PEOPLE AND PLACES

PEOPLE AND PLACES

Thursday, December 4, 2014

Holy moley!: SAIL ON

 

 

Is it a boat, is it a car? No, it's a megayacht. The supercar designer's megaboat costs more than £16 million Slimline: Solar panels fold out from under a sleek car-bonnet-like deck to power the ship      

Whether it's being used as a swanky party venue, floating showroom or private vessel, the Xhibitionist is certainly a boat designed to turn heads.

The 75 metre long vessel is an extravagant, multipurpose yacht which even comes with its own supercar.

Designed by Swedish-based car designer Eduard Gray, the slick ship's interior is decked out in Art Nouveau decor, with classic touches like a Steinway piano, a dual staircase, and fine crystal Baccarat lighting.

But you'll need Bruce Wayne's bank account if you want to buy one. The lead-in price is 2 million euros (£16million) for a 'basic' model.

Keeping with its automotive theme, the Xhibitionist has space for a car showroom and 'engine room', complete with exposed engines displayed behind glass walls.

Solar panels fold out from under a sleek car-hood-like deck to power the ship, and the panels double up as a concert space or helipad with space for three helicopters.

The fly deck even features a Jacuzzi, and by night, the superyacht glows in the dark thanks to oceanLED lighting.

As for the Xhibitionist's price? 'As far as investments go, the 75 m luxury yacht Xhibitionist concept resembles more of a real estate and marketing venture than a yacht.'

If you have to ask, you know you can't afford it.

 

 

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Is it a boat, is it a car? No, it's a megayacht. The supercar designer's megaboat costs more than £16 million

The 229ft-wide Xhibitionist is an extravagant, multipurpose yacht designed by Swedish supercar designer Eduard Gray

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The 229ft-wide Xhibitionist is an extravagant, multipurpose yacht designed by Swedish supercar designer Eduard Gray

Holy moley! A good sized helipad on deck ensures A-listers can be flown in if needed

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Holy moley! A good sized helipad on deck ensures A-listers can be flown in if needed

Shiny shiny: Believe it or not this is actually the inside of the boat. It feels as large as an airplane hangar, but with an Art Nouvea vibe

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Shiny shiny: Believe it or not this is actually the inside of the boat. It feels as large as an airplane hangar, but with an Art Nouvea vibe

Can we make it a car showroom? Apparently so, this boat is big enough to take an entire fleet of Bentleys

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Can we make it a car showroom? Apparently so, this boat is big enough to take an entire fleet of Bentleys

Opulence: Sofa space for chilling out, tick. But where's the television?

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Opulence: Sofa space for chilling out, tick. But where's the television?

And where better to chill out and watch the sunset than atop the deck... hang on, is that a band playing up there?

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And where better to chill out and watch the sunset than atop the deck... hang on, is that a band playing up there?

It may look like a deep sea creature from the abyssal plains but this is just the megayacht with its lights on after dark

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It may look like a deep sea creature from the abyssal plains but this is just the megayacht with its lights on after dark

And of course every megayacht needs a megacar for those all important onshore errands. Right, have we run out of champagne again? 

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And of course every megayacht needs a megacar for those all important onshore errands. Right, have we run out of champagne again? 

Slimline: Solar panels fold out from under a sleek car-bonnet-like deck to power the ship

And so to bed: By night, the superyacht glows in the dark thanks to oceanLED lighting

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And so to bed: By night, the superyacht glows in the dark thanks to ocean LED lighting

 

A talented designer has come up with a real 'floating palace' that is sure to catch the eye of superyacht owners.

Lujac Desautel's SALT concept is very much a luxury item. But it is no celebrity-style motoryacht; it is a 180ft yacht, complete with two masts and huge sails.

The living quarters resemble a glass box, offering stunning views 24/7 and the glass area can be folded away so as to open up the yacht and take in the sea air. There are also steps that can be folded down into the sea giving you your very own swimming pool.

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Lujac Desautel's SALT concept is a 180-foot vessel with sails instead of a motor that is very much a luxury item

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Lujac Desautel's SALT concept is a 180-foot vessel with sails instead of a motor that is very much a luxury item

The downstairs area resembled more like a pool-side lounging section, with easy access for a quick dip in the sea

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The downstairs area resembled more like a pool-side lounging section, with easy access for a quick dip in the sea

Included on board is a dining area that can cater for 12 people, a cocktail bar and even an interior garden. There is one master cabin, two VIP cabins and two twin-bed residences.

The yacht is a progression from Desautel's GLASS structure which was inspired by skyscrapers and Lego and resembles a gleaming block rising from the sea.

Instead, this sailing yacht is a somewhat more dreamy offering.

'The world is a laboratory of ideas that can be borrowed,' Desautel writes on his website.

'Certain typologies can evolve because they have adoptive features. SALT could be thought of as an evolution of these preconceived ideas.'

A walk down to the lower deck offers a stunning balcony view that can also act as a sun trap

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A walk down to the lower deck offers a stunning balcony view that can also act as a sun trap

The yacht is a progression from Desautel's GLASS structure which was inspired by skyscrapers and Lego

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The yacht is a progression from Desautel's GLASS structure which was inspired by skyscrapers and Lego

For any crew employed there are also four twin-bed cabins in a separate part of the yacht.

On his website Desautel describes how he believes 'great design offers an authentic beauty that invites people to consider experiencing the world in a different way; perhaps a way they never imagined.'

Desautel was last year nominated for Young Designer of the Year by Boat International Media and is a Bachelor of Architecture Student at California College of the Arts in the US.

Although the ideas are only at the 'design' stage, it is hoped the innovative and futuristic superyacht may well be just what one millionaire is after.

The upper deck offers relaxing space, and despite the choppy seas there are plenty of facilities to keep you relaxed on board

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The upper deck offers relaxing space, and despite the choppy seas there are plenty of facilities to keep you relaxed on board

Benjamin Maltby, Principal Consultant at MatrixLloyd – the worldwide authority on superyacht purchase and construction – gave MailOnline Travel his views on the SALT concept.

'I really like many of SALT's features. Sure, it's been created by a young designer – and this shows – but with a little further investment it could be turned into a glorious, ground-breaking vessel.

'The great thing about superyachts is that no planning permission is needed to build one – there are just some common sense safety regulations to be met. So buyers can make a floating space that's truly a reflection of their personalities and aspirations.

Lujac Desautel offers an insight into his thoughts via Instagram

 

The superyacht is very much a futuristic design, the brainchild of talented yacht lover Lujac Desautel

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The superyacht is very much a futuristic design, the brainchild of talented yacht lover Lujac Desautel

'I love the water-yacht interfaces. For years, too many designers viewed superyachts as floating houses. It took a long time for the ‘beach club’ concept to be accepted (this is where hinged parts of the hull fold outwards to create platforms down by the water’s edge) – now they’re de rigueur for engine-driven superyachts.

'SALT’s beach club at the back is an idea that’s not been tried as yet, but it’d be great as it offers a shady area that’s also surrounded by water on three sides.

'The steps on the side are wonderful, but some thought would be needed as how and where they would be stored when not in use as weight on a sailing superyacht must always be carried as centrally and low as possible to counteract the action of the wind on those sails.'

 

 

 

FROM SUPER YACHTS TO WWII GERMAN TRAINERS: DREAM ON

 

 

The super-yacht so big it's almost a ship: First look at former F1 boss Eddie Jordan's luxurious floating palace that even boasts a nightclub (but it still doesn't quite measure up to Roman's!)

  • F1 mogul commissions construction of a £25million super yacht that is 155ft-long
  • But luxurious vessel pales in comparison to the 536ft-long, £272million yacht owned by Roman Abramovich

 

F1 mogul Eddie Jordan has bought a £25million super yacht that is so big it is almost classed as a ship.

The 155ft-long vessel has been commissioned by the 58-year-old and will blow his current 120ft-long boat out of the water.

But it pales in comparison to the Eclipse, the world's largest private yacht.

Owned by Chelsea football club oligarch Roman Abramovich, that vessel is a staggering 536ft-long and cost £272million. It has two swimming pools, two helipads, a gym, hair salon, dancefloor and a 007-style submarine.

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Under construction: A computer-generated artist's impression of what Eddie Jordan's £25million yacht will look like when it is completed later this year

Under construction: A computer-generated artist's impression of what Eddie Jordan's £25million yacht will look like when it is completed later this year

Sunseeker boss Robert Braithwaite stands in the enormous hull that is currently being built at his company's headquarters in Poole, Dorset

But even the Eclipse will soon be dwarfed by a yacht currently being built for the Saudi royal family. Known only as Project Azzam, it will be 590ft-long and cost £400million.

Still, Mr Jordan can take comfort in the fact his yacht will have four decks to house 12 close friends as well as ten crew members.

Construction recently began at Sunseeker headquarters in Poole, Dorset, and floor-plans have hinted at what will be contained within.

The sky deck could boast a giant hot tub and bar and the upper deck will feature a luxurious dining area.

An on-board nightclub will be built and, after a tiring night of partying, Mr Jordan and his guests will be able to relax in the lower deck day-room.

There will be a ‘beach club’ stern and ‘panoramic viewing platforms’ down the side, giving guests a front row seat for the Grand Prix at Monaco.

The yacht will have an on-board garage complete with small boats and jet skis.

It will cost approximately £30,000 to fill up the super yacht with fuel for her 4,500-mile range.

A team of workers began building the 500-tonne vessel in April. Construction is expected to be finished by December next year.

It will be the largest ever built by Sunseeker, a firm that has long been a favourite with F1 drivers including Nigel Mansell, Michael Schumacher and Lewis Hamilton.

Robert Braithwaite, founder of Sunseeker, said: 'She will not be owned by many but those that do will be buying a craft of exceptional style, quality and innovation.'

Mr Jordan owns a 120ft vessel named ‘Snapper’, which is currently moored in Monaco.

Now a commentator at the BBC, he is a member of the Royal Cork Yacht Club in Ireland and has keen interests in extreme sports outside of sailing, including skiing.

Last month, stunned photographers captured images of the Project Azzam vessel as it was transported out of the 170-metre dry dock at the yard of German shipbuilder Lurssen. It had because too large to build inside.

The yacht, which was minus its bow section, was quickly moved to the larger 220-metre dock so engineers could continue with their work.

Peter Seyfferth, from TheYachtPhoto.com, said: 'The photographers who took the pictures of Azzam were overwhelmed by the size of it.

'It is difficult to say at this stage but I think it will be a very elegant yacht and more interesting looking then Eclipse.

'There appears to be a special propulsion system which should make it one of the fastest yachts out there.

'In terms of length, we think it will be around 180-metres which makes it longer than some cruise ships.

'If it has been commissioned for the Saudi Royal Family it is unlikely it will leave its dock very often. It is more of a question of prestige, to have the world's largest yacht.'

The yacht's 'beach club' stern. It will also have 'panoramic viewing platforms' down each side side, giving guests a front row seat for the Grand Prix at Monaco

The yacht's 'beach club' stern. It will also have 'panoramic viewing platforms' down each side side, giving guests a front row seat for the Grand Prix at Monaco

Huge: Eclipse, owned by Chelsea Football Club owner Mr Abramovich, has two swimming pools, two helipads, a gym, hair salon, dancefloor and a 007-style submarine

Huge: Eclipse, owned by Chelsea Football Club owner Mr Abramovich, has two swimming pools, two helipads, a gym, hair salon, dancefloor and a 007-style submarine

Official details on mega yachts, such as Project Azzam and Mr Abramovich's Eclipse, are notoriously sketchy due to confidentiality agreements set up between the builders and their customers.

