Few events have ever affected yachting as much as the sinking of the 60 meter Yogi. The largest yacht to ever sink, its wreck strongly hit the Turkish shipbuilding sector and made owners take a hard look at their insurances and dangers, even though no one was hurt. Despite the accident, Yogi was no less of an exceptional yacht.
Yogi was the largest yacht ever built by up and coming Turkish shipyard, Proteksan Turquoise at the time of her delivery in 2011. Reminiscent of an explorer style yacht through her design by Jean Guy Verges, Yogi featured oversized portholes in her hull that brought in tons of flight into the yacht's cabins.
Built for Stephane Courbit, a French media and TV millionaire valued at €450 million, Yogi was built to be operated as a charter yacht part of its hotel collection. Maximizing space, the yacht had many amenities for her size including a swimming pool, beach club, wellness center and media room.
Yet, on February 17th 2012, just as the yacht was days out of leaving the yard where it was undergoing warrantied maintenance work, it sank in the Aegean sea. The weather was particularly difficult during that day and yet it seems to be an engine failure that, tied to a number of circumstantial events, led to the 60-meter yacht sinking to the bottom of the Mediterranean.
The report did, however, clear Proteksan in the quality of its build, focusing on what was a mixture of human oversight and extreme conditions. A Turkish investigations arrived at similar conclusions. Manned by a skeleton crew of 8 during this voyage, it took an hour to evacuate by helicopter the yacht's crew as seas at their peek featured waves of up to 7 meters.
The largest yacht to have ever cruised with the French flag, Yogi was part of Courbit's Lov Collection, a holding company that includes the Les Airelles palace in Courchevel as well as the Pan Dei hotel in St Tropez. Built with charter in mind to its existing and new clientele, the yacht commanded prices of up to €378,000 per week and featured 800 square meter of interior space in a particularly luxurious interior.
A key element in Yogi's design was her large pool with overflow that sat aft of the yacht's main deck, directly on top of its beach club. In the middle of the pool was a glass porthole that flooded the area underneath with light. All around the pool were lounging pads for Yogi's guest to take in the sun when the yacht was anchored off in a bay.
To complement the swimming pool aft of the main deck, a Jacuzzi was also placed aft of the sundeck, for guests that wanted to enjoy the sun in a hot tub. Also surrounded by sunpads, these feature a common beige design throughout the yacht with colored pillows. Same can be said for the customizable lounging area aft of the upper deck.
On the inside, Yogi was reminiscent of Courbit's luxurious hotels. Featuring a beige and creme tone throughout the yacht, the 60-meter was fitted with floor to ceiling windows that visually increased the size of its 800 square meters of interior space. Its main salon was structured into a lounging area and a TV sector with a wide screen built into the wall.
Stretching across the full beam of the yacht, Yogi's master bedroom was no less spectacular with both lots of light and space. A king sized bed throned in the middle of the suite with access through a central corridor to a dressing room and his and hers bathrooms.
The yacht's guest accommodation didn't also pale in comparison with the owner's stateroom. Finished in the same style, the double and twin guest cabins could be connected or separated through double sliding doors. In total, Yogi could accommodate a total of 12 guests across 6 cabins.
Tall windows could be found throughout the yacht and were a real differentiating factor from competition on the market for Yogi. 'The idea was to have a yacht that could be chartered and run just like a resort.' detailed its designer, Jean Guy Verges in a later interview. 'She has been designed to the specific request of her owner. I think this jewel offered more than you would expect of a yacht her size.'
Another interesting amenity of Yogi was her observational lounge up on the sun deck. Finished throughout in glass, the area boasted a 180 degree view into the yacht's surroundings through a climate controlled environment. Equipped with custom furniture from the likes of Hermes, this media lounge separated the sun deck into a Jacuzzi and a raised dinning area.
Down on the upper deck, which also featured a covered dinning room, guests would find an extensive lounging pad with tiles that could be raised or flattened to create lounging chairs or sun beds. Connected to iPods and iPhones, which in 2011 was still rare, Yogi featured an advanced system for her time with TVs that slid out even in front of lounging pads.
Viewed by many as a step forward for the Turkish yacht building sector and as an endorsement of their quality, when Yogi sank, the whole country took a hit. By 2011, yacht owners and charters had started outgrowing the stigma of building in Turkey and the market was picking up for local builders. In fact Yogi was the largest yacht ever built by Proteksan.
