Few things can rival the exhilarating feeling of sailing across the waves on a lavish boat, with the wind in your hair. Indeed, luxurious yachts symbolise not just wealth but power too. Since celebrities — be it in entertainment, sports or business — have both, owning a yacht becomes a matter of status among these immensely affluent.
However, while some celebrities have more than one, others have never owned any. Chief among them are Beyoncé, who is known for chartering yachts, and Leonardo DiCaprio, who has previously holidayed on some yachts owned by his celebrity friends.
At the same time, some celebrities have also sold their yachts. These include Va Bene, which was owned by Eric Clapton, while Seven Seas was sold by Steven Spielberg in 2021.
Floating palaces on the water
Celebrity yachts are similar to those owned by powerful royals or political leaders around the globe. All of them exude luxury through their design and amenities while having some of the best security systems on board.
The breathtaking interiors of a luxury yacht are designed, keeping in mind the refined tastes of the owners. Therefore, the very best furnishings and the finest materials are used in the construction of the vessels.
Everything, from swimming pools to jacuzzi and cinema halls to dance floors, are built across the length and breadth of the yachts. They also come equipped with jet skis and other toys should their guests wish to partake in water sports.
The cabins, or suites, appear like rooms of the best luxury hotels and the décor reflects the highest of artistic tastes. Meant for utmost fun, the yachts give the owner and the guests every opportunity to unwind in peace.
Here are some celebrity-owned yachts you must know about
Giorgio Armani — Maìn
The Maìn was constructed by Codecasa in 2008 and has the rare distinction of being partly designed by its owner. However, this should not be a surprise when the owner is fashion designer Giorgio Armani — one of the greatest icons in the history of fashion.
Design is certainly a high point of the Maìn. One of the most stunning yachts in the world, it is dark green, which helps it camouflage at sea.
Armani carefully worked on the interiors of the 65-metre-long yacht along with designers Studio Dellarole and Ortelli. A minimalist colour scheme coupled with Asian aesthetics, such as Japanese-style low tables, dominates the décor across rooms and the main salon. The blinds, windows and furniture have been created by Armani and his namesake brand.
There are seven suites built to accommodate 12 guests.
Tiger Woods — Privacy
Among the most famous luxury yachts owned by celebrities, the Privacy is known for having the legendary golfer on board on important tours.
Woods, who was in March 2022 inducted into the World Golf Hall of Fame, stayed on it during the 2019 PGA Championship at Long Island, the 2018 US Open at Shinnecock Hills and the 2006 US Open at Winged Foot.
The Privacy was purchased by Woods in 2004. At the time, he paid USD 20 million for the 48-meter-long vessel. It has five cabins for 10 guests.
Among its most attractive luxury features is a jacuzzi on the deck where up to eight guests can take a dip at a time. There is a bar and a cinema room for some winding down. A gym in the yacht helps Woods maintain his regular fitness routine when he is on board the Privacy. There is also a decompression chamber for scuba diving, jet skis, ocean kayaks and motorised scooters.
David Geffen — Rising Sun
The Rising Sun measures 138 metres and is one of the most iconic celebrity superyachts. Built in 2004, Geffen bought it six years later from Oracle founder Larry Ellison.
The founder of Geffen Records and co-founder of DreamWorks Pictures, Geffen is a billionaire known for his love of yachts. After buying the Rising Sun, he used it to host his galaxy of friends from Hollywood’s A-list, including Leonardo DiCaprio, Oprah Winfrey, Katy Perry, Orlando Bloom and Chris Rock. Even Jeff Bezos, the Amazon founder and one of the world’s richest men, was seen holidaying on it with his girlfriend Lauren Sánchez in 2019.
According to Esquire, Geffen paid USD 590 million for the superyacht. However, Forbes valued it at USD 570 million in 2020.
The Rising Sun was built by German shipbuilder Lürssen and styled by Seccombe Design. Its exterior features some engineering masterpieces and has the signature of Jon Bannenberg of the Bannenberg & Rowell firm.
Of the five decks, the top deck has been designed entirely for owner use. There are luxurious rooms for 18 guests. The guest cabins are crafted to provide direct access to the exterior side decks of the vessel, while the remaining are sheltered from the weather by indents. The vessel houses a spa, a gym, a helipad, a swimming platform and a double-height cinema.
