Recent quarters have seen the concept of explorer yachts trickling down to a set of smaller yachts. Initially, however, explorers come from the megayacht world and the 115-meter Luna has become almost eponymous with what an explorer yacht should be.
Refreshened through a €50 million refit that came following a change in ownership, Luna was delivered in 2010. Currently the 3rd largest explorer in the world, her open aft deck and swimming pool have set a standard for the yachting industry.
Built for Russian billionaire, Roman Abramovich, Luna was originally intended as a more sleek version of her owner's existing explorer, the 113-meter Le Grand Bleu. At the time of her launch, the swimming pool installed on Luna was the largest that anyone had ever seen onboard a superyacht.
Luna's current owner, which Forbes names as Farkhad Akhmedov, purchased the yacht from Abramovich in 2014. The man, valued at $1,3 billion by the magazine, later initiated a 14-month refit in Germany that gave the yacht a sleek exterior look and implemented several improvements on one of the world's most iconic yachts.
One of the largest jobs undertaken during the refit was the fairing of Luna's hull. Under Abramovich's ownership, the 115 meter had been left unfaired to reflect the strength and power of the yacht by making a show of her welds. Luna's new owner, however, faired the yacht in order to give it a sleeker look.
Nearly 80 painters and eight months were required to fill and fair the over 2,000 square meters of Luna's hull, whilst also applying a new finish to her superstructure. The result is a complete mirror finish, which perfectly reflects the sea as Luna sails on her world travels.
Luna's exterior refit was led by Newcruise, a German design studio that undertook the project as it's first major one with a motor yacht. Across all proposals that were reviewed during planning, the main idea was to create a very open deck. This led to the project team focusing on style rather than the toy storage one would find on other explorers.
In fact, the aft area of the main and lower deck was amongst the most affected by Luna's recent refit. One of the main attributes of the yacht, in addition to her main deck pool, is her extensive beach club area on the lower deck. Whilst two tender garages sit to port side, two foldable platforms open the beach club onto the sea on starboard.
The beach club is completed by a wave-shaped sauna, plunge pool, steam bath as well as a fully equipped gym. New equipment was installed during the refit including mirrored panels that let Luna's guests open the 12-meter foldable doors and getting a sea view without anyone seeing guests exercise from the outside.
A relatively rare feature onboard superyachts a decade ago, beach clubs have become a must have onboard new yachts of even a smaller scale. Popular options, both for charter guests and owners, include lounging areas, wet bars, saunas, hot tubs, plunge pools and gyms. All of which Luna was already built to accommodate.
Other improvements to the area during the refit include a new mosaic on the walls of the steam room, an updated audio visual system, a pantry area to facilitate service and a new arrangement of couches. Over 80 TVs are found onboard Luna, however, none of them were placed in the beach club for it to be a place to enjoy the sea.
Safe from the beach club, the remainder of Luna's lower deck is dedicated to crew and operations. In addition to the engine room and technical spaces, most crew accommodation can be found on the lower deck. Seven generators produce an output of 15,000hp that goes on to power electric motors. According to her manufacturers, it would be enough to power a town of up to 25,000 people.
Luna's original interior designer was Donald Starkey who joined the project when the yacht was already 70% built at Lloyd Werft. Modifications imposed by the designer included an increased headroom as well as a new dinning room, which wasn't on the initial layout. This was achieved by dividing the upper deck lounge into two by a fireplace that can be enjoyed from both sides of a newly installed wall.
Starkey's theme of light fabrics coupled with darker wood and light that filters from the 115 meter's large windows can be found throughout Luna. Modern oak was in fact used around the yacht and then aged to create the effect of 17th century antique beams.
One of Luna's highlights is, without a doubt, the private, forward-facing terrace that comes as part of the owner's private suite. With a glass panel located directly on top of the master bed, a private terrace in front lets Luna's owner explore the world with her.
Another newly improved area on the 115-meter explorer is Luna's observational lounge. Meant as an area where guests can socialise and take in the view, its panoramic view faces forward and is often found to be a guest favourite location when entering a new marina or anchorage spot.
Whereas the master suit benefits from one of yachting's best views, guests on Luna get to access one of its main locations much quicker from the main deck. Through a straight line corridor, guests can find their way to the pool in a matter of seconds without having to climb up flights of stairs.
Luna's swimming pool area also benefits from a new feature installed during her recent refit. A raised section, which can be covered by a massive tent or opened to the sun, was put in towards the aft of the deck. It features both a dinning table for casual, outdoor dinning, as well as coffee tables and a sofa.
From a technical standpoint, Luna is powered by a diesel electric set up that lets her be both more efficient and flexible when cruising. The explorer can in fact get up to a top speed of 21 knots and even nudge through shallow ice.
