Cruise & Ferry Review - Spring/Summer 2023

INTERVIEW It’s all in the details Greg Walton and Yohandel Ruiz explain to Rebecca Gibson how Studio DADO has helped Oceania Cruises to set a new standard of luxury onboard Vista, its first Allura-class ship Touted as a ship with a “captivating beauty and stylish design”, Oceania Cruises’ new ship Vista will offer guests a “dramatic new way of seeing the world” when it debuts in Rome, Italy, in early April 2023. The vessel, which will be the first in the Allura class, will boast several new dining concepts, luxury residential-style accommodation for up to 1,200 guests, extravagant yet intimate and cosy spaces, and much more. Most of the vessel’s interiors have been designed by award-winning Miami-based firm Studio DADO, including all the guest accommodation (aside from the Owner’s Suite), multiple dining venues, lounges, the pool deck, outdoor areas and the public corridors, passenger elevators and stairwells. “We developed the macro-level design concept and narrated the whole guest experience, ensuring a thread of continuity and an organic flow throughout the vessel,” says Yohandel Ruiz, founding partner of DADO. “We’ve created spaces that have their own distinct identities but still fit harmoniously into the overall design concept to ensure the ship feels cohesive rather than disjointed.” Oceania Cruises asked DADO to create a fresh, contemporary design that would fulfil the needs and expectations of both the current and future generation of travellers. “The culinary experience and the destinations are pivotal on an Oceania cruise, so we’ve put them front and centre of our designs,” says Greg Walton, founding partner of DADO. “Vista will be sailing to amazing destinations around the world, so one of our key priorities was to capture the essence of these locales in the onboard spaces as a way of enhancing the culinary experience and deepening the guests’ cultural enrichment.” Vista’s new signature restaurant Ember, for example, is designed to evoke the modern, yet cosy, eateries found in California’s Napa Valley. It boasts soft white wood panelling, split-face stone walls, custom-seeded glass and iron lighting, a vaulted brick ceiling, photographs of California landscapes and wooden tables with the butterfly joints that are typically found in traditional American woodwork. 170 The design of the atrium was inspired by a nautilus shell and features a two-deck-high chandelier by Lasvit as its centrepiece DYNAMIC DUO Yohandel Ruiz (left) and Greg Walton (right) are two of Studio DADO’s four founding partners. Ruiz uses his research and conceptualisation skills to create functional spaces with meaningful design stories behind them. Meanwhile, Walton’s eye for beauty, appreciation for functionality and extensive cultural knowledge enable him to create purposeful and innovative designs for cruise clients.