But they are known to have incredible security systems and it is not uncommon for them to be flanked by smaller yachts and submarines which help make up a billionaire's flotilla.

It is thought a yacht this size will cost its new owner around £400million - and that is just the initial payment with the yacht having astronomical running costs.

Welcome aboard the gold superyacht the size of an OIL TANKER... with indoor ski slope, on-board BMWs and five helicopters

  • The 918ft tankers normally carry one million barrels of oil and use 60 tons of fuel a day
  • The superyacht design includes four-storey ski slop, Austrian-style lodge and four beach clubs with sea access
  • World's first tanker-sized yacht is called Imāra, a name based on the Arabic word for 'emirate'.

When it comes to the competitive world of superyachts, size is everything.

Which is why one design firm has gone all-out in its bid to attract the rich and famous, drawing up plans for a vessel based on the dimensions of an oil tanker.

Measuring 918ft in length and including a four-storey ski slope - complete with Austrian-themed Apres lodge - the mind-boggling boat is nearly double the length of the world's biggest superyacht, Azzam, owned by the Abu Dhabi royal family, which measures 590ft.

The oil tanker-sized superyacht will measure 918ft in length and will have a grand hull painted white and gold

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The oil tanker-sized superyacht will measure 918ft in length and will have a grand hull painted white and gold

The bizarre design is the brainchild of an Austrian firm called MOTION Code: BLUE and is planned to appeal to billionaires in the Gulf, who may like to celebrate their oil-based wealth with a superyacht designed to look like a tanker.

In fact, the world's first tanker sized yacht is called Imāra, a name based on the Arabic word for 'emirate'.

Billionaire sailors will be able to entertain guests across the 11 decks, store five helicopters on board, receive visitors arriving at the three helipads, and relax in the four-deck-high atrium, complete with waterfalls.

Wet garages will store tender boats and toys including speedboats and jet skis so guests can entertain themselves without having to head to the beach.

As well as a hull painted white and gold, the enormous area can be explored using custom painted BMW 13 electric cars to zip passengers form one end of the boat to another.

The spectacular design includes space for a four-storey ski slope, complete with Austrian-style lodge, four beach clubs with access to the sea restaurants, a spa and BMW cars to zip guests from on end of the ship to another

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The spectacular design includes space for a four-storey ski slope, complete with Austrian-style lodge, four beach clubs with access to the sea restaurants, a spa and BMW cars to zip guests from on end of the ship to another

A Suezmax oil tanker can normally hold around one million barrels of oil and burn up to 60 tons of fuel on a daily basis to power them through the water. But filling the tank will be the least of this billionaire yacht-owner's worries.

On board there will be eight two-storey VIP suites, another 12 guest cabins, theatres, four beach clubs with access to the sea, concert halls, libraries and offices.

A seafront gym will offer the perfect view while working out, along with tennis courts, an enormous spa and a selection of restaurants and a shisha bar.

But by far the most unusual centrepiece to the superyacht will be the four-storey ski slope, in case passengers tire of constant sunshine and beach clubs, complete with an Austrian-style lodge for apres-ski.

The superyacht has three helipads and two hangars to stores and extra two helicopters if needed, as well as wet garages for speedboats and other toys that guests may want to use

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The superyacht has three helipads and two hangars to stores and extra two helicopters if needed, as well as wet garages for speedboats and other toys that guests may want to use

Christian Gumpold, managing director of Motion Code: Blue, said: 'Motion Code: Blue defines itself as trendsetter in yacht design and has generated and pushed many trends in modern yacht design since its foundation back in 2009.

'We have developed the world's first tanker-sized yacht called Imara, which is based on the Arabic word for 'emirate'.

'Based on the dimensions and hull geometries of common 280-metre long SuezMax tankers, the design studio's concept was to improve the aesthetics of nowadays oil tankers by developing a private tanker-based yacht with emphasis to the preferences of Middle East clients who are willing to show their national pride and their country's resources by using a modified and upcycled oil tanker as private luxury floating residence.

'The overall exterior design concept was to generate a highly precious aesthetic combined with modern architecture-like elements but also incorporating every state-of-the art-superyacht feature.

'The interior design of Imara is simply enormous.

'With a length of 280m, a beam of 57m and a total of 11 decks, Imara set clearly new standards in private yachting.

'It shows what is possible when thinking outside the box.'

 
   

 

 

Sunseeker boss Robert Braithwaite stands in the enormous hull that is currently being built at his company's headquarters in Poole, Dorset

 

Eddie JordanRoman Abramovich
Yacht fans: Mr Jordan (left) may live a life of luxury, but his yacht is almost like a toy when compared to the private boat owned by Roman Abramovich (right)

 

This is the moment the world's largest private yacht took to the sea. Azzam, which was built by German firm Lurssen, is a staggering 590 feet long - a £400million floating palace which has knocked Roman Abramovich off the owners' top spot. It was officially unveiled for the first time in April following three years at the shipbuilder's docks in Bremen.

World beater: The yacht Azzam is 590 feet long and cost a staggering £400million

World beater: The yacht Azzam is 590 feet long and cost a staggering £400million

Yachtspotters have now photographed Azzam, believed to have been ordered by a Middle-Eastern billionaire, being tested on the North Sea.

Azzam has taken pole position as the world's largest yacht off Eclipse, a 533-foot boat owned by Roman Abramovich.

It can travel in excess of 30 knots, with power coming from a combination of two gas turbines and two diesel engines with a total of 94,000 horsepower.

Introducing the world's largest yacht: Azzam

Majestic: Believed to have been pictured in the North Sea, the yacht was first unveiled back in April

Majestic: Believed to have been pictured in the North Sea, the yacht was first unveiled back in April

Speed as well as size: Experts claim the megayacht reached a speed of 31.5 knots during its trials - making it by far the fastest in the world

Speed as well as size: Experts claim the megayacht reached a speed of 31.5 knots during its trials - making it by far the fastest in the world

Peter Seyfferth, from TheYachtPhoto.com, said: 'During the three days of trials, Azzam reached an amazing top speed of 31.5 knots, making her not only the longest but also by far the fastest megayacht in the world.

AZZAM'S VITAL STATISTICS

Cost: £400million
Length: 590ft
Speed: Over 30 knots - it hit 31.5 in trials
Horsepower: 94,000

'Such a speed is absolutely exceptional for a yacht of this size.

'Her elegant, sleek lines are another feature which distinguish Azzam from all the other yachts above 150 metres.'

Mubarak Saad al Ahbabi was the engineer behind the megayacht, and assembled a team to work on the ultra-sophisticated project.

He was told by the yacht's secret buyer to build a vessel which was innovative and had a timeless design which would be able to travel at high speed and in shallow waters.

The exterior design, which has been described as 'surprisingly slender' was carried out by Nauta Yachts, with interior designer Christophe Leoni working on Azzam's inside.

Azzam is expected to be delivered to its owner later this year.

Labour of love: The megayacht spent three years at the shipbuilder's docks in Bremen, and has been praised for its sleek lines

Labour of love: The megayacht spent three years at the shipbuilder's docks in Bremen, and has been praised for its sleek lines

Seen this, Abramovich? Azzam has taken the top spot as the world's largest yacht off Eclipse, owned by the Russian billionaire

Seen this, Abramovich? Azzam has taken the top spot as the world's largest yacht off Eclipse, owned by the Russian billionaire

Azzam, which was built by German firm Lurssen, is a staggering 590 feet long Azzam, which was built by German firm Lurssen, is a staggering 590 feet long

 

 

Ready to serve: The vessel will be delivered to its owner, believed to be a Middle-Eastern billionaire, later in 2013

Lurssen, which is building Azzam, has refused to discuss the top secret yacht although rumours in the industry are that is being build for Saudi billionaire Al-Waleed bin Talal.  Al-Waleed, 57, is worth around £10billion and a member of the Saudi royal family. If he is the owner, he is thought to have ordered the new toy as a replacement for his Kingdom 5KR yacht, which he has enjoyed for the past 20-years.

Ousted: But Mr Abramovich is about to lose his title as the owner of the world's largest private yacht - after this incredible vessel was spotted in Germany last month

Ousted: But Mr Abramovich is about to lose his title as the owner of the world's largest private yacht - after this incredible vessel was spotted in Germany last month

This is quite literally the Rolls-Royce of the yachting world - with Rolls-Royce Marine behind the luxurious £80million vessel.

The Palmer Johnson (PJ) World is every bit a superyacht.

A cinema, a beauty salon, and a docking station for a six-passenger submarine are some of the particular highlights of the floating paradise.

Complete with its own helipad, guests will have the option of getting a helicopter in or travelling by boat

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Complete with its own helipad, guests will have the option of getting a helicopter in or travelling by boat

The PJ World yacht, estimated to cost at least £80m, really is a luxury home on the sea with numerous high-end amenities

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The PJ World yacht, estimated to cost at least £80m, really is a luxury home on the sea with numerous high-end amenities

Spectacular views, as expected, will be seen from the owner's private suite on board the Palmer Johnson superyacht

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Spectacular views, as expected, will be seen from the owner's private suite on board the Palmer Johnson superyacht

Rolls-Royce Marine is co-designing the vessel alongside master shipbuilders Palmer Johnson, with an asking price of £80million.

Other features include a helicopter garage and 32-ft swimming pool.

With guest accommodations for 16 and crew accommodations for 26, PJ World is truly a go anywhere ship that is expected to be delivered in within 18 months to her owner.

Currently the yacht is being built in Norway. A spokesperson for Palmer Johnson told MailOnline Travel: 'The yacht is 26 months from completion after signing of contract. Her hull and superstructure are completed and the owner would be able customize his/her own interior.

'We’ve built a number of Palmer Johnson yachts over the years and they are an incredible product.

'She is an explorer yacht like no other. With a large fuel capacity, vast on-board stores and sea-keeping facilities and an ice class hull, she was built to cruise all the worlds ocean's with limited stops.'

The yacht is 26 months from finishing construction at a base in Norway, with interest in purchasing it predicted to be high

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The yacht is 26 months from finishing construction at a base in Norway, with interest in purchasing it predicted to be high

This design looks almost military, and as it is equipped with a thermal imaging system, this fits in with the power of the vessel

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This design looks almost military, and as it is equipped with a thermal imaging system, this fits in with the power of the vessel

An artist's design of the gym area on board the PJ World, which will raise the game in the world of superyachts

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An artist's design of the gym area on board the PJ World, which will raise the game in the world of superyachts

The luxurious main lounge offers vast amounts of space for guests as well as numerous viewing points

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The luxurious main lounge offers vast amounts of space for guests as well as numerous viewing points

For those who like to perform, there is the opportunity of entertaining your guests on the grand piano on board

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For those who like to perform, there is the opportunity of entertaining your guests on the grand piano on board

And when you just want some alone time, you can retire to your personal salon to  relax

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And when you just want some alone time, you can retire to your personal salon to relax

The PJ World will allow all-year round operating of the Antarctic, Arctic, Middle East, Mediterranean, Caribbean, Far East as well as other worldwide ocean voyages.

