Tag Archives: Monaco Yacht Show

Exclusive boat shows in 2017: Save the date for these yachting events happening around the world

What’s not to like about exploring the China Coast, circumnavigating Australia, wining and dining on the French Riviera, or living it up on Miami’s hip South Beach? Big boat shows take place at such venues.

Well-heeled boaters may consider buying a motor yacht to impress clients, or for company conferences, or to facilitate incentive cruises. Perhaps the charter market appeals. Other visitors could try selling marine accessories, or even luxury brands, from fine wines and watches to sports cars and helicopters. Marketing, PR and media roles qualify, as do promoting exotic marinas and resorts.

Agreed payments, tax benefits and expense refunds can thus accrue, and some Asia-Pacific countries offer financial incentives to exporters. A rationale is needed for travel anyway. Why not mix business with pleasure, and use boat shows as a prime purpose for voyaging abroad? It’s fun, and personal contacts often lead to glamorous new lifestyle opportunities. Some youngsters even become superyacht crew. What are the current options?

North Asia

Hong Kong Boat Show

Let’s begin with the powerhouses of North Asia: North China, South Korea and Japan. French lass Delphine Lignieres, founder of the Hainan Rendez-vous, has tried So! Dalian events since 2014 to hopefully attract Beijing boaters to this Russian-established coastal city in Liaoning. The next one, targeting people who have a passion for the sea and beach polo, is to be held on the weekend from July 8 to 9. Twenty brands are taking part.

Yantai, formerly Chefoo, on Dalian’s opposite peninsula, is where several superyachts have so far been built, including the 90m proa Asean Lady based at Raffles Marina in Singapore, and Nero, recently the largest superyacht shown at the Monaco Yacht Show.

South Korea, on the eastern shores of the Yellow Sea, is more formally organised, in a pleasure boating sense, with their Ministry of Oceans and Fisheries backing two events: the Busan International Boat Show (BIBS), held from March 23 to 26, and Korea International Boat Show (KIBS), held on the outskirts of its capital Seoul from May 25 to 28.

I visited South Korea’s second city Busan in 1986, ‘87 and ‘88 for the Asian Games Sailing, Pre-Olympics and Olympic Regatta, when the action was at the newly built Suyeong Yachting Centre. That venue is still used for the boat show today. Not a lot has happened in the past 30 years, but Busan and its famous Haeundae Beach are definitely worth a call, as is the offshore holiday island Jeju, still recovering from the loss of over 300 mostly schoolchildren in the Sewol ferry disaster in 2014. Another show, Yacht & Boat Korea, is trying to establish in nearby Changwon. It has not announced its 2017 dates at our deadline.

Japan International Boat Show (JIBS) is held from March 2 to 5. It has moved to Tokyo’s port city Yokohama. One can easily stay in Tokyo and commute daily, or Yokohama itself can also be quite interesting. After the heady entrepreneurial 1980s, JIBS has been relatively quiet, reflecting the country’s long, slow recession since then, but there have been recent signs that boating may be picking up. Tokyo and Sagami Bays have seen locally owned superyachts cruising their waters in the past, and the likes of Oceanco’s 91.5m Equanimity is among big boats making a recent return. Berth availability and fishermen’s rights are both issues in Japan.

Back to the China Coast, where Huang Zhengang, Secretary General of the China Boat Industry and Trade Association, says that there are now an astonishing 41 boat shows. Not all would meet our criteria for listing, so starting in the north, near Yantai, there is the yachting centre at Qingdao set up for the Beijing Olympic Regatta in 2008.

Sir Robin Knox-Johnston’s around-the-world Clipper Race has had a strong association with Qingdao since 2004-05, and in 2012 the latest 12-strong fleet of Tony Castro-designed Clipper 70s were built there. Local lass Vicky Song became the first Chinese woman to circumnavigate the globe in the 2013-14 Clipper Race, and will make her usual call in at the 2017-18 event. Boat shows in the city, however, are sporadic.

South China

This is not so in Shanghai, where annual events began in 1996 at the old Russian-built exhibition halls off Nanjing Road, near People’s Square. The show moved across the Huangpu River to the Shanghai World Expo Centre in Pudong for some years, and this year, the 22nd China (Shanghai) International Boat Show (CIBS), held from April 26 to 29, changes venue again to the Shanghai New International Expo Centre (SNIEC).

SNIEC is located in Pudong too, but further inland. This joint venture display facility, whose partners include Messe Dusseldorf, was opened in 2001, and is thus not so new either. No easy in-water links, tried in the past, appear possible in the latest set-up, and CIBS Shanghai will be held alongside another unrelated mega show called Hotel Plus. Features this year are “Business Matchmaking” and “Superyacht Showcase,” although superyacht exhibitors are few and far between these days.

I’ve been to a dozen or more Shanghai boat shows, including the first one, and suspect that visiting Shanghai itself has always been the strongest lure for foreign exhibitors. There are few facilities for boaters, and local cruising waters are poor, so CIBS has become effectively a core marine trades event.

But this is also a city of immense wealth. Its citizens can and do keep quite big boats abroad, and the wife of China’s richest man runs a distinctively-coloured Sunseeker on the Huangpu. A separate approach is needed for this market. Ms Lignieres for example, has a discreet Bund Classic Cars event in association with Simpson Marine on the weekend from October 14 to 15. China (Xiamen) International Boat Show (CIBS) in Fujian Province, opposite Taiwan, is a different story, although like Shanghai it was a foreign trading port, known as Amoy, and crumbling colonial homes can still be seen on offshoot island Gulangyu, now a lover’s retreat.

In Xiamen some sizeable marinas have been built in Wuyuan Bay, and the 45m Feadship Helix was alongside during one event we attended recently. Locally owned motor yachts to circa 80 ft are used primarily for business-related cruises, and there is some sailing. Attractive destinations are nearby, and bonded store facilities are offered. Redevelopment of the Wuyuan Bay waterfront has caused the boat show, held in November, to be split into separate in-water and hard standing sectors of late, but like Sydney’s show, it is now re-merging.

American Nordhavn and Marlow brands are built in boating- friendly Xiamen, which displays a huge statue of Koxinga, a famous pirate-cum-patriot who once ruled the Taiwan Straits and repelled colonial incursions, notably of the Dutch.

Taiwan International Boat Show was relaunched in 2014, ‘15 and ‘16 in Kaohsiung, where most of the boat building yards are located, and it is presently slated for March 10 to 13, 2018, moving to a biannual schedule. Prime movers include Taiwan Trade or Taiwan External Trade Development Council (TAITRA), Kaohsiung City and Horizon Yachts, one of the world’s top 10 builders. A new in-water exhibition centre and hard standing are located close to leading hotels and the Central Business District (CBD). Lately renamed Horizon City Marina, this facility can be visited anytime. Other well-known builders in Kaohsiung include Ocean Alexander, Kha Shing with its Monte Finos and American Hargraves, Johnson, President, Global and New Ocean.

Hong Kong International Boat Show at Club Marina Cove, on Sai Kung’s eastern seaboard, is held from December 1 to 3, 2017. A fairly full marina has restricted in-water display space in recent years. Hong Kong Gold Coast Boat Show at Gold Coast Yacht and Country Club, in the territory’s western approaches, is usually held late April or early May, but a substantial marina upgrade taking place means this event has been suspended until further notice. Various venues in Hong Kong-Kowloon CBDs have been tried when regional dealer Mike Simpson and I were running the Hong Kong Marine Traders Association, but choppy conditions in the harbour have always proved a problem.

