If you like nice boats and fast cars, and frankly who doesn’t, the Monaco Grand Prix is the place to be.
Every year the world’s elite descend upon the beautiful Mediterranean island to take in the annual F1 race. But over the years, it’s become arguably as much about boating as it is about auto racing.
Massive superyachts with premium slips can moor with their stern facing the racetrack. It’s quite the sight, and it adds an additional spectacle to watching the world’s fastest cars rip through the narrow streets of Monaco. Both on the track and off, there’s plenty to see.
Those slips, and the top decks of those superyachts, have the perfect vantage point to catch a portion of the race. They also serve as a makeshift showcase for boating enthusiasts to see who, and what, is in town for the weekend.
There are 760 berths up for grabs near the racetrack, with the least expensive running about $3,800 a night. But, for those who want a guaranteed view of the racing, or for those who need a large slip for a large boat, they can run up to $110,000 a night.
This year included some of the nicest superyachts from around the world, plus a few smaller vessels that captured the public’s attention. We took a deep dive into the three most eye-catching boats in Monaco over the weekend, and they’re not your typical fare.
Photo – Boat International
Arguably the biggest splash on the scene was UFC superstar Conor McGregor and his Lamborghini Tecnomar 63. And it wasn’t because of the size of his boat, but because of the buzz it generated.
In 2020, ‘The Notorious’ purchased the 63-foot-long Lamborghini Tecnomar 63. The 63 is a boutique ensemble of old school Lamborghini style (the “63” is both the length of the boat and an ode to Lambo’s first year in business), and ultra-modern tech from Tecnomar. Of the 63 being made, McGregor scooped up #12 in ode to his Proper 12 Irish whiskey.
Not only is the yacht modeled after Lambo’s new hybrid Sián Supercar, it also has old school kickbacks to the Countach and Miura of the 60’s and 70’s. Tecnomar provided the modern touch with carbon fiber accents, a futuristic layout, 4000 horsepower, dual diesel V12’s, a top speed of 60 knots (70 mph). It even has the epic nickname of “Supercar of the Sea.” That is some legit performance for a luxury yacht.
By all accounts, McGregor had a really good time in Monaco. Great dock slip, too.
Always known as a crafty fighter with clever trash talk, McGregor may have out-gamed the system by bringing a smaller vessel. The inner docks of Port Hercules overlooking the racetrack have a length restriction of 30 meters. With only a 19 meter (63 foot) LOA, McGregor was able to get right on top of the action.
The biggest boat in Monaco this year might be familiar to yacht enthusiasts. The superyacht Octopus was the most expensive yacht sold in 2021, and it was originally commissioned by Microsoft co-founder Paul Allen. It is now reportedly owned by Swedish industrialist Roger Samuelsson.
The Octopus, at a whopping 414 feet long, went onto the market following Allen’s death in 2018. it sold for a record-setting $266 million in August of 2021. Initially, the ship was listed as high as $325 million before undergoing several price drops until finding a buyer. At the time it was launched in 2003, it was the world’s largest yacht.
The explorer-style yacht was built by respected German shipyard Lurssen, and some of its most recognizeable details include a full recording studio, a full size swimming pool, a gym, a library, and a basketball court. Her coolest feature might be the hydraulically-assisted swimming pool that converts to a dancefloor. As for guest accommodations, there are 13 cabins for 26 guests and space for over 60 crew. The master suite has its own private elevator and observation deck, not to mention two VIP apartments, seven double staterooms, and three twin staterooms.
The rugged hull design was built for Arctic exploration, and power comes from massive diesel-electric engines and eight generators. Its hybrid propulsion system gives Octopus increased autonomy and greater range, allowing it to travel up to 9000 nautical miles (16,600 km) before needing to refuel. It also has an impressive top speed of 19 knots (22 mph). She’s functional too, having helped the British Royal Navy recover the bell of the historic HMS Hood from a depth of 1.7 miles (2.8 km) in the Denmark Strait of the North Atlantic after it sunk during World War II.
But all of that undersells the coolness of what she hides below deck. Octopus was designed to accommodate one of the most insane collection of secondary vessels ever seen. Two helicopters, a submarine, and seven tenders all use custom holding stations inside the hull’s framework. There are also two life rafts, multiple jet skis, and an autonomous robotic boat (ROV) for deep sea exploration. There is even a glass bottomed observation deck, a fully-equipped diving station, and a hyperbaric chamber for post-dive recovery. There’s also the small matter of the literal Beatles-inspired Yellow Submarine.
If you couldn’t make it to Monaco but would like a ride aboard Octopus, she’s available for charter for a meager $2.4 million per week. The last time she went out for charter, F1 champ Lewis Hamilton and Olympic medalist Shaun White had one heck of a good time cruising around Antarctica.
The most visually stunning yacht that pulled up for F1’s big hoorah might have been the 164-foot (50 m) ‘joyMe. Most superyachts (and most yachts in general) tend to have bland colour schemes. Usually you get all-white, and sometimes if you’re lucky you might see the occasional blue or green accent.
Not so with ‘joyMe, as she’s decked out with an eye-popping chrome lower half and a crimson red upper hull. To complement the unique colours and details, she also has a beautiful teak deck. Her interior also sports some avant-garde style that wouldn’t be out of place in a modern art exhibit or inside David Bowie’s wildly styled superyacht El Caran.
Her top speed is 15.0 kn (17 mph) and her cruising speed is 13.0 kn (15 mph), which is pretty average for a 164-foot superyacht, but we’ll chalk that up to the fact she devoted her resources to looking good. On the upside, she does have a maximum cruising range of 3200.0 nm (3600 miles / 5800 km) at 12.0 knots, which is solid. She gets her power from twin Cummins diesel engines and can accommodate up to 12 guests in 6 staterooms and 11 crew members.
Not only is her exterior unique, but so is her interior layout. All the guest staterooms are located on the main deck, which is both peculiar and extremely rare (they’re typically well below deck). The perk is that it creates better views from enormous bay windows and easier access to everything topside. There’s also a ‘VIP Deck’ for the owners, which is laid out like a full size apartment and includes a walk-in bathroom, master lounge, a jacuzzi, and access to the wheelhouse.
Since all the guests are on the top deck, that leaves room below for a full gym, a Finnish sauna, and a Hammam spa. What’s a Hammam spa, you ask? Also known as a ‘Turkish bath,’ it uses hot steam during treatments to encourage a more intense and refreshing experience. As if sitting on her deck to watch an F1 race wasn