The 267ft, 600-tonne vessel will feature advanced and environmentally-friendly marine technology and has a top speed of 16.5 knots (19mph).

Palmer Johnson have confirmed to MailOnline Travel that there has already been a lot of interest in purchasing the World model.

 

 

  • The world’s largest solar boat is making London its final port of call for the weekend before it travels to Paris
  • The MS Turanor PlanetSolar has a lightweight carbon structure and 512 square metres of photovoltaic cells
  • Launched in Florida, its DeepWater expedition has collected data along the Gulf Stream to help scientists get a better idea of climate change

The MS Tûranor PlanetSolar has 512 square metres of photovoltaic cells made of up 809 solar panels or 29,124 solar cells. The eco-friendly boat is capable of crossing the Atlantic ocean in 22 days, smashing the previous Guinness World record of 26 days thanks to its clever design. Launched in Florida, its DeepWater expedition sought to collect a continuous series of physical and biological measurements along the Gulf Stream, both from the water and the atmosphere, using advanced instruments onboard.

The world's largest solar boat is making London its final port of call on an epic voyage of scientific discovery along the Gulf stream

The world's largest solar boat is making London its final port of call on an epic voyage of scientific discovery along the Gulf stream

The MS Turanor PlanetSolar has 512 square metres of photovoltaic cells and is capable of crossing the Atlantic ocean in just 22 days

The MS Turanor PlanetSolar has 512 square metres of photovoltaic cells and is capable of crossing the Atlantic ocean in just 22 days. It is the first time the impressive catamaran has visited the UK and it will be docked at Canary Wharf from tomorrow until Monday 2nd September to show off its solar panels that can generate 480 kWh on a sunny day. The vessel is a scientific research platform for the University of Geneva (UNIGE), has a top speed of 14 knots and is home to up to nine crew members at a time, including scientists. It is stuffed with atmospheric instruments, some of which are prototypes developed by the university and for the past four months has been analysing the Gulf Stream to collect data that might inform scientists about climate change.

WATCH: World's largest SOLAR boat powered by 809 panels

It is the first time the impressive catamaran has visited the UK

It is the first time the impressive catamaran has visited the UK and it will be docked at Canary Wharf from tomorrow until Monday 2nd September to show off its solar panels that can generate 480 kwh on a sunny day. It is pictured in New York

The vessel is a scientific research platform for the University of Geneva

The vessel is a scientific research platform for the University of Geneva (UNIGE), has a top speed of 14 knots and is home to up to nine crew members at a time, including scientists. Led by Professor Martin Beniston, climatologist and director of the Institute of Environmental Sciences at UNIGE, the research team studied the key parameters of climate regulation, focusing on aerosols and phytoplankton. Their aim is to improve the understanding of complex interactions between the ocean and atmosphere, as well as the role these interactions play in climate change. He said: 'The PlanetSolar DeepWater expedition has allowed intensive testing in real-world conditions of a number of ocean and atmospheric instruments, some of which are prototypes.

'There is now a wealth of physical, chemical, and biological data housed at the University of Geneva, and which is beginning to undergo exhaustive scientific scrutiny.

Here, the boat has 'closed' its solar panels allowing it to dock more easily

Here, the boat has 'closed' its solar panels allowing it to dock more easily. It also pulls them in when sea conditions are very rough

The boat is approximately 35m long and 23m wide, depending on whether the solar panels are closed

The boat is approximately 35m long and 23m wide, depending on whether the solar panels are closed. In this image you can see the Statue of Liberty to the left. 'Although the data has not been analysed yet, we have noticed some very interesting trends, especially with regards to the production of aerosols by sea sprays,' he said. The boat is approximately 35m long and 23m wide, depending on whether the solar panels are closed - when it is docked or experiencing very rough conditions at sea - or open, in most instances at sea.

The boat travels at an average speed of five knots and uses a staggering 512 square metres of
photovoltaic panels to power six blocks of lithium-ion batteries.

The boat is stuffed with atmospheric instruments, some of which are prototypes

The boat is stuffed with atmospheric instruments, some of which are prototypes and for the past four months has been analysing the Gulf Stream to collect data that might inform scientists about climate change. It is pictured on a visit to New York

The boat travels at an average speed of 5 knots

The boat travels at an average speed of 5 knots and uses a staggering 512 square metres of photovoltaic panels to power six blocks of lithium-ion batteries. Despite this it is is light, durable and completely silent. Crossing the Atlantic in 22 days, the speedy solar boat compares favourably with a 40 foot sailing ship, which usually takes around 35 days to cross the ocean. The university believes it clearly demonstrates the possibilities of solar power for sea travel, with massive implications for sustainable tourism and transport. With zero fuel requirements and zero carbon emissions, the boat can take to the open seas for months at a time, so long as the sun continues to rise.

With zero fuel requirements and zero carbon emissions, the boat can take to the open seas for months

With zero fuel requirements and zero carbon emissions, the boat can take to the open seas for months at a time, so long as the sun continues to rise. This is the high-tech control panel

With a carbon structure, the boat is light, durable and completely silent

With a carbon structure, the boat is light, durable and completely silent

Professor Beniston said: 'The MS Tûranor PlanetSolar has positive benefits for scientific study and exploration, allowing for pollution-free research to be carried out in the vicinity of the boat.' The boat also plays an educational role as the scientists are keen to raise awareness about environmental issues. One of the aims of the recent expedition, which stopped at Miami, New York, Boston, Halifax and St. John’s before journeying to London, is to promote the use of solar technology.

The next stop is Paris

One of the aims of the recent expedition, which stopped at Miami, New York (pictured) Boston, Halifax and St. John¿s before journeying to London, is to promote the use of solar technology. The next stop is Paris. It was designed by Craig Loomes from New Zealand after months of research into creating the optimum dimensions and design of the double-hulled vessel. Engineers optimised the energy collection and storage as well as the boat’s aerodynamics, propulsion systems and choice of building materials. The light scientific vessel has a carbon structure and is its name is inspired by the literary mythology of J.R.R. Tolkien and literally means 'power of the sun'. After visiting London, the boat will cross the English Channel and will then dock in Paris.

 

 

Sailing into the record books: The £400m, 590ft super-yacht that's going to put Roman Abramovich's nose out of joint. New mega-yacht took four years to design and build and is largest in world. Called Azzam, it has been built for a mystery client whom some say is Saudi. Chelsea owner Abramovich's 533ft Eclipse now just second-largest in world

It is the largest private yacht ever built and is set to launch a new round of one-upmanship among the world's super-rich.

At 590ft, Azzam is 57ft longer than Russian oligarch Roman Abramovich's superyacht Eclipse.

The Chelsea owner's vessel had been the world's biggest yacht – until Azzam's launch in Germany yesterday.

 

For the playboy who has everything: Azzam the £400m superyacht blows everything else out of the water

For the playboy who has everything: Azzam the £400m superyacht blows everything else out of the water

Ownership of the £400million craft is shrouded in secrecy but it is rumoured to have been paid for by a member of the Saudi royal family, Alwaleed Bin Talal Alsaud.

Longer than 12 double-decker buses, not only is Azzam the biggest superyacht, it is also expected to be one of the fastest. The 94,000 horsepower vessel could reach speeds of more than 30 knots, or 35mph.

The size of superyachts has grown as billionaires compete to own the largest and its builders boast that Azzam, which means dedication in Arabic, is the 'most complex and challenging yacht that has ever been built'.

It was designed by Nauta Yachts and constructed in Bremen by Lurssen.

The firm's Peter Lurssen said: 'She truly represents another milestone in yachting history.'

Little is known about the interior of the yacht, which will require a staff of 50 and will be delivered to its owner later this year.

But it is likely to match the luxury of Abramovich's Eclipse, which features an armour-plated master suite, two swimming pools, two helipads, a hall, a cinema, a mini-submarine and even its own missile defence system.

Longer than some cruise ships: Azzam has been described as the 'most complex and challenging yacht' ever built

Longer than some cruise ships: Azzam is described as the 'most complex and challenging yacht' ever built

No expense spared: Azzam has taken one year to design and three years to build

No expense spared: New super-yacht Azzam has taken one year to design and three years to build

Abramovich has owned Eclipse, which is valued at £740million, since it was launched in 2010. It took the title of world's biggest private yacht from the 454ft Rising Sun, owned by American businessman Larry Ellison, which in turn took over from the 414ft Octopus, owned by Microsoft co-founder Paul Allen.

Prince Alwaleed, who is said to be worth around £10billion, already has Nabil, a yacht formerly owned by Saudi Arabian arms dealer Adnan Khashoggi, in his fleet.

If he is confirmed as the owner of Azzam, it will be the second time the 58-year-old has got the better of Abramovich.

The 46-year-old Russian was denied a berth at Antibes harbour on the French Riviera in 2011 as the prince had docked another of his yachts, the 265ft Kingdom 5KR, in the last remaining space.

Eclipse's crew pleaded for a berth but were eventually forced to drop anchor at sea and travel to the Russian's villa on a motorboat.

Azzam's design suggests it has been built for a buyer in the Middle East as it has about 50 suites but no large open spaces on deck, said TheYachtPhoto's Peter Seyfferth.

'I have never seen an Arab-owned yacht with big parties and girls round the pool like the Russians have,' he said.

'It is unlikely it will leave its dock very often. It is more of a question of prestige, to have the world's largest yacht.'

Helicopter lands on world's largest yacht, Azzam

You wouldn't want to turn around in a hurry: Azzam is 54ft longer than Abramovich's yacht Eclipse

You wouldn't want to turn around in a hurry: Azzam is 54ft longer than Abramovich's yacht Eclipse

Abramovich's yacht Eclipse is smaller but boasts essentials such as two heliports,several jacuzzis and bulletproof glass

Abramovich's yacht Eclipse is smaller but boasts essentials such as two heliports,several jacuzzis and bulletproof glass

Plenty of room for the crew: The mystery buyer, whom some suspect may be a Saudi Royal, will have rooms to spare

Plenty of room for the crew: The mystery buyer, whom some suspect may be a Saudi Royal, will have rooms to spare. At 590.6ft long, Azzam is longer than 12 double-decker buses parked end-to-end. At her widest point, known as the beam, Azzam measures 68.2ft, while her hull is 15.8ft deep. She's heavier than Eclipse, too, with an estimated gross tonnage of 14,000GT - roughly equivalent to 1,750 adult African elephants.

Powered by two gas turbines and two diesel engines, she will boast an impressive 94,000 horsepower and a top speed in excess of 30 knots.

The world's largest super-yacht, Azzam, was launched in Germany today

The world's largest super-yacht, Azzam, has been commissioned for a mystery owner and launched in Germany today

Azzam's fuel tank can hold one million litres and she will have a top speed of in excess of 30 knots.

It took the world's top engineers one year to design Azzam and three years to build her - but this is considered super-quick in ship-building terms.

The owner of Azzam is rumoured to be a member of the Saudi Royal Family, but the whole project is shrouded in secrecy.

Interior features will include a 29ft salon and a stunning, open-plan interior.

French interior designer Christophe Leoni was briefed to produce a sophisticated and yet timeless interior with a turn-of-the-century, Empire style.

