Rendering of a custom yacht that Ryberg is hoping to design one day
During the Covid-19 pandemic and as life became less busy, some people were given the rare opportunity to reflect on their priorities.
For some, this resulted in taking up a new hobby or finding different ways to relax and unwind. For others, it meant embarking on new challenges. The latter is true for Swedish interior designer Petra Ryberg, who left her role as head of design at Carnival Australia to create her own business, Studio Berg+.
“I’ve had the best time in Australia, and it has been such an honour to head up the design department for the last six years,” she says. “However, I felt it was time to come closer to Europe and my family. I also like to shake things up and I’m super excited to see where this chapter will take me.”
As she takes control of her own business, Ryberg is excited for the opportunity to identify her niche in the market and how she can best help her clients. “It is important to stay true to who you are, both personally and in your designs,” she explains. “I am a hospitality designer, not a residential designer. I also don’t believe you can excel at every aspect of the process; that’s why I hire the people that are experts in their field to help with projects.”
Building on her experience at Carnival Australia, Ryberg will continue to prioritise delivering a high-quality guest experience. She does this in surprising ways, with a particular passion for crew spaces: “If we can create inspiring environments for the crew, I’m convinced that will lead to a better experience for guests.”
Achieving this is complex though, particularly as customers expect beautiful and exciting decor that is increasingly considerate of the environment.
To meet these expectations, Ryberg will be focusing on making her designs more environmentally sustainable and encouraging clients to think the same way. “Usually, paying more upfront for quality materials will result in the client saving money in the long run, not to mention the improved aesthetics,” says Ryberg. “For me, it is like fashion. We must shift our focus from just being trendy and accessing quick wins, and instead look at the long term. Unfortunately, it is often hard to influence assigned budgets, but where clients are willing to spend more on quality materials, it definitely increases the longevity of the design.”
Ryberg also believes there are important steps to be taken to minimise the waste created by refurbishment projects. “I would really like to see a standardised system for this,” she says. “There needs to be proper regulations put in place in coordination with shipyards. I imagine a lot of what is currently sent to landfill could be repurposed in many creative ways.”
And the same goes for sustainable product sourcing. “It would be great if there was a method of ranking sustainable qualities,” says Ryberg. “There is a lot of greenwashing going on. At first glance, a product might look sustainable but, when you dig deeper, you find it might compromise something else in the production chain. It is crucial that more sustainable products are comparable in look, feel, budget and lead times.”
This article was first published in the 2022 issue of Cruise & Ferry Interiors. All information was correct at the time of printing, but may since have changed.
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