Around the Pearl River Delta, apart from Hong Kong, there are boat shows in Shenzhen, Nansha, Macau and other smaller locations. Shenzhen rivals Hong Kong and Guangzhou, formerly Canton, on the fast-growing Chinese billionaires list, and its boat show held last year at Shenzhen Sevenstar Yacht Club has been evolving since 2007. Like Macau and the less frequent Yacht CN show at Nansha, these events are spread from late September to November, making it possible to visit say Xiamen, Hong Kong, Shenzhen and Macau in a month.

Macau has established casino moguls. This group does buy big boats and charter superyachts, although vessels are kept in Hong Kong, Asia-Pacific waters, the Mediterranean and sometimes the Caribbean. The Macau Boat Show has oscillated between Fisherman’s Wharf near the Ferry Terminal and The Venetian on the Cotai Strip between Coloane and Taipa. It is presently back at Fisherman’s Wharf with upgraded in-water facilities.

Finally the Hainan Rende-zvous. I’ve called this island “China’s future Florida” since the 1970s, as assorted five-star hotels have been built there, and PR people have also added “China’s Hawaii” and the “Chinese Riviera.” Ms Lignieres again was the motive force behind the Hainan Rendez-vous boat, private aviation and luxury lifestyle showcase event that was launched in 2009.

The boatyards of Europe, America and Asia-Pacific have long coveted one place where they can showcase their vessels to Asian and Australasian clients, conveniently forgetting that Europe and America require many more venues, even for superyachts.

For a while it looked as though Hainan would be the new focus after Shanghai. Early teething troubles were overcome, and by the 3rd or 4th Hainan Rendezvous, displays at local entrepreneur Wang Da Fu’s Visun Royal Yacht Club and Hotel began to look really impressive.

However, when the five-year partnership between Lignieres and Wang broke up, each went their own way, and the character of the event subtly changed. The last Hainan Rendez-vous was moved back from its usual April 2016 timeslot to December. Dates for 2017 have not been announced so far.

South East Asia

The Singapore Yacht Show (SYS) at One° 15 Marina had in the meantime, been getting support. Some background here, when British outfit Informa bought Monaco Yacht Show (MYS) from Lord Irvine Laidlaw in 2005, it was decided to try to clone the MYS brand in America, the Middle East, Australia and Asia, in full frontal opposition to existing boat shows.

High-level presentations were made. America and Australia were not interested. The heavily sponsored, but sparsely-attended Abu Dhabi Yacht Shows lasted three years against the incumbent Dubai Yacht Show, and then folded. In Asia, Informa first bought Andy Dowden’s Phuket International Boat Show or PIMEX, rebranding it as “Asia’s largest in-water event,” and launched “Asia’s First Superyacht Show” in Singapore, which saw a handful of assorted boats huddling under heavy storms.

Changing its title to Singapore Yacht Show, the event later went head-to-head against the long-running Boat Asia, formerly at One° 15 Marina and then at Marina at Keppel Bay, by announcing it would be held on the same dates. Boat Asia closed. Informa earlier severed its ties with SYS, and gave Phuket Boat Show back to Dowden.

Despite this somewhat chequered history, Singapore Yacht Show is now supported by One° 15 Marina’s owner Arthur Tay, and has steadily built up exhibitors, attracting a few passing superyachts.

As a yacht show with high-value accessories on display, it is certainly the largest in Asia at present, and Singapore’s famed East- West ambience and central geographic location helps its image, as does the city-state’s growing reputation as the financial hub for the whole region. The next SYS is scheduled from April 6 to 9, 2017.

Meanwhile, six months apart, a new entity called Asia RendezVous, associated with YACHT STYLE and its sister lifestyle titles in the Lux Inc Media and Heart Media stables started a complementary boutique event called the Singapore RendezVous at Raffles Marina.

The first edition last October proved highly popular. It brought together all the key luxury components from properties, yachts, supercars and classic cars, to watches, fashion art, fine wines and champagne. Said a spokesman: “An affluent audience of 5,800 visitors had a chance to interact with carefully selected brands, and were able to broaden their interests and experiences. Yacht dealers in particular, reported many qualified leads, and exhibitors in general said the format was very successful. A second Singapore RendezVous takes place from October 5 to 8, 2017. Get your tickets to Singapore RendezVous 2017 here.

In Thailand, SYS started Thailand Yacht Show (TYS) in Phuket in February 2016 at Ao Po Grand Marina, having first announced a charter yacht show at rival Phuket Yacht Haven. Thai Government backing was obtained, and TYS was held again at Ao Po mid- December, only weeks before Andy Dowden’s 14th annual Phuket Boat Show (PIMEX) at Royal Phuket Marina over January 5 to 8, 2017. This was well-booked, and went ahead regardless.

The first TYS had more exhibitors than visitors. The turnout for the second TYS merely improved with the participation of leading local dealer Lee Marine, and organisers said 55 vessels took part, including the 90m Lauren L hosting a Titan Brokers party, the 41m Norman Foster-designed Ocean Emerald, 50m Northern Sun being offered for charter by Burgess Yachts, an eight-vessel line-up from the Boat Lagoon featuring a Princess 32m, and the steel Sanlorenzo 46m Forwin. The third TYS is scheduled December 14 to 17, 2017.

As this issue of YACHT STYLE closed, it was announced that PIMEX was taken over and rebranded Phuket RendezVous with an inaugural edition to be held from January 4 to 7, 2018, with Andy Dowden aboard and building upon his 14 years of experience. This is the second such event under the Asia RendezVous umbrella, and more are planned for other Asian cities.

In the Gulf of Thailand, the annual Ocean Marina Pattaya Boat Show at Pattaya-Jomtien is held in late November, and offers direct access to the Bangkok market only a short drive away, whereas Bangkok to Phuket is a one-hour flight. This event is normally well- attended, and vessels like Ocean Emerald above are based there for the last charter season.

Vietnam’s largest show is of a more maritime commercial bent, but some pleasure boats are also built on the coast. The 4th Indonesia Yacht Show takes place April 21 to 23, at Batavia Sunda Kelapa Marina in Jakarta, and there are other fledgling events in Sri Lanka and India.

Australia and New Zealand are advanced boating markets. The largest events on Australia’s East Coast have been at Sanctuary Cove from May 25 to 28 on the Gold Coast, the epicentre of the country’s boat building industry, and at principal city Sydney, from August 3 to 6. The latter has been split for several years while new exhibition halls are built at its lovely in-water Darling Harbour location. This year marks its return to one easily navigable central CBD venue.

Rest of the World

The Gold Coast Marine Complex near Sanctuary Cove has long been holding its own events, some conflicting with the ambient resort. This year, it has rebranded itself Gold Coast International Boat Show, to be held over three days from March 17 to 19. Riviera is a prominent participant, as is Gold Coast City Marina, which offers in-water berths to other non-Riviera exhibitors.

Other Australian capitals have smaller boat shows that can be checked out online. In West Australia, one well-supported event is at Mandurah, south of Perth and held from October 6 to 8, not far from Henderson’s Australian Marine Complex where 70m to 90m superyacht builders like Echo and SilverYachts are based.

Across the Tasman Sea, the more local Hutchwilco New Zealand Boat Show is held in suburban Auckland showgrounds from May 18 to 21, and the International Auckland On-Water Boat Show is in September.

Further afield, September is the month to visit Europe, when late summer weather lingers and the tourists have mostly gone home. Start at the superb Cannes Yachting Festival in early September, drive down the coast to explore the Genoa Boat Show and boat building centre Viareggio, perhaps calling at Santa Margherita Ligure and Portofino in between, then finish with the inimitable Monaco Yacht Show. Paris, London and Dusseldorf are three other big ones, but they take place in mid-winter.