Roman Abramovich's Eclipse is 533.1ft long and 72.2ft wide, and has an estimated gross tonnage of 13,500GT.

Eclipse, owned by Roman Abramovich, has been revered by yachting enthusiasts for years on account of her size

Eclipse, owned by Abramovich, has been revered by yachting enthusiasts for years on account of her size

She has four diesel engines and a maximum speed of 22 knots, which means Azzam will far outstrip her should the billionaire owners decide to have a race.

The yacht can accommodate 36 guests in comfort, and boasts a cinema, conference facilities, children's playroom, beauty salon, dance floor, swimming pool and sauna.

Built by Blohm +Voss Shipyards and designed inside and out by Terence Disdale, Eclipse was custom-made for the Chelsea oligarch in 2010.

Both ships are so huge, they would have trouble fitting into the majority of the world's marinas.  Only a handful, including Monaco and Antibes on the Riviera would be large enough to accommodate them.

However, despite Azzam eclipsing Eclipse today, neither of them comes close to the Titanic in terms of scale.  Built in 1912, the ill-fated Titanic was 882ft long and 92ft wide.

 

  • XSR Interceptor has been described as 'the Bugatti Veyron of the seas'
  • Built from Kevlar and carbon fibre it has two engines putting out 1,600bhp
  • A luxury version featured on BBC's Top Gear being raced against a Ferrari
  • Built for the military, it is being put up for auction in Hampshire tomorrow

This James Bond-style powerboat was built to chase down pirates with its remote controlled machine gun and 100mph speeds - but now it could be yours. The cutting edge boat - the fastest military vessel ever made - is on general sale and is tipped to go for a fraction of its £1.5 million value. When it was launched in 2006 the XSR Interceptor was described as 'the Bugatti Veyron of the seas' in homage to its incredible 1,600bhp power and stylish design.

Dream machine: The XSR Interceptor powerboat made from Kevlar and carbon fibre was built to chase down pirates with its remote controlled machine gun and 100mph top speed

Dream machine: The XSR Interceptor powerboat made from Kevlar and carbon fibre was built to chase down pirates with its remote controlled machine gun and 100mph top speed

Cutting edge: The military vessel is being put up for auction with no reserve and is tipped to sell for a fraction of its £1.5 million value

Cutting edge: The military vessel is being put up for auction with no reserve and is tipped to sell for a fraction of its £1.5 million value. After unveiling the boat Prince Michael of Kent described it as 'a true super product of which British industry should be proud'. Top Gear host Jeremy Clarkson called it 'the most beautiful thing ever created by man' when it featured on the BBC show. But seven years on, the 48ft superboat is now set to go under the hammer with no reserve - and anyone can bid provided they put down a £50 refundable deposit. It is among 300 lots including two other incomplete boats being sold off by manufacturers XSMG World to recover money owed to HM Revenue and Customs.

Cockpit: The cabin seats are worth £90,000 alone

Cockpit: The cabin seats are worth £90,000 alone

Powerplant: The boat's two powerful Isottafraschini engines put out a whopping 16000hp

Powerplant: The boat's two powerful Isottafraschini engines put out a whopping 1600hp

Impressed: Top Gear presenters James May and Richard Hammond pictured aboard the futuristic craft. The show saw the boat being raced against a Ferrari Daytona in the South of France

Impressed: Top Gear presenters James May and Richard Hammond pictured aboard the futuristic craft. The show featured a luxury version of the boat being raced against a Ferrari Daytona in the South of France

The cutting edge boat is built from Kevlar and carbon fibre and boasts a camouflage paint job and top spec navigation equipment.

It even has a 0.5mm machine gun turret that pops up from inside the front of the vessel although the gun itself is not included in the sale.

The onboard toilets cost a staggering £7,000 and the cabin seats are worth £90,000.

The dashboard was created by the same people who made the Bugatti's, the front deck is crafted out of glass and the rear is made out of the finest teak.

Although the boat, called No Boundaries, is expected to sell for a snip, the winning bidder will have to fork out £4,000 to pay overdue marina fees.

The buyer will also have to negotiate a price for the boat's two huge 800hp turbocharged engines which are currently on loan from the suppliers.

The carbon fibre and kevlar craft streaks across the sea powered by two huge engines

Power: The carbon fibre and Kevlar craft streaks across the sea powered by two huge engines

The 48ft superboat, named No Boundaries, is among 300 lots including two other incomplete boats being sold off by manufacturers XSMG

The 48ft superboat, named No Boundaries, is among 300 lots including two other incomplete boats being sold off by manufacturers XSMG

Streamlined: The boat, the fastest military vessel ever made - is being sold with no reserve and is tipped to sell for a fraction of its £1.5 million value

Streamlined: The boat, the fastest military vessel ever made - is being sold with no reserve and is tipped to sell for a fraction of its £1.5 million value

A luxury model was driven by TV presenter James May in a race against Richard Hammond's Ferrari Daytona from Portofino, Italy, to St Tropez, France in 2009. It had also been listed for sale but has since been withdrawn.

Hot rod of the seas: The dashboard was created by the same people who made the Bugatti Veyron's

Hot rod of the seas: The dashboard was created by the same people who made the Bugatti Veyron's

The onboard toilets cost a staggering £7,000

The onboard toilets cost a staggering £7,000

Scuppered: Although the boat is expected to sell for a snip, the winning bidder will have to fork out £4,000 to pay overdue marina fees

Scuppered: Although the boat is expected to sell for a snip, the winning bidder will have to fork out £4,000 to pay overdue marina fees. It has a range of 1,000 miles and can carry up to 12 passengers. XSMG World says the vessel 'provides governments and commercial users with high speed interception and offshore patrol capability to counter the most complex of modern waterborne threats'. Its website claims their 'world-class' team had come up with a boat that 'redefines the operational boundaries of high speed intercept, pursuit and patrol in coastal waters'. Speaking at its launch in 2006, XSMG World boss Ian Sanderson said: 'Globally the ultra-rich are spending vast amounts of money on luxury 'supercars' but there was no marine equivalent, so we challenged ourselves to create one. 'We wanted the XSR48 to be state of the art so have taken the DNA and high performance of a supercar and transformed it into a boat. 'The top speed of the boat is 100mph making in the world's fastest diesel boat. It is the Bugatti Veyron of the marine world.

'If you are spending a million pounds you may as well buy something that can take up to five friends and something you can eat, sleep and entertain on. 'The major advantage of the superboat as opposed to the supercar is the freedom it offers. 'There are no boundaries with this boat. Everywhere you go these days on land there are speed traps and cameras, but here you just have the wide open ocean in front of you.'

  • Business tycoons, princes and movie moguls rule the waves in this sumptuous set of spectacular sea cruisers
  • The luxury boats have their own basketball courts, wine cellars, cinemas, helicopters, submarines and discos
  • Sales of superyachts have more than doubled in five years - up from 194 in 2010 to 412 at the end of 2014
  • Boom mirrors a doubling of the number of billionaires around the globe, from 793 in 2009 to 1,645 in 2014

If you're only a millionaire, don't bother getting your wallet out.

Figures have just been released which show that sales of superyachts have more than doubled in five years - up from 194 in 2010 to 412 at the end of last year.

Just as those numbers have been rocketing, so the potential pool of buyers has been on the increase. Figures from Forbes show the number of US dollar billionaires in the world has also grown by more than 100 per cent - from 793 in 2009, to 1,645 in 2014.

Depressingly for the rest of us even more superyachts are in the pipeline, including the Triple Deuce, which will reportedly be the first with a billion pound price tag.

The £390 million Azzam superyacht - owned by the president of the UAE - leaves the yard on its maiden voyage in 2013

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The £390 million Azzam superyacht - owned by the president of the UAE - leaves the yard on its maiden voyage in 2013

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The graph on the left shows how superyacht sales have risen dramatically since 2009, in line with a doubling of the number of dollar billionaires. The chart on the right shows how Roman Abramovich's Eclipse superyacht is by some distance the most expensive in the world at $1.1 billion - despite the Russian oligarch and Chelsea FC owner being far from the wealthiest owner on the list

At that price it will be the most expensive private yacht ever built, costing more than the annual GDP of Western Sahara, the British Virgin Islands, and Micronesia.

It will reportedly be 222 metres long, which is more than 40 meters longer than the world's current biggest superyacht, Azzam.

It makes some of the floating palaces on the list of the world's top 15 private yachts compiled by Boatshop24.com seem like veritable bargains.

But then you still have to consider the 'small' matter of the running costs.

Rob Anderson, director of Boatshop24.com, explained: 'As well as forking out hundreds of millions of dollars to buy a superyacht in the first place, don't forget that the annual running costs of a boat this size are phenomenal - well over $20 to $25 million a year - and hundreds of people are employed to maintain and run them.

'Only the top 0.01% of humans have that kind of wealth, so it's fascinating to get a glimpse of who they are and what they do.'

Yes that's £12 million to £16 million a year in running costs alone.

Though Benjamin Maltby, an English barrister and Director of consultants Matrix Lloyd, points out that some of the lower end superyachts do repay their owners to an extent through being chartered.

But unless it is roughly three times the length of a London bus you aren't on one.

'Superyachts are yachts longer than 24 metres,' Mr Maltby said. 'Above this size certain rules and regulations apply, crew must be employed, and the whole adventure becomes much more exclusive.

'The good news is that charter income can contribute significantly towards running costs. They can take years to build, but buying an existing vessel gives immediate use, and a subsequent refit can soon provide individuality and a box-fresh feel.'

Using figures on superyacht sales from Boat International Market Intelligence and the 2014 Credit Suisse Global Wealth Databook they also revealed that no British billionaire has made it into the most exclusive of private clubs.

In fact a breakdown of the world's top 15 superyacht owners shows that seven are from the Middle East, four from Eastern Europe, and three from the United States - with American entertainment mogul David Geffen owning two of the top 15.

The UK can only lay secondary bragging rights thanks to two of those owners living here and having interests in some of our biggest football clubs - Chelsea's owner Roman Abramovich, and Arsenal shareholder Alisher Usmanov.

Altogether in 2014, £2.4 billion (US$3.71 billion) was spent on superyachts.

Most are constructed in Germany, with boat building giants Lurssen and Blohm and Voss dominating the market.

British design teams are, however, responsible for many of the interiors and exteriors. Terence Disdale Design, of Richmond, South West London, is responsible for the interior of Abromovich's giant Eclipse, and also music mogul David Geffen's Pelorus. Terence has no formal training in the field yet is one of the world's most sought after yacht designers.

Tim Heywood, who was part of the famously coined 'Chelsea University,' otherwise known as the studio of the late Jon Bannenburg, along with Terence, designed the exterior of Pelorus, and also that of Alisher Usmanov's Dilbar, and finally the Al Mirqab, owned by the former Prime Minister of Qatar.

