When one intends to buy a yacht, sooner or later they will come across yacht brokers. A bad broker would opt for selling their yachts by all means, while a good one could even dissuade a customer from buying a vessel instead. Yachts’ maintenance costs sometimes are so high, that it might be easier to confine to chartering. Still, in any case, it is important to first try several different yachts on charter before buying your own.

The largest international brokers such as Burgess, Fraser, Moran Yachts & Ship, Edmiston and several others act as central agents of the «best» yachts: they manage them, select the crew and sometimes oversee the construction. However, one can book a yacht even through a small company, if it has the appropriate certification. Below, you will find 9 significant steps to consider prior to buying a yacht.




#1. Define the goal

First of all, one has to define answers on such questions, as: why they need a yacht, where they are going to use it, whom they are planning to invite on-board, whether there will be children among the guests and many other issues. That is where the information about a customer, his or her tastes and lifestyle matters. 

A good broker would have a detailed conversation with a potential buyer, even asking some rather personal questions. Ideally, they should spend with a customer several days to understand how they dress, what kind of car they have, where they prefer to have dinner, how social they are etc. 

Those things are crucial as a yacht represents a continuation of her owner’s personality. Like your own home, it may or may not be suitable for parties, sports, the presence of children, it may be chamber or large-scale, high-speed or slow-moving, with or without a helipad. Dozens, if not hundreds of details, will affect the final choice, and the cost here is by no means the main criterion. After all, you can find a yacht at a comfortable price, but she may not suit you at all.




#2. Set the style

First, it is important to understand whether you need a sailing or motor yacht, since these are two fundamentally different styles of yachting. Usually, those who prefer to be closer to the water, lead an active lifestyle on the yacht, delve into the nuances of management, seek to obtain a captain's license and are interested in sails. Those people in the first place can be called yachtsmen. On the contrary, motor yachts, even the fastest ones, are floating boutique hotels, where the owners will be served at the highest level. As to sports racing yachts, they are not generally suitable for recreation.

It should be noted that in the sailing segment, not all yachts are the same. For example, superyachts above 40 metres, produced by such builders as Perini Navi, are not inferior to motor yachts either in design and comfort, or in high-technology equipment. They might even outperform motor yachts of the same size in price. 




#3. Consider your lifestyle

How and with whom do you want to spend time on a yacht? For parties, one would need large open spaces, and it would be nice to have a Jacuzzi or a pool with a backlight. Naturally, a yacht must come with built-in audio and video systems and wireless Internet. For gambling, you would need a special zone. If you like cooking, a yacht should have a specially equipped separate kitchen. If you plan to invite parents to the yacht, you need to make sure that there is a VIP suite on-board. If the yacht has three or more decks, older people will need an elevator. If you have children, the system of fences is crucial so that they do not fall overboard or on the lower deck, plus a cabin for the governess should be provided, etc.




#4. Think over your activity

There can be many different nuances, but there is something that almost everyone pays attention to: a garage with tenders and water toys on a yacht. You would need a tender in any case. Furthermore, it is good to have the yacht equipped with everything for diving, snorkelling, water skiing, "sea-beans", jet skis and other toys. Many yachts also come fitted with a fitness deck, which usually comprises a gym, massage room, hairdresser, sauna and hammam.



#5. Choose the right crew

Naturally, owners of yachts assemble the crew according to their own requirements, and the crew is not less important than the yacht itself. Not only should they be sociable people with an understanding of the service, but they should also meet special requirements. For instance, it is important to consider whether a cook is good on a yacht and what exactly he or she can cook. A professional broker would be aware of such things as if there is a massage therapist, yoga and diving instructor on-board and what languages the team speaks. A broker would either know the invited crew members personally, or do a decent research on them in advance. 




#6. Get directions

It is important to decide whether you are planning to live on-board during your vacation. For example, if one has a villa in Forte dei Marmi and wants to take a short trip to Corsica for a day, a small 50-60 foot open class yacht or a yacht with a flybridge, with a speed of 30-40 knots. 