In the United States, Ft Lauderdale International Boat Show, held from November 2 to 6 in Florida, is a month after Monaco. Billed as the world’s largest, a claim challenged only occasionally by Dusseldorf, it spans five venues, and one could spend all five days in the principal Bahia Mar site alone. Miami is in February, and Palm Beach in March, geographically located on either side of Ft Lauderdale.

In the Middle East, the Dubai International Boat Show (DIBS) is held from February 28 to March 4, and is definitely worth attending for anyone who wants to get a hang of what’s happening in the always-evolving United Arab Emirates and the wider Middle East. Other boat shows are also held in Turkey and Lebanon.

Here, space decrees that we must wrap up this potted tour of particularly Asia-Pacific boat shows and their 2017 dates, hoping that readers have found something of value, and that they will check out more of these events this year and in the future.

This article was first published in Yacht Style 37.

Royal Huisman

Royal Huisman Schooner: 81 Meter Sailing Yacht Sold to Asian Client

“It is a great pleasure and honour to have contributed significantly in realising this trendsetting 81m project for a client in Asia,” said Bart Kimman of Northrop & Johnson Hong Kong, when it was announced at Monaco Yacht Show late September that premier Dutch super sailboat builder Royal Huisman “has been commissioned to build a truly breathtaking contemporary three-masted schooner”.

Said Royal Huisman spokesman Jurjen van ‘t Verlaat: “To hear a client say ‘build me my dream’ is – without a doubt – a dream come true for any yacht builder.” This client’s dream has an impressive 81m or 266ft overall length and a plumb bow, making her powerful and recognizable all over the world, and she will be ranked in the top 10 of the world’s largest sailing yachts. By any measure, this is a superyacht destined for greatness.

Together with Dykstra Naval Architects, designer Mark Whiteley and regional liaison by Bart Kimman of Northrop & Johnson, Royal Huisman will make this dream yacht become a reality, keeping their promise of ‘if you can dream it, we can build it’.

The latter is not an idle boast. Royal Huisman has a picture-postcard yard at Vollenhove, about an hour’s drive from Amsterdam, where great innovations are constantly under way, and many an owner has fallen under its spell during visits there.

American Dr Jim Clark launched his first 47m Royal Huisman sloop Hyperion, after seeing his friend’s lovely Juliet, in 1998. However, it wasn’t long before he also ordered the 90m Royal Huisman schooner Athena, delivered in 2004, and later the classic J-Class Hanuman. Clark’s wife Kirsty is Australian, and Athena has spent much time in Asia-Pacific waters, as have other Royal Huisman yachts such as Juliet, Anakena, Twizzle and Ethereal.

Last year Taipei-based Dr Samuel Yin Yen Liang took delivery of the 43m Royal Huisman sloop Sea Eagle, which was a cover story in Yacht Style’s last issue. Dr Yin is the philanthropic founder of the Tang Prize, which offers endowments of higher value than the Nobel Prize. Bart Kimman in Hong Kong handled this sale too. Time will tell if there are similarities with Dr Clark’s case, but the yard will not reveal more details about the project until much later, and many other Asian yachtsmen have the experience and wealth to order such a schooner. Royal Huisman has been active in Asia-Pacific markets for two decades, and there have been lots of high-level talks.

Thys Nikkels of Dykstra Naval Architects said that “creating an innovative contemporary schooner for fast passage making is one to kick off our Bucket List”, while Mark Whiteley described it as “a very special experience, so I’m thrilled”.

The vessel will be built in aluminium, and delivered in 2020. Mast and booms are by Royal Huisman subsidiary Rondal. Classification is to Lloyds MCA LY-3. Twelve guests and 13 crew are accommodated.

This article was first published in Yacht Style.

Mediterranean Marinas: OneOcean Port Vell, Porto Montenegro are two upcoming ports for yachts

Boaters visiting the Mediterranean are drawn to its famous marinas. Some charter small sailboats or motor vessels. Others pay more than EUR 100,000 a week for a trial taste of luxury lifestyles afloat. Ultra-wealthy owners build superyachts in Europe, and often stay for a season before heading home to pristine Asia-Pacific waters.

The Côte d’Azur; from Saint-Tropez, to Cannes, Antibes, Nice and Monaco, is always a focus, as are Santa Margherita, Portofino and Italy’s Amalfi Coast. A sign near Olbia in Sardinia points to Porto Cervo and the Costa Smeralda. Palma in the Balaerics, Malta and Cyprus have their adherents. The Greek islands and Turkish Riviera can be a delight. But the latest “in” marinas are undoubtedly OneOcean Port Vell in Barcelona, and Porto Montenegro in the amazing Adriatic Sea.

Barcelona’s OneOcean Port Velloneocean-port-vell-note-107m-ulysses-at-left

Located 470nm from the Med’s western entrance at Gibraltar, the vibrant Catalan capital of Barcelona on Spain’s Iberian Peninsula is fast becoming the first port-of-call for superyachts voyaging the trans-Atlantic from the Caribbean to spend an extended “summer” in Europe, which spans April to September.

Officially opened last year as OneOcean Port Vell, and taking a debut bow at Monaco Yacht Show, this former site for the Olympic Regatta in Barcelona 24 years ago has undergone a stunning EUR 80 million upgrade, and can now host 158 private yachts of more than 190m.mpv_4089

Backers are OneOcean Ventures, a customized endeavor of the long-established and privately-held Salamanca Group based in London. Says a spokesman: “Drawing on 15 years experience supporting UHNWI investment, business and lifestyle activities, OneOcean Ventures was set up to establish new benchmarks for the superyacht industry; one that applies financial sector rigor, transparency and discretion.”

Possible synergies with passing superyacht owners are not hard to spot, and OneOcean Port Vell general manager Paul Cook told a conference in May that “with 20 yachts over 100m in build, ensuring secure space is available in a location that owners enjoy is driving demand for berth purchases.”mpv_1936

Berths can indeed be bought at OneOcean Port Vell, and leased back to others if the owner’s vessels are elsewhere. The facility is also a last port-of-call for Caribbean-bound yachts in October and November. Or why not winter here? Cook recommends making it a year-around base.

The Mediterranean Yacht Brokers Association (MYBA) is equally ecstatic, and has decreed that OneOcean Port Vell will be the host venue for the next three annual MYBA Charter Shows, starting from April 24 to 27, 2017. This is a prime event, and Port Vell beat out rival pitches from Genoa and Nice._hp_5036

Barcelona’s urban population is 4.7 million, ranking it after Paris, Madrid and Milan among European Union cities, and it is the largest metropolis on the Mediterranean Sea. Says Wikipedia: “Barcelona is one of the world’s leading tourist, economic, trade fair and cultural centers, and its influence in commerce, education, entertainment, media, fashion, science and the arts all contribute to its status as a major global city.”

Somehow they missed soccer. Any aficionado knows the names of Lionel Messi, Luis Suárez, Neymar and Andrés Iniesta of the world-famous Barcelona Football Club. If Barça, as the team is nicknamed, is playing at their home Camp Nou HQ, hotel rates can double or treble._hp_4995

And what about architecture? Antoni Gaudí (1852-1926) was the city’s renowned art nouveau exponent. There are many examples of his off-beat works, from Casa Vicens, Parc Güell, Casa Milá and Casa Batlló to the incredible La Sagrada Familia, a church that began construction in 1882 and is expected to be finished circa 2025-2030. Frank Gehry and Norman Foster added touches too, including Camp Nou.