     

The 15 most expensive superyachts currently on the seas

15 -  OCTOPUS

COST: £130 million. The Octopus is owned by Microsoft co-founder Paul Allen and though it is only at number 15, still cost $200 million

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COST: £130 million. The Octopus is owned by Microsoft co-founder Paul Allen and though it is only at number 15, still cost $200 million

Owner: Paul Allen, Microsoft co-founder

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Owner: Paul Allen, Microsoft co-founder

  • The Octopus is 126m long and was built by world famous superyacht makers Lürssen in Germany in 2003
  • Owner Paul Allen, who co-founded software giant Microsoft with Bill Gates, recently used the yacht's submarine to find the wreck of the Japanese Navy's battleship Musashi, which had lain undiscovered on the floor of the Sibuyan Sea for the past 70 years after it was sunk by the US Navy in 1944
  • When not on a mission to find long lost warships, the Ocotpus can accommodate up to 26 guests in palatial comfort, and also has room for 57 crew
  • Luxury features include a glass bottomed swimming pool, a cinema, music recording studio and a hangar for two helicopters
  • Its interior was designed by Jonathan Quinn Barnett and the Octopus was last refitted in 2008
  • It is one of the slower superyachts in the list, with a cruising speed of 17 knots and a top speed of 20
  • It has a range of 8000 nautical miles on an 850,000-litre fuel tank
14 - RISING SUN

COST:  £130 MILLION. The Rising Sun was designed by Jon Bannenberg and built in 2004. Its owner David Geffen bought it in 2010

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COST:  £130 MILLION. The Rising Sun was designed by Jon Bannenberg and built in 2004. Its owner David Geffen bought it in 2010

Owner: David Geffen, entertainment mogul 

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Owner: David Geffen, entertainment mogul

  • David Geffen occupies the unique position of owning not one, but two superyachts in the top 15
  • In this instance it is the 138-metre long Rising Sun, which he acquired from Lurssen Yachts in 2010 for £130 million
  • The DreamWorks founder went closer to home to find a designer, in the form of San Francisco's Seccombe Design
  • It can accommodate 16 guests and up to 45 crew
  • Features include 82 rooms on five levels, with a reported 8,000 square metre living area
  • There is also a basketball court on the main deck, a cinema with giant plasma screen, extensive wine cellar, swimming pool and jacuzzi
  • It was designed by Jon Bannenberg and built in 2004 by Lürssen for Larry Ellison, CEO of Oracle Corporation, and last refitted in 2007
  • Geffen bought a half share of the yacht from Ellison in 2006, and took total ownership in 2010
  • It is capable of doing 28 knots flat out, with a cruising speed of 26 knots
13 - SEVEN SEAS

COST:  £130 million. The superyacht Seven Seas was bought by Jaws director Steven Spielberg in 2010. At 86 metres it is relatively short

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COST:  £130 million. The superyacht Seven Seas was bought by Jaws director Steven Spielberg in 2010. At 86 metres it is relatively short

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Owner: Steven Spielberg (right), film director

  • Seven Seas, built by the Dutch firm Oceanco, was purchased by the legendary Hollywood director Steven Spielberg for £130 million in 2010
  • It measures a relatively conservative 86 metres in length and can accommodate up to 12 guests with a maximum of 23 crew members
  • Features include 'at anchor stabilisers' to make the boat more comfortable when docked in choppy waters, one master suite, two VIP suites, plus two double guest cabins, and a twin cabin
  • A helipad, entertaining area, and cinema are also included
  • Two years ago the director, who was raised in the desert, announced that he wouldn't be seen in a while as he embarked on a 30,000 mile voyage
  • It can do 20 knots flat out, with a cruising speed of 15 knots.
  • The yacht has a range of 5000 nautical miles
  • Hollywood titan Spielberg has directed classics including Jaws, E.T., Schindler's List, Jurassic Park, the Indiana Jones franchise and Saving Private Ryan
  • 12 - LADY MOURA

    COST:  £136 million. The Lady Moura is one of the most opulent superyachts, if not the biggest. Its owner is billionaire Nasser al-Rashid

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    COST:  £136 million. The Lady Moura is one of the most opulent superyachts, if not the biggest. Its owner is billionaire Nasser al-Rashid

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    Owner: Nasser al-Rashid, Saudi Arabian businessman

    • Lady Moura is only the 27th largest superyacht in the world, but what it lacks in size it makes up for in elegance
    • Owner by engineering tycoon Nasser al-Rashid, it is 105 metres long and cost £136 million when it was sold by Blohm & Voss back in 1990
    • It has seven decks and an indoor swimming pool which can be transformed to an outdoor deck thanks to a roof which slides open
    • It had to be sent back for repairs after it took on water and nearly ran aground during the Cannes Film festival back in 2007
    • It is usually moored in Monaco and has its name carved on the starboard and stern in 24 carat gold
    • During the summer season it can be seen in the south of France, and frequently travels between Antibes and Monaco
    • Lady Moura is capable of 22 knots flat out, with a cruising speed of 20 knots
    • Saudi Arabian Mr al-Rashid founded Rashid Engineering in 1975, which oversees major government construction projects
    11 - AL MIRQAB

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    COST: £161 MILLION. The Al Mirqab was built in 2008 and at 133 metres, is known as one of the longest and most beautiful superyachts

    Owner: Hamad bin Jassim bin Jaber Al Thani, former Qatari prime min

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    Owner: Hamad bin Jassim bin Jaber Al Thani, former prime minister of Qatar

    • The Al Mirqab cost its owner Hamad bin Jassim bin Jaber Al Thani, the former prime minister of Qatar, £161 million
    • The source was another German yacht builder, Peters Schiffbau
    • Tim Heywood and Andrew Winch Designs, both UK based, were responsible or the exterior and interior
    • The yacht can accomodate 30 guests in 10 guest suites and two VIP suites, plus a maximum of 60 crew
    • Amenities include outside bars, a cinema, pool, and jacuzzi.
    • It is 133 metres long
    • The yacht has a top speed of 23 knots, and a cruising speed of 21 knots
    • Like the Seven Seas it also has stabilisers which increase onboard comfort when the boat is at anchor and on rough waters
    • Its owner was prime minister of Qatar from 2007 to 2013
    • Mr Al Thani He has stakes in Qatar Airways and Harrods and is a partner in Guernsey-based Project Grande, the developer of the opulent One Hyde Park apartment complex in London
    10 - DILBAR

    COST: £170 million. Major Arsenal shareholder and Uzebek-born businessman Alisher Usmanov has owned the Dilbar since 2008 which he bought in 2008.  

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    COST: £170 million. Major Arsenal shareholder and Uzebek-born businessman Alisher Usmanov has owned the Dilbar since 2008

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    Owner: Alisher Usmanov, Russian oligarch

    • Alisher Usmanov's Dilbar, named after his mother, is only the 24th largest yacht in the world, but occupies tenth place in the list
    • He spent £170 million on this floating palace back in 2008
    • At 110 metres long it features a steel hull and aluminium superstructure and state-of-the-art stabilisation system to minimise the roll effect of being at sea
    • British yacht designer Tim Heywood is responsible for the exterior while Paris-based designer Albert Pinto worked on the interior
    • It can sleep up to 20 passengers and 47 crew, and comes complete with a swimming pool and helipad
    • This superyacht, unlike many others in the list, is sometimes available for charter
    • It can do 21 knots flat out, and has an 18 knot cruising speed.
    • It was last refitted in 2009
    • Usmanov is thought to be Russia's richest man, with a fortune estimated at $14.7 billion, and the world's 58th richest person
    9 - PELORUS

    COST:  £195 MILLION. The Pelorus is  David Geffen's second entry in the top 15. He bought it in 2011 and also owns the Rising Sun

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    COST:  £195 MILLION. The Pelorus is  David Geffen's second entry in the top 15. He bought it in 2011 and also owns the Rising Sun

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    Owner: David Geffen, music mogul

    • The Pelorus, in Latin 'keeping on course,' was built by Lurssen in 2003 - making it one of the oldest yachts in the top 15
    • Terence Drisdale and Tim Heywood, both British, designed the interior and exterior respectively
    • The yacht can reach speeds of 20 knots flat out and has a cruising speed of 18 knots
    • Its features include a helicopter pad, zero-speed stabilisers, swimming pool, jet skis, and jacuzzi
    • Geffen bought it in 2011 from Roman Abromovich's wife Irina, who had been given the boat as part of her divorce settlement
    • Her ex had earlier allowed Chelsea captain John Terry and his wife Teri to use it for their honeymoon back in 2007
    • Pelorus was refitted in 2007 at the Blohm and Voss shipyard when a second helicopter pad, new paint and zero-speed stabilizers were installed
    • The original owner was a Saudi businessman who wanted to extend a 72 metre yacht he already had. Tim Heywood instead proposed building a new 85 metre one, which with extra features became the 115 metre Pelorus
    8 - Al Said

    COST:  £195 million. The Al Said is the fourth largest superyacht at 155 metres but is also quite speedy, capable of 25 knots flat out

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    COST:  £195 million. The Al Said is the fourth largest superyacht at 155 metres but is also quite speedy, capable of 25 knots flat out

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    Owner: Qaboos bin Said al Said, the Sultan of Oman

    • The Al Said is owned by Qaboos bin Said al Said, the Sultan of Oman, and is another product of Lurssen Yachts
    • At 155 metres long, it is the fourth largest superyacht in the world
    • British innovation is also featured here in the form of the exterior design by Redman Whiteley Dixon (RWD), of Hampshire, while the interior came from Monaco's Espen Oeino
    • The yacht, which was given the project name Sunflower during its secret construction, can sleep a colossal 70 guests and 154 crew
    • Features include a concert hall which can easily house a 50-piece orchestra, and the now obligatory helipad
    • The Al Said has a top speed of 25 knots, and a cruising speed of 22 knots
    • Its owner Qaboos is an avid fan and promoter of classical music and has his own 120-member orchestra, which has a strong reputation in the Middle East
    7: DUBAI

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    COST:  £195 MILLION. The prime minister and vice president of the United Arab Emirates enjoys cruising around in this monster

    Owner: Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, vice president and prime minister of the United Arab Emirates

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    Owner: Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, vice president and prime minister of the United Arab Emirates

    • The Dubai is the third largest superyacht in the world, and the third most expensive at £195 million
    • It is owned by the Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, who is vice president and prime minister of the United Arab Emirates
    • The Dubai is 162 metres in length
    • It was built in 2006 and the sleek interior is the work of the renowned British designer Andrew Winch
    • It was originally commissioned by Prince Jefri of Brunei, but ended up being passed to the Dubai government
    • Its notable features include seven decks, a barbecue area, a mosaic swimming pool, cinema, disco, landing area for a Blackhawk helicopter, five VIP suites and a 21.3 metre wide atrium
    • It also has a garage for its submarine and a vast array of water toys
    • The Dubai has an impressive top speed of Dubai has a displacement of 9,150 tonnes, an impressive top speed of 26 knots, and a nautical range of 8,500 miles
    6: RADIANT

    COST: £207 MILLION. The Radiant cruises in at number six on the list. It was first built for the late Russian oligarch Boris Berezovsky

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    COST: £207 MILLION. The Radiant cruises in at number six on the list. It was first built for the late Russian oligarch Boris Berezovsky

    Owner: Abdulla Al Futtaim, UAE businessman

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    Owner: Abdulla Al Futtaim, UAE businessman

