Battle of the super yachts

Super-sized luxury yacht ownership is a competitive pursuit: just ask Russian billionaire, Roman Abramovich, whose super yacht, Eclipse, has edged out 99 of the world's grandest craft to take the crown as the world's largest.

The prime spot for 2012 was awarded to Eclipse by, a website which hands down an annual listing of the world's privately owned yachts dubbed Top 100 Superyachts.

This year's list includes the usual suspects: media barons, business tycoons, royalty, and other assorted members of the world's highest flyers.

As the world's largest mega yacht at 164 metres, Eclipse's length is equivalent to more than 1 1/2 football fields, and Abramovich, a 45 year-old tycoon who earned his fortune in Russian oil and commodities, is believed to have forked out over $600 million in 2009 in a bid to build the biggest and the best.

It is reported to have nine decks, two helicopter landing pads, a cinema, a private garden and according to some reports, a German missile defence system and a private mini submarine/escape pod - but the ship was build under great secrecy so rumours abound.

He also owns Chelsea FC soccer team in the UK - plus a couple more yachts, including the 115 metre Peloris - one of the largest explorer yachts in the world which also made the Top 100, taking the 18th spot.

The second largest luxury vessel was Dubai, a 162 metre leviathan graced with a grand central staircase and owned by the prime minister of the United Arab Emirates, Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid al-Maktoum.

Al Said, a 155-metre yacht owned by the Sultan of Oman, came in third. It can accommodate up to 70 guests and is capable of carrying up to 154 crew.

Australian media moguls also made the list. The 87.5 metre vessel, Arctic P, owned by James Packer, came in at number 46. The refitted ocean-going tug was originally bought by the late Kerry Packer in 1995.

Reg Grundy's former super yacht, Reborn (once known as Boadicea), came in at number 90. The 88-year old TV pioneer bought the 75.5 metre luxury vessel - which boasts five decks, a panoramic lounge, a cinema and nine separate dining areas - in 1999 but it was reportedly put up for sale in 2009.

Ilona, the hydraulically-powered 73.6 metre luxury vessel which comes with its own built-in helipad, owned by the shopping mall giant, Frank Lowy, came in at number 98.

Also gracing the list was Ocean Breeze, ranked 59, which was built for Saddam Hussein but was never delivered owing to the disruption of war, according to Details of the Danish-built super yacht, which was once named Qadissiyat Saddam, are still shrouded in secrecy.

According to, a yacht measuring 62m that might have easily earned a significant place in the Top 100 Largest Yachts listing in 2006, would have made only "a modest impression in 2007. And in the past two years "only yachts over 73m could reach the bottom rungs of the top 100".

The website predicts that 11 new super yachts will launch this year, with the largest new vessel named Topaz likely to enter the top five of its listing at 147m.