Las Ramblas is the central tourist thoroughfare, where liter-sized sangrias are served in huge glass bowls and a statue of Christopher Columbus points to the Americas. But the Old Town and Gothic Quarter are as interesting. Some of its quaint restaurants offer only Jamon Iberica, the region’s famed ham, in dozens of different dishes. Ordering a chef-created paella someplace else is de rigueur. Nearby for sunning and swimming is Barceloneta Beach, and all this is a 15-20 minute stroll from OneOcean Port Vell._hp_5563

Harbour Master and prior yacht captain Anders Pehrson presides over five quays in the complex. Berths include power, potable water, cable TV and fiber optic internet connections. Duty free fuel is available, plus provisioning, and this is one of only a few European marinas to hold a TPA permit, allowing non-European vessels to complete maintenance work in the marina tax free.

Spanish charter rules have been simplified, and OneOcean Ventures itself handles bespoke charter inquiries often relayed by their Yacht Client Advisory Team in Monaco. They are also “able to take on full responsibility for one transaction, or asset management throughout the lifespan of the yacht, and support technical, financial, administration and regulatory needs.”mpv_1392

The private members’ OneOcean Club and OneOcean Wellness Spa complete the facility. As a Global Project, OneOcean won the prestigious FX International Interior Design Awards last year. Celebrities such as model Bar Refaeli and F1 driver Felipe Massa grace its portals, and nightlife is said to be superb. www.oneoceanportvell.com, www.oneoceanventures.com

Porto Montenegro Makes Wavesporto-montenegro-views-2

When Porto Montenegro exhibited at the 2014 Singapore Yacht Show and Hainan Rendezvous, a few eyebrows were raised. Leading European marinas don’t often have displays at such far-flung regional events, although Monaco Tourism is sometimes about. In this case Peter Munk, majority shareholder of Montport Capital which owned Porto Montenegro Marina and Resort, realized that Asia-Pacific people were increasingly visiting the Adriatic. He wanted to tap into a new client base.

In 2015, Porto Montenegro won the Superyacht Marina of the Year Award, which is open to all Gold Anchor accredited members of British-based The Yacht Harbour Association (TYHA). It is nominated again for the 2017 Awards, which will be announced at the London Boat Show in January.

However, it was in February this year that the most momentous developments began to take place. Porto Montenegro, which by then had 450 berths capable of taking vessels to 180m, announced it was making a 250m berth available for an anticipated new generation of giga yachts.

Industry pundits said that this instantly positioned it as a world leader, exceeding the largest superyacht berths even of OneOcean Port Vell in Barcelona (190m) and Grand Harbour Marina in Malta (135m). The present #1 private yacht is the Lürssen-built and Middle East-owned Azzam at 180m, but with concepts like the 220m Double Century being floated, Porto Montenegro will be ready for her.

For the record, OneOcean Port Vell’s facilities include a 440m fixed dock for superyachts, so they too can accommodate future giga yachts.montenegro-coast-views-2

Fourth in the Top 10 list compiled by superyacht directory Yachting Pages was Vilanova Grand Marina also in Barcelona (120m), then came Limassol Marina in Cyprus (110m), Palmarina in Bodrum, Turkey (105m), Marina di Stabia in Italy (100m) Christophe Harbour in St Kitts in the Caribbean (91m), ACI Marina Split in Croatia (90m) and Marine di Loano (77m).

Munk, a Canadian entrepreneur who founded Barrick Gold of Toronto, the world’s largest gold producer, was by early March extolling Porto Montenegro at Dubai Boat Show in Mina Seyahi, describing this event as “an unparalleled platform to showcase to the Middle East’s nautical investors and enthusiasts.”

He obviously piqued their interest. On May 7, a new media release from Sand People advised that “the Investment Corporation of Dubai, a principal arm of the Government, has agreed to purchase Porto Montenegro Marina and Resort from Montport Capital.”

Located in the Bay of Kotor, a World Heritage site on the Adriatic Sea, the landmark waterfront development offers a lifestyle community for boat owners, residents and tourists, set against the magnificent backdrop of the Montenegrin mountains. In only 10 years, Porto Montenegro has firmly established itself as a premier destination for yachtsmen and women.dining-rooms-porto-montenegro

“The move is in alignment with ICD’s strategy to add high quality international assets in fast-growing markets to its substantial portfolio. The transaction marks ICD’s first investment in Montenegro and the yacht marina sector, both of which are expected to experience strong growth in coming years.”

ICD is currently developing the Royal Atlantis Resort and Residences facing Atlantis on The Palm Jumeirah in Dubai. Last year it acquired stakes in the W Hotel in Washington DC, the Mandarin Oriental in New York, and in One and Only in Cape Town. It also has significant equity in Sol Kerzner’s holding company which operates the One and Only, Atlantis and Mazagan brands.

Munk was philosophical about the deal, describing ICD as the ideal party to take the resort to the next level. In addition to 450 berths already built and occupied, approvals are in hand for another 400 berths, plus development land with a BUA of 280,000sqm. “It has the potential to double in size, and I am confident I am leaving Porto Montenegro in very safe hands,” he said.

Presently, the facility has sold out more than 200 luxury apartments, 55 retail outlets made up of restaurants, bars, cafes, shops and amenities, and a five star Regent Hotel with its own 80 luxury suites and apartments. Owners are said to get 85% revenue returns from the Regent’s rental program.

As for the marina: “Complemented by these spacious waterside residences, signature restaurants, lively bars and a wide range of sports, leisure and cultural activities, the marina is an ideal homeport solution for yachts of any size, while the country’s outside EU tax benefits (7% VAT on marine-related services, 0% VAT on charters, and duty free fuel) presents a powerful financial case for basing a yacht in Montenegro all year around.”private-apartments-porto-montenegro

One owner, well-known in Hong Kong and Singapore, keeps his 69m Feadship in Monaco, which some say is “on a par” with Montenegro. He revisited the Adriatic this summer and emailed us enthusiastically: “Terrific cruise. I had forgotten just how lovely this area is.”

Venice and Trieste lie at the northern end of this long narrow sea between Italy and the former Yugoslavia. Ancona on the Italian side hosts a superyacht yard enclave, but really, the Adriatic Coast means Slovenia, Croatia, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Montenegro and Albania down to the Greek island of Corfu.

Since the so-called “Balkan Wars” 25 years ago, these countries have been independent. Best-known are the Croatian cities of Zadar, Split and Dubrovnik, which is next door to Montenegro, but there are also 1,300 islands and inlets and tiny towns that make cruising here such a delight, and it is possible to charter small sailboats as well as superyachts.

Mid-summer can be hot, and this is when many Europeans take holidays, so visiting before or after is recommended. The MYBA has taken to holding a Pop-Up Superyacht Show at Porto Montenegro in the first week of September, just before Cannes Yachting Festival. For those in the industry, try both. Next up is Genoa, and then Monaco Yacht Show, all within one very pleasant month.

This article was first published in Yacht Style Magazine.

OCEANEMO 55 Superyacht Unveiled

The Monaco Yacht Show drew many yacht manufacturers as they unveiled new designs and OCEANEMO certainly didn’t miss out. From the brand’s Sport Utility Yachts range, comes the OCEANEMO 55 that is the latest introduction to the OCEANEMO series.

Designed by Fulvio De Simoni, the 55-meter superyacht has particular advantages for those looking to bring their toys aboard as they take to the open seas. As a result of this design, we find here smaller external spaces that make room for more tenders, water-toys and accessories. However, this does not mean that the design skimps on the needs of the passengers. In fact, it is crafted to suit the specifications of the owner.

With the design better suited for those who prefer a more athletic lifestyle while aboard a superyacht, Simoni provides a covered hanger and a raised deck that will accommodate various equipment. In the hanger, owners can store a tender limousine that measures 9.6 meters in length, a crew tender of 4.5 meters, two water-jets and even a helicopter or airplane with folding wings. The raised deck can host a fisherman, a luxury car or SUV, a hovercraft or even a personal submarine should one wish to explore what lies beneath the waves.