At the same time, if you plan to go on a cruise from Saint-Tropez to Portofino, to Corsica, Sardinia or Sicily and back, then for a two-week trip you would need a comfortable yacht of at least 30–35 metres. If the group is big, the size has to be even larger. The speed of such yachts will make only 11-17 knots. However, low speeds save fuel: megayachts making 30 knots per hour require hundreds of thousands of EUR a year for fuel. In addition, high speeds even on the best yachts might not be comfortable: noise and vibrations increase, and it becomes difficult to talk and walk. 

If you plan to take the yacht from the Mediterranean to the Caribbean for the winter period, she should boast a transatlantic power reserve, to complete the journey without refuelling. And if you are thinking about traveling around the world, you need not only a large cruising range, but also an Explorer class yacht, which can operate under different weather conditions. To cruise to the Far South or North, you need an Ice-class yacht - although not an icebreaker, she would not be subject to collisions with small ice floes.



#7. Choose a hull

Yacht hulls are mainly built of steel, aluminium and composite. Almost all major European yachts builders rely on steel or aluminium, while in American and Asian yachts (except for the largest yachts) composite is used, since it is a lighter material that is easier to care of; it is not subject to corrosion. However, the composite is not suitable for all operating conditions. Owners of megayachts relate to it without reverence: a 50-metre composite yacht would already be an exceptional case. 



#8. Estimate expenses

A yacht should not be taken as an investment, it is a luxury item and not more than that. Moreover, her cost drops by 10% per year. About the same amount should be saved for yearly operating costs, such as parking and repairing expenses, crew salaries and taxes, not to mention fuelling. Meanwhile, if several years ago green yachting was considered uneconomic since environmental options increase the cost of the yacht, now yachting enthusiasts have concluded that eco-yachts save fuel, and, therefore, are cheaper to operate.



Step 9. Set the timeline

A fully-custom superyacht of above 35 metres, will take up to four years to be built with such yards as Lürssen, Abeking & Rasmussen, Feadship or Oceanco. A faster option is always a semi-custom-yacht of the same size, where a standard hull is used, and the interior is created on-spec for the owner’s needs. Such yachts take about 2.5 years to build and they are 30% cheaper. In that niche, the most famous shipyards are Dutch Amels and Heesen. 

Serial yachts of up to 100 feet in size would confine your choice to one of 3-5 typical interior options. However, there are many good yachts on the market that the owners sell after 2–4 years of operation, simply because they want a new one Such vessels with clear and proven seaworthy properties can be acquired immediately.

The difference in the price of yachts even for one niche is so great that it makes no sense to focus on it. Everything depends on the interior materials, technical options, the name of the designer, and the class of the shipyard. For example, the cost of a Feadship yacht might be twice as large as a Turkish yacht of the same size. Nevertheless, Feadship will far less fall in price over the years.

