Cruise & Ferry Interiors 2023

132 DESIGN LEGEND Marco de Jorio Rebecca Gibson asks Italian architect and designer Marco de Jorio how he took the passion he developed for shipbuilding at a young age and transformed himself into a sought-after interior designer that has spearheaded projects for some of the world’s major cruise and ferry brands When Marco de Jorio first boarded a wooden motor yacht as a young boy, it kickstarted a love for shipbuilding that led to him completing a degree at the University of Architecture in Genoa and Rome in 1986, and subsequently honing his design knowledge and expertise at Studio De Jorio, a firm owned by his father, the renowned cruise ship architect Giuseppe de Jorio. He quickly developed a well-earned reputation as a highly skilled designer that creates timeless interiors and, in 2000, he established De Jorio Design International alongside his father and his brother, Vittorio de Jorio. Some of the notable projects the firm has worked on over the past three decades include ferries for Grande Navi Veloci, Tirrenia Ferries, Minoan Lines and Grimaldi Holdings, as well as cruise vessels for major brands like Costa Cruises, Princess Cruises, Disney Cruise Line, MSC Cruises and Explora Journeys. Here, De Jorio shares an insight into the highlights of his more than 30-year career. How did you first get into cruise ship design? You could say it was fate – in 1779, my ancestor Michele de Jorio – juriconsult, lawyer, magistrate and president of the Sacred Royal Council of the Kingdom of Naples in Italy – developed the world’s first maritime code for Ferdinand IV of Naples (also known as the King of Two Sicilies). The Ferdinandean Code is a cornerstone of maritime and legal literature, and it is still studied today. I like to think that I’m following in the footsteps of my ancestor, albeit in the more creative and stimulating world of designing the interiors and exteriors of ships. My introduction to the maritime field happened as a young boy in the 1970s when I accompanied my father, the renowned cruise ship architect Giuseppe De Jorio, during some of his many trips to design motor yachts for both private owners and Italy’s Genoa, Viareggio and La Spezia shipyards. During one of these trips, I spent a full day working alongside a team of people painting the hull of a motor yacht, which gave me the opportunity to learn painting techniques first hand. I also had the chance to acquire valuable and irreplaceable knowledge from other technicians, wood and steel workers, and interior and furniture suppliers. Moments like this instilled my longstanding passion for shipbuilding. My interest in designing and building ships grew over time, with my first interior designs being for the 65-metrelong El Bravo motor yacht, Costa Line’s “ We became renowned for creating designs that prioritised elegance and pure Italian style” Marco de Jorio’s ancestor Michele de Jorio developed the world’s first maritime code, which is still studied regularly today