In the stern area, is a beach area measuring 45 meters where guests can relax while a 42 square meter covered veranda provides privacy and shelter from bad weather. Within the yacht, is a dedicated apartment that provides pure comfort.

Navetta 37

Navetta 37 Superyacht Unveiled by Custom Line

Custom Line is set to make 2016 a memorable year for its parent company Ferretti Group. The yacht manufacturer took the two major yacht shows at Cannes and Monaco as the perfect opportunity to unveil the Navetta 37.Navetta 37

As the flagship of the semi-displacement line, the launch of the yacht happened to coincide with the 20th anniversary of the Ferretti Group brand. The Navetta 37 is said to be the largest semi-displacement yacht built by Custom line.Navetta 37

At 121.6 feet, the superyacht combines comfort, safety and customization that are all values Custom Line is associated with. To ensure a smooth journey, the Navetta 37 also features a new semi-planing hull with a bulbous bow as well as the option of five engine configurations.

Mercedes Unveils ARROW460-Granturismo Yacht Design

You may recall that Mercedes-Benz announced the launch of its very own yacht back in April. At the Monaco Yacht Show, the car company unveiled the final design for the ARROW460-Granturismo and it is set to command a name for the brand at sea as it does on land.

The result of a collaboration between Mercedes and Silver Arrows Marine, the ARROW460-Granturismo promises unrivalled comfort with sports performance. The yacht’s luxurious interior offers creature comforts for up to 10 passengers, which is impressive considering that it is only 14 meters. The interior is trimmed with eucalyptus wood that has been treated so that its grain follows the contours of the cabin and the floor, finished in a sustainable composite material. Wraparound windows can slide open to invite a generous amount of light in. The windows can even be tinted or clarified with the simple touch of a button.mercedes-granturismo-yacht-interior

“By blending the maritime and automotive world with their respective design idioms, technologies and ideas we have created a new standard for motor yachts,” said Ron Gibbs, Chairman of Silver Arrows Marine. “[It] blends maritime engineering artistry with charismatic design and perfect elegance, familiar from the world of Mercedes-Benz.”

Majesty 155 At Monaco Yacht Show 2016

With the Monaco Yacht Show underway, numerous manufacturers are showcasing their wonderful creations and Gulf Craft is no exception. The company is proud to showcase the Majesty 155, the largest superyacht built in the Emirates.

Having made its European debut at the Cannes Yachting Festival, the superyacht travelled to Monaco for yet another boat show that is expected to be just as successful. At 47 meters, there is little chance of mistaking this as anything but luxurious! On board, the superyacht is fitted with a fountain, beach club, waterfall that cascades from the rear sundeck and even a Jacuzzi on the upper deck.

As an award winning yacht-manufacturer, Gulf Craft has produced numerous premium range yachts that vary in size. Incorporating advanced technology with each client’s specific needs, Gulf Craft is set to dominate the world of on-water living.

Gulf Craft Debuting Majesty 155 Superyacht

With the Cannes and Monaco Yachting Shows both under a month away, yacht builder Gulf Craft is gearing up for a display that will highlight the very reason why it is a leader in the industry. Marking a European debut, Gulf Craft is all set to unveil the Majesty 155 in September.

At 47 meters, the superyacht is considered to be Gulf Craft’s largest superyacht to date. From a spacious seating area to an elaborate fountain on the sundeck, it lives up to its name as the manufacturer’s most majestic creation. If that isn’t enough, the Majesty 155 also has a waterfall, which cascades into the Jacuzzi on the upper deck. The interior of the superyacht is just as luxurious with the use of the world’s finest leather, fabrics and marble. The Majesty 155 is also able to house a tender and two jet skis in the garage located at the rear of the vessel.

To cap off this premiere at the Cannes Yachting festival, Gulf Craft is expected to use the international yachting event as a platform to make several landmark announcements. “We have celebrated many milestones in the company, but our journey doesn’t end here,” says Erwin Bamps, CEO of Gulf Craft. “There is always room to grow and opportunity to excel, and we look forward to announcing our next venture at the Monaco Yacht Show” he added.

Benetti Unveils New Models: Monaco Yacht Show 2016

The Monaco Yacht Show is a wonderful opportunity for distributors and manufacturers to showcase their splendid creations. Benetti is one of the many yacht builders set to make use of this event to bring out its finest and shiniest new superyachts to the playground of the rich and famous. Straight from the Italian yacht builder’s Custom Line comes the Benetti MY Domani (above) and the Benetti FB 264, both of which will be on display at the Monaco Yacht Show.

We first take a look at the MY Domani that measures in at 45 meters. Spanning three decks, the yacht has four guest cabins that provide comfort and space for those on board. The upper deck plays host to the VIP cabin while the main deck houses the full beam owner’s suite, complete with a private terrace that gives you a view of the sea. Those looking for some fun under the sun can enjoy the sundeck that is split into three different areas. Choose between frolicking under the rays on a dedicated sunbathing space or cool down in the pool then enjoy a meal in the external dining area.

The Benetti FB 264

The Benetti FB 264

Slightly larger than the MY Domani, the Benetti FB 264 comes in at an impressive 63.5 meters. Boasting a steel and aluminum hull, it is clear the Benetti took inspiration from naval architecture. With four decks, designed by FM Architettura d’Interni, the superyacht is fitted with four guest cabins on the lower deck, much like the MY Domani. However with the extra space, Benetti was able to include one extra VIP cabin on the main deck with an 80 square meter owner suite on the upper deck. An external salon also takes its place on the upper deck, providing ample room for entertaining and dining. Those who love fitness will enjoy the sun deck. With a 4-meter swimming pool, gym and beauty area, we can’t think of a better place to get in touch with yourself.

For more information on the MY Domani and the MY FB264 at the Monaco Yacht Show, visit Benetti Yachts.

This story is also available in Bahasa Indonesia. Read it here: Benetti Memamerkan Model Baru: Monaco Yacht Show 2016

M/Y Divine Debuts Monaco Yacht Show 2016

Making its grand entrance at the Monaco Yacht Show 2016 in September is the M/Y Divine from Columbus Yachts. Held along the scenic Quai des Etats-Unis the show will host the second model of the Columbus Sport Hybrid 40M from the yacht manufacturers award-winning series.

Owner's Suite

Owner’s Suite

With three decks, the 40-meter aluminium superyacht is able to house 10 guests in its five staterooms along with eight crew members. The Owner’s Suite on the superyacht by Columbus Yachts is situated on the main deck, complete with its own study and is said to be as large as those found on bigger yachts. Versatility is key, with the VIP suite, which can be converted into two cabins with ease, a feature that was requested for by the owner. With exceptionally large headroom of 2.3 meters, the superyacht is able to invite a wealth of natural light into the main deck with large windows.

Main Deck Lounge

Main Deck Lounge

In the lower deck, the incorporation of light into the interior is continued as the designers replaced the usual portholes with a single window. The designers at Palumbo along with Hot Lab and the owner opted to use a tone-on-tone palette of colors that allowed for consistency throughout the superyacht. Luxurious materials such as Breccia Sarda and Adri Venato marble, eucalyptus and American walnut wood, polished stainless steel, soft wool carpets and fabrics fill the interior. In the saloon, guests can sit back amongst the high-quality materials and enjoy a view of the ocean through the two large windows.

