The World’s 100 Largest Yachts 2003 Page 3

The World’s 100 Largest Yachts - 2003

By Diane M. Byrne


Limitless (#10)
Photo: Janet Germano
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10. LIMITLESS • L: 315'7"; Y: 1997
Call him the Sultan of Silky Underthings, the Merrywidow Magnate, even the Prince of Push-Up Bras—all we know is, Limitless’ owner and Victoria’s Secret head Leslie Wexner is livin’ large off lingerie. In January Limitless became the largest yacht to enter Simpson Bay Lagoon in St. Maarten, shortly after the channel had been widened and the drawbridge spanning it had been rebuilt. Quite a crowd of spectators gathered along both sides of the shore to watch the historic transit. Limitless wintered at the area’s Yacht Club Isle de Sol Marina. And in May she arrived at Oceanco’s Dutch facility for some maintenance work. Our spies said security at the yard was unusually tight during her stay. It doesn’t surprise us, though, as Limitless is equipped with one of the most sophisticated security systems aboard a yacht. We’ve outlined some of the features before, like pressure-sensitive sensors embedded in the decks that trip alarms when an unauthorized person steps aboard. There’s also a system for keeping an eye on tenders—even if someone manages to steal a tender, it’s equipped with a tracking system that lets the Limitless crew follow the path.
B: Lürssen, Germany; N: Builder; H: Steel; E: 2/7,268-hp Caterpillars

11. EVERGREEN • L: 302'4"; Y: 1997
A hairdressing salon, private movie theater, karaoke lounge, and hospital suite are among the special areas aboard Evergreen. Dr. Yung-Fa Chang, founder and chairman of Taiwanese shipping giant Evergreen Marine Corporation, has her for sale because he’s said to be ordering a larger yacht.
B: Hayashikane, Japan; N: Diana Yacht Design; H: Steel; E: 2/6,598-hp Wartsilas

12. TATOOSH • L: 301'8"; Y: 2000
Tatoosh remains in the hands of Paul Allen one year after he acquired her from McCaw Cellular cofounder Craig McCaw (brother of John McCaw, the former owner of Le Grand Bleu, mentioned earlier). And boy, has he kept the yacht busy, sending her to destinations ranging from the Galapagos (for diving) to New Zealand (for the America’s Cup) to Palau (for some quiet R&R). While he kept a low profile in Palau, a controversy began brewing after he left. According to Pacific Islands magazine, Palau’s National Congress is questioning the sale of some firearms and ammunition that had been aboard the yacht, even though the arrangement was made with the president of the country and approved by the justice minister. The sale reportedly occurred in international waters due to Palau’s strict firearms laws, but the National Congress is still questioning the authenticity of the sale and the utilization of funds without legislative approval.
B: H.D.W. Nobiskrug, Germany; N: Kusch Yachtagentur; H: Steel; E: 2/1,018-hp Deutz-MWMs

13. NAHLIN L: 300'0"; Y: 1930/2003
The restoration of this historic lady, one of the last large steam yachts built in the UK, is now complete. The refit is rumored to have cost $35 million, with a lot of labor centered on removing asbestos, restoring her masts (strictly for cosmetic purposes), and repairing her engines. Nahlin had been moored to the banks of the Danube River in Romania for three decades, serving as a restaurant, when a British citizen acquired her with the help of Nick Edmiston of Edmiston & Co., intending to restore her to her original purpose. Whether he charters her or uses her for private cruises, we wonder if she’ll pick up where she left off in the scandal department: The affair that England’s King Edward VIII carried on with American socialite Wallis Simpson onboard in 1936 led to his abdication of the throne, and the King of Romania used the yacht (under the name Luceafarul, meaning The Evening Star) for a love affair, too, with Magda Lupescu. In fact, Lupescu insisted that King Carol have his government acquire the yacht in 1937 because she was inspired by The Prince of Wales’ affair.
B: John Brown & Co., Scotland; N: G.L. Watson; H: Steel; E: 4/Brown-Curtis steam turbines

14. ASEAN LADY • L: 289'0"; Y: 2003
“Considering 70 percent of the time onboard is spent on anchorage, stability is definitely the ultimate essential.” So says Brian Chang, the CEO/chairman of Raffles Yacht, and thus the reason why his unusual-looking Asean Lady is equipped with a 138-foot-long outrigger. Chang was inspired several years ago while watching Indonesian fishermen in wooden outrigger canoes navigate choppy waters with relative ease while his yacht at the time, a 158-footer, became susceptible to the seas to the point where guests became seasick. “The skeptics will wonder about the idea of an outrigger on a megayacht,” Chang admits. “But if you put a 1,000-year-old concept with the shipyard’s advanced technology, you will be able to eliminate all shortfalls and proceed to [transform] an overlooked conceptual design into a breakthrough technological one.” As for the decor, the main deck features an enormous carved block of Duan Mu, a Chinese wood, which took one month to complete. And the dining hall (it’s far too big to be called a room) has 12 panels made from rare natural Chinese stones, each depicting a different scene. Chang intends to take the yacht to boat shows worldwide in the coming months.
B: Yantai-Raffles Shipyard, China; N: Ian Mitchell; H: Steel; E: 1/2,000-hp Caterpillar