    • In 2009 Lurssen Yachts also produced the 110 metre Radiant - sister ship to Alisher Usmanov's Dilbar, which is at number 10 on this list
    • It has an exterior designed by Tim Heywood
    • The Radiant was originally built for the late British-based Russian oligarch Boris Berezovsky
    • UAE businessman Abdulla Al Futtaim bought it from Berezovsky in 2010
    • Its features include a helicopter landing pad, jacuzzi, swimming deck, cinema, plus accommodation for up to 20 people
    • It also has the 'zero-speed stabilisers' which increase onboard comfort, particularly in rough waters
    • Its owner runs the Al Futtaim Group, a Dubai based conglomerate which has interests in the retail, automotive, technology and real estate sectors
    • The group owns Mall of the Emirates in Dubai, a 223,000 square metre outlet with more than 500 shops
    5: SERENE

    COST:  £214 million. The experience of cruising on the Serene is probably just that, given its incredible array of luxury features

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    COST:  £214 million. The experience of cruising on the Serene is probably just that, given its incredible array of luxury features

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    Owner: Yuri Sheffler, Russian vodka magnate

    • Owned by Russian tycoon Yuri Sheffler, The Serene is 134 metres in length, and cost £214 million
    • Again there is a British influence, with Reymond Langton Design being responsible for the interior
    • Features include seven decks, a hangar, two helicopter landing pads, a large swimming pool and a submarine
    • One of its special aspects is an LED-lit outdoor spa
    • It can sleep up to 24 guests in 15 staterooms, including a master suite, one VIP stateroom, seven double cabins and three twin cabins.
    • The Serene can also carry up to 52 crew
    • Bill Gates reportedly chartered the yacht for US$5 million dollars a week
    • You should never be short of something to drink on board, as its owner is Yuri Scheffler, the vodka-and-spirits magnate behind the Stolichnaya brand
    • Scheffler caused a stir in New York when he moored The Serene in midtown Manhattan in March 2014
    4: 'A'

    COST:  £252 MILLION. Certainly the most striking on the list, 'A' is the second of three Russian-owned superyachts to make the top 15

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    COST:  £252 MILLION. Certainly the most striking on the list, 'A' is the second of three Russian-owned superyachts to make the top 15

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    Owner: Andrey Melnichenko, Russian banking and steel billionaire

    • The futuristic superyacht 'A' was built in 2008 by Blohm & Voss and features and exterior and interior design by the uber trendy French designer Philippe Starck
    • The amazing look comes from an upside down steel hull and aluminium superstructure
    • It measures 119 metres long and was four years in the making
    • Features include three current creating swimming pools, bomb proof glass, and rotating beds
    • The bath knobs alone cost £25,000 each, and there are 44 motion detect security cameras
    • ‘A’ can accommodate 14 guests in one owner's suite and six guest suites
    • It also has room for up to 37 crew members
    • Powered by twin 6035bhp diesel engines, ‘A’ can reach up to 23 knots and has a range of 4250 nautical miles
    • As well as a penthouse in Manhattan, owner Andrey Melnichenko owns Harewood Estate in Ascot, Surrey
    3: TOPAZ

    COST: £337 million. Topaz owner Mansour bin Zayed al Nahyan clearly doesn't just spend his riches on Manchester City

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    COST: £337 million. Topaz owner Mansour bin Zayed al Nahyan clearly doesn't just spend his riches on Manchester City

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    Owner: Mansour bin Zayed al Nahyan, UAE's deputy prime minister and Manchester City FC owner

    • Third in the list of the world's most expensive superyachts is The Topaz, at £337 million
    • It is owned by the UAE's deputy prime minister Mansour bin Zayed al Nahyan
    • Again it is a product of the German shipyards of Lurssen in Bremen, though there are also significant British contributions, with Tim Heywood designing the exterior, and Terence Disdale the interior
    • This superyacht, at 147 metres long, was launched in 2012 and has an aluminium superstructure which consists of eight floors
    • Onboard features include zero speed stablisers, on deck jacuzzis, a swimming platform, and double helipad
    • The wealthiest of all the superyacht owners on this list, Sheikh Mansour is worth an estimated $20 billion
    • As well as owning Manchester City FC, he is the half brother of the current president of UAE, Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan - who also happens to own one of only two superyachts which cost more to build than The Topaz
    2: AZZAM

    COST: £390 million. The vast Azzam is the longest superyacht in the world at an incredible 180 metres

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    COST: £390 million. The vast Azzam is the longest superyacht in the world at an incredible 180 metres

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    Owner: Khalifa bin Zayed al Nahyan, President of the United Arab Emirates

    • The Azzam cost £390 million to build and fit out, and stretches beyond any other superyacht in the world in length
    • It was launched from the Bremen-Vegesack shipyard of Lurssen Yachts in 2013 and took more than three years to build
    • It features a 29 metre long open plan main cabin, two helipads, a pair of swimming pools, cinema, mini submarine, bullet proof glass, and armor plated lining in the master bedroom, and has its own missile defence system
    • Despite its gargantuan size it can reach 30 knots flat out, assisted by diesel and gas engines which combines to provide 94,000bhp
    • Longer than 12 double decker buses end-to-end, it requires a crew of 50 to operate
    • Its owner Khalifa bin Zayed al Nahyan, President of the United Arab Emirates, does not spend all of his vast $18 billion fortune on yachts - he is also a prominent philanthropist, having reportedly donated more than $460 million to humanitarian projects
    1: ECLIPSE

    COST:  £710 MILLION. And the winner, by some way, is Eclipse: a $1.1 billion monster owned by Russian oligarch Roman Abramovich

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    COST:  £710 MILLION. And the winner, by some way, is Eclipse: a $1.1 billion monster owned by Russian oligarch Roman Abramovich

    Owner: Roman Abramovich, Russian oligarch and businessman

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    Owner: Roman Abramovich, Russian oligarch and businessman

     

  • On the move: The yacht, which was minus its bow section, was quickly taken to the larger 220-metre dock so engineers could continue the awesome project

    On the move: The yacht, which was minus its bow section, was quickly taken to a larger 220-metre dock so engineers could continue the awesome project.

    Super-secretive: The £400million megayacht, known only as Project Azzam, is rumoured to have been commissioned by the Saudi Royal Family
    Project Azzam

    Super-secretive: The £400million megayacht, known only as Project Azzam, is rumoured to have been commissioned by the Saudi Royal Family

     

    This is the next super-yacht set to hit the world's oceans - which comes complete with its own functioning volcano and floating tropical islands.

    The vessel - dubbed the 'Tropical island Paradise' - has been designed by British boat builders Yacht Island Design, from Derby, Derbys - some 90 miles from the sea.

    The extravagant 295ft ship boasts a towering volcano with a cascading waterfall which feeds the swimming pool.

    Luxury: This yacht will soon be cruising the oceans with its very own floating tropical islands

    Luxury: This yacht will soon be cruising the oceans with its very own floating tropical islands

    And playboys will feel right at home with the ships helicopter landing pad and huge bar set behind a series of beach cabanas.

    Studio director Rob McPherson at the Derbyshire firm, who have also created the Streets of Monaco super-yacht, said: 'The exterior was designed to give the impression of waves breaking around a volcanic island, whilst maintaining the look of a contemporary yacht design.

    'It comes with its own private beach cove and a waterfall cascading down from a volcano.

    'This design centres around a secluded island paradise, with elements inspired by the islands of the Caribbean, Indian Ocean and Polynesia. It is set to be a big hit when it comes onto the market.'

    The lavish yacht can accommodate up to 10 guests - and can travel along at a top speed of 15 knots.

    The main deck is a secluded beach 'cove' of cabanas surrounding a massive ocean view swimming pool.

    Spectacular: There is also a huge helicopter landing pad for those quick trips to shore

    Spectacular: There is also a huge helicopter landing pad for those quick trips to shore

    And should the millionaire future owners get tired of taking a dip in the pool, they can sail out into the sea on their very own floating island complete with deck chairs and palm trees.

    McPherson added: 'We had two reasons for designing such a boat. The first being that it's good fun, and secondly the current market is pretty saturated with designs that look fairly similar.

    'Our mission is to work on incredibly fun designs and carve a niche for ourselves within the market, a place where other designers fear to tread.'

    Inside the huge, towering volcano is a cinema, library, games room, gym, spa and VIP suites - including an owners pad spread over two decks.

    The boat - which has yet to hit the market and hasn't had a price set - is causing waves in the boat building world with its unique design.

    View from the top: The lavish liner can accommodate up to 10 guests and has a landing pad and huge bar set behind beach cabanas

    View from the top: The lavish liner can accommodate up to 10 guests and has a landing pad and huge bar set behind beach cabanas

    With its stunningly beautiful lattice exterior and equally luxurious facilities, this eye-catching vessel blows Roman Abramovich's super-yacht out of the water in the style stakes.

    The lavish interior of the Voronoi 'mega-yacht' is encased in an intricate honeycomb lattice facade, making it potentially one of the most beautiful boats to have taken to water.

    And with hot tubs, a golfing green, swimming pool and sky lounge, the 125m yacht has enough creature comforts to catch the eye of most Russian oligarchs.

    Eye-catching: The distinctive lattice exterior of the Voronoi makes it unlike the average multi-million pound super-yacht

    Eye-catching: The distinctive lattice exterior of the Voronoi makes it unlike the average multi-million pound super-yacht

    One of a kind: The Voronoi is an impressive 125m long, making it bigger than Roman Abramovich's Luna

    One of a kind: The Voronoi is an impressive 125m long, making it bigger than Roman Abramovich's Luna

    The Voronoi was the creation of yacht enthusiast Kim Hyun-Seok, who was intent on designing the ultimate yacht complete with the most distinctive exterior possible.

    Mr Hyun-Soek described the 20m beam single hull vessel he came up with as 'a unique and enjoyable luxury yacht'.

    He named the yacht after the 'Voronoi' concept of random geometric spacing created by Russian mathematician Georgy Voronoi.

    Plush: A large swimming pool comes as standard on board the 'unique and enjoyable' Voronoi

    Plush: A large swimming pool comes as standard on board the 'unique and enjoyable' Voronoi

    Lap of luxury: The dining area and bar on board the mega-yacht are equally modern and impressive

    Lap of luxury: The dining area and bar on board the mega-yacht are equally modern and impressive

    All aboard: The second tier on the Voronoi features more exclusive areas and ultra-sleek design

    All aboard: The second tier on the Voronoi features more exclusive areas and ultra-sleek design

    Mr Hyun-Soek said: 'We can find the (Voronoi) pattern in many areas, especially our body, and cell membranes look like Voronoi patterns.

    'The Voronoi pattern is a special method of removing unwanted blocks of solid space, letting you create the most robust structures while using the minimum amount of material.

    'Therefore, this method is often used in engineering work.

    'Any kind of guests who are selected by the owner will totally be satisfied when they are on board.'

    The steel, aluminium and enhanced plastic compound Voronoi also features a lush indoor garden, bar, gallery and dining room with a stage for playing music.

    And at 125m long, it pips Chelsea owner Roman Abramovich's £115m superyacht by 10m.

    Spectacular: A night-time design concept shows off the boat's unique lattice exterior the full

    Spectacular: A night-time design concept shows off the boat's unique lattice exterior the full

    Garden of paradise: The luxury vessel even includes a glorious garden surrounded by the boat's trademark 'honeycomb' facade

    Garden of paradise: The luxury vessel even includes a glorious garden surrounded by the boat's trademark 'honeycomb' facade

    Relaxation: Guests on the mega-yacht would be treated to hot tubs looking out on to the oceanA specially-made golf green also adds to the luxuryUltimate relaxation: Guests on board would also be treated to hot tubs looking out on to the ocean and a golf green for refining your long game

    The majestic Voronoi is only 1m shy of being as long as Octopus, the £122m super yacht owned by Micosoft co-founder Paul Allen.

