SAILING INTO HISTORY
Meet some of the gigayachts that are making the biggest splashes.
The superyacht industry is thriving. According to recent data, the number of yachts on order or being built in 2018 is up from 2017, with Italy, the Netherlands and Turkey the leading countries in which superyachts are built. The world’s 10 largest superyachts tell a different story, however. Germany is by far the largest producer of gigayachts. Lurssen built five of them, including the 180.6m Azzam, the globe’s largest yacht. The owners primarily hail from Middle Eastern royal families. Others are Russian billionaires such as Roman Abramovich, whose yacht Eclipse was eclipsed by 18m in 2013 for the title of longest yacht.
The styles range from the futuristic Sailing Yacht A, the world’s largest sail-assisted motor yacht (with its 3,744sqm of sail plan), to the ultramodern topside of Yas and the Victorian El Mahroussa, the 146m Egyptian presidential yacht first launched in 1865. They share a size that spans many football fields but diverge in design, reflecting their owners’ tastes and particular needs. Some of those requirements are met with special features, including a personal submarine and missiledefence system (Azzam); multiple helipads (Eclipse and Topaz); and a swimming pool half the length of a gridiron, with a bottom that rises flush with the deck and transforms into a disco floor (Eclipse). Δ