15. ARCTIC P • L: 288'7"; Y: 1969/1995
If you ever visit Australia and buy one of the country’s most popular magazines, like Wheels, Bulletin, or She, then you’ll make Kerry Packer a very happy—and even wealthier—man. They’re among the titles that the Australian media baron owns; in fact, he owns about 60 percent of all magazines sold in his country. The 66-year-old is known for his lavish spending sprees, such as the time a few years ago when he lost several million dollars in a Las Vegas casino; some reports have his loss as high as $34 million. But when you consider his net worth is estimated by Forbes to be about $2.5 billion, it’s not that much, now is it? He also reportedly spent nearly $20 million to convert this former ice-class tug into a world cruiser eight years ago.
B: Schichau-Unterwasser A.G., Germany; N: Claus Kusch (conversion); H: Steel; E: 2/4,400-hp Deutz-MWMs

16. KINGDOM 5KR • L: 281'9"; Y: 1980
Prince Alwaleed, who holds dual citizenship in Saudi Arabia and Lebanon, had his yacht painted a shade of beige reportedly to mimic the color of sand. While he’s famous for taking his yacht to Cannes every summer, he’s also famous for being one of the world’s most aggressive investors in the stock market; in fact, Time magazine dubbed him the “Arabian Warren Buffett” in the 1990’s. Even though he can still afford to give away millions each year to various causes and afford a lavish lifestyle, traveling aboard his own Boeing 767 and splitting time between his yacht and a huge palace in Riyadh, Prince Alwaleed has seen his portfolio suffer huge losses in recent years, with some estimates having him down $10 billion on paper. The American-educated prince has also taken a beating in the court of public opinion; when he offered then-New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani a $10-million check in 2001 after the September 11 attacks, he suggested that America revise its stand in the Middle East. (Giuliani, you may recall, eventually declined the check.)
B: M&B Benetti, Italy; N: Jon Bannenberg/builder; H: Steel; E: 2/3,000-hp Nohab Polars

17. ANNALIESSE • L: 279'8"; Y: 2003
It’s amazing what the Internet can turn up: We found out about this yacht more than a year ago thanks to a letter posted on a Russian brewery site, of all places. The letter, from the noteworthy firm of Cavendish White, informed the brewery’s management that this yacht would be available for charter this summer. Annaliesse is actually the first of a fleet of 200-plus-footers that will both charter and be offered in a partial-ownership program. Liveras Yachts of Greece is organizing the ownership program, under which clients can purchase four weeks onboard and a percentage of shares for $7.5 million. What do you get for either the charter rate or the ownership shares? You and 35 of your closest friends can spread out among 16 double guest staterooms on the main deck and lower deck, a VIP stateroom on the main deck, and an owner’s stateroom that takes up the forward part of the main deck (including a private open-deck area). She’s also noteworthy because she has a one-to-one ratio of guests and crew. Want to be among the first to try out her waterskiing tenders, dive equipment, or health spa (with steam room) on a charter? Call your favorite broker, but make sure you’ve set aside a big chunk of money for your vacation aboard this 280-footer: It’ll cost you upwards of $770,000 per week, the most for any charter yacht.
B: Neorio Syros Shipyards, Greece; N: unknown; H: Steel; E: 2/2,722-hp Caterpillars

18. GOLDEN ODYSSEY • L: 265’7"; Y: 1990
If you have $70 million burning a hole in your pocket, then you can become this yacht’s new owner. She’s the largest member of “The Golden Fleet,” a nickname stemming from the fact that Golden Odyssey is one of three “Golden”-named yachts owned by Saudi Arabia’s Prince Khaled, the country’s deputy defense minister. He’s also president of the Khaled bin Sultan Living Oceans Foundation, which funds coral reef research. Because of his interest in oceanography, he’s loaned his fleet to scientists for several years. As for Golden Odyssey in particular, she has a coral reef aquarium visible beneath a pool, making guests feel as if they’re actually in the ocean.
B: Blohm & Voss, Germany; N: Platou; H: Steel; E: 2/2,992-hp Deutz-MWMs

19. BART ROBERTS • L: 265'0"; Y: 1963/1986/2002
Okay, so you’re looking to spend some serious cash on a yacht—how about participating in the “shared-use” program that’s about to kick off with Bart Roberts? Forget what you’ve heard about partial-ownership programs, this one has the former icebreaker, complete with dazzling, pirate-themed interior, going on a five-year around-the-world cruise. She’ll visit three different and even exotic locales each year, and you get to spend a few weeks in two of them. Destinations include the Amazon River, Great Barrier Reef, and Far East. For your first night aboard, we suggest cranking up the stereo and clearing the throw rugs from the dance floor in the 65- by 35-foot saloon. When the party winds down, watch the piranhas (yes, piranhas) swim around in the 400-gallon fish tank to port of the fireplace.
B: Canadian Vickers, Canada; N: Builder (original construction), Lennart Edström (conversion); H: Steel; E: 2/2,000-hp Rustons

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This article originally appeared in the July 2003 issue of Power & Motoryacht magazine.

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