Several years ago elevators began appearing on megayachts for practical reasons: Between the number of stairs on some multideck mariners and the unfortunate reality of the aging process, they’re simply the easiest way to get around. Never ones to be satisfied with “just” sensible features, however, some owners began inquiring with their design and build teams as to whether the elevators could be, well, more fashionable, like the rest of their yachts. After all, most elevators aren’t exactly scenic, leaving people to look at the progression of floor numbers, the plain floor, or even the equally plain ceiling.
Thus the glass elevator, previously the domain of fancy office buildings and hotels, entered the yacht arena. Push a button, and the beauty of the yacht’s various decks unfolds before your eyes. As seen above aboard the 198-foot Blue Moon, natural light spills down from above and hundreds of star-like lights glow at night, and the owner and guests get to admire the workmanship of the wrought-iron staircase that winds around the tubular elevator as it rises throughout her four decks. A similar scene awaits visitors to the 144-foot Mirgab V, this time a custom bronze spiral staircase with illuminated glass treads (though her pneumatic elevator rises “only” three decks).
If that’s not enough entertainment as you venture from deck to deck, borrow a page from the owner of the 138-foot Blue Eyes. He had a mural painted within the elevator shaft, mimicking the various depths of the ocean—with the seafloor at the lowest deck and the ocean’s surface and the sky at the uppermost deck.
This article originally appeared in the October 2006 issue of Power & Motoryacht magazine.