Photo by Ron Raffety
Located underneath Luna's master bedroom, her bridge sits forward of the explorer's upper deck. Allowing easy access to anchoring gear and crew areas, keeping all crew operations on the upper deck also frees up higher decks for the guests' relaxation.
One of the most well known figures in the yachting industry, Roman Abramovich currently sits as the world's 139th richest man according to Forbes, with a net worth of $10,3 billion. In the business community he's most well known as the owner of the Chelsea FC as well as for selling his stake in Sibneft to Gazprom.
In yachting, however, Abramovich is synonymous with his 162-meter Eclipse, formerly the largest yacht in the world. Whereas Eclipse was overshadowed by the 180-meter Azzam, the Russian billionaire's exploits in yachting remain on everyone's mind to this day.
Photo by Nicholas Canepa
Other than Eclipse and Luna, the 51 year-old has owned an unequaled fleet of yachts, which have included the 115-meter Pelorus, which he purchased in build from a Saudi businessman in 2003 before reselling it to Dreamworks co-founder, David Geffen in 2011.
Prior to Pelorus, Abramovich also had the 113-meter explorer/support yacht Le Grand Bleu. Carrying a plethora of toys, onboard Le Grand Bleu could be found a Dubois sailing yacht as well as a 21-meter Sunseeker. He later reportedly sold the yacht to Eugene Schvidler.
Born in Baku, Azerbaijan in 1955, Farkhad Akhmedov is the 67th richest man in Russia according to Forbes. After moving to London in 1986 and starting out in fur trading, he started his own company in 1987 to supply equipment to Russian gas companies. In 2012, he sold his stake in Russian gas company, Nortgas to Novatek.
Photos by Guillaume Plisson
Ironman is a 42-metre yacht from Fast 140 series, being the sixth model launched by Italian yard Benetti Yachts at their facilities in Viareggio. The yacht is built to RINA standards from GRP and carbon fibre, boasts exterior design by Stefano Righini and interior design by British studio RWD, with the naval architecture developed by the Azimut Benetti Research and Development centre and features a D2P - Displacement to Planing hull with wave piercer, designed by Pierluigi Ausonio.Large glass windows in the main deck saloon makes natural light flood in and makes interior bright, also providing great sea views. Main deck area is divided into zone for relaxing and for dining, with room for 12 guests around central table.On board, she accommodates up to 12 guests across a 6 cabins, including a master suite on the main deck, 2 VIP cabins and 2 twin cabins on the lower deck, as well as an additional VIP suite accessible via one of the twin cabins. Crew quarters is up to 7 people.Ironman is fitted with twin 3,650HP MTU diesel engines, reaching a top speed of 23 knots and cruising speed of 18 knots, and when switched back to economical speed of 12 knots, Ironman will have a range of 1,800 nautical miles, thanks to her fuel tanks of 35,000 litres.Earlier this month, Benetti Yachts launched two Fast 125 yachts My Way and Charade.
April 24, 2018
The MYBA Charter Show is an event for those who are in industry, which started on April 23 at the OneOcean Port Vell in Barcelona and will last four days till April 26, allowing to view yachts, providing competitions between crews and glamorous social events. This trade only show has become one of the most important international events dedicated strictly to charter professionals and superyachts. Top industry professionals from yacht charter companies from around the globe will be able to view the freshest superyachts coming onto the charter market, as well as meeting captains and crew, just before the start of the Mediterranean summer season. A numerous yachts that were refitted and upgraded will also be on display and available for views. The show is the perfect occasion for charter brokers to gather first hand recommendations to pass on to current and future clients. The MYBA Charter Show is attended by the world's top charter agencies and presents an impressive showcase of luxury charter yachts as well as services for the yachting industry.The event also allows charter brokers to experience the world-class hospitality of the crew, so they will obtain knowledge for potential charter guests. The highly popular competitions for chefs and crew will once again take place, showcasing diverse culinary and design talents of the teams. Seminars and parties will also be well attended as they continue to be heavily subscribed by industry professionals from far and wide.The current exhibition is only the second one to take place in Barcelona after the event took place in Italy for 27 years, and the show began at 10am in the Catalonian capital with the 55 superyachts in attendance welcoming aboard show-goers for exclusive yacht viewings. Just four years old, Barcelona’s superyacht Marina OneOcean Port Vell boasts 68 berths ranging from 22-metres to 190-metres. The city itself has become a prominent yachting destination, welcoming superyachts to experience the accessible city while on Spanish charters. The increase in numbers is partly due to easing of legislation on Spanish charters, as well as the unrivalled marina facilities and infrastructure that the marina is now able provide large superyachts.Top yachts attending the MYBA Charter Show 2018 :1. Alfa Nero (81m, 2007, Oceanco, refit in 2017)Available for charter starting from €750,000 per week. 2. Titania (73m, 2006, Lurssen, refit in 2018)Available for charter starting from $490,000 per week.3. Joy (70m, 2016, Feadship)Available for charter starting from €700,000 per week.4. Andiamo (59m, 2009, Benetti, refit in 2017)Available for charter starting from $395,000 per week.5. The Wellesley (56m, 1993, Oceanco, refit in 2016)Available for charter starting from €220,000 per week.6. Lazy Z (51m, 1997, Oceanco, refit 2015)Available for charter starting from $224,000.7. Elixir (55m, 2016, Amels)Available for charter starting from $275,000 per week.The full list of yachts attending the show is here.
