 6.8 to 8 m and featuring a particular design, a great attention to details and amazing finishes. In November 2016, the Ovation 7.6 model (which our interview deals with) received the nomination for the Best of Boats Award and a special mention for the German Design Award 2017.
Mathias has followed his father’s footsteps. During the previous life of the Ganz yard, between 1972 and 2000, his father had, in fact, built about 500 sailboats. In 2005, Mathias took over the facilities and business and started a new adventure with motorboats.
His first boat is currently known as Ovation 6.8. She saw the light in 2007 as Mathias’ personal boat: “When I sailed with the boat I had finally built on Lake Zurich – tells the young Swiss businessman – I realized that many people stopped to see her. I was very impressed by their reaction. So, I understood that I had taken the right direction”.
Then, the first model was followed by the Elovation 6.8: essentially the same boat but electric and environment-friendly, perfect to respect the strict rules of German and Austrian lakes. Later, it was the turn of the 7.7 Evolution, the only model featuring a closed cockpit and a separated astern sun pad, and finally the Ovation 7.6, the latest model exhibited at the German boat show sharing the same lines of the Evolution but with a completely different deck. A fifth and sixth model are upcoming: the Ovation 7.6 Open, the first boat with a fore cockpit and the new flagship of the yard, and the 9.2 Open. So, a small but very well-structured range. What’s common to all Ganz models? .
” All boats are carefully designed. We take much time to reduce rather than add. We want to create something different from what is already available on the market: we are a very young yard so we can’t hope to be successful copying what more prestigious brands already make successfully. All our boats focus on functionality and the typical usability of a dayboat; this is essential for us. In short, all Ganz boats want to give their owners some relaxed time”
Who’s the ideal customer of these boats?
“They’re many. There’s the family with two children, the young couple enjoying boat trips with friends and those who desire their motorboat docked just in front of their villa off the lake. The ideal customer is anyone who wants to relax and not only sail fast (all models sail at over 30 knots) . But the ideal customer is also who wants to attend the creation path of the boat. Each boat is different because, every time, we customize the product according to the owner’s requests and not only in terms of style choices.”
You’re based on a lake: are Ganz boats lake boats?
Ganz boats are good for everything: they’re designed to sail both at sea and fresh water. They, in fact, sail a lot during the year: many owners put their boat on the carriage during their holidays and bring it to the sea, Cote d’Azur or Croatia’s coastline.
Looking at the design evolution of your models, Ganz style seems to have become a little softer. Today, curved lines hide the straight ones of the first models. How do you explain this change?
The same evolution can be observed in the automotive industry. Look at Bmw, for example. My designers and I look carefully at what happens in that world for inspiration and new ideas.
Which technical details make a boat built by Ganz Boat really different?
First of all, the transom. I gave my personal contribution to develop it. A hydraulic system can convert it into a swimming platform. This is not only a comfortable solution: it also increase the living space on board, it ensures an easier access to the boat after the bath and avoids the risk of falling outboard especially if we sail with babies and pets. Then, the Touchboat management, an electronic control system developed in collaboration with Raymarine. It displays the most important data concerning both the boat and navigation and eventual alarms. Finally, the walking surface: passengers can go from the stern to the steering console without having to walk up and down and without disturbing guests who are sunbathing, for example.