Dubai (Ex-Golden Star, Panhandle, Platinum)
LENGTH: 531ft. 6in. (162m)
SHIPYARD: Blohm + Voss/Lurssen, Germany - Platinum Yachts, Dubai
Prince Jefri Bolkiah, the Sultan of Brunei’s younger brother, ordered this yacht in 1996. Blohm + Voss and Lürssen began construction in earnest until the Sultan ordered construction stopped. It is said that the ruler of Brunei had set limits to the 12,488-GT yacht’s construction budget, and that cost overruns did not meet his approval. The yacht was sold “as is” to Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid al Maktoum, ruler of the Emirate of Dubai and prime minister of the UAE. In 2001, Platinum Yachts acquired the enormous unfinished carcass and 250 containers full of spare parts and worked four years on finishing this giant. The Andrew Winch-styled Dubai, features a 10,000 sq.-m painted surface finished in Awlgrip Snow White, and stylistic enhancements in stainless steel around portholes and large windows. In spite of her 3,470 gross tons, Dubai can reach a 26-knot top speed and cruises at 23 knots thanks to two MTU 20V 1163TB93 engines of 6,323kW each, connected to a MAAG gearbox that couples the two 20V cylinders with controllable-pitch propellers. Aside from a lavish pool and helicopter station suitable for a Sikorsky S76 or any other helicopter up to 9.5 tons, the interior finishes include tiles covered in gold leaf, marble, onyx, lapis lazuli and malachite. As witness to a difficult period in the yachting industry and elsewhere, Platinum Yachts, which went on to refit two other very larges yachts, later merged with a government-owned shipyard. Sheik Mohammed is a staunch supporter of the yachting sector in Dubai and visited the 20th edition of the Dubai International Boat Show, which exhibited 430 yachts and hosted 11 of the world’s superyacht builders represented by SYBAss.
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