MONACO (CNN) – The world is in turmoil. The specter of global conflict looms on the horizon. Energy prices are putting a strain on millions. Covid lives on. But in Monaco, the yachting world’s most glamorous event, it is business as usual.
This week, superyachts worth a combined value of some $3.8 billion gathered together in the blue waters of the tiny European principality for the 31st annual Monaco Yacht Show. And no amount of geopolitical anxiety could dim the glitz.
“All the yachts are here,” Johan Pizzardini, head of communications and media for the Monaco Yacht Show, told CNN Travel on the eve of the four-day event’s grand finale. Some 118 superyachts were among the luxury vessels on display at the country’s Port Hercule.
The superyacht crowd was also in force.
The 31st edition of the Monaco Yacht Show began on 28 September and will end on 1 October.
Valerie HacheAFP/Getty Images
The show is exclusively dedicated to the superyacht market. Every year, during normal times, an estimated 30,000 people gather in one place in this tiny Mediterranean Riviera country to witness the astonishing spectacle of some of the world’s largest and most expensive superyachts.
And while the event is undoubtedly an opportunity for wealthy boat owners to let their hair down in a safe haven, away from the non-boat-owning world, it’s also an opportunity to shop for yet more sea-going affluence have a chance.
It is, as Pizzardini acknowledges, a “niche market”. But one that shows little sign of slowing down despite the turbulent times ahead. There are nearly 40 brand new luxury yachts due this year, including the colossal 115.1-metre AHPO, the largest superyacht ever built.
Some of the huge yachts throwing up their mooring ropes belong to first-time yacht buyers, including the 62-metre Rio from Italian shipbuilder CRN and the 50-metre Kinda from Tankoa Yachts.
This reflects a growing trend that developed significantly during the pandemic, when a large number of new buyers chose to go bigger rather than move up from a smaller boat.
“This [the pandemic] Motivated people who were always thinking about buying a yacht,” Bob Denison, president and founder of Fort Lauderdale-based yacht brokerage Denison Yachting, which has four boats on display at the show, tells CNN Travel.
“People are thinking, ‘We’re not going to wait 10 years.’ They were coming from anywhere and buying 60 meters (yachts).
“We’re still seeing a lot, and I think it’s something that will continue. People are taking the plunge.”
Pizzardini has also noted a change in the attitudes of potential superyacht buyers as a result of the global pandemic.
“We saw a carpe diem period in which potential customers who had been hesitating to charter or buy a yacht for months or years were saying, ‘well, in these times of uncertainty, I need to enjoy life he says.
Arthur Brouwer, chief executive of Dutch shipyard Heesen, noted that “order books remain quite full” across the board despite elements of global uncertainty due to the “post-Covid push”.
In fact, Boat International’s 2022 Global Order Book indicated that 1,024 superyachts were under construction or on order in 2022, a 24% increase on the previous year, with a 10.5% increase for those measuring 45m and over.
As the 2022 Monaco Yacht Show draws to a close, here are eight of the grandest superyachts that are impressing the wealthy.
The 115m-long Lürssen’s AHPO, seen before the show, is the largest superyacht on display.
This massive 115-metre superyacht from the German shipyard Lürssen is undoubtedly one of the most popular vessels on display. The largest superyacht ever displayed at the Monaco Yacht Show, it makes an eye-catching sight on France’s Mediterranean coast with the only deep-water port in the tiny country.
Built with a steel hull and aluminum superstructure, the AHPO, which has a gross deadweight of 4,850 tons, has five decks and five cabins for a total of 14 guests.
The superyacht, delivered last November, is powered by twin MTU engines, providing a top speed of 17 knots.
The brand new superyacht Lucene from Hessen features an intricate interior by Sinnott Yacht Architecture & Design.
David Churchill / Hessen Yachts
Lusine, a 60-metre steel vessel from Dutch shipyard Heesen, is one of the superyachts making its debut at this year’s Monaco Yacht Show. With its smooth, pointed sides and “bird wing” shape consisting of three decks connected, the Lusine is a yacht in every sense.
Although its imposing exterior, designed by Omega Architects, is undoubtedly a spectacular sight. The painstakingly detailed interior of the Lucene by Sinnott Yachts Architecture & Design has been drawing gasps from those lucky enough to take on board.
“We do a lot of boats and we’ve never done this before,” Heesen CEO Arthur Brouwer says of the superyacht, which cost an estimated $70 million to build. “The amount of detail is amazing.”
Named after the Armenian word for “moon,” Lusin’s interior is stunningly crafted to combine elements of sea and sky, with wall panels and tables featuring mother of pearl, as well as midnight blue Sculptures are also included.
Its furnishings are made from an exclusive combination of materials, including white onyx, as well as rare woods and bespoke metals.
