Polar Star looks to lead the charter market.
Seeing a yacht in a shipyard is like seeing a dolphin at Sea World—it’s not an entirely accurate representation of behavior in the wild. So when I heard that the 208-foot Polar Star had been released back into the wild after five months in captivity at Florida’s Rybovich shipyard, I set to tracking her all the way to the U.S. Virgin Islands. Recent sightings had her leaving St. Croix headed toward St. Thomas. I planned to intercept the massive Lrssen there at Yacht Haven Grande.
I had no trouble spotting her. Dominating Pier 2A, she dwarfed the 134-foot Silver Cloud and 192-foot Ronin not only in length but also in height. Her name was backlit in blue on the port and starboard sides and on her transom. Even in the tropic daylight, it glinted in the sun. It was a small change—to have the nameplate inlaid with stainless steel—but it caught my eye and reflected the carefully considered changes to her interior.
Originally launched in 2005 as Northern Star, her current owners purchased the trideck in 2007 as their first yacht and changed only her name before taking her to sea. Design accents such as a compass table on the owner’s deck and tables emblazoned with four-pointed stars guided her new name.
But major change finally began last year, starting in June 2010 when Capt. Maxx Ainsworth took command. The following November he took the yacht in for what he describes as a “12-month refit in five months.”
Polar Star looked every bit the new yacht when I saw her. Her navy blue hull remained and shimmered with every ripple of the turquoise water and sharply contrasted with the DuPont cumulus white paint Rybovich had meticulously applied to her superstructure.
This article originally appeared in the July 2011 issue of Power & Motoryacht magazine.