    Mr Hyun-Soek, who this year won an award for his yacht designing skills, said the Voronoi was only a concept - but he believed it could be constructed in the future.

    He added: 'To the best of my knowledge, this kind of complex structure and non-repeatable pattern can be constructed using a stamp method.

    'Therefore the structure can be divided into lots of individual pieces and then connected to each other.'

    Spacious: The galley area offers further space and opportunities to live the high life

    Spacious: The galley area offers further space and opportunities to live the high life

    Captain's quarters: Even the wheelhouse of the Voronoi is designed to the highest standards

    Even the wheelhouse continues the honeycomb lattice structure theme

    Captain's quarters: Even the Voronoi's wheelhouse continues the lattice honeycomb structure theme in style

       

    The super-yacht Eos Impressive - the largest private sailing yacht in the world - has been spotted docked off the coast off the south coast of England.

    Impressive Eos, which is owned by billionaire movie mogul Barry Diller, towered over modest cruise boats and fishing trawlers as it swept into Dartmouth, Devon. 

    The five-year-old wooden schooner is equipped with state-of-the-art navigation systems, electronic sails and several speed boats to transport crews and guests ashore.

    Vast: The sailing yacht, which can be seen here in all its glory is 300ft long and worth a staggering £100million

    Vast: The sailing yacht, which can be seen here in all its glory sailing under power in Devon, is 300ft long and worth a staggering £100million

    Scenic: A rainbow hangs in the sky and a steam train passes in the background as the world's largest sailing yacht towers over nearby cruise boats and fishing trawlers

    Scenic: A rainbow hangs in the sky and a steam train passes in the background as the world's largest sailing yacht towers over nearby cruise boats and fishing trawlers in Dartmouth in Devon

    IMPRESSIVE? YES, IT IS

    Owner: Barry Diller Length: 305ft

    Masts: 3x200ft Width: 44.29ft

    Value: £1m approx           Speed: 16 knots

    Propulsion: Twin screw with 2x2,333hp (1,740KW) MTU diesel engines

    Max laden weight: 1,500 gross tons

    Complement: 16 guests, 21 crew.

    Build time: Three years.

    Named after Eos, Greek Godess of the dawn.

    Aluminum hull and superstructure.

    The masts are the maximum height allowed to let it to pass under bridges across the globe.

    The stunning 300ft long yacht boasts three 200ft high masts, which have dominated the skyline at the mouth of the River Dart since its arrival earlier this week.

    Assistant harbourmaster Nick Clarance said: 'We had Eos in a few years ago and there was a lot of interest in her then.

    'It is exactly the same now, we've seen large groups of people lining the harbour to catch a glimpse of her and take photographs.

    'Eos is so large that while she is on the river her masts will be the first thing visitors see as they drive in.

    'She is certainly a magnificent sight and one of the most imposing you are likely to see anywhere in the world.'

    Billionaire Diller, 69, was chief executive of Paramount Pictures in the 70s and 80s when it produced box office smashes Grease, Indiana Jones: Raiders of the Lost Ark and Beverly Hills Cop.

    Lit up: The yacht looks stunning at night with its lights forming a reflection on the River Dart in Dartmouth, Devon

    Lit up: The yacht looks stunning at night with its lights forming a reflection on the River Dart in Dartmouth, Devon

    Owner: Business mogul Barry Diller and his fashion designer wife, Diane von Fuerstenberg

     

    Owner: Film mogul Barry Diller and his fashion designer wife, Diane von Furstenberg

    He is married to fashion designer Diane von Furstenberg and went on to form Fox Broadcasting Company where he gave the green light to The Simpsons.

    Diller then became chairman of internet travel giant Expedia and CEO of InterActiveCorp, parent company of Ticketmaster, after selling a £25 million stake in QVC shopping channel in 1995.

    It is not thought Diller is on board Eos, which is passing through Dartmouth so the largely British crew can have some rest and relaxation and visit family members.

    The yacht will spend a few days moored on the river before sailing on to Gibraltar.

    Then she will travel on to Germany to the yard where she was built for a marine MOT.

    Eos made her first visit to Dartmouth shortly after she was built in 2006, setting sail from the yard at Bremen on her maiden voyage, and this is her third time returning.

    There is some debate over her status as the world's largest privately owned super-yacht because of her nearest rival, the Maltese Falcon.

    While she is longer overall than the Falcon by around 16ft, much of Eos' extended length comes from the bowsprit - the pole that extends forward from the prow at the front of the boat.

    The Falcon is said to be 14ft longer on deck and more than 20ft longer at the waterline.

    However, Eos is very marginally bigger in the beam - the width at its widest point - with a 2ins advantage.

    This could be Monaco, or an exclusive resort on the Med as the world’s most lavish superyachts jostle for space. Their perfectly scrubbed decks bristle with security guards, while hot tubs bubble and helipads wink at the sky.

    This is the playground of billionaires, oligarchs and A-list celebs. There are rumours that Roman Abramovich’s sumptuous $1billion boat will arrive tomorrow.

    At 557ft, the Russian tycoon’s Eclipse is the largest private yacht in the world. It has two swimming pools, two helipads, a dedicated disco hall, 30 cabins, a cinema, a mini-submarine, and even its own missile defence system. Abramovich’s master suite is armour-plated and protected by bullet-proof windows and a laser system designed to dazzle long-lens photographers.

    But where is this mecca for the mega-rich? Cannes perhaps? Or the crystal-clear waters off Antibes?

    Octopus, the £130m super yacht of Paul Allen, co-founder of Microsoft, enters South Dock in the Canary Wharf the weekend before the games begin

    Octopus, the £130m super-yacht of Paul Allen, co-founder of Microsoft, enters South Dock in the Canary Wharf the weekend before the games begin

    Improbable though it may seem, this is gritty East London — with all the spent industrial allure of  down-at-heel Beckton to gaze on,  for example.

    Yet some of the world’s richest people used to mega-luxury and the most gorgeous, exclusive hideaways on earth are heading here — just in time for the Olympics.

    Over the coming weeks the Thames will be transformed into a glamorous floating village of luxury and excess. Up to 100 superyachts are due to arrive and a glittering string of parties are scheduled.

    Billionaires who are planning to berth their giant luxury vessels in London for the summer include Microsoft founder Bill Gates whose superyacht Gogypus will drop  anchor at the Royal Docks in  East London, five miles from the Olympic Stadium.

    Microsoft co-founder, billionaire Paul Allen, is expected aboard his 414ft superyacht Octopus, manned by a 57-strong crew. Other superyachts believed to be on their way to London include The Maltese Falcon, owned by the Greek millionairess Elena Ambrosiadou, and the 246ft Leander, owned by Donald Gosling, the NCP car park tycoon.

    The £80 million Illona, owned by Frank Lowy of the Westfield shopping centres, has already docked near Canary Wharf.

    For those too penurious to run their own superyacht, there are charter yachts aplenty. The Seanna, a 213ft superyacht, is being chartered out to wealthy visitors for the duration of the summer. Yours for £294,000 a week.

    Luxury vessel: The super yacht costs £13m a year in running costs alone and was bought in 2003 by the reclusive software billionaire

    Luxury vessel: The super yacht costs £13m a year in running costs alone and was bought in 2003 by the reclusive software billionaire

    Flying the flag: As the Octopus arrives in London the vessel raised the Olympic flag

    Flying the flag: As the Octopus arrives in London the vessel raised the Olympic flag

    Cruising: Octopus passes the O2 dome on it's way into Canary Wharf where preparation for the arrival of the owner began

    Cruising: Octopus passes the O2 dome on it's way into Canary Wharf where preparation for the arrival of the owner began

    The Harle, a comparatively modest 146ft charter yacht, is moored nearby with its crew of nine. It can be hired for £143,000 a week.

    Officials at the Royal Docks complex, which looks after the Royal Albert Dock, the Royal Victoria Dock and the King George V Dock, believe they will have 20 of the world’s biggest yachts moored to their bollards by the time the Olympics open.

    An estimated 800 security guards are expected to be hired and Mike Luddy, of the Royal Docks Management Authority, says: ‘It will be a real sight to behold and there will be a considerable return for us.’

    At West India Docks near Canary Wharf, they are expecting ten or 11 privately-owned boats, reaching maximum capacity. There is also space for 19 super yachts at nearby St Katharine Docks.

    Prime Central London berths, such as at Tower Bridge Upper, next to HMS Belfast, have been booked months in advance.

    Such spots aren’t cheap. A 230ft superyacht will cost £64,000 for  two weeks of the Games in mooring fees alone.

    The recording studio on Octopus   A bedroom on the Octopus

    Easy living: The yacht's recording studio where Mr Allen and the on-board band which is part of his crew jam and, right, one of the luxurious bedrooms on the boat

    Yellow Submarine: The rear deck of the 413ft yacht holds a submarine which can be taken out for two weeks at a time - something which may come in handy if the London transport network gets too crowded for Mr Allen

    Yellow Submarine: The rear deck of the 413ft yacht holds a submarine which can be taken out for two weeks at a time - something which may come in handy if the London transport network gets too crowded for Mr Allen

    Kitted out: The Octopus, which holds not only the submarines, the two helipads and a recording studio but also a basketball court and a cinema, is pictured moored in Nice in 2006

    Kitted out: The Octopus, which holds not only the submarines, the two helipads and a recording studio but also a basketball court and a cinema, is pictured moored in Nice in 2006

    Once the yachtsmen have disembarked, parties and VIP treatment await. The yacht advisory company MGMT has organised a string of concierge services for the superyacht invasion. The company can arrange VIP tickets to Olympic events — and transfer by helicopter or speedboat.

    Among the Hollywood stars reportedly attending are George Clooney and his girlfriend Stacy Keibler, Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie.

    The market for superyachts has defied the economic crisis. After a brief dip in demand following the financial crash of 2007, the market in luxury yachts is buoyant once more.

    The dull blue-and-white interiors of old are long gone, and an army of glitzy yacht designers have sprung up to fulfil their clients’ every outrageous whim. In the world of top-end yacht design, what the client wants, the client gets.

    One of the most sought-after interior designers is Tara Bernerd, who is currently overseeing the design of a 150ft superyacht being built for clients in Turkey.

    ‘They are three brothers, based in Istanbul — a sporty family who love swimming, canoeing and water skiing.’ They are building the six-bedroom yacht so they can share family holidays. Bernerd took on the project in October, and it is now nearing completion.

    Joining the party: Super yacht Ilona, moored nearby in the South Dock of West India Dock, Canary Wharf,belongs to 81-year-old Australian shopping centre mogul Frank Lowy

    Joining the party: Super yacht Ilona, moored nearby in the South Dock of Canary Wharf,belongs to 81-year-old Australian shopping centre mogul Frank Lowy

    Does it float your boat?: The Harle, a 146ft charter yacht costing £143,000 a week to hire, is also docked near Canary Wharf

    Does it float your boat?: The Harle, a 146ft charter yacht costing £143,000 a week to hire, is also docked near Canary Wharf

    Sleek and fabulous: Moored near Canary Wharf, the Australian-owned 242ft Llona has a cinema, massage room and gym

    Sleek and fabulous: Moored near Canary Wharf, the Australian-owned 242ft Llona has a cinema, massage room and gym

    No decent hotels? The superyacht Seanna can be yours for just £294,000. That's for the whole week, mind...