Main Deck Exterior Lounge

Main Deck Exterior Lounge

While we could sing praises on the interior for days, it is what powers the superyacht that gets our attention. The M/Y Divine is able to reach a top speed of 20 knots in its high-performance Sport mode, thanks to two diesel engines. Using a Hybrid Propulsion system which works together with two electric motors, the superyacht is able to be not only fast but quiet, much like a traditional full displacement yacht. Free of wing stations, the M/Y Divine is equipped with a wireless Vessel Manoeuvring Assistant device that allows the pilot to have access of the controls anywhere on the yacht.

Focus: Sanlorenzo Explorer 460Exp

Sanlorenzo’s first Explorer, Moka, was unveiled at the Monaco Yacht Show in 2015. She has just successfully concluded her maiden voyage, a transatlantic ocean journey that brought her to American shores where she was met by her owner. With a successful crossing under her keel, Sanlorenzo is keen to promote this new addition to their superyacht range.

The Explorer superyachts launched by Sanlorenzo are specifically designed to undertake long-range cruising. The fully equipped vessels offer a variety of services and features (and, of course, all the oceangoing superyacht necessities), along with large internal spaces that are so important to an owner intending to cruise for prolonged periods.

Characterized by Sanlorenzo’s unmistakable and distinctive lines, the 460Exp measures up at 42m in length and tips the shipyard scales at 460 gross tons. She has a displacement hull in steel, and an aluminum superstructure inspired by big exploration vessels capable of reaching far flung destinations. Spaciousness on board, safety and self-sufficiency are the three key factors that make this yacht unique, with the aim of the 460Exp bringing back the real meaning of ‘adventure’ for an owner.Sanlorenzo-460Exp-main-deck

The design of this superyacht pays great attention to environmental and conservation concerns, and the 460Exp has been classified as “Green Plus” by RINA. ‘Smart design’ allows her to remain at anchor for long periods of time without having to make use of generators – thereby eliminating emissions, vibration and noise. The level of self-sufficiency and cruising stability are notable for a motor yacht of this size, and the boat’s length allows it to be both more agile and more maneuverable when turning, permitting access to confined harbours, ports and docks.

The interior décor was chosen by the owner of the first in the 460Exp line. Like all Sanlorenzos, it is ‘made to measure’, and is perfectly in keeping with the expedition philosophy of the yacht. Wood features strongly, in the most classical shades of mahogany and teak, matched with elegant and timeless furniture, and with intensely coloured leathers by way of accents, creating at the same time a relaxing environment.

The lower deck hosts four large double bed cabins and a wellness room which includes an endless swimming pool, gym, and sauna with a Turkish bath. The room is illuminated by large vertical windows on either side, offering tantalising views of the sea and nature.Sanlorenzo-460Exp-Living-Area

The lower deck also houses the crew cabins, and the Captain’s cabin is on the main deck, adjacent to the wheelhouse, allowing the Captain to be on hand and ready to supervise operations during long range cruising passages.

The fun factor has not been forgotten. The Sanlorenzo 460Exp can accommodate a huge number of water toys in the large stern area on the lower decks; these include tenders, speed boats and fishing boats up to 9 meters, and other toys such as sailing dinghies, jet skis, Sea Bobs, windsurfers, surfboards and more.

At anchor, and once the large teak deck at the stern is free of toys, the area becomes a large recreational space where guests can enjoy sunbathing, or swim against the current in (another) large and aptly named ‘endless swimming pool.’
The stern area also offers a complete beach club with bar, a sauna, and space for diving operations.Sanlorenzo-460Exp-Master-Bedroom

The Sanlorenzo 460Exp seems to be bigger inside than out, offering more volume than her size suggests, and less fuel consumption during extended voyages thanks to her two 1,300+ hp engines, giving the yacht a maximum speed of 16kts. With a fuel capacity of 50,000 litres, she can cruise for more than 4,000nm at 11kts without refueling.

Keeping with the Explorer philosophy, the superstructure is located further forward than on conventional yachts, leaving an ample aft deck capable of carrying a tender of dimensions far exceeding what one would expect to find on a yacht this size.

Following hull #1, M/Y Moka, four further units of the 460Exp have been sold and are currently under construction.Sanlorenzo-460Exp-Gym

Diary of an Atlantic Crossing

Straight out of the box: Confident in the ability of the newly-launched vessel, and after extensive sea trials conducted by her new crew together with the relevant technical consultants, the owner called for the SL460Exp to be delivered to the Caribbean immediately. Her maiden voyage was, therefore, a cold and wintry Atlantic crossing.Sanlorenzo-460Exp-Helm

11 December 2015:
Only a few hours after the delivery celebrations, Moka departed with her Captain and eight member crew from the port of Viareggio, heading for Palma de Mallorca, arriving 13 December after a passage of 500nm through the Tyrrhenian Sea and the Golfe de Lyon.

21 December 2015:
Taking advantage of a break in the weather, Moka departs and arrives two day days later in Gibraltar, the gateway to the Mediterranean. After topping up her fuel tanks, Moka sets sail on the same day into the Atlantic Ocean. The next stop will be in the Canaries. The weather on this leg was not ideal, and Moka experienced severe conditions along the African coast, with beam seas and crosswinds. None of these constituted a problem, and she arrived safely in Santa Cruz de Tenerife on Christmas Day.

25 December 2015:
The yacht makes a stopover in Santa Cruz to refill fuel tanks and load fresh supplies before the longest leg of the journey.

28 December 2015:
Moka departs from Tenerife and sails 2,700nm before reaching her next stop – Saint Martin, half French and half Dutch.

6 January 2016:
The Captain catches a glimpse of the dark landmass of St Martin on the horizon, and Moka has completed the longest leg of her ocean crossing without any fuss at all.

7 January 2016:
Moka sails towards West Palm Beach in Florida. She still has to cover 1,100nm, over a third of the Atlantic crossing, passing the British Virgin Islands and through the channel between Cuba and the Bahamas.

10 January 2016:
Florida’s luxurious city welcomes Moka to her warm waters, after a month at sea covering 5,600nm at an average speed of 12.5kts. Moka does not show any sign of wear and has experienced no serious issues along the way.

SPECS:
Gross tonnage: 460 GT
Overall length: 42.20 m
Maximum beam: 9.20 m
Draught at full load: 2.50 m
Displacement at full load: 430 t
Guest cabins: 5-6
Crew cabins: 4
Engines Caterpillar: C32 Acert or MTU 8V 4000 M63
Power output: 2 x 970 kW (1.319 cv) or 2 x 1,000 kW (1.360 cv)
Maximum speed: 16 knots
Max range: >4.000 nm at 11 knots
Fuel: 50,000 litres
Water: 8,000 litres
Construction: Steel and aluminum
Displacement hull Design: Sanlorenzo

Story Credits

Text by Suzy Rayment, Editor-at-large, Yacht Style

This story first appeared in Yacht Style.

Review: Benetti M/Y 11∙11

Unveiled at the latest edition of the Monaco Yacht Show, this immensely stylish 63m superyacht features a distinctive vertical axe bow – only the second plumb-bow yacht designed by Benetti’s naval architects. Designed to cut through the water and deliver an exceptionally stable ride, the vessel’s distinctive shape and wide beam permit increased living and storage space aboard.