The Rising Sun can cruise easily at 26 knots and has a top speed of 30 knots.
The Edge — Cyan
In September 2021, U2’s lead guitarist The Edge and frontman Bono were seen holidaying on the Cyan in Ibiza.
The Edge, whose actual name is David Howell Evans, bought the superyacht in 2008 for a reported GBP 12 million (between USD 17-20 million at the time). It was refurbished by his wife Morleigh Steinberg the year it was purchased.
One of the most famous celebrity yachts in the world, the Cyan was originally built in 1997 and is easily identifiable by its dark hull.
The 48.7-metre-long vessel has six luxurious cabins which can house up to 12 people. The master suite is located on the main deck.
There are many avenues for relaxation and entertainment on the yacht. Among them are a three-metre outdoor cinema screen and a movie library with more than 1,500 titles.
There are several toys for those who would like to take part in water sports. These include wakeboards, inflatables and WaveRunners. Some of these were seen when The Edge and Bono were in Ibiza.
David and Victoria Beckham — Seven
In April 2022, power couple David and Victoria Beckham were seen spending time with their children, parents and friends on board the Seven off the coast of Miami, US. The family was vacationing ahead of the marriage of the couple’s eldest son, Brooklyn, to Nicola Peltz.
The Seven, which is named after the English footballer’s jersey number, was built in 2021. The vessel is part of the Riva 90′ Argo family of flybridge yachts.
Ferretti Engineering Department built the 28.5-metre-long vessel, while Mauro Micheli’s Studio Officina Italiana Design worked on both its interior and exterior.
Its sun lounging space is located on the foredeck. The main saloon, dubbed Crystal Palace by its makers, has large glass windows and a dark lacquered ceiling. Its aft deck is almost all glass and therefore, creates an infinity view of the sea.
Rafael Nadal — Great White
The tennis great gifted himself the yacht on his 34th birthday in 2020 and named it the Great White. It reportedly cost him USD 6.2 million.
One of the most famous yachts owned by celebrities, the 23.95-metre-long vessel was built by Sunreef Yachts in Poland and delivered to Nadal’s hometown of Mallorca, Spain. The Great White is a fully customised Sunreef 80’ Power catamaran, which is basically a two-hull vessel.
Nadal himself worked on the interior design of the yacht. The colours beige, coffee and cream — all of which are the Spaniard’s favourites — dominate the 371.6 square metres of the living space of the yacht.
There is a large main saloon connected to the front terrace. The flybridge on the Great White offers sun pads for guests and has a fully equipped wet bar and a barbecue. There is also a waterfall-fed spa pool.
The vessel has four guest cabins luxuriously fitted for 10 guests. Nadal’s own suite, which is on the main deck, has a private fold-out balcony and an overhead skylight.
Like other large-sized yachts, the Great White, too, comes with its own set of toys such as jet skis in its personal garage.
Diane von Furstenberg and Barry Diller — Eos
Measuring 93 meters, the Eos is one of the world’s largest sailing yachts. Built by Lürssen in 2006, the beautiful vessel is essentially a three-masted schooner powered by a 1,740 kW MTU engine. The yacht can attain a maximum speed of 16 knots.
Diane von Furstenberg, the Belgian fashion designer renowned for her wrap dress, and her husband Barry Diller, an American businessman, bought the Eos in 2009.
While the vessel’s classic exterior was designed by the late Bill Langan, its interiors were done by François Catroux. Although details of the yacht’s interiors are not known, guests such as American television producer Andy Cohen and CNN anchor Anderson Cooper, along with Diller himself, have shared pictures of the same.
The pictures reveal a mix of white furniture on brown wooden panelling and a wooden staircase leading to an upper deck. In a photograph of von Furstenberg taken by Diller in 2019, the designer can be seen taking a nap on a comfy couch, with throw pillows draped in cream and navy patterned covers.
The spacious Eos can accommodate up to 14 guests in seven cabins. It also reportedly has a world map mural measuring 4.2 metres created by Hand Made Maps Ltd.
