La Spezia (Italy) – Cantieri Baglietto

February 2017

2 Months

  • Tadelakt

The Work

Out of doubt, the work carried out in spring 2017 is one of the ones I’m most proud of. First of all because is the first time that an Original Tadelakt finiture has been realized on board of a luxury 40 meters long yacht.

This work represented and huge challenge, due to the prestige of the realization, the special kind of customers that requested it and the technical complexity of the execution. 

All this peculiarity pushed me to personally take care of this project, that i started to follow by the time the ship was still inside the shipyard, precisely in Cantieri Navali Cerri – La Spezia (Italy) until its first official sea voyage.


Progetto esterno dello yacht Fuoriserie Kanga 40

At the beginning of 2017 I’ve been contacted  by the architect Sabrina Iorio on behalf of the New York firm “Architecture at Large” of the architect Rafael Decadenas. As I said it was a very unique request, because I supposed to realize a bathroom in Tadelakt on board of a luxury yacht, in particular 4 out of 12 bathroom that were inside the ship, including the Captain’s bathroom. As I could noticed in the moment of the first site inspection, the total amount of the surfaces to be worked was approximately 50 square meters. 

The particularity of that project wasn’t on its shapes or dimensions, but in its positions. Is very uncommon to work in a yacht bathroom, and such an unusual work can hide big issues for a material delicate as Tadelakt is.


On a general level, for a successful work the condition in which operate are crucial, it must be assured to be able to work with the right humidity level and to have the right spaces, because it will be necessary to operate on the floor and on the ceiling.

Once evaluated the general conditions, is necessary to look for which movable components can hide risks for the perfect Tadelakt realization that last in time, things that is really important in such works, where the expectation of the customer is the high quality and the care of every single detail.

The work on this massive ship, a 40,80 meters Fuoriserie Kanga by Baglietto that was inside the shipyards Cantieri Navali Cerri, very important company that operates since 1997 and located in La Spezia (Italy), started on march 2017 and was carried out during the ship building process. Let’s see the different phases that led to those luxury Tadelakt bathroom. 

Initial Stage

Due to the fact that the bathroom was fully tailor made, the processing base was made in marine wood – a widely used material in ships – on which it was placed a two-component resin for naval use (applied by the constructor), that guarantee a strong hold.

Before applying the material I checked the hold of the bottom and then I made sure of stabilize the parts that could move or swing during the navigation, ad the shower framework and discharge system, using materials like grids. he problem is that even little movements could generate cracks in the materials.


First of all I started by sanding the base and than applying a rough clinging based on resins and hydraulic lime in order to enhance the material seal. After that, I’ve created the “peel” on the base using a roller after the second spread of the bottom with a spatula. I started the laying of the material making sure of the properly humidity level.

The first laying of the material on the wall has been made with a trowel made from cedar wood, designed for evenly and smoothly distributing the material, drying it when necessary because during this phase is crucial to avoid spots of accumulated material.

After the first phase I waited 2-3 hrs to proceed to the laying with a spatula made from steel. In this phase is very important to decide the right moment for the second applying and there are two common errors: waiting to long, that brings to the solidification of the material that affect the hold, or waiting too little and the base is too fresh to hold the second laying. In this second case, the material faced some difficulties to dry, due to the lack of air recirculation, for that reason I used a dehumidifiers during this entire phase. 

Than I passed through the final phases: the stone sanding and the laying of black soap, both essential parts of the original technique to create the authentic Marrakech Tadelakt. Finally, after about 15 days spent waiting for the correct absorption of the previously applied materials, beeswax, carnauba wax and citrus solvent were passed with the aim of strengthening the waterproofing characteristics already naturally present in Moroccan lime. The handicraft process and the materials used are 100% sustainable, without the use of synthetic agents.

Work Completed

The choice of the Original Tadelakt for those luxury bathroom han not been casually taken. Architects responsible for the project are very focused on the sustainability, and Tadelakt and all the other materials involved in its processing are 100% natural and bio sustainable.

Obviously is very relevant the esthetic side of the final result and, as well documented by the photos taken after the work, the decision of the natural color was very successful. The architects was certain that the delicate natural color of Tadelakt would be the best choice for the fine finishes and the luxury interiors of the yacht. This fact confirm that Tadelakt is chosen by who is sensible to eco sustainability, but do not want to renounce the esthetic rendering.

Who Realized this Work

Evento Restructura Lingotto TO

Nino Longhitano – Tadelakt Master

For over 40 years i do my job with commitment and passion. During all of my long career in the decorative handicraft i gave a central role to the materials quality, always choosing natural products and relying on handicraft to do high quality works. Since 2009 in my “Atelier di Decorazione” in Turin (Italy) i teach the Tadelakt technique to artisans and decorators willing to learn this wonderful but highly complex art. During the years i realized and documented many works using Tadelakt, that are available in my personal page.