New design

Design with a purpose

October 11, 2017

Galileo Watermark has been turning heads with quirky innovative amenity kit designs.
Julie Baxter discovers more from the creative team

Following the merger of Galileo and Watermark a new and vibrant design team has been working hard to position the company as leaders in onboard innovation.

The diverse team is made up of experienced product and graphic designers, spread across three time zones, providing a continuous creative service throughout the day. Creative director, Alexander Atkinson explains: “Our mission is to deliver the world’s best guest experiences with design and innovation at our core. We look to innovate through problem solving with an eye towards adding value and improving efficiencies.”

Whether working on a client brief or its own in-house innovations, the process always begins with research. They study trends, passenger needs, product use and environment, materials and manufacture. Atkinson adds: “We want to form a true understanding of our client brief and their customers, their specific requirements, brand values and design ethos.”

They find that most blue-sky innovation starts with the question: “What problem are we solving.” Atkinson insists: “It’s not innovation for innovation’s sake, but about finding solutions for problems, both old and new.”

Among those innovations catching attention is the X-FORM geometric bag design which emerged from studies into ways to create transformable bag architectures that would save space and adapt to a wider range of user needs. It came through strong collaboration between the design and operations teams.

The team takes scheduled ‘design days out’ to draw inspiration from both digital and real life enviornments, visiting museums and innovative stores, and studying architecture too to glean ideas and fuel the process. “Our inspiration also comes from an innate curiosity and a healthy and skeptical dissatisfaction with the status quo,” adds Atkinson.

New ideas are not only generated by the design team. Every department is encouraged to share its thoughts, with a set of tools in place to encourage this. Inevitably there’s a bit of push and pull to find the right compromise between creative expression, technical possibility, and business practicalities but as Atkinson concludes: “There’s no formula but it works if everyone is aligned towards delivering the best possible solution for our clients.”