Significantly redeveloped from her original concept in just 10 months, this full displacement superyacht has four decks contained in her steel hull and aluminum superstructure, and can accommodate up to 12 guests and 16 crew.Benetti-MY-11-11-Forward-Deck-Seating-and-Sunbathing

The yacht’s external architecture is elegant and streamlined. The absence of bulwarks and the integration of full height portrait windows on the main deck, as well as the enormous 180 degree windows that enclose the upper and sun decks, means that the forward area of the main deck is completely unencumbered. The ship’s handling and docking areas are concealed so as not to obstruct the view from the bridge or the master suite. Together with the significant natural daylight illumination achieved through the continuous glass windows, and the striking nocturnal illumination effects generated by 46 underwater lights along the waterline, the designers have created a magical effect.Benetti-MY-11-11-Forward-Deck-Bow-Sunloungers

11∙11 is the epitome of a luxury superyacht. This is particularly evident in the superior quality and high specification of her interiors, all which provide the comfort, functionality and innovation of a most luxurious residential home. From the principal living and entertaining spaces, to the spacious crew quarters and superbly-appointed galley, fine craftsmanship, exquisite finishes, and intricate attention to detail are at the heart of the interior. All the furniture, joinery and soft furnishings are bespoke.Benetti-MY-11-11-Living-Area

The generous and spacious living areas both inside and out offer softness, comfort and functionality. The main saloon is an impressive entertaining space with its custom-made U-shaped sofa, 12-seater formal dining table and calming grey color palette, while the sky lounge on the upper deck offers a more informal lounge environment complete with cocktail bar and generous seating.Benetti-MY-11-11-Dining-Area

An impressive lobby and staircase on the main deck features a bright Italian marble floor and handmade balustrade crafted from marine grade stainless steel with a shimmering shagreen handrail. There are numerous opportunities for dining across the main and upper decks, but perhaps the most distinguishing feature can be found on the upper deck aft where 14 guests can be accommodated at a unique ‘backlit’ quartzite dining table. The outside bar, crafted from over a tonne of natural Italian fluted stone, and two symmetrical seating areas with custom fitted sofas, complete this exceptional entertainment space.Benetti-MY-11-11-Main-Foyer

When it comes to social areas, it doesn’t get better than the main saloon on the 11-11, which welcomes passengers with a large, plush, U-shaped sofa, surrounded by a unique cushioned coffee table, which makes for a ‘Wow’ factor both by day and by night.

Two luxurious cabins on the main deck enhance the living quarters. The spacious VIP suite is a full-beam cabin with six full-height portrait windows and an adjoining study / vanity area and fitted walk-in dressing room. The master suite enjoys an expansive 180 degree panorama over the bow, overlooking the entirely private owner’s sun deck with large jet pool and a sunbathing area stretching all the way to the bow. As the yacht is designed for the owner’s family, child safety features strongly in the yacht’s design, including rounded edges and fabric-wrapped walls and furniture, with a children friendly cabin adjacent to the master suite.Benetti-MY-11-11-master-bedroom

On the lower deck, guests are accommodated in four spacious suites comprising two double cabins and two twins. All the ensuite bathrooms feature Italian marble hand-selected from the quarry, and bespoke Lalique crystal taps to complement the generous basin areas. There is also a powder room on every deck.Benetti-MY-11-11-VIP-Suite-Bathroomd

The Sun Deck is the pre-eminent leisure area aboard, and was entirely restructured to create 15m of deck space for outdoor relaxation, sunbathing and entertainment. The most indulgent spot on the yacht comes in the form of a dedicated Spa area. The Steam Room is made entirely from pearlescent mosaic tiles, with smoky quartz stones and soothing chromatherapy decor. The white marble Treatment Room features an adjustable massage bed and heated towel cabinet.Benetti-MY-11-11-Treatment-Room

The crew cabins are identical in size and without the disadvantage of narrowing as they near the bow, creating generous quarters for the 16-strong crew. The remaining volume is used as valuable storage space for this substantial vessel.

Technology features have been carefully integrated into the design and include individual iPads in every room. These provide controls for customising audio/visual content, lighting, curtains, blinds and air conditioning. Built-in curved Samsung UHD TVs also feature throughout, housed in bespoke cabinets and frames to complement the overall design.Benetti-MY-11-11-Helm-Station

Apart from the dreamy accommodations and the yacht’s luxurious amenities, the technical details are also important: twin CAT 3512C engines power the superyacht up to an impressive recorded top speed of 17.5 knots – exceeding the contractual speed by 1.5 knots – and delivering a cruising range of 5,000 nautical miles, which should be more than enough for most owners. The two nickel-aluminum-bronze DETRA propellers are designed for high efficiency and low-pressure transmission to the hull. A Custom Benetti 8m limousine tender and a Novurania 6m RIB complete the inventory of this exceptional vessel.Benetti-MY-11-11-Custom-8m-Tender

  • SPECS
    LOA: 63m
    Beam: 10.80m
    Draught (loaded): 3.5m
    Construction: Steel (hull) and aluminum
    (superstructure)
    Displacement: 1,000 tonnes
    Gross Tonnage: 1181 GT
    Naval Architect: Benetti
    Exterior and Interior Design: Benetti
    Main engines: 2X Caterpillar 3512C, total 2700 KW combined
    Speed: Max 17.5 knots / Cruise 16 knots
    Fuel Capacity: 110,000 liters
    Range at Cruising speed: 5,000 nautical miles
    Stabilisers: OPEM Sistemi with Zero speed

Story Credits

Text by Suzy Rayment, Editor-at-Large, Yacht Style

Images by Jeff Brown

This story first appeared in Yacht Style.

Floating Tourbillon: Franck Muller Yachts 55 Open

Last year, with plenty of celebratory aplomb but also a strict exhortation to secrecy on the part of attending press, the Italian Sea Group (ISG) announced a new partnership with luxury watch brand Franck Muller, the creation of Franck Muller Yachts, and the first build in the new FMY range, the Franck Muller 55. Our friends at Yacht Style share the story with us.

When it comes to luxury brands – and yachts and watches are no exception – the key to visibility and character is differentiation. After all, watches are expected to tell the time, and we rather hope that all yachts float. So it’s when it comes down to the short strokes that we start looking for what sets the brands apart.

Creating a yacht building division by rolling together a superyacht builder and a superluxe watch brand is a novel idea. And yes, look carefully and you can see the signature lines of a Franck Muller watch carried through into the lines of the FMY powerboat. So how did this marriage of elegance come about?

The Italian Sea Group is a relative newcomer to the Italian superyacht scene, although that is not true of its constituent parts.

Franck Muller Yachts 55ft-1

NCA (Nuovi Cantieri Apuania) started building commercial ships in 1942, the Admiral brand launched its first 18m wooden vessel in 1966, and Tecnomar – another commercial builder – was founded in 1987. The three names came together as a ‘Group’ in 2013, under the enthusiastic direction of the Chairman, Giovanni Costantino.

At the same time a substantial injection of shareholder capital (reportedly in excess of €15 million) allowed ISG to totally rebuild and refurbish the existing NCA shipyard in Marina di Carrara, just up the road from Viareggio, Tuscany. The Italian Sea Group now boasts 100,000sqm of pristine production facilities that look more like an operating theater than a shipyard. An Italian journalist confided to us, “I pass by here quite often, and drop in unannounced. It always looks like this.”

Pride of place within the Marina di Carrara yard, within sight of the blinding white hillsides of the famous Carrara marble quarries, is the new shed with ‘Franck Muller Yachts’ on the door. The project is the creation of ISG’s Chairman, Giovanni Costantino, and Vartan Sirmakes, owner and founder of Franck Muller Watches, and is designed to artfully blend the high-end worlds of luxury watches and luxury boats. First off the cab rank for Franck Muller Yachts will be the FMY 55 that had just been popped out of the mold when we visited ISG in March, and was presented to the public at the Monaco Yacht Show in September. Yes this model is a reality…

Italian Sea Group 2015 trip

Viewing the newly-finished hull, and comparing it with the plans on display and the impressively shiny scale models, ISG/Franck Muller Yachts have come up with a boat with very attractive lines. Whether the lines of the boat have been inspired by the new line of yachting watches, or the other way round, is hard to tell – says Nicholas Rudaz, Director of Franck Muller. “Franck Muller creates aerodynamic watches with curves, and we wanted to create an aerodynamic boat – inspiration came from the watches.” On the other hand ISG Sales Director Francesco Carbone revealed that “the watch was created for the boat… with a curve, like a woman, a very sensual curve.” Take your pick.