Yogi's delivery was followed weeks after by their newest flagship, a 70.5-meter reminiscent of a Dutch-build quality, Talisman C. Shortly after it followed the 72-meter Vicky and it looked like Turkey would emerge as a yacht building destination. This all ended when Yogi sank in February 2012 and owners' stigma towards Turkey developed once again.
Although some Turkish shipyards continued to prosper, many faded down their ambitions in a global recession. This ultimately culminated with the acquisition of Proteksan Turquoise by Dutch-based Oceanco. Backed by billionaire investor Mohammed Al Barwani, the Dutch superyacht builder since set out on a mission to make the yard competitive and got an order for a 77-meter yacht now under build.
Having initially started his career in television in the 1990s, Stephane Courbit where he built a reputation, eventually starting his own production company behind hits such as Miss France. Eventually acquired by Dutch holding Endemol, Courbit exited from the company in 2001.
His LOV Group currently includes companies in the audiovisual space with several production companies behind some of France's most popular game shows. Other investments include several betting sites, which he started in acquiring in 2007. One of his fastest growing divisions has now becomes the Airelles collection of hotels.
After investing nearly $200 million into the purchase and renovation of the five star Courchevel palace, Les Airelles, Courbit acquired the Pan Dei Palace in St Tropez. His hotel portfolio then grew with the Bastide de Gordes in 2014. Two more Airelles hotels are set to open in the next two years, one in Versailles and one in Val d'Isiere.
Gulf Craft, the fast-growing UAE-based shipyard, has released more imagery of its latest 43-meter model, the Majesty 140. First unveiled at the Dubai Boat Show in February, the yacht is the 2nd largest model in the yard's lineup of superyachts.Accommodating up to 12 guests in 5 cabins, the 43-meter C'est La Vie features a master cabin on the main deck that comes with a fold-out balcony and Jacuzzi hot tub. Designed with a light theme and lots of natural light, the yacht is catered by a crew of 9."The Majesty 140 is a continuation of our 3 and a half decade long commitment to creating yachts and boats in accordance with the world's best standards, carrying the Made in UAE flag with pride." commented Mohammed Hussain Al Shaali, Chairman of Gulf Craft.Amongst the yacht's highlights is a 55sqm beach club, a rare feature on yachts of this size. The 43-meter's spacious main salon also benefits from tall, panoramic windows that directly connect guests with the sea.Powered by twin 2,600hp MTU engines, the Majesty 140 can reach a top speed of 20 knots. Other projects currently in-build at the yard include its future flagship, the Majesty 175, set to be delivered in 2019.A growing force in the superyacht space, Gulf Craft has established itself as the leading yacht producer in the Middle East over recent years, gaining traction across Europe. According to several reports in local media, Gulf Craft was contemplating a public listing.
December 11, 2018
#1 KhalilahPhoto by @BalcoBuilt by US shipyard Palmer Johnson in 2014, the 49-meter Khalilah became one of the yard's most emblematic yachts thanks to its unusual form and colour. Part of its Super Sport 48 series, the yacht has a total of 5 cabins and can reach a top speed of 30 knots.#2 Chevrolet Corvette onboard 49m La Pellegrina.La Pellegrina was designed by Exequiel Cano Lanza, while her interior design was created by Jean-Pierre Fantini. Built by Couach Yachts and delivered in 2012, a maximum speed of 28 knots.#3 Roberto Cavalli's 27m superyacht Freedom launched by CCN.Freedom is capable of reaching a maximum speed of 40 knots thanks to 3 water-jet engines. Both the exterior profile and the interior layout reflects the personality of the owner, who asked for a yacht enhancing maximum contact with the sea while also ensuring the utmost privacy. To provide some more details, the master cabin – located behind the helm station – extends across the entire main deck. A central sky-light lets in plenty of natural light, while, aft, the large cockpit fitted with concealing curtains allows to fully enjoy the sea in privacy. The lower deck features 2 guest cabins and comfortable crew quarters, and the fly includes a private area with pilot seat.#4 49m Aurora.Photo by @alexxa_k01Fulvio De Simoni styled her exterior, whilst the interior design came from the boards of Achille Salvagni. She hosts a large garage with two tenders, two seabobs, two jet skis, scuba diving equipment and a variety of water toys. Performance wise Aurora is powered by two 3,460hp MTU 12V 4000 M93L diesel engines, providing her a top speed of 21 knots and a maximum cruising range of 3,800 nautical miles at 12 knots.