    No decent hotels? The superyacht Seanna can be yours for just £294,000. That's for the whole week, mind...

    Before embarking on the design she undertook an in-depth analysis of her clients’ needs: ‘Where they will eat, how much salon space they need.’

    An entire deck has been turned into a sky-lounge ‘with a cool club feel and floor to ceiling windows’.

    Who'll win gold for the poshest party?

    She adds: ‘The heat is so intense in southern Turkey that being indoors part of the day is a necessity.

    ‘Everything has been so overblown on these vast yachts with cinemas and so forth, but this is far  more elegant.’

    The main deck is a vast salon, with a bar on one side. A second bar in the sky-lounge area will create a ‘moodier more evening feel’. On the top deck is a whirlpool bath. The interior is done out in a palate of soft greys.

    Bernerd says: ‘The client prefers a more contemporary, fresh feel. When you walk in, you’re met with subdued grey limestone, and a sleek grey wood floor.

    'The ceilings are in white lacquer, and there is layered off-white leather. It is very sleek.’

    A huge bespoke bookcase is the main feature in the library, again made of grey wood. The main staircase is made of polished plaster, with grey oak stairs and burnt orange detail on the handrails.

    Bernerd says the scale of the vessel in dry dock is immense.

    ‘It reminds me of being taken to the London Science Museum as a child,’ she adds. ‘It’s like a dinosaur skeleton, the scaffold of ribs, and the height. It towers over you, the scale is overwhelming’.

    Bernerd is also working on the  art collection that will adorn the interior of the finished yacht.

    Dickie Bannenberg is another London-based designer with yacht design in his veins.

    His late father Jon pioneered yacht design in the Sixties, creating classic boats including Saudi Arabian arms dealer Adnan Khashoggi’s yacht Nabil, which is now owned by Saudi Prince Al-Waleed bin Talal Alsaud. Jon Bannenberg also designed the interiors of John Paul Getty’s 262ft yacht Talitha G.

    His son says: ‘While there is still a big middle ground of a fairly corporate and anodyne look, designers are increasingly trying to introduce some sort of individuality, on the basis that anyone commissioning this sort of yacht, with the price tag it commands, has a right to expect something that is one-off.

    ‘You don’t want to walk onto an impressive 150ft vessel and find it has a slightly ho-hum feel.’

    For the 150ft yacht Raasta, Bannenberg’s studio commissioned a sculptor to make a series of handmade bronze wall lights at £2,000 apiece.

    And for the 200ft Bacarella, the British sculptor Richard Kindersley carved a large stone map to be placed in the bridge deck lobby. Made from five pieces of Lake District slate, it depicts sea horses and dolphins, alongside marine-inspired quotes from Yoko Ono.

    But that’s nothing compared to a project recently completed by yacht designer Remi Tessier, who created a five-storey atrium in polished stainless steel and glass, studded with tiny LED lights making the walls sparkle like diamonds.

    The billionaire U.S. industrialist Dennis Washington has just completed a four-year project building a superyacht, Attessa IV.

    He says: ‘I set out to build the ultimate family boat. I’ve tried to make every room an experience. A great gym and spa, just to make it fun for family and friends.’

    It is believed he spent $50  million on the yacht — and an extraordinary $200  million refurbishing it. But, then, he can afford it. Gucci stainless steel lounge chairs decorate the decks, while a huge pool dominates the outside.

    A helicopter perches at one end of the vessel, waiting to ferry guests to shore. It has four guest cabins, and everything from the curtains to the air conditioning is operated by remote control.

    The outrageous cost, quite simply, doesn’t matter. As Monte Fino yacht designers say: ‘Quality is remembered long after the price is forgotten.’

    As Camilla Storey, a PR executive co-ordinating Olympic party events, says: ‘We will have the entire financial industry, everybody from the worlds of business, sport and entertainment, all coming together. That is a unique opportunity.

    ‘Do these people want to be lost in the hubbub, immersed in the tourist crowds, or do they want to be watching it, waited on hand and foot, from the top of one of the world’s most exclusive yachts?’

     

    German Luftwaffe boat runs aground during round-island race on the Isle of Wight

    • Sea Scamp was one of five 'windfall yachts' built for the Luftwaffe in 1936 to aid pilots with navigation training
    • But they were among 200 seized by the British forces from German harbours in 1945, and taken as prizes of war
    • The vessel had been competing in a race for classic yachts which had started earlier in the day from Cowes
    • Rescuers came to the sloop's aid but the crew of six had to wait until the early hours until high tide to refloat

    You may have all the trappings of wealth, all the luxury that money can buy, and all the time to enjoy it in.

    But they say that eventually all this gets boring, and that life is dull without a sense of adventure and curiosity.

    Which is where this just-launched superyacht comes in - for the 74-meter RV Pegaso not only comes with all the flatscreen TVs and en-suite bathrooms befitting a luxury ship, but also a fully operational 'floating laboratory'.

    The RV in the name stands for Research Vessel, and just in case there is any doubt, the ship also has a submarine on-board - and a team of marine biologists ready to do your bidding.

    Researching a life of luxury: The RV Pegaso is half-dedicated to giving its owner a wonderful yacht trip, and half of it is dedicated to state-of-the-art scientific research

    Researching a life of luxury: The RV Pegaso is half-dedicated to giving its owner a wonderful yacht trip, and half of it is dedicated to state-of-the-art scientific research

    The Pegaso provides en-suite bathrooms, widescreen TVs, a luxurious cabin - and an on-board submarine and dive-room

    The Pegaso provides en-suite bathrooms, widescreen TVs, a luxurious cabin - and an on-board submarine and dive-room

    Under the sea: The submarine can launch from the Pegaso, and take visitors and scientists on underwater trips for research or for pleasure

    Under the sea: The submarine can launch from the Pegaso, and take visitors and scientists on underwater trips for research or for pleasure

    Actually, the six-million yacht comes with one string attached - that the owner can have as much or as little involvement in sea research as they wish, but they must allow the biologists to be on board, travel with them, and work on projects.

    Pegaso Marine chief executive Alex Flemming said: 'The historic perception of the superyacht set is the south of France, drinking champagne and having a lovely time.

    'But suddenly people are going: #Hang on a second. I can go somewhere further afield and be a part of something bigger."

    'This is about getting the most out of time and also feeling as though they're doing some good.'

    Ship in the yard: The Pegaso under construction, where it was specially adapted as a sea-lab

    Ship in the yard: The Pegaso under construction, where it was specially adapted as a sea-lab

    In the shipyard: The yacht dwarfs admirers as it prepares to launch

    In the shipyard: The yacht dwarfs admirers as it prepares to launch

    Is this cramped? Not really, when you consider it is the submarine cabin

    Is this cramped? Not really, when you consider it is the submarine cabin

    The vessel's purchaser is actually very keen to get his hands dirty in research.

    The anonymous owner has previously owned four yachts, and traveled the world twice - and toldf the boat manufacturers that he wanted to do 'something different' with the new purchase.

    The boat's dining area has been converted into a laboratory and fitted with equipment that can tag endangered marine life and monitor water pollution levels.

    A decompresson chamber and diving equipment - including oxygen machines- allow guests to take deep dives from the yacht - and if that is not enough, the five-man submarine will take people down even further.

     

    A boat once used by Germany’s Luftwaffe for navigation training ran aground during a race around the Isle of Wight.

    The 41ft classic yacht Sea Scamp became stranded on a receding tide on a ledge at about 7pm last night.

    Rescue crews came to the aid of the Bermudan-rigged sloop but the crew of six had to wait until the early hours of this morning until high tide to refloat.

    Marooned: The 41-foot classic yacht Sea Scamp became stranded on a ledge at about 7pm as the tide came in

    Marooned: The 41-foot classic yacht Sea Scamp became stranded on a ledge at about 7pm last night as the tide came in

    The yacht had been participating in the clockwise direction race for classic yachts which had started earlier in the day from Cowes.

    It ran aground on Quarry Ledge, near Thorness Bay and Cowes and Yarmouth RNLI came to the aid with support from Needles Auxiliary Coastguard.

    Rescue crews used the yacht’s anchor to help stabilise the stricken boat and left the scene once the boat was secure.

    The rescue dinghy returned after midnight this morning to ensure the boat refloated safely and then escorted it back to Cowes.

    It was due to be inspected for damage today to see whether it could return to its base at Shamrock Quay, Southampton, Hampshire.

    Long wait: Rescue crews came to the aid of the Bermudan-rigged sloop but the crew of six had to wait until the early hours of this morning until high tide to refloat

    Long wait: Rescue crews came to the aid of the Bermudan-rigged sloop but the crew of six had to wait until the early hours of this morning until high tide to refloat

    A Nazi accident: It was one of five built for the Luftwaffe in 1936 by the premier boatyard Abeking and Rasmussen to aid pilots with navigation training

    A Nazi accident: It was one of five built for the Luftwaffe in 1936 by the premier boatyard Abeking and Rasmussen to aid pilots with navigation training

    Photographer Owen Buggy, 30, from Cowes, captured the scenes while walking his dog.

    He said: 'I had just taken my camera in case there was a nice sunset when I spotted a group of very annoyed sailors.

    'Somehow, they had managed to run aground during the race. They were pretty fed up but resigned to the fact it just happens sometimes.

    'I think they were more annoyed at the fact that the they were going to be stuck for seven hours until the tide came back in.

    'It’s a beautiful old yacht with some fascinating history. Fortunately no-one was injured but I think the crew’s pride may have taken a hit.'

    Rescue crews used the yacht¿s anchor to help stabilise the stricken boat and left the scene once the boat was secure. Rescue crews used the yacht¿s anchor to help stabilise the stricken boat and left the scene once the boat was secure.

    Hard work: Rescue crews used the yacht’s anchor to help stabilise the stricken boat and left the scene once the boat was secure

    Sea trouble: The yacht had been participating in the clockwise direction race for classic yachts which had started earlier in the day from Cowes

    Sea trouble: The yacht had been participating in the clockwise direction race for classic yachts which had started earlier in the day from Cowes

    A Junkers Ju 52 from the Luftwaffe, used for cargo and troop transport

    A Junkers Ju 52 from the Luftwaffe, used for cargo and troop transport

    Originally named Zeisig, which means ‘Siskin,’ Sea Scamp was built in Germany and for eight years was used for sail training and recreation by German armed forces.

    It was one of five built for the Luftwaffe in 1936 by the premier boatyard Abeking and Rasmussen to aid pilots with navigation training.

    In 1945, the British forces found some 200 yachts in German harbours, and took them as prizes of war.

    Called the 'windfall' yachts, they were sailed to England and distributed to service units all over the world.

    Thousands of British servicemen were trained to sail in them.

    Since 1984 it has been owned and sailed by the Sea Scamp Syndicate.

    The ledge where it went aground is very close to the remains of the PLUTO pipeline which was laid in 1944 to pump fuel to France for the D-Day invasion.

     

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