Claudette K. Bonville, yacht and residential designer passed away on July 16, 2019 after a hard-fought battle with cancer. She was 66. Claudette was first diagnosed with breast cancer in May of 2011 and battled the illness with the same gusto and good humor that defined her work in the yachting industry.
Claudette graduated with a degree in Interior Architecture from Kansas State University and spent several years working as a flight attendant before establishing her own design firm, Claudette Bonville Associates (CBA). Her early projects included hotels, resorts and cruise ships, and her talents quickly drew her into the superyacht industry, her first boat design project being a significant build: the 121ft sportfish yacht Lady Anna, built in 1991.
Claudette’s yacht projects over the last 30 years included the 180ft Newcastle Sovereign (ex-Harbour Island), the 167ft Feadship Amanti (ex-Dream), the 164ft Westport Trending (ex-Vango), the 164ft Delta Victoria del Mar (ex-Happy Days), and the 142ft Royal Denship BACA (ex-Triple 8), as well as the 124ft Delta Nita K and the 170ft Amels Nita K II (ex-Marjorie Morningstar).
Working with a design team that included Cindy Gunther, who joined CBA in 2002, and Claudette’s daughter, Lauren Bonville, who joined the company in 2009 while receiving a degree in Interior Design from the Art Institute of Fort Lauderdale, Claudette’s most recent work included the extensive refit of the 182ft Feadship Cynthia (ex-Twizzle). In June, the firm completed work on the refit of the 180ft Trinity charter yacht Unbridled as well as the 122ft Delta charter yacht Wonderland (ex-Time For Us).
Known for her laughter and vivacious personality, Claudette was not only an icon within the yachting industry, she was also committed to serving her local community, receiving multiple Boys & Girls Clubs 100 Outstanding Woman of Broward County honors for her tireless work with her favorite charitable organization. In March of this year, Claudette was recognized by The South Florida Business Journal as a 2019 Influential Business Women Honoree.
Claudette is survived by her husband of 39 years, Michael, son Chase, daughters Lauren and Bridget, and three grandchildren. In her absence, Lauren Bonville and Cindy Gunther have partnered to launch Bonville Associates to complete work on current CBA projects and will offer yacht interior design, residential design, and space planning services with the same level of customer service that defined Claudette Bonville Associates.
Claudette’s passing was memorialized in a private family ceremony. In lieu of flowers, the family asks that donations be made to the Boys & Girls Clubs of Broward County in her name. A celebration of Claudette’s life and work is being planned for the Fort Lauderdale International Boat Show.