Elegant ebony, mahogany or rare tamo ash – nothing makes a room feel more exquisite or homely than high-quality veneers. As an interior outfitter for yachts and residences, List General Contractor (List GC) knows where to find these types of precious wood and how to skilfully process them.
Veneer, a traditional wooden material, is once again growing in importance. Veneer achieves what few other materials can do. It gives a room a timeless sense of beauty and elegance, creating the warm, high-quality impression of wood. It is a design element that keeps its natural beauty and dynamic even after processing. That is just one more reason why customers increasingly come to List GC requesting high-grade veneers for the exquisite interiors of luxury yachts. On yachts in particular, the material has a number of important advantages aside from aesthetic considerations: It makes for beautiful, finished surfaces that are perfect for any room – whether on water or on land. Furniture with veneer surfaces is lighter than solid wood, which impacts positively on the overall weight of a yacht.

Among experts, veneer is known as the finest material derived from wood.

Among experts, veneer is known as the finest material derived from wood.

And on top of that, veneer is one of the most sustainable ways of using wood: Depending on its origin, the required veneer thickness and of course the type of wood, one trunk can yield between 100 and 20,000 square metres of veneer.

A sixth sense for wood

The professionals at List GC know exactly what really matters when it comes to elegant veneer: The finest wood – and many years of experience in making it into unique pieces of the highest quality.

Skilfully finished veneer surfaces are no coincidence. It all starts with the tree and its origin. No two are alike – whether hardwood or softwood, mahogany from the African tropics, walnut from America or oak from European forests. Each trunk has a distinct character, colour and structure, all of which shape the future veneer pattern. And it’s not just any veneer that List GC requires for exclusive yachts, apartments and residences – it’s the very best. Only around two to three percent of all veneers produced fulfil these high requirements.

Johann Pusterhofer, wood processing engineer by trade and Senior Purchaser at List GC, knows where he can get the required veneer thanks to his many years of experience. At the moment, American black walnut, European maple, German oak or walnut burl, due to its unique colour and grain, are in high demand. Figured maple from Europe, specifically Switzerland, Germany, Romania and Slovenia, is also currently among the most expensive veneers on the market.

Pusterhofer benefits from his experience in international wood purchasing during his work. He knows the different types of wood and their distinctive features. Thanks to his experience and his keen sense for wood, he knows if a tree will really yield the kind of veneer he expects. Another difficulty in procuring veneers is that the veneer season only runs from November to March.

From design dreams to first-class products

The wood specialists at List GC implement the high demands of their customers, whether they are asking for brushed, wavy or rough-cut surfaces. They make sure that customers get the best of what is technically feasible. One project might involve up to 20 different types of wood, and they each have their own individual characteristics. Just like no two trees are alike, no two sheets of veneer are alike either – the colour, grain and structure of each sheet of veneer is unique. That is why it is essential to agree on the veneer and the veneer pattern itself early in the process. The sampling process – where veneer manufacturer, designer, customer, project managers and veneer purchaser come together to coordinate – is also very important. Each sample brings the team closer to the ideal vision, until even the most extravagant customer wishes have been fulfilled.

Perfect, fine wooden surfaces

The veneer specialists at List GC are familiar with the material and know exactly how different veneer sheets will behave during processing. Gabor Liptak, carpenter at List GC, is one of them. There are many different components that play a role during his work: The final furniture design, the shape and surface, whether the product is big, small or rounded, which backing materials are used and whether laminating, coating or further finishing is required – not a single detail must be overlooked. Some days, his work can feel like a mental game of chess: The grain and veneer pattern must continue on seamlessly and connect to other surfaces just as perfectly. Nothing is left to chance and in the end, every single piece of veneer – and sometimes that means several hundred individual parts – has its assigned place in the elegant result.

Veneer and its natural beauty speak to us like no other material. And it’s not just owners of super yachts and luxurious residences who are enthusiastic about it, but also the professionals at List GC – day after day.

Veneer and its natural beauty speak to us like no other material. And it’s not just owners of super yachts and luxurious residences who are enthusiastic about it, but also the professionals at List GC – day after day.