What is special about this little craft, and what may well make it a huge success in Asia, is that it is first and foremost a day boat. The 55 Open, of which three have reportedly been sold into the US, straight ‘off plan’, boasts a huge open cockpit and then an expansive saloon beneath the foredeck. It is a big, elegant speedboat with bags of entertaining space. Carbone again: “It is a ‘Lounge Concept’. We have gone right away from the ‘small galley, one small cabin, one medium cabin, one small bathroom’ department, and opened up the interior. The design encompasses a huge open cockpit, a huge open foredeck space covered in sunpads, and the huge covered lounge. It’s a party boat – please, bring the champagne.”

A pair of Volvo 950 engines will push it up to 46kts, so you’re going to go wherever you want to – fast. Whether it is pure serendipity, or whether Franck Muller Yachts’ designer, Gian Marco Campanini, has been listening to the Asian whispers that keep taking about “day boats, not weekenders”, we could not ascertain, but on the drawing board the result is elegant, classy, and – yes – absolutely designed-for-Asia.

Italian Sea Group 2015 trip

Giovanni Costantino, Chairman Italian Sea Group (left); Nicholas Rudaz, Director FM Watches (second from right); and VIPs at the unveiling of the FM55 model

The complete family of Franck Muller Yachts will include 55, 68, 80 and 100 versions, with the 55 and 68 available as either Open or Hard Top. When the first Franck Muller Yachts 55 Open showed at Monaco in September, the craftsmen and artisans of the Italian Sea Group revealed something thoroughly different in carbon, aluminum, glass and sapphire, and all yours for an estimated €1.6 million, which makes it exceptionally good value for money. There won’t be a straight line in sight, and the attention to detail and finish will be as perfect as Swiss clockwork. ISG Chairman Giovanni Costantino declares that “this is a boat built by artists, not by boat builders.”

Story Credits

By Guy Nowell

Baccarat Lustre Marie Coquine

Baccarat is Exhibiting at the 24th Monaco Yacht Show

Baccarat Lustre Fibre de Cristal

Crystal house  is turning captain with a special boat-themed exhibition of its dazzling creations at the Monaco Yacht Show this fall.

The prestigious French crystal maker, which celebrates its 250th anniversary this year, will present its pieces against a new backdrop specifically dedicated to yacht decoration.

SEE ALSO: VIDEO : LEGENDARY STORIES BY BACCARAT

Beyond Crystal by Baccarat

The collections on display will include the new “Beyond Crystal” series of bathroom elements by Rémi Tessier, showcasing the collaboration between Baccarat and the upmarket faucets and accessories manufacturer THG.

Baccarat has a long history with the yachting world and its designs have adorned the boats of stars from the Duke of Windsor to Aristotle Onassis.

The crystal house was founded in 1764 by permission of King Louis XV and has since become a symbol of superb craftsmanship.

monaco yacht show photo

Considered the most prestigious pleasure boat show in the world, the  will feature 500 major exhibitor companies and 100 super- and mega-yachts afloat. It runs September 24-27.

Ocean Paradise

Ocean Paradise named “greenest” yacht

Ocean Paradise

The annual gathering of yacht connoisseurs came to a close in Monaco over the weekend, with the prestigious Rina Green Plus prize going to a new mega-yacht from Italian manufacturer Benetti.

The 55-meter boat, presented in a world premiere at the Monaco Yacht Show, was recognized as the year’s leading example of yacht constructors’ efforts to reduce the carbon footprints of their vessels.

Ocean Paradise yacht dining

The prize is awarded based on the criteria set out by Rina, a marine services company, in its Green Plus certification label, which encourages all manufacturers to produce more eco-friendly boats.

Ocean Paradise yacht living room

Among the innovative and green technologies aboard the Ocean Paradise is a system that reabsorbs greenhouse gas emissions in order to limit their dispersion in the marine environment. Benetti used a brand new coating on the hull of the yacht, reducing resistance in the water and thus enhancing fuel efficiency. The boat is lit with next-generation LED lights, also an optimal choice for energy efficiency.

Benetti Ocean Paradise yacht

Sneak peek at Benetti’s Ocean Paradise

Ocean Paradise yacht

Benetti has just unveiled the first images of the Ocean Paradise, the brand’s latest yacht, which will be presented in a world exclusive at the upcoming Monaco Yacht Show, which runs September 25-28.

Ocean Paradise yacht living room

This 55 meter-long mega yacht was assembled in the Livorno boatyard in Tuscany, where it has just been put to sea. Designed according to the specifications of the boat’s owner — a wealthy Singaporean businessman — the yacht combines high-end technology and ultra luxury design.

Ocean Paradise yacht bedroom

Automated systems handle all the settings. The interior design is based on minimalist lines, with a mix of transparent materials and openings onto the outside to let in natural light, such as the large bay windows in the living room.

Ocean Paradise yacht dining

The Ocean Paradise includes four guest cabins with marble bathrooms and a main suite with its own terrace at the bow on the main deck. Every detail has been carefully, luxuriously treated, such as the leather-surfaced interior of the wardrobes.

Ocean Paradise yacht waterfall pool

The upper deck is dedicated to a private home beach club, equipped with a solarium, a waterfall pool, a gym and a mini bar with DJ mixing tables.

Ocean Paradise yacht deckBenetti Ocean Paradise yacht

monaco yachtshow

Monaco Yacht Show 2012

Monaco-Yacht-Show-2012

One of the most important events in the super yacht calendar, The Monaco Yacht Show kicks off on September 19 and runs until September 22.

The 22nd edition of the Monaco Yacht Show is showcasing a fleet of 103 superyachts for four days, turning the Port Hercules marina into the host for some of the world’s biggest and most luxurious vessels. The latest designs and constructions will be seen by more than 28,000 visitors including industry experts.
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Feadship Breathe concept

Steve Jobs’ Unfinished Feadship Superyacht

Feadship Breathe concept

Steve Jobs was designing his own Feadship superyacht at the time of his death. The vessel had been in development since 2009.

The design is said to be sleek and minimalist, naturally, with 40-foot-long glass walls and was to be built at Feadship’s facility in the Netherlands.

“Sometimes, word gets out about one of our yachts,” Feadship tells Super Yacht News regarding the report.
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beluga yacht

The Beluga: Emperor of the Seven Seas

The Aviation and Superyacht division of Pure-Sang, in cooperation with Glass-Deco International, introduced its latest luxury vehicle.

“The Beluga: Emperor of the Seven Seas” earned the title of “Best New Super Yacht Concept” at last month’s Monaco boat show 2010.

The Beluga’s transparancy creates an exeptional loft-feeling, with all the luxury of a hotel. The routing in the boat tooks is inspiration from the fairytales of Moby- Dick & Pinochio.
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Claydon Reeves debuts 80m ‘Remora’ superyacht

UK-based design consultancy Claydon Reeves has unveiled an 80m superyacht christened ‘Remora’ at the 2010 Monaco Yacht Show.

The sleek craft is characterized by a narrow plumb bow, highly resolved, dynamic, taut surfaces and concave glass angling to its tapering stern.

The elaborate structure of the sundeck is a nod to Spanish Modernisme architect Antonio Gaudi and an indication of Claydon Reeves’ aesthetic ambitions.
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