The World's Largest Yachts—2012
41. Musashi • 287'10"
Musashi is most definitely owned by Larry Ellison (see no. 6). Yes, she looks like Fountainhead and even has a similar basketball court outlined on her aft deck. But, Musashi launched first, and the design elements were clearly inspired by Rising Sun, which Ellison commissioned several years ago. Put photos of Musashi and Rising Sun next to each other, and you’ll see it right away. (As to why Fountainhead also resembles her, maybe Cuban just thought Ellison had good taste.) Musashi’s namesake could be a Japanese province that today includes Tokyo, but it’s more likely to be Miyamoto Musashi. The latter was a famous samurai (some say the greatest ever) born in the 16th century. Musashi also penned a book, The Five Rings, about swordsmanship, and was an artist. As for the yacht, she has a subdued interior design, all the better to appreciate the natural surroundings she explores. The owner’s suite has full-height sliding-glass doors that open onto a private deck area, and the saloon can become a cinema when desired.
42. Arctic P • 287'3"
To put mega-size megayacht construction into better perspective, Arctic P was ranked number 23 on our annual list just five years ago. That hasn’t diminished her in the eyes of her owner, Australian media and gambling baron James Packer. Packer likes his toys, which have included a variety of yachts over the years, and is a pretty private person. Speaking of private, we had to laugh when an Australian newspaper ran an interview with an apparently just-fired Arctic P crewmember a few years ago, who claimed to be blowing the lid off the onboard life of the Packer family. He revealed that all new hires were handed a document of behavioral guidelines, which included the following: “‘The Boss is extremely private—the movement and operation of the yacht should not be discussed with anyone.’” Well, all we can say is, duh.
43. Ace • 285'4"
In January Ace emerged from her build shed. She had been known by two different code names, Flash and Rocky, since being signed. No one associated with the build or design teams is permitted to discuss her, which is a shame, given how incredibly different in appearance she is. She has a creamy-tone hull that strikes a nice contrast against her white superstructure, accentuating her sweeping lines all the more. Ace encompasses six decks, with the highest one being more of an observation platform accessible from twin staircases aft that lead from the deck directly below.
44. Kingdom 5KR • 282'2"
Could the long-planned successor to Kingdom 5KR be under construction? That’s what some people think. Andrew Winch had been commissioned almost a decade ago to style a new yacht, and he gave the drawings to her owner, Prince Al-Waleed bin Talal of Saudi Arabia, a billionaire known for varied investments from Citigroup to the Four Seasons Hotels. A French television program revealed the drawings during an interview with the prince aboard Kingdom 5KR in 2005. The shipyard was not yet selected, and at some point within the next few years the project was put on hold. If the project is back on, it will be a few years before we see her. Until then, the prince can take heart knowing that his yacht’s presence at the famed “Billionaire’s Row” in Antibes, France last summer resulted in Eclipse (see no. 1) having to anchor offshore, due to a lack of room.
45. Seven Seas • 282'2"
Famed film director Steven Spielberg commissioned Seven Seas and still cruises aboard. He allowed highly selective tours aboard during the Monaco Yacht Show last year, the first time she was exhibited. Media, unfortunately, were on the “no-way, no-how” list. Even for the lucky few who were invited aboard, no one was allowed to see the master suite, among a few other rooms. Seven Seas was also initially available for charter, but she’s no longer listed for bookings. Too bad, because it would have been fun to watch Jaws on the 16-foot-wide screen in the saloon.
46. Ecstasea • 282'0"
About three years ago, Roman Abramovich (see nos. 1, 16) sold this turbine-equipped yacht, which he had owned since launch. When photos emerged of Sonja Zuckerman, a South Florida philanthropist and socialite, disembarking at her estate, many assumed she was the owner. Ecstasea was spotted in Barcelona this spring.
47. Cakewalk • 280'8"
If you’d like to own the largest yacht (by volume) built on American soil in more than 70 years, Cakewalk is available—but you’ll have to make a formal inquiry, as she’s listed as “price on application.” Displacing nearly 3,000 gross tons, Cakewalk rises six decks high and was conceived by a couple who thought out every nook and cranny. Besides being designed for frequent entertaining and chartering, with large pantries (the size of some yachts’ galleys) on each deck, she has a grand, ornate staircase flowing from bottom to top. Then there’s the tender garage, which houses a few boats, including a custom Vikal limo tender designed by Tim Heywood to match Cakewalk.
48. Sunrays • 280'5"
Sadly, Bjorn Johansson, Sunrays’ stylist, died in a motorcycle accident two years before this yacht was launched. His design team carried on work to ensure his vision would come to fruition for the owner. It did. When viewed in profile, Sunrays has a distinctive, dagger-like design element in her superstructure. It’s accentuated by an unusual teal hull color. Inside there are equally unusual features from Terence Disdale Design, including hand-carved doors and, our favorite, a dining table that transforms into a pool table.
49. Vibrant Curiosity • 280'4"
Reinhold Wuerth, a German businessman famed for a screw-manufacturing business, was vilified in his home country’s media when he took delivery of Vibrant Curiosity, for having just laid off a number of employees due to the global recession. Nothing like writers refusing to let the facts get in their way; yachts like Vibrant Curiosity take three years and longer to design and build. Bermuda, Mexico, Italy, Montenegro, Argentina, the U.S. Virgin Islands, Grenada, and more have been in the yacht’s travels since delivery.
50. Pacific • 279'5"
While under construction, Pacific was known as project Josi, to keep her somewhat confidential. Few details have emerged since then. Styling-wise, she looks a bit more like a military ship than a yacht. She even bears a gunmetal gray paint job. Pacific was spotted in Costa Rica in March.