Brandon Grotesque logo, and font combinations

Jean Louis's picture


I am new to this forum and would like to ask your opinion on the readability and possible webfont combinations for this logo.

My client is a yacht charter company, aiming for a contemporary yet timeless and elegant brand ID. The name is rather long and unusual, but they insist it has to be one word, not "xxxx Yachts". There's a story behind that.

I've selected Brandon Grotesque with enough kerning, aiming for a clean effect without feeling "clinical". In a small enough size, the logo gets the effect of Savoy hotels (, clean and refined. But, since we'd like to avoid lower case and different font weights, first readers may wrongly put emphasis on the "AYA", instead of on the "E". Is that how you perceive it?

Regarding the website fonts, I was somehow hoping to use Univers, which I love particularly on this website: However, if proceeding with Brandon Grotesque, I'd possibly use the same font for the main menu and headings, and keep the body text neutral with Univers or Arial.

merayachts.jpg23.26 KB
Major Major's picture

I don't know what you mean by putting emphasis on the 'AYA' instead of the 'E'. To me "merayachts" looks like one German or maybe Dutch word. I suppose if there are photos of yachts below I'll eventually figure it out, but otherwise there's no way I'm reading it as "MERA YACHTS".

You haven't "gotten the effect" of SAVOY, which is thin as opposed to regular weight, and half the number of characters. I think yours might prove to be too long in practical applications. In any event, it's rather bland and undistinguished.

LooselyKerned's picture

"Mair-ray-yachts" is how I read it. Maybe I would've read it as one weird big long word if I hadn't known it was a yacht thing beforehand. I like the look of Brandon Grotesque but I think you should maybe try something at least somewhat condensed for this? (anything to save space and make it look shorter) I don't think the big kerning is helping the readability either, even though I'm obviously a fan of loose kerning. Something about Brandon Grotesque and the way you used it does look very 'yacht-y' / nautical though, so maybe it could work...

Jean Louis's picture

@Captain Howdy: On a yacht we say that, right or wrong, the captain is still the captain. But you're right here. Looks like we'll have to consider splitting up the word, or something else to make the word digestible. SAVOY is indeed a different case...

@LooselyKerned: It will be hard to part from the loose kerning, but it's clearly not helping here. Have you seen this one of Quintessentially? Ah... Fascinating you are getting a "yacht-y" impression. I thought that the "1920's NYC" urban feel of Brandon Grotesque would work against me.

Back to the drawing board, thanks to both.

Major Major's picture

>> On a yacht we say that, right or wrong, the captain is still the captain.

If you mean to say that your client is your captain, that may be true, but the final captain is the millionaire who's shopping for a yacht. Too often, the client fails to realize who you're really designing for.

Jean Louis's picture

Thanks, hrant, for linking. I found the logo critique section after posting my message here.

Jean Louis's picture

Captain Howdy, I'm not quite sure whether wealthy clients really notice about a logo being just acceptable or remarkable or brilliant. The more complex the product or service, in a market that is already niche, the less brand ID seems relevant. But things are slowly changing. Look, in charter companies the most memorable logo's are and, Y.CO being the most consistent and contemporary. The rest is a bit like this, corporate rather than desirable.

It seems like people think: to catch the attention of a billionaire client we have to look corporate and expensive. But what does "expensive" actually look like? Twitter is worth more the best law firms. Besides, isn't a yacht about enjoying good times? Shouldn't it be a memorable experience for a client to order a yacht, instead of just meeting corporate looking brokers in corporate looking offices with corporate looking logos?

Major Major's picture

I think maybe neither of us fully understands what the other is saying, or thinks more is being said than was actually intended. I wasn't suggesting that you ought to make the mark look "corporate" or "expensive" or anything else. I was merely suggesting that you figure out how to make it appealing to your client's particular target market, whoever they are, and try to impress upon your client that the goal is to please that market, not himself. For example, your client insists on a one-word name despite the fact that it will be illegible to his target market.

Jean Louis's picture

You are right. What I said before is my perception that this industry deserves more unique brand ID's.

hrant's picture

I suspect (I will never know :-) that for a typical billionaire, a yacht (with its visual ID) has to simply look like what others think a yacht should look like.



Jean Louis's picture

Thanks for the link, hrant. I've been there before, nice fonts.

Martin Silvertant's picture

I have to say Merayachts is one of the most confusing brand names I've seen in a while. Before reading it's a yachts charter company I had no idea how to interpret the logo. The problem I think is that the Y wants to belong to both Meray and Yachts and thus I didn't even think to pronounce Mera Yachts instead. I second what Captain Howdy said. At times I find it almost miraculous how clients tend to think their brand is for themselves rather than for their target market. At times I've even used a typeface I didn't like personally but it worked for the target market so I put my personal taste aside.

I think Brandon Grotesque has a bit of that quality of late 19th century engraving typefaces. I think something a bit more squared and industrial might work well for a nautical company. You might want to do something with the M, such as in this unicase branding I see every day when I go to school:

By the way, why the hell is Y.CO playing Tech House on their website? I guess that's what the target market wants...

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