The first superyacht ever built by Italian shipyard Fincantieri, the 134-meter Serene was delivered in 2011 to Russian billionaire, Yuri Scheffler. As was later revealed, the oligarch sold his superyacht in July 2015 to Saudi Arabia's deputy crown prince, Mohammed bin Salman. The royal spent $458 million to acquire the former largest yacht in Italy.



 Featuring a salt-water swimming pool, a supersized hot tub, a sauna in front of the sea and a fully-operational helipad, Serene became known in yachting as one of the most inspiring superyachts ever completed. 

 At the time of her delivery, Serene was the 9th largest yacht in the world, barely topping the Emir of Qatar's 133-meter Al Mirqab and outdone by David Geffen's 138-meter Lurssen, Rising Sun. For the state-controlled Italian shipyard, Fincantieri, Serene was, however, the first yacht the company ever built, having primarily focused on commercial ships before. 



Currently the 15th largest yacht, Serene turns heads anywhere she goes, not only due to her giant-like size, but also her exterior lines drawn by Espen Oeino and series of innovations in the interior.

Following the sale, her former owner, Scheffler claimed that Fincantieri's second yacht, the 140-meter Ocean Victory built for Russian billionaire, Viktor Rashnikov, had infringed on his intellectual property by building the superyacht on the same platform as Serene. As a result, Scheffler filled a suit against Fincantieri claiming €20,9 million from the shipyard in damages. 



Whereas it is unknown how much exactly Scheffler spent building the 134-meter Serene at Fincantieri, it is widely believed in the superyacht sector that the vessel was sold at a profit by Scheffler to the Saudi Arabian deputy crown prince. As revealed by media as part of the Paradise papers, Serene was sold for €420 million.

At the time of the sale, some publications had reported that the sale was closed within several hours with the buyer having asked Scheffler to vacate the yacht within hours of the purchase. The new documentation that emerged through the Paradise papers leaks, however, tells a different story as the sale took at least 10 days to close. Before it could change hands, Serene had to cruise into international waters.



Stretching over a beam of 18.5 meters, Serene is 6 decks tall and boasts a myriad of amenities that few five-star hotels have. One of her most noticeable features from the outside is her supersized bathtub located aft of the sundeck. 

One of the seven pools onboard Serene, the Jacuzzi on the top deck is surrounded by lounging pad for sunbathing. Forward of the hot tub is a fully-stocked, wet bar underneath the yacht's observational deck that features an additional set of sun loungers.



Up on the sundeck is yet another spa pool surrounded by lounging pads, located forward of the deck. This particular pool features bar stools and is connected to a fully stocked bar surrounded by two additional hot tubs. A table for casual dining can also be found in the shaded area of the sundeck.



Serene's interior was designed by British design studio Reymond Langton, incorporating a sophisticated mix of cream and dark colors with wooden fixtures. Offering views from any imaginable vantage point, Serene's sky lounge is equipped with a myriad of sofas, chairs and coffee tables for cocktails and tea.



A more formal location designed for the entertainment of larger groups, the main lounge features white colors with dark tones. At the center of the room is a piano with cocktail tables spread out across the room. Interestingly, this lounge sits just over the main dining room with its chandelier hanging through the two spaces and letting the music spread.



The formal dining area features two tables, capable of each accommodating up to 12 guests, bringing the total to 24 guests. Its layout, however, allows for the possibility to extend the table in order to hold larger banquets. On both sides of the room are floor-to-ceiling windows. In terms of food, Serene features a fire pizza oven as well as a teppanyaki grill.



Each space on Serene features a different set of colors, all coordinated across one central theme that spreads around the yacht with circles both on the floor and on the ceiling to create a sense of symmetry. Some of Serene's unique features include an indoor climbing wall as well as an underwater observation lounge.



The 134-meter yacht can carry a total of 24 guests across 12 staterooms divided into one master suite with essentially an owner's deck, a VIP cabin, three twin cabins and seven double staterooms. Serene carries a crew of over 40 people onboard.

Prior to the yacht being sold to the Saudi Arabian crown prince, Serene was made available for charter to select guests by Scheffler. These have included Microsoft founder, Bill Gates, who reportedly chartered Serene at a price tag of $5 million per week during the summer of 2014.



In addition to her vast interior spaces, Serene's exterior lounging spots have been optimized to best utilize the space onboard the 134-meter superyacht. Forward on the bow, for example, forward of the commercial-grade helipad can be found a lounging spot on the bow of the yacht. Although a long walk from the aft deck, these spaces are often used for maximum privacy when moored in a harbor.



Perhaps the most unique space onboard Serene is her swimming pool located aft of the main deck under a retractable glass roof. Up on the main deck, this opening can be closed with glass panels and is surrounded by lounging areas.



