An essential partner for cruise and ferry operators

Magicman’s repair and restoration services can help cruise and ferry operators to preserve the original designs of their interior spaces and keep their vessels in pristine condition

An essential partner for cruise and ferry operators
A before and after shot of a brass rail that Magicman repaired and restored on a passenger ship

Designs are plans or specifications that detail how to construct an object or space. The design must fulfil certain criteria and may take into account aesthetic, functional, economic, or sociopolitical considerations. Cruise ship design is bespoke to an individual – or class – of vessel and is tailored to the expected clientele.  

From the shape of the hull to the superstructure and individual interior spaces, designers must meticulously consider every detail of the vessel to ensure that it meets expectations in terms of aesthetics, functionality and performance, and that everything integrates together seamlessly. Designers use different colours, substrates, textures, shapes and more to distinguish between interior spaces, but all designs follow a similar route from conception to completion. First, designers develop their ideas and then select materials and assess both their aesthetic appeal and their suitability for the intended environment. Next, the components of the design are manufactured, distributed and installed onboard the vessels. Then comes ongoing maintenance and repair.  

Often, the aforementioned characteristics of a design can be at odds with maritime requirements. A ship is a moving object and operating in certain conditions can cause stresses and vibrations that may not have been considered during the design phase. Similarly, the methods of construction, material selection or installation can introduce unanticipated consequences – for example, joining two surfaces with different characteristics together may cause problems.  

Regardless of how carefully an interior space is designed, its components will always be at risk of damage from unforeseen factors such as soiling, stress failure or exposure to extreme temperatures, steam, chemicals, fire, floods and more. In addition, contractors and onboard crew members have a tendency to drill, cut, affix things to, or otherwise spoil, certain surfaces.  

As passenger ships feature strikingly beautiful interiors that have been custom designed and outfitted with bespoke products, it can be challenging to repair them if they are damaged. Typically, shipowners attempt to resolve these issues with the help of onboard maintenance staff, but sometimes they are forced to carry out a wholesale replacement of the items or completely redesign the space. Both options come at great cost in both money and time – they either need to close the space to guests to complete the work while the ship is in service, or cancel sailings to dry dock the vessel. It can also be expensive and time consuming for shipowners to reproduce the damaged fixtures and fittings themselves.  

This is where UK-based repair and restoration expert Magicman can help. Its team of highly skilled technicians has been restoring damaged surfaces on both the interiors and exteriors of ships and buildings for more than 28 years.  

Magicman’s Riding Crew, which usually comprises four to six technicians, can board vessels to repair items behind the scenes (often at night), restoring them to their former glory and minimising disruption to guests. Not only is this a fast and cost-effective way to protect the original design and rejuvenate onboard spaces, but it also has unexpected sustainability benefits. It eliminates the greenhouse gas emissions associated with removing, transporting and disposing of the damaged items in landfill, as well as those produced by manufacturing, transporting, assembling and installing the component parts of new items.   

In addition, Magicman can offer regular repair and restoration services, boarding clients’ vessels a couple of times per year to ensure the interiors are in pristine condition, thereby drastically reducing the number and frequency of passenger complaints.  

To further improve this offering, Magicman is developing maintenance programmes where it works with a client to schedule a series of projects across multiple vessels – either while they are in service or in dock. By collaborating with ship operators and coordinating schedules, Magicman can seamlessly move teams and equipment off one vessel in a port and straight onto another. Not only does this reduce travel time and shipping costs for personnel, plant and materials, but it also decreases greenhouse gas emissions. In this industry collaboration is key, and when we do it right, everyone benefits. 

Mark Henderson is CEO of Magicman  

This article was first published in the Spring/Summer 2022 issue of Cruise & Ferry Review. All information was correct at the time of printing, but may since have changed. 

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By Mark Henderson
22 April 2022

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