In its 25th year, the world's premier superyacht show is bigger—and greener—than ever.
The Monaco Yacht Show, the most prestigious and prolific superyacht show in the world, is celebrating its 25th anniversary this year. Dedicated to an ultra-high-profile clientele and to professionals in luxury yachting, the show has come a long way from its modest beginnings. In 1991, the first Monaco show had only 50 exhibits, mostly indigenous to Monaco and the French Riviera, and only 30 yachts with an average length of about 105 feet (32 meters). This year promises to be the largest Monaco Yacht Show yet with 500 exhibiting companies and 120 superyachts with an average length of 154 feet (47 meters).
Here are snapshots of some of the yachts expected to be on display in September. A trait many share is a concerted effort on behalf of owners, designers and builders to create vessels with better fuel efficiency and improved environmental performance.
Silver Fast (253ft./77m) is an Espen Øino design, the fourth in a series of fuel-efficient yachts built by Silver Yachts of Australia. Fast and long-range, she can cross the Atlantic at 22 knots, do 4,500 nautical miles at 18 knots and cruise 6,000 nautical miles at 14 knots. For more information: silveryachts.com
Yersin (251ft./76.6m) is an expedition vessel built at the commercial Piriou yard in France for a private owner who will be carrying out ecological explorations around the world while conducting scientific research and experiments. The yacht is built with an extreme green consciousness in compliance with environmental policies. For more information: piriou.com
Yalla (239ft./73m) was built by CRN with naval architecture by CRN, exterior design by Omega Architects and interior design by Droulers Architecture. She is a departure for CRN in that she is the first to be built with a 41-foot (12.5-meter) beam. She can carry 12 passengers in six cabins and accommodates a crew of 22. For more information: crn-yacht.com
Tankoa’s S693 (227ft./69.3m) is the first yacht from the Italian builder designed by Francesco Paszkowski Design. She is a modern classic with a fuel-efficient hull that achieves a top speed of 16.5 knots and a cruising speed of 15 knots. An economical speed of 12 knots will yield a range of more than 5,000 nautical miles. For more information: tankoa.it
EsterIII (216ft./65.99m) was built by Lürssen with exterior design by Espen Øino and an interior by Reymond Langton Design. Features include a swimming pool aft and a helicopter landing pad above the wheelhouse. The yacht has large windows and a near-vertical bow. Her interior includes a hand-carved leather artwork running the length of the main stairwell. For more information: lurssen.com
Irimari (208ft./63.43m) was built by Sunrise Yachts with an exterior by Espen Øino and an interior by Focus Yacht Design. She is the first of three projects realized with Øino. At 1,500 gross tons, she has an exceedingly high volume-to-length ratio. She is one of the largest yachts ever built in Turkey. For more information: sunriseyachts.com
Saramour (200ft./61m) is CRN’s first yacht designed by Francesco Paszkowski Design. The outstanding feature on this yacht is the private owner’s deck with its own swimming pool. The décor aboard is minimal and modern so as to show off the owner’s art collection. For more information: crn-yacht.com
MadameKate (197ft./60m) is an Amels 199 designed by Tim Heywood with interior design by Laura Sessa. The yacht has a distinctive pearl-effect paint job that reflects the sunlight. Substantial outdoor spaces and a large beach club offer opportunity for relaxation and fun. For more information: amels-holland.com
Atlante (180ft./55m) was built by CRN with exterior design by Nuvolari Lenard. She has a no-nonsense, military-style profile. She has four decks and can host up to 12 guests in an owner’s suite and four VIP cabins. For more information: crn-yacht.com
Scorpion (151ft./46m) is a new yacht in the 46 Alloy series from Sanlorenzo. She has a beach club with a fitness area and gym, and easy access to the sea via a no-step swim platform. For more information: sanlorenzoyacht.com
Sanlorenzo’s 460 EXP (151ft./46m) is a long-range explorer vessel with 460 gross tons. She can carry large tenders and plenty of toys for exploring the world’s oceans. She is also designed to be fuel-efficient. For more information: sanlorenzoyacht.com
Baglietto’s 43m Fast (141ft./43m) was designed by Francesco Paszkowski and is an evolution from the yard’s past efforts. An aluminum planing yacht, she looks fast with her aerodynamic lines and sporty bow. For more information: baglietto.com
Mangusta’s 132 (132ft./40m) is the fourth new model in the builder’s open series. She was designed by Stefano Righini and Overmarine, and reflects improvements from her predecessors with new power and tweaks to the hull design, as well as an elongated flybridge. For more information: overmarine.com
Mondomarine’s SF40 (132ft./40.23m) was designed by Luca Vallebona-SF Yachts. She has a private owner’s cabin on two semi-levels with a panoramic view on the upper level and a sense of intimacy on the lower. For more information: mondomarine.mc
Taransay (131ft./39.95m) was built by Rossi Navi with interior design by Studio Tassin. She takes spirit of tradition design reference from the early 1900s, however, she is 21st century all the way in terms of technology. She has been awarded the RINA Green Star Plus certificate. For more information: rossinavi.it
Nautor’s Swan’s 115S (115ft./35.2m) has contemporary lines by German Frers and a hull and deck infused with carbon fiber for stiffness, strength and weight saving. Her rigging and mast are carbon as well. Her waterline and 26-foot (8.1-meter) beam are intended to deliver performance and comfort under sail. For more information: nautorswan.com
SeaLook (102ft./31.1m) is Cerri Cantieri Navali’s flagship. Her gray hull has aggressive lines in keeping with her sportboat soul. She combines the thrill of an open with functionality and livability. For more information: cantiericerri.it
Southern Wind’s 102 (102ft./31.1m) has naval architecture by Farr Yacht Design and exterior and interior concept by Nauta Yacht Design. She offers exceptional performance and a spacious flush deck. Her interior has a studio that separates the forward master from the salon. For more information: southernwindshipyard.com
LadyG (95ft./29.02m), from Southern Wind Shipyard, has naval architecture by Reichel Pugh Design and concept, exterior design and interior styling by Nauta Yacht Design. She is semi-custom with a different transom and belowdecks configuration than her predecessors. For more information: southernwindshipyard.com
When: September 23-26 (10 a.m. to 6:30 p.m.)