Latest News

Fiji to complete the first green marina in the region by 2020
By November 2020, new superyacht marina should be completed and open for yachts on Navi Island (Fiji). Located in a 10-minute drive from Savusavu Airport, it is set to become one of the region’s first green facilities.The 150-berth Marina is conceived as one of the first eco-friendly yacht harbours in the world, by forbidding the use of disposable plastic bags on its territory. What is more, the marina and associated resort will be powered by renewable solar energy.Nawi Island Ltd’s Managing Director Mike Gann commented: We intend to be one of the first green marinas in the world. In doing so, the development on the island will be powered by renewable energy, namely solar. We are also putting in place an organic wastewater treatment system for the whole island and in addition, the company is using sustainable and organic building materials on the island.The marina’s berths will be able to welcome boats from 10 to 60 meters in length. In addition, fuel and power connections along with fire service pedestals, wastewater pump-out, ferry and taxi pontoon and a 75-tonne travel lift will be provided.The yard will offer repair and maintenance services, a hard stand, pull-up fuel and wastewater pump-out, and long-term dry storage. The marina will also comprise a hotel with a spa and sports facilities, 38 private villas and a yacht club.The works should be completed by early 2020. The official opening should take place ahead of the 2021 America's Cup yacht race held in New Zealand.
Amels launches its largest superyacht to date
The 78-metre Full Custom superyacht project by Dutch builder Amels has touched water for the first time. The vessel is the builder’s largest superyacht in terms of interior volume. Earlier launched at Damen hull-building facility on the Danube, the 2,850 GT yacht features Espen Øino design and naval architecture and interiors by Zuretti Interior Designers. She is scheduled for completion in 2021, following transport to the AMELS outfitting yard in the Netherlands.Although several Amels superyachts including the 83-metre Here Comes The Sun and the 82-metre Ilona outdo the new-build in terms of LOA, the new Full Custom project features larger Gross Tonnage to make her the largest Amels superyacht once delivered.Espen Øino comments on the project’s details:The layout with the big pool on the upper deck with the boats below either side, but they are all hidden so you don’t see it. And of course the balconies with the direct access from the cabins out which you can spot very easily and it’s actually looking pretty amazing. The contract for construction of the vessel was signed in 2017, during the Monaco Yacht Show. Representing the owner, Andrew Tree of Superyacht Technical Services commented:This truly custom yacht, with stunning design both inside and out, could only be achieved with the greatest collaboration, having the very best of European design and the highest quality of construction and management.
The world’s largest ketch Aquijo arrives in Antigua
The largest private sailing ketch in the world, the 86-metre superyacht Aquijo has been seen arriving in Antigua to take part in Antigua Charter Yacht Show taking place December 4-9.Video: Dutch YachtingThe 6th largest sailing superyacht in the world, Aquijo was built in 2016 out of collaboration between two Dutch shipyards, Oceanco and Vitters. Vitters developed a custom steering system specially for Aquijo. It transmits the hydrodynamic forces on the rudder blades directly to the steering wheels on the flybridge, thus providing the helmsman with immediate feedback and a feeling for how the yacht is moving through the water. German studio Dölker + Voges was responsible for her interior design, whilst Tripp Design Naval Architecture styled her exterior. The yacht comprises 4 decks and accommodates up to 12 guests across 17 cabins. On-board, Aquijo offers space and amenities normally seen on motor yachts, comprising guest elevator, interior and exterior dining for up to 24 people, 3 outdoor bars and a beach club with steam room, sauna and ocean view Jacuzzi. craftsmanship.The package of Aquijo’s toys and tenders includes and does not confine to 3 tender boats, 1 jet ski, 4 kayaks, 2 wakeboard, 3 water skis, 3 stand up paddle boards, 8 diving packs etc.Featuring a mast of of 90 metres, Aquijo boasts a maximum speed of 17.5 knots.The vessel is available for charter from EUR 450,000 per week in winter season.Photos via Y.CO.
ER Yacht Design presents 61m sport superyacht concept
Vancouver-based studio ER Yacht Design has unveiled a 60.5-metre sport superyacht concept Shotel. Designer Ivan Erdevicki conceived the project with aggressive sporty lines to be a part of the studio’s Gotham sporty yachts series.The superyacht would be built in aluminium and carbon fibre. The model’s key trademarks are spacious aft open deck areas with fold-down hull sides, large swim platform and beach club.Meanwhile, the main deck aft is integrated with the cockpit deck that comprises a spacious saloon and dining area. Alongside the pilothouse and captain’s cabin, there is the sky lounge sitting on the upper deck.With a beam of 10.5 metres and interior volume of 780 GT, the yacht can accommodate up to 14 guests across a full beam master suite on the main deck forward and six double guest cabins on the lower deck. The bow deck with two launching cranes can house an eight-metre tender, rescue RIB and jet skis.Shotel will boast a maximum speed of 24 knots and cruising speed of 18 knots, also featuring a range of 3,800 nautical miles.
First Otam 70 HT sold and under construction
Italian builder Otam has announced sale and construction start of 21-metre fully customised motor yacht. The sleek project was designed in Otam’ collaboration with Tuscany-based BG Design Firm.BG Design specialises in custom yacht design, from tenders to superyachts. The aggressive profile and refined detailing of the new Otam 70 HT are strongly inspired by luxury automotive and aeronautical design. The yacht is conceived as a high-performance output of design and engineering, combining Otam’ design DNA and ‘slippery’ new hull lines by Umberto Tagliavini Marine Design.From a practical standpoint, the vessel will feature a LOA of 21 metres and a beam of 5.35 metres, offering unlimited customisations within. Key features will comprise a transom tender garage, stabilisation system and Otam’s large volume engine room.Already sold to the final client and currently under construction, Otam 70 HT will make her international debut at the 2021 Cannes Yachting Festival.