As megayachts get larger and larger, the yachts on previous versions of the PMY 100 have slid down the list. And each year the boat at number 100 gets a bit larger: 2012’s number 100, Coral Island, fell eight spots from number 92 in 2011. We chart the path of some special yachts as they travel down our list over the years here:
One of the most talked-about yachts in 1985 was Cedar Sea II, which at just shy of 209 feet was the largest new yacht in the world. In 1985, there were about 300 yachts around the world measuring 100 feet and larger. Today, there are more than 4,000.
The largest privately owned yacht in 1985 was the 380-foot Atlantis II, since the 408-foot Savarona had not yet been restored for private service after a devastating fire several years prior.
The smallest yacht on the list, the 123-foot Cacique, was still a significant size for the time.
In 1995 the top 10 included a remarkable debut, a converted offshore tug christened Simson S. Commercial-craft-turned-yachts were a rarity, and those still reflecting their original rugged styling even harder to find.
Golden Shadow, a 219-footer launched in 1995. Ranked number 18 in the world, she held the additional remarkable distinction of being the largest yacht constructed on U.S. soil since 1931.
The famed Newport, Rhode Island, mansion The Elms cost $1.4 million to build in 1901, which equals about $36.2 million today. The descendants have Laurel (no. 97) on the market today for $79.5 million. Four yachts among the top 10—Rising Sun, Octopus, Pelorus, and Le Grand Bleu—were all delivered between 2000 and 2005.
As for Simson S, she was still there, rechristened Lone Ranger, though having dropped dramatically in the rankings in 2005: number 28. Golden Shadow had taken a larger tumble, to number 50.
Today, Lone Ranger is ranked 76th and conversion projects no longer make people bat an eye, unless you’re talking about really big conversions like the nearly 463-foot Yas.
This article originally appeared in the August 2012 issue of Power & Motoryacht magazine.