The term megayacht refers to an expensive, professionally crewed yacht. These luxury yachts may be either power or sailing yachts, both types built with the highest standards, tastefully decorated and maintained to perfection.
A yacht is a pleasure craft of 12 meters or more in length. A large private yacht over 23 meters is defined as a mega yacht, sometimes referred to as a super yacht. Yachts from about 23 meters require a professional crew, highly trained and experienced in care of their charges. Larger yachts are commonly considered super yachts, usually with three or four decks and cabins to accommodate 12 guests, some even more.
The lower deck has a swimming platform at the stern, a few guest cabins and the crew living area. On some yachts there are more crew members to serve than there are guests. The main deck is sheltered and leads to the saloon. There is a dining room and a galley there, as well as the owner’s suite usually with a study. Finally, the upper deck is often used for outdoor dining. This is the lounge area with saloon, bar, stateroom, captain’s cabin, bridge and often with a Jacuzzi on the roof. Mega yachts are lavishly outfitted with modern and high technology equipment, multiple flat screen televisions and satellite communications. A mega yacht can also have a yacht tender for short daily trips towards the shore, different toys for water sport activities and entertainment; jet-ski, windsurfing and diving equipment, etc. Level of luxury service vary and is reflected in the price.
Nautical tourism has become more popular over the past few years and the demand for luxury yachts has increased significantly. The beginning of the 20th century was already marked by the popularization of large private yachts used for pleasure. However, 1990s marked a real revolution in yacht construction. Large private yachts have increased not only in number, but in size as well. Most were custom built yachts with four decks and a helicopter landing platform. These yachts usually have one or more VIP suites, a sauna, a playroom, a cinema and various additional living areas. Luxury yacht vacation provides a taste of elegance and style. It’s a popular way to enjoy wonderful scenery and explore exotic coastlines worldwide. Megayacht charter promises luxury and excitement. It’s your own private traveling resort. You can spend your luxury vacation in numerous impressive destinations, for these yachts are available at almost any port of the world.
A successful conversion and redecoration of a workboat to a luxury yacht depends on different elements and requires a great deal of effort and patience. These boats are restored through a complete refurbishment and re-powering by the experts. The expenses can sometimes be compared to a new yacht price, even to a custom build yacht. However, new owners are attracted to these boats, their features and the possibility to convert the “oldtimers” into elite and luxurious yachts.
The first to deal with the idea were Greeks, whose ports have always been crowded with boats and ships, waiting to be completely renewed. Onassis’ yacht is the world’s famous example of creating a masterpiece. Originally built in 1943 as a Canadian convoy escort, the yacht was purchased by shipping magnate Aristotle Onassis in 1954 and was converted into the most elegant and advanced private yacht afloat.
Over the past few years, some brokers have specialized in converting military and workboats to yachts. One of the great examples is surely the yacht Simson S. The former tug Simson S was converted to a yacht in 1994 by a shipyard in Malta. When her owner, Jack Setton, sold her, she was renamed Lone Ranger.
Bart Roberts, a 265-foot expedition yacht, used to perform search-and-rescue missions off the coast of northern Canada. This former ice breaker was transformed to 20-passenger luxury yacht. Arctic P was built as an ice-class tug in 1969 and was converted to a prestigious yacht. Amazon Express is one of the most discrete yachts among the world’s finest examples of megayachts. The yacht was launched under the name Albacora in 1966 and was intended for deep sea fishing. However, the first modifications were carried out by the Norwegian shipyard in 1984, while the second refit was done in Venice, turning Amazon Express into one of the most impressive mega yachts.
Motor yacht Titan was launched in 1968 by Brooke Marine as a Royal Navy vessel. In 2004 the yacht completed an extensive rebuild, which converted her to superb yacht with up to 20 guests accommodated in luxury.
Numerous are examples of converted yachts; Diones, former Adriatic liner, Prometej and Itasca, former ice-breakers, French Look II, the offshore supply vessel, Turama, an ocean cruiser, then Noé, the former whaler, Altair Amels, an expedition yacht, etc. All these were converted to prestigious luxury yachts with some external modifications and complete interior decoration.