Sergey Brin — Dragonfly
The Google co-founder is believed to have bought the yacht in 2009. Named after a project that the tech giant launched to bring a censored search engine to China, the Dragonfly measures 73.3 metres and is one of the most fuel-efficient vessels at sea.
Like any other luxurious celebrity yacht, the Dragonfly comes with amenities designed for a luxurious stay. However, it is best known, in fact widely respected, for playing a major role in disaster relief missions as part of Brin’s Global Support and Development (GSD) team, which comprises ex-military men.
According to The Daily Beast, the yacht supplied 62 metric tons of freshwater to Vanuatu when the island was hit by Hurricane Pam in 2015. It was also used to treat more than 250 patients and engaged in critical medical evacuation. The Dragonfly’s crew helped build shelters in the villages of the island. That mission launched GSD.
Ever since, Brin has been reportedly using GSD to run relief missions around the world, including earthquake-hit Ecuador and the hurricane-ravaged Bahamas, from time to time.
As for the yacht, it was valued at USD 80 million in 2020.
Roman Abramovich — Eclipse
Abramovich, a Russian oligarch and former boss of the English Premier League club Chelsea FC, is perhaps the most famous name among superyacht owners. The Eclipse has been in his possession since he bought it for USD 590 million in 2010. Its current valuation comes to around USD 1.5 billion.
The Eclipse is, therefore, one of the most expensive celebrity yachts. Measuring 162.5 metres, the superyacht is also one of the biggest celebrity yachts.
German shipbuilder Blohm+Voss built the vessel, whose interiors were decked up by the renowned Terry Disdale of UK’s Terence Disdale Design. The beach-house style interiors showcase the finest in Art Deco.
The massive nine-deck vessel is served by around 100 crew members and can house 36 guests in its 18 über-luxurious suites. Each suite features materials such as a limed wedge, black wood with silver rubbed into the open grain, and buffalo hide. Several types of fireproof materials, such as stone, shell and fossilised wood, have also been used.
One of its many highlights is the main deck, which has a 16-metre swimming pool with a blue granite floor. At the push of a button, the pool rises to deck level and turns into a dance floor. The pool is designed in a way that guests can relax comfortably around it in an indoor setting, with glass panels closing off the sides.
Another attractive location is the rear lounge on the lower deck. The cosy setting offers one of the best views of the water while enjoying the luxurious comforts of the vessel.
Among the other amenities are a deck jacuzzi, a beauty salon, a tender garage and an exterior fireplace. The lobbies are decorated with artwork specially commissioned for the Eclipse.
The superyacht can carry three helicopters. It has two helipads — one at the foredeck and another at the sundeck. Below one of the helipads is a hangar for the third.
The Eclipse is also a high-tech yacht known for its missile detection system and bulletproof windows protecting the master suite. A submarine within the vessel is powerful enough to dive to a depth of around 50 metres.
Jeff Bezos — Y721
Multiple media reports in February 2022 indicated that Amazon’s billionaire founder Jeff Bezos has commissioned one of the world’s largest yachts.
Measuring 127 metres, the huge vessel has been dubbed Y721 and will reportedly cost Bezos around USD 500 million. It is being built by Dutch shipbuilder Oceanco in Rotterdam, the Netherlands.
The vessel will have three decks and three massive masts, which makes it similar to the sailing yacht Eos owned by Diane von Furstenberg and Barry Diller. Once ready, the Y721 will host 18 guests besides crew members. It can also accommodate jet skis and other smaller boats along with a helicopter.
Celebrity yacht trivia
Among all the celebrities in the world, the most expensive and biggest yacht belongs to Roman Abramovich. That superyacht is named Eclipse.
Besides the Eclipse, Abramovich is also the owner of the Solaris and the Sussurro, both of which are superyachts. The Russian billionaire has previously owned a number of yachts, making him perhaps the owner of the highest numbers of mega yachts in a lifetime.
Currently, Bezos doesn’t own any yacht, but he will once the Y721 is ready for sailing.
Tiger Woods appears to be one of those who loves yachts more than land. He is known to have used his vessel, Privacy, as his stay at many major tournaments near the coast.
(Main and featured images: Riva Yachts)
This story first appeared on Prestige Hong Kong