Sydney Superyacht Show gears up

There are several definitions of a superyacht, one of the main ones being an uber-luxury vessel measuring more than 24 metres in length.

But we reckon you don’t need a dictionary to know when you’re on a superyacht - if you notice a helicopter perched on the deck, there’s a good chance there’s a superyacht under your feet.

Oh Ophelia

There’s little doubt the 36.57 metre long Ophelia makes the grade. Not only does it come with a helipad (the chopper is extra), but with a range of 4000 nautical miles, it will float you from Sydney to Tahiti without refuelling. (As a matter of fact, the 42,000 litre fuel tank will still be a quarter full).

Ophelia can host up to 19 guests and a crew of five in pure opulence. There’s eight sumptuous cabins, including an owner’s full-beam stateroom with a double walk-in wardrobe, and ensuite with spa.

But you’ll need $14 million to take it home with you.

Yachts for show

Ophelia, along with 23 other luxury vessels, will be moored at the inaugural Sydney Superyacht Show. Unlike the more popular Sydney International Boat Show being held in Darling Harbour on the same weekend, the Superyacht Show aims to attract extremely well-heeled prospective buyers.

“We’re looking at several hundred people, but they have to be the ‘right’ several hundred people,” says Captain Richard Morris, owner of Australian Superyachts and one of the show’s organisers. “We’ll be dealing with high net-worth individuals; CEOs, etcetera.”

All of the vessels on offer are second-hand - or, as they like to say in the trade, ‘pre-owned’. The total value of the fleet will be around the $50 million mark. Even the least expensive boat will set you back around $500,000.

One of the most decadent vessels is Patriot; a 32.13 metre floating palace with features including a chandelier, Versace plateware, hand-laid timbers (babinga, burl walnut, and chestnut burl), Bose surround sound, and a honey-onyx lined bathroom with gold basins and cut crystal accessories from Paris. The asking price is $3.95 million.

Other standouts include a Warren 75, Sunseeker 82, and a Princess 85.

There will also be a couple of helicopters available to purchase and the show will exhibit a host of luxury brands such as Mercedes Benz and L’Oreal. Punters will be able to board the MV Epicure, Sydney’s newest three-level hospitality venue for the event, to drink champagne and dine on ritzy canapés such as Shark Bay blue swimmer crab salad, and fennel crusted yellow fin tuna.

Big is better

Morris says there’s little doubt a superyacht is still the ultimate expression of wealth, and that size does matter. “Big is better, not only from an ego point of view, but also when it comes to sea-keeping and comfort and the amount of people you can have on board,” he says. “In our part of the world, a superyacht can be smaller than 24 metres, just as long as it is luxurious enough.”

Co-organiser of the superyacht show, Peter Lovett of Geoff Lovett International, says the superyacht scene in Europe raises the ante even further, where a superyacht will typically exceed 100 metres in length (Azzam, owned by Sheikh Khalifa bib Zayyed al-Nayan, is a staggering 157 metres long).

“We’re a much smaller pond over here,” he concedes. “But in saying that, the size of the average boat in Australia is growing.”

Since it opened in 2000 for the Olympics, the Sydney Superyacht Marina has been the port of choice for movers and shakers needing a place to park their superyacht. These have included Reg Grundy’s 70-metre Amels Boadicea; Greg Norman’s 71-metre Oceanfast, Aussie Rules; James Packer’s 46-metre Leopard Sport, ‘Z; Kerry Stokes’ 36-metre Oceanfast, Antipodean; and Lindsay Fox’s 34-metre Sunseeker, La Volpe.

The marina is also the permanent home to 45-metre Ilonka, owned by shopping centre magnate Frank Lowy. It boasts six staterooms with ensuites decked out in Rajasthan marble.

The Sydney Superyacht Show will be held from August 1 to 3 at the Sydney Superyacht Marina in Rozelle Bay. Entry to the marina and parking is free.

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