April 24, 2018
The 49-metre superyacht Flying Dagger was launched in Viareggio on April 21 by Rossinavi. Previously known as Project FR036, Flying Dagger was sold in May 2016. This aluminium motor yacht boasts interior and exterior design by Enrico Gobbi at Team For Design. The design focuses on minimizing noise emissions to give greater comfort during crusing and wide windows and skylights to allow natural light to flood into the interior and offer guests superb panoramic views.<iframe width="632" height="356" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/hq64kID18Uk" frameborder="0" allow="autoplay; encrypted-media" allowfullscreen></iframe>Guest accommodation is divided on two decks, with the full beam owner’s suite on the main deck forward, and 4 double suites located on the lower deck. As Flying Dagger was built for speed, she will reach a maximum speed of 27 knots, fitted with three 2,600hp MTU engines and three KaMeWa waterjets. With a cruising speed of 23 knots and her range will be 3,300 nautical miles at 12 knots. The aft tender garage is complemented by a foredeck Jet Ski locker.
April 23, 2018
Founded by the GYA (Greek Yachting Association), the Mediterranean Yacht Show was set back in 2014. Now it's the 5th edition of the show and ever since its premiere, the show has taken place in the historic Greek town of Nafplio. The industry-only event, taking place from April 28th to May 1st, it brings together yachts, ranging from motor and sailing yachts to gulets and catamarans. This year’s charter fleet will consist of nearly 90 vessels, from small cruisers to large superyachts.Industry professionals are given the opportunity to meet the yacht crews, explore some new models and refits of the yacht already on the market. There will be a variety of networking events and social programme for show-goers, such as Chef’s Competition, where the region’s top yacht chefs will battle in front of judges. The Mediterranean Yacht Show shows the recovery of the Greek tourism industry. Now more than 100 superyachts and 300 visitors are expected to attend each year.Top 5 largest yachts attending the Mediterranean Yacht Show :1. Capri I (58.6 m, 2003, Lurssen, refit in 2012)Available for charter through Fraser Yachts starting from €280000 per week.2. O'Natalina (56 m, 1985, Pichiotti, refit in 2017)Available for charter through Atalanta Golden Yachts starting from €130000 per week. 3. Pegasus (53 m, 1995, Feadship, refit in 2009)Available for charter through Athens Yachts starting from €27850 per week.4. Marla (50 metre, 1999, Amels, refit in 2015)Available for charter through Seascape Yacht Charters from €185000 per week.5. Ouranos (50 m, 2016, Admiral Yachts)Available for charter through IYC from €210000 per week.The full list of yachts attending the show is here.
April 23, 2018
The Ritz-Carlton Hotel has announced itineraries and shore excursions for its Luxury Yacht Collection. Three luxury cruising yachts are scheduled to sail in 2020. Ritz-Carlton will start taking reservation from May 21 from its loyalty members and those of its parent company Marriott International. The very first voyage will sail out of Fort Lauderdale, Florida, on Feb. 1, 2020, for a 8-night cruise in the Caribbean. The yacht will travel to Bimini, Bahamas, and Key West, Florida, before returning to Fort Lauderdale.In its inaugural season, The Ritz-Carlton Yacht Collection will offer 40 different voyages, most ranging from 7 to 10 nights. Number of experiences will be available, such as visiting a renowned winery in Bordeaux, France, learning how baby oysters are grown in a private farm in Sete, France or even emeeting with a spiritual shaman in the Grenadines. The shore excursions will be grouped into five categories: Iconic Sights (art and culture); Stirring the Senses (wellness); Cultural Connections (wild life); Active Explorations; and Epicurean Experiences. The trips “illustrate our commitment to providing rare opportunities to today’s luxury traveler,” said Lisa Holladay, global brand leader for The Ritz-Carlton, in a statement.The unique designed yachts will measure 190 meters, with 149 suites accommodating up to 298 passengers, which is more like superyacht than an actual cruise ship. Each stateroom has its own private terrace. The yachts will also feature two 158-square-meter penthouses, each with its own private whirlpool, modern craftsmanship and interior finishes jointly designed by The Ritz-Carlton and design firm Tillberg Design of Sweden. Prices have not yet been released.
April 19, 2018