Where: Port Hercules, Boulevard Albert 1ER, Principality of Monaco
Tickets: Public $150 euro/day (on sale at the show)
For more information: monacoyachtshow.com
Monaco, Monarchs and the Sea: A Brief History of Yachting in the Heart of the Mediterranean
The seafaring life and Monaco have been eternally entwined. In ancient times, the intrepid, oceangoing Phoenicians were said to have sailed into the sheltered harbor of Monaco. Long the subject of gossip—way before Vanity Fair and “Lifestyles of the Rich and Famous”—the region that is now Monaco featured colorfully in Greek mythology. Heracles, more commonly known by his Roman moniker Hercules, played a part in the Monaco story. The Temple of Monoikos was purportedly built to honor his feats on land and at sea. And the name of the principality’s largest port, Port Hercules, no doubt is a nod to the rambunctious son of Zeus.
Monoikos, which translates from the Greek to mean “single house,” connotes self-reliance and self-sufficiency. Today, this bite-size country (second-smallest only to the Vatican) ruled by a monarch is indeed a singular enclave unlike any other. Prince Albert II, the current ruling monarch, can trace his family origins back to 1297 when François Grimaldi, disguised as a monk, seized the fortress of Monaco from a rival Italian faction.
Naturally, over the course of time, leaders came and went. In 1604, Lord Honore II propelled Monaco into its “Great Century,” firmly implanting the Grimaldis as sovereigns. Fast-forward to the French Revolution: Monaco was annexed by France and did not revert to Grimaldi rule until Napoleon’s abdication in 1814.
Yachting as we know it came into play in the principality during the 19th century. According to the Yacht Club of Monaco, the first regattas were held in the bay of Monaco in 1862. However, it was not until 1888 that Prince Charles III and his son Prince Albert I established the “Société des Régates.”
Charles III (“Carlo” in Italian) is the namesake of Monte Carlo. He established gambling and founded the Grand Casino. However, it was Prince Albert I—who took over the monarchy in 1889—who had closer ties to the sea. Under his reign, the first international event for motorboats was established in Monaco in 1904. Thereafter, all the big sailing and motor yachts gathered annually to be part of historic gatherings. Monaco had become the center of the world for fashionable water sports.
Prince Albert I was also keen on scientific research and oceanography, and he created the Oceanographic Museum on The Rock of Monaco (where the palace sits). An ongoing enterprise today, it has been a great resource for exhibits and education over the years. Jacques-Yves Cousteau was the director of the museum from 1957 to 1988.
Prince Albert I combined yacht exploration and education. He owned four research yachts: Hirondelle, Princesse Alice, Princesse Alice II and Hirondelle II. He traveled throughout the Mediterranean with leading scientists of his day, recording oceanographic studies and creating maps and charts. In 1896, on an oceanographic survey of the Azores, he discovered the Princess Alice Bank. In the years from 1898 to 1907 he made four scientific reconnaissance cruises to Svalbard and the Arctic.
In 1953, Prince Rainier III, grandson of Prince Albert I, founded the Yacht Club de Monaco. It was a natural evolution for the Société des Régates. The objective, according to the yacht club, was “to develop, encourage and serve the promotion of the principality in the yachting sector.”
In the 1960s and ’70s, many eminent parties happened aboard one particularly famous yacht in Monaco. Celebrities, movie stars and heads of state were entertained aboard Aristotle Onassis’ 325-foot (99-meter) Christina. In 1981, Stavros Niarchos built the 380-foot (115-meter) Atlantis II to exceed his rival Onassis’ yacht. Today Atlantis II is a permanent fixture at her berth in Monaco’s harbor, but there are no publicized parties aboard.
In 1984, HSH Prince Albert II became president of the Yacht Club of Monaco and has made great strides in ensuring that Monaco remains the luxury yachting capital of the world. He has a passion for all things yachting. In 1995, he acquired the 1909-built, 92-foot Fife Tuiga as the club’s flagship. As part of the Prada Challenge vintage circuit, the club established Monaco Classic Week. In 2005 the club instituted the “La Belle Classe” label, federating yacht owners around a charter that defends essential yachting values: respect for etiquette, safeguard of the environment, preservation of the country’s heritage of classic yachts and innovation for luxury yachting. During the past few years, Prince Albert II spearheaded the building of a Norman Foster-designed yacht club facility, inaugurated in 2014 to further anchor Monaco as a world destination and facility for superyachts.
It would be a Herculean task to match Monaco as a sensational yachting port of call. —Jill Bobrow