One of the most advanced swimming pools ever built on board a superyacht, it is the key element of the beach club that stretches for a large portion of the yacht's lower deck. Within the pool area are two additional Jacuzzis for the yacht's guests to relax in. On both sides of the yacht are lounging areas with access to the sea through foldable platforms.



Serene's beach club facilities, however, do not stop just with its pool. The superyacht features a full-sized spa with a sauna room with glass doors looking out onto the sea through a foldable platform. Next to the sauna are a hammam as well as a snow room.



Lighting systems were installed throughout Serene's exterior to ensure that the yacht could boast a sleek look at night as well as during the day. During the summer, the yacht could previously often have been seen lighting up Monaco and the Côte d'Azur.


Photo by Julien Hubert

Following her sale to the deputy crown prince of Saudi Arabia, the yacht started spending time in the Persian Gulf. During the summer of this year, Serene ran aground on a reef near Tiran Island in the Red Sea. Some damage is believed to have been sustained to her bow at the time, although the superyacht has been repaired since. Several days ago, she cruised to a shipyard in the Netherlands for maintenance work.



Currently valued at $1,6 billion by Forbes, Yuri Sheffler made his fortune in the alcohol business. Venturing into business in 1993, Sheffler made a series of moves that got him the rights to brands of vodka such as Stolichnaya, which was previously owned by a state-owned corporation. This has put him at the center of long litigations with the Russian government over the ownership of the brand.



Having left Russia for Switzerland and the United Kingdom during the early 2000s, Sheffler is currently the main shareholder in SPI Group, a conglomerate that sells alcohol under 380 brands in 160 countries. Earlier this year he acquired an estate in Scotland at an asking price of £25 million.



In 2014, Fincantieri launched its second megayacht, the 140-meter Ocean Victory which was commissioned by another Russian oligarch, Viktor Rashnikov, whose net worth is estimated at $4.8 billion. Prior to its launch in December 2014 however, Fincantieri was ordered to pay €20.9 million to Serena Equity Limited (the company controlled by Shefler that owned Serene) by London courts.



Shefler's main claim was that Fincantieri had used Serene, on which the billionaire says he holds intellectual property, to develop Ocean Victory which he says is a near sistership. In fact, both superyachts boast an exterior design by Espen Oeino and seem to have similar technical characteristics.

As such, English courts have granted Shefler €13,2 million for the violation of his intellectual property and €7.7 million for late deliveries, which were to be paid by Fincantieri where the Italian government holds a 70% controlling stake. Fincantieri, however, filed a motion in Trieste's Court of Appeals in 2015 to dismiss the fact that London's ruling applied.



Mohammad bin Salman, born in 1985, is the deputy crown prince of Saudi Arabia and currently sits as the youngest defense minister in the world and the first deputy Prime Minister of Saudi Arabia.


Julien Hubert

From a technical standpoint, Serene can reach a top speed of 25 knots and cruise at 15 knots. Reportedly, her interior volume comes in at 8,231GT, ie, half of Dilbar, the world's largest yacht by gross tonnage.

Check our Timeline platform to get the full access to our analytics platform, that offers you a detailed report on the timeline of each superyacht, real time market view to see the yacht market developing and much more!