#5 104m Quantum BluePhoto by @superyachts_gibraltarBuilt in 2014, Quantum Blue was designed by Tim Heywood and Alberto Pinto. She has a length of 104m, a beam of 16.8m and a draft of 4m. The yacht's alluring amenities include a spa with a pool, a lift, helipad, beach club, gym and movie theatre. With a maximum speed of 22 knots, she can cruise at 13 knots.#6 175-metre superyacht concept Acionna.Concept by Andy Waugh Design.At 175-metre in length Acionna is the ultimate world cruising megayacht and challenges many of the preconceptions about larger yachts that are often said to be homogenous and conventional. At first glance it is obvious that Acionna is absolutely unique, her avant-garde styling a feast-for-the-eyes from every angle is exaggerated by her elegant proportions and sheer scale.The interior space available within the design is colossal and could include almost any feature desired including potentially a full size squash court, helicopter hanger and a 20m indoor pool. Included in her 8 decks is a spectacular, double-height main saloon with panoramic curved glass overlooking the main aft deck pool.#7 The Oasis projectLazzara Ombres ArchitectsA cross over design of a Power Catamaran with the toy capacity of a Shadow yacht. Creating anything unique in the yachting world is a tall order but Oasis has done just that.“The innovation is the stepped layout and higher freeboard which achieves a flush, full beam, lower deck” says Joe Lazzara, a third generation yacht designer. “This space is typically used for technical equipment on a traditional Catamaran hull”.The full beam (35.5’) owners apartment with fold down private balconies on each side allows the owner to be closer to the water. A master shower with privacy glass has an endless sight line of the water.
December 11, 2018
In the spotlight throughout a long-running case around Malaysia's sovereign wealth fund 1MDB, the 91-meter Equanimity is now being auctioned for a nine-figure sum by Malaysia's government. Built by Oceanco, the superyacht was delivered with one of the largest spas ever seen onboard a yacht.1MDB was created in 2009 as a sovereign wealth fund with over $4 billion under management to invest in strategic projects. After a series of investments in energy and real estate, a controversy around the fund began as to whether funds had been misappropriated throughout this period by management and government officials.Later investigations led to asset seizures spearheaded by the US DoJ, amongst which was Equanimity. It was then claimed that her owner, financier Jho Low, had ordered the yacht using profits that were connected to 1MDB's real estate dealings and off-shore accounts totalling over $250 million for the yacht's purchase and upkeep.Financed also in part through a loan by Sotheby's financial against art works, Equanimity was delivered in 2014 and introduced at the Monaco Yacht Show later that year where she won the award of finest yacht. Amongst her main highlights was an extensive spa area that spanned a large part of her lower deck.Following developments in the 1MDB case, the DoJ moved to seize Equanimity in June 2017 as part of their effort to recoup an estimated $400 million in alleged profits from Low. The yacht was eventually seized in Indonesia at the request of Malaysian authorities. According to a spokesman for Equanimity (Cayman) Ltd, this was done in violation of Indonesian and American court rulings. Following the seizure, the yacht was transported to Malaysia where finance minister, Lim Guan Eng said an auction of the yacht was to take place. It is now understood at least nine figures were being sought for the yacht at the auction, which is expected to be completed by March 2019.Equanimity was, however, famous across the yachting community, well before being pushed into the limelight by this case, for its extensive spa area on the lower deck, plunge pools and highly customised interior. At 2,998 gross tons of interior volume, the yacht still sits as the 65th largest yacht in the world.The 91-meter's spa is akin to that of a megapolis' 5-star hotel. Incorporating plunge pools, massage areas, saunas, experiential showers, hammams, jacuzzis and a gym all designed with the most precious of materials, it directly connects to a beach club from which guests can swim out into the ocean.Equanimity's 5 decks are connected by a grand staircase coupled with a glass elevator. Accommodating up to 22 guests in 11 cabins, the yacht was the first one to be built to comply with the new Passenger Yacht Code. Carrying a crew of 31, the yacht can cruise for up to 5,000 nautical miles at a speed of 15 knots, with its top speed at 18.5 kn.Aft of