The vessel, which has a capacity of up to 12 guests, is equipped with a helipad for private use as well as a tender garage. With 1,079 gross tonnage, the Lucene is powered by two diesel engines, and can reach a maximum speed of 17.5 knots.
The classic sailing yacht Blush, which has been spotted taking to the waters of Antigua, is currently up for sale.
Billy Black / Camper & Nicholson
This beautiful 45-meter sailing yacht, built by the Italian shipyard Perini Navi, has been displayed at the Monaco Yacht Show several times since it was delivered back in 2007. However, its eye-catching red exterior and sporty lines ensure that it always stands out from the crowd.
Designed by leading yacht designer and naval architect Ron Holland, the vessel recently underwent an extensive refit at a cost of approximately $1.8 million, with renovations completed on both its exterior and interior.
Powered by a Caterpillar C-32 diesel engine, Blush is capable of reaching a top speed of 13.5 knots, and has a gross tonnage of 315. Owned by Formula One boss Eddie Jordan, it is currently listed for sale for less than €12.5 million (about $12.2 million) through brokerage firm Camper & Nicholson.
Built by Italian shipbuilder CRN, the Rio features an interior filled with bright, vibrant colors.
This stunning 62-meter superyacht made of steel hull and aluminum was delivered in May and is attracting a lot of attention at this year’s show thanks to its exceptionally funky interior.
From its hand-painted jungle-themed wall murals to fish panels and rugs with animal-shaped ornaments, Rio is an explosion of vibrant colors from start to finish.
Built by Italian shipbuilder CRN and designed by Omega Architects, the vessel, which has a gross tonnage of 1,218, is spread over four decks, and can accommodate up to 12 guests within its six colorful enclosed cabins. There’s also an on-board gym with Peloton bike access, while the Beach Club has its own massage tables.
Named after its owner’s first cat, the Rio exudes a cosy, family feel that is very unique, especially for a superyacht of this stature. A regular Monaco Yacht Show attendee says, “It’s impossible not to walk by that yacht without a smile on your face.”
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Kinda is the fourth hull in Italian shipbuilder Tankoa’s all-aluminium series.
Among the latest superyachts at the Monaco Yacht Show, Kinda is also making a splash partly because of its impressive foredeck swimming pool.
Delivered by Italian yacht manufacturer Tankoa earlier this year, it features exterior and interior design from renowned luxury yacht designer Francesco Paszkowski.
The vessel is powered by a hybrid propulsion system designed to provide enhanced fuel efficiency with three different cruising modes, diesel-mechanical, diesel-electric and full-electric.
The fourth of Tankoa’s all-aluminum S501 series after the Vertige, Bintador and Olokun, Kinda has a gross tonnage of 499, and can comfortably fit up to 12 guests in its six impressive suites.
The Giraud is one of several superyachts currently listed for sale.
It may not be one of the hottest new superyachts at the Monaco Yacht Show, but the Giraud is arguably one of the most eye-catching due to her stunning sand-colored exterior designed by Luca Dini Design & Architecture.
Previously named Caicos V, the 40-metre aluminum vessel was built by Italian shipyard Admiral, and delivered in 2013. Listed for sale with an asking price of more than €12.9 million (about $12.6 million), it is fitted with five cabins with a capacity for 11 guests and a 479 gross tonnage.
The Giraud is powered by two engines which give the superyacht a cruising speed of 14.0 knots.
The unusual exterior of the Soaring ensures that it always stands out.
Olga Dromus/Bluey/Ocean Independence
Another yacht of majestic stature, the Soaring, the work of German superyacht builder Ebecking & Rasmussen, stretches to a length of 68.2 metres.
The vessel’s owner was said to have requested a distinctive superyacht that would not easily be confused with any other, and German studio Focus Yard Design certainly achieved that.
Delivered in 2020, the four-deck superyacht has flowing, sporty lines, as well as a bright orange stripe located just above the waterline that makes it pretty hard to miss.
With an interior volume of 1,541 gross tonnage, it has six staterooms, along with a library and a luxurious spa and beach club.
Also up for sale with a soaring €98 million price tag.
Victorious – The largest superyacht to be built in Turkey.
It’s not every day that you get to observe a superyacht on the market for €110 million (about $107 million), but this year’s participants have the opportunity to do so. Measuring 85 metres, Victorious definitely lives up to its grand name.
Recent years have seen an increase in the amount of shipbuilding activity in Turkey, and this mammoth vessel from Turkish shipyard Akechut is the largest superyacht ever built in the country.
Equipped with 11 en suite cabins as well as a master suite, the lavish vessel has space for up to 20 guests. Its incredible list of facilities includes a cinema room, a 200-square-metre beach club, a helipad and a wine and cigar club room with a fireplace.
Correction: An earlier version of this story misstated the value of the assembled superyacht.