Latest News

89m Here Comes The Sun Is Ready for New Adventures
The 89m Here Comes The Sun has departed the Damen Yachting Vlissingen City shipyard in the Netherlands ready to take on a global itinerary. Before heading to waters further afield, the now 89m Amels – the largest delivered to date – made a port of call in London marking her first public display beyond the local shores of the Damen Yachting facilities where she has spent the last 16 months. She was originally delivered in 2017 and returned to Damen Yachting in 2020 under new ownership for an extensive Amels refit. The owner appointed Azure Yacht Design, the yard’s original partner for the naval architecture, to re-pen this iconic Amels from 83 to 89 meters.Her 6-meter extension and the volume increased from 2827 to 2977 GT became all the more evident. The modifications also included the new colour, the extended sun deck aft with helicopter landing area, extended bridge deck aft accommodation to allow for two VIP suites with exterior balconies and extended main deck aft providing a larger beach club, spa facilities and a large 7-meter swimming pool. Further modifications include alterations to a number of deck and interior areas and layouts. Damen Yachting Project Manager Sander Peeters was present at the yard as Here Comes The Sun set sail. “The refit of Here Comes The Sun was a very large scale and complex project. We are all very proud to have delivered on time and to such a high quality, made possible by the teamwork and collaboration between our own teams, our co-makers and the owner’s team and crew. We would like to thank everyone involved for their part in making this special project a success. Seeing her leave the yard is a very emotional moment and we look forward to following her next chapter and adventures with her owner.”Damen Yachting, a division within the Damen Shipyards Group, was created in 2019. The division combines the pedigree and heritage of Amels yachts with a growing portfolio of SeaXplorer yachts and Yacht Support vessels.Credits: Damen Yachting
Benetti’s 37m Mamma Mia Sold
Camper and Nicholsons has sold the 36.60m Mamma Mia, with Camper and Nicholsons’ senior sales broker Fernando Nicholson representing the seller, and Jim McConville of Allied Marine representing the buyer.A tri deck Mamma Mia is a highly customised Benetti Classic 120. She was launched in 2007 as a part of a very successful series.Mamma Mia offers accommodation for up to 12 guests across five well-appointed en suite cabins, comprising a master suite, three doubles and one twin.Mamma Mia's interior, designed by Zuretti, is elegant and classic with neutral colours set against mahogany. The larger, shared areas of the yacht, such as the sky lounge and main foyer, also feature marble finishes.The classic exterior lines come from designer Stefano Righini and aboard Mamma Mia, the extensive deck space. The main deck is covered, the bridge deck partially so and has a seating/dining area with extra tables to suit a buffet style set-up, and the sun deck, with a bar and hot tub, has an optional bimini and umbrellas.Mamma Mia also has a large tender garage, positioned aft, with space for a tender of up to 6m along with a jet ski or two, and her 4.5m Williams jet tender.Credits: Camper and Nicholsons
150' Palmer Johnson Andiamo Finds New Owner
Andiamo, a 150' Palmer Johnson built in 2007, has been sold. She was asking USD 12,900,000 at the time of sale. Alex G. Clarke from Denison Yachting introduced the buyer and AJ Blackmon with Apollo Yachts represented the seller.The sporty Andiamo had a refit in 2020. Her interior and exterior design is by Nuvolari Lenard, although her interior underwent a complete refit of all soft goods with the addition of custom furniture, new upholstery, new carpet, and bed linens. Naval architecture is by Donald L. Blount.She can accommodate 12 guests across five cabins, plus eight crew.Onboard amenities include a beach club, swimming pool, hot tub on the bow and another one in the master, and cinema. Her top speed is 26 knots with a maximum range of 700 nautical miles when navigating at a cruising speed of 18 knots. Credits: Denison Yachting
110m Concept Malena Unveiled by Rodriguez Design
A 110m concept Malena was revealed by studio Rodriguez Design. The steel and aluminium yacht with sleek and sharp profile spreads across four decks and can accommodate 24 guests in 11 cabins, including six VIP’s on the main deck and four doubles on the lower deck. The owner suite is located at the owner’s deck. The owner deck, the upper deck and the sundeck feature the side balcony system. “With the side balcony system, we wanted to create the feeling of being on a super luxury skyscraper. Wherever the yacht is docked or moored, the city will have a new addition to its skyline,” explains Josh Rodriguez, studio founder. The yacht features two infinity pools at the main deck with a bar. The stairs lead down to the hydraulic swimming platform. The hot tub is located on the owner’s deck. The additional pool is placed on the upper deck. Here is also posted a large dining table and lounge area. A touch and go helipad for an Airbus ACH 160 helicopter can be found at the bow. Malena will have a hybrid diesel electric propulsion system. Her top speed is 18 knots and she has a range of 6,000 nautical miles at 12 knots.Credits: Rodriguez Design
Sunseeker’s 26m Hard 8 Sold
The 26.29m Sunseeker 86 Yacht Hard 8 has been sold. Listed for sale with Nick Hatfield of Sanlorenzo Yachts UK, the buyer was introduced by Harry Bristow-Holmes of Bristow-Holmes. Hard 8 was launched in May 2017 by Sunseeker, with the highest degree of specification of any Sunseeker 86 to leave the yard. Her interior in satin-finished wenge wood comfortably accommodates eight guests in four cabins consisting of an amidships master suite, a forward VIP and two double guest cabins. All guest cabins have entertainment centres, Apple television screens and en-suite bathroom facilities. The crew quarters are located aft.The spacious main saloon has large settees to port and starboard, plus armchairs and ottomans, with an entertainment centre featuring a Bose stereo surround sound home cinema system. Forward of the saloon is a formal dining area with seating for eight guests, while further forward still is an open galley with breakfast area.The yacht’s exterior spaces are designed for relaxing, entertaining and dining, with the aft deck having built-in seating around a teak table and the foredeck sunbathing area incorporating a removable parasol. On the flybridge, shaded by the hard top, she offers a wet bar with barbecue, sit-up bar, hot tub and sunpads. Twin 1,500hp MTU diesel engines power the vessel to speeds of up to 30 knots and she is fitted with hydraulic fin stabilisers.Hard 8 was sold for an undisclosed sum, but was asking £3,550,000 ex VAT.Since 1969 Sunseeker Yachts has built composite semi-custom yachts from 12m to 47m. The shipyard's main facility is located in Poole. Credits: Maa Agency