Floating against the picturesque backdrop of Sydney Harbour, The Starship is a stunning innovation coupled with masterful engineering

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Project credits:
Project name: Starship Sydney
Architect : Smart Design Studio (SDS)
Client: VIP Charter Group
Construction: 2007
Design Team: William Smart, Hamish Ginn, Christian Harrup, Tatsu Hayashi, Goldie Peligrino
Naval engineer: Graham Parker Design 
Glass engineer: Bonnaci
Lighting design: DJ Coalition

Inspired by pure ‘Modernism’, Smart Design Studio (SDS) is an award winning multidisciplinary design practice based in Australia. The firm has executed a broad array of projects thereby earning themselves with a reputation of being one of the leading design practices in Australia. Starship Sydney is one such extraordinary project that reflects the design ethos of SDS by retaining a simplistic approach to create a highly efficient and contemporary design. It is a finely detailed chartered vessel holding a capacity of up to 950 passengers. With an iconic design and highly functional layout, this 110 feet long glass boat has raised the bar for cruises on Sydney Harbour. The detailed brief drawn out by the clients was to create the most spectacular charter vessel on Sydney Harbour.


The main deck being a large column-free event space accompanied with a full length light box ceiling sets up a soothing ambiance for all its visitors.



The grey body tinted glass skin not only encloses the main deck but also forms the balustrade for the lounge deck situated above.


This continuous glass skin spanning along the length of the boat from the inclined and curved bow incorporates a frame-less glass ‘windscreen’, to twin angled and cantilevered blades terminating at the stern. It acts as a shield while at the same time facilitates uninterrupted views of Sydney Harbour.

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The viewer in this way stays mesmerized by the scenic beauty.


Lastly the service bar is located at the rear end. In this way, the main deck provides the perfect spot to host a rendezvous filled with dazzle. Behind this glass screen, a tinted blade, raked to follow the angle of the stairs, is branded with the refracted Starship Sydney signage – a dynamic graphic identity for the vessel.


Positioned immediately above the main deck, is the lounge deck that comprises of a fully retractable enclosure of bi-fold doors enabling a strong connectivity between the interior and exterior spaces. An overhanging aluminium blade roof has been designed so as respond methodically to the harsh environment. The sky deck utilities the roof profile to conceal elements such as life rafts, buoys and balustrades.


Below water line, the rooms have been intricately designed with a sense of finesse and poise thereby giving Starship the credit for being the premium hospitality vessel on the harbor.

An ample gallery kitchen, generous store areas, a VIP meeting room and all the services and machinery required to operate the boat are accommodated below.

This four storey boat is a subtle composition of pure geometric forms to create a functional and sleek design. The simplicity reflected in the vessel is the outcome of a rigorous design development process between the clients and consultants.

Starship Sydney articulates a palette of complimentary materials that are simple yet graceful. The design infuses a sense of transparency and lightness within itself. The Starship is a luxury floating venue adorned with elegance and sophistication, hence making it truly timeless!

sdteamSmart Design Studio (SDS)
– Rhea Fernandes ,Volume Zero.








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