its second deck, Equanimity features a large helipad, typically covered with lounging sofas and sun beds when not in use. Forward of the helipad is a 20sqm spa pool sitting in front of the entrance to the yacht's spacious main salon. Throughout the deck, guests are kept within the atmosphere of a luxurious, relaxing spa.Inside, across the yacht's lounges and cabins can be found a continuing theme of the sea rendered through a clever use of sculptures, ornaments and glass. Centred around a clear colour scheme with tall windows throughout, Equanimity's interior almost acts as an extension of the sea wherever the yacht cruises.Equanimity's staterooms, styled like a luxurious, modern hotel, are spread out into a master cabin with a study, which can be converted into a double cabin, a VVIP suite, 3 VIP cabins, as well as an additional 2 double and 2 twin cabins spread out throughout the yacht's main deck, giving good views to all guests.Fully-equipped, the 91-meter's gym can be used underway but is best enjoyed when at anchor, with a fold down platform that opens up onto the sea and lets guests exercise practically on the water. Equanimity also comes complete with two custom-designed, 10-meter Hodgdon tenders to ferry around her guests in style.Malaysia's auction will see qualified buyers making sealed bids for the yacht in view of a sale that is set to complete by March 2019. Whilst the exact asking price is for the moment unknown, officials are looking for a 9 figure number according to various press reports. This becomes the 2nd high profile yacht auctioned off this year, following the 95-meter Oceanco, Indian Empress, which was sold earlier this year for €35 million during an auction in Malta.
December 9, 2018
Equanimity, the 91-meter superyacht caught up in legal pursuits led by the United States' Department of Justice over the 1MDB fund, is now going to be auctioned off for a nine figure sum in March 2019. This follows the yacht being seized earlier in 2018.The sale of the yacht, which is being handled by Burgess on behalf of the Malaysian government, is happening at the request of the Sheriff of the Admiralty Court of Kuala Lumpur. According to statements made by government officials, interest in purchasing the yacht has already been recorded.This development comes as part of a long saga that started with the US DoJ moving to seize Equanimity back in June 2017. This was being done as part of an effort to recover $1.7 billion that were allegedly misappropriated from the 1Malaysia Berhad Fund according to the DoJ. Of this figure, $400 million were being sought from Jho low, a Malaysian businessman who took delivery of Equanimity in 2014. The yacht cost him over $250 million according to court fillings, including its upkeep.After eventually being seized by Indonesian authorities, the yacht was moved to Malaysia in view of a public auction for the yacht that was to take place according to Malaysia's finance minister, Lim Guan Eng. A spokesman for Equanimity (Cayman) Ltd, the yacht's owner, then commented that this move was done in violation of Indonesian and American court rulings.Launched in 2014, Equanimity was built by Oceanco in the Netherlands and debuted at the Monaco Yacht Show, later that year. Amongst her main amenities area a large spa area spread throughout the yacht's aft.
December 7, 2018
Hakvoort, the Dutch-based shipyard, has confirmed the launch of its largest project to date, the 63.72-meter Scout. Designed by H2 Yacht Design, the yacht is expected to be delivered to her owners in Spring 2019. She was previously known as Project Brio.Launched on December 1st, the yacht started construction under a different ownership, changing owners early on and shifting the project to the steel and aluminium explorer that it is today. "The owner’s brief called for a rugged explorer style yacht intended to look like a conversion from a commercial vessel." commented H2's Jonny Horsfield. "We placed the tenders on the bow, leaving them exposed to add to the utilitarian aesthetic. There is a helideck and a forward observation lounge in addition to an expansive sun deck."Scout features 4 guest cabins on the main deck as well as an owner's deck in addition to 2 staff cabins on the lower deck. Sold by Fraser Yachts to her current owner, Scout will become the largest yacht built by Hakvoort, topping its 61-meter Just J's delivered in 2016.The owner's previous yacht was a 45-meter RMK Marine also named Scout. Delivered in 2012, she was sold asking $15.9 million and has since been renamed Calliope.Powered by twin CAT engines, Scout will cruise at 12.5 knots and reach a top speed of 14.8kn. Her maximum range will be at 4,800 nautical miles once delivered, coupled with an ice-class hull.
December 7, 2018