According to The Independent, the demand for luxury yachts among the rich and wealthy is steadily improving despite dwindling economies. The company CRN Spa, located in Italy, is in the business of building mega vessels for a small but extremely wealthy clientele. They estimate that only 1 500 people worldwide can actually afford to buy one of their yachts.
According to CRN Spa, most people would never have heard of their clients: they are billionaire businessmen (interestingly, the company has not yet had a female buyer), as opposed to superstar athletes or big shot actors. The sales manager of CRN Spa, Matteo Belardinelli, described how most clients have very specific requests: some want aquariums, others want submarines, one client even forked over a million euros to cover any small holes with glass and netting for the safety of his dog (after all, the yacht was a present for her, so she had to be totally safe in it).
Belardinelli's associate, Mr. Tacoli, also describes the challenges they face while actually building the vessels, as tastes, fashions and lovers change over time (since the average time of completion for a boat is three years, you can see how the buyer would have lots of time to think over and change their requests). However, you can be sure of one thing, no matter what style or features the clients go for in the end, these boats cost more than most people will earn in a lifetime.
From crystal encrusted flip-flops for guests, to fully staffed, full time hairdresser salons, the world's 10 most expensive luxury yachts show a glimpse of a life the vast majority of people will never know.
10 Dilbar - $263 Million
The Dilbar is 110 meters long and is owned by Alisher Usmanov, founder of Metalloinvest, investor and philanthropist. He named the ship after his mother. According to Forbes, he has a net worth of $13.6 billion. In fact, he used to be the richest person born in Russia.
Being a shrewd businessman, Usmanov invested in a variety of Russia’s sectors: he invested in the country’s iron ore and steel, in Russia’s second biggest mobile phone operator, MegaFon, and in the country’s biggest daily business newspaper, the Kommersant. He has also invested in China’s Alibabab, Xiaomi and the Arsenal Football Club. In 2013, he was honored by being awarded the Order for Service to the Fatherland IV.
9 Pelorus - $300 Million
The Pelorus spans 115 meters and is owned by American David Geffen, the founder of DreamWorks SKG, Asylum Records, Geffen Records and DGC Records. According to Forbes, he is worth an approximate $6.9 billion.
David Geffen proves that though education definitely helps, it is not necessary to be successful: he is a dyslexic college dropout. After getting a job at the William Morris Agency (thanks to a fake UCLA degree), he eventually founded Asylum Records and Gueffen Records, launching big names into the industry, such as The Eagles, Aerosmith and Guns N’ Roses. He also owns a small part of Dream Works Animation, $1 billion Apple stocks and one of the world’s most valuable art collections.
8 Al Said - $300 Million
The owner of this 155-meter long, steel yacht is Qaboos bin Said, the Sultan of Oman and its dependencies. According to the Business Insider, he is worth approximately $1.1 billion. It can fit 70 passengers and 154 crewmembers.
People aboard the Al Said experience full luxury as the yacht features a helipad, a cinema, and even a concert hall that can fit a 50-strong orchestra. It was launched in 2007, and is still one of the most expensive yachts in the world today.
7 Dubai - $300 Million
The Dubai is 162 meters long and was built in 2006 by Platinum Yachts. It can accommodate a total of 115 people. The yacht features numerous dining areas, saloons, guest and VIP suites, two heli-observations rooms and eight decks. It used to be the largest privately owned superyacht, however that title now belongs to the Eclipse (161.7 meters).
The Dubai is owned by Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, the Vice President and Prime Minister of the United Arab Emirates, as well as constitutional monarch of Dubai. According to the Business Insider, he is worth an estimated $14 billion.
6 Radiant - $320 Million
The Radiant, 110 meters long, was initially built for Boris Berezovsky, a Russian oligarch. However, it was eventually sold to Abdulla Al Futtaim, an auto-dealer and investor (he owns Al Futtaim Group which is the exclusive distributor of Toyota and Honda vehicles in the United Arab Emirates). According to Forbes he is worth an approximate $3.2 billion.
Though the yacht looks like a peaceful boat, it is anything but. The Radiant is equipped with sonic guns capable of bursting eardrums, as well as water cannons with the capability of sinking boats as far as 91 meters away. The yacht even contains a small speedboat designed for quick escapes if need be.
5 Serene - $330 Million
The Serene is 134 meters long and is owned by Russian founder of the SPI Group, Yuri Scheffler, who is worth an estimated $800 million. Among the yacht’s features are an “underwater viewing room,” an indoor climbing wall, a children’s playroom, and enough cabins to accommodate 24 guests as well as 52 crew members.
When the yacht arrived in New York last year, concern started to rise because of its presence. However, according to CNBC, Americans had nothing to worry about as Scheffler was there on business and had publicly fought Vladimir Putin for years (as he wanted to seize Scheffler’s company to “renationalize” it). A warrant was even issued for Scheffler’s arrest in 2003, when he continuously refused to give away his company.
4 A - $390 Million
No, that is not a typo: this luxury Yacht’s name is indeed the “A.” It is owned by Russian billionaire Andrey Melnichenko, an industrialist with businesses in the fields of coal mining and fertilizers, serving as the chairman of the Board of Directors for Eurochem. According to Business Insider, he is worth approximately $11.4 billion.
The yacht, which some describe as looking like a submarine, features incredibly lavish details such as bath knobs that cost $40 000 each. The “A” is also complete with touch screen navigation, bomb-proof glass and button-operated rotating beds. The master bedroom is even protected by a fingerprint scanner.
3 Topaz - $520 Million
This 147 meter long luxury yacht was custom-built for and owned by Mansour bin Zayed, the Deputy Prime Minister of the United Arab Emirates. He is worth an estimated $20 billion.
The yacht is the work of British designer Tim Heywood; it took four years to complete and finally set sail in May 2012. It features three swimming pools, a gym, a Jacuzzi, a cinema and a helipad. Last summer, Leonardo DiCaprio rented the impressive yacht to watch the World Cup, and brought 21 lucky friends along with him for the ride.
2 Azzam - $600 Million
This massive 180 meter long vessel is owned by the president of the United Arab Emirates, emir of Abu Dhabi, and commander of the Union Defense Force, Khalifa bin Zayed al Nahyan. The Business Insider estimates that Nahyan is worth $18 billion.
The yacht itself was designed by Nauta Yachts, built by the German shipyard Lurssen, and was set out to see in 2013. According to the Daily Mail, the Azzam (or “dedication” in Arabic) was “the most complex and challenging yacht that has ever been built.” It features an armour-plated master suite, two swimming pools, two helipads, a hall, a cinema, a mini-submarine and even a missile defence system.
1 Eclipse - $1.1 Billion
The world’s most expensive luxury yacht is owned by Russian politician, businessman and investor, Roman Abromovich. According to the Business Insider, his overall estimated net worth is $12.8 billion.
The yacht is 163 meters long, 22 meters wide, and weighs an estimated 13, 500GT. It features four diesel engines, a cinema, conference facilities, a children’s playroom, a beauty salon, a dance floor, two swimming pools, two helicopter pads, a disco hall, a sauna, 30 cabins, a miniature submarine and a missile defence system. The master suite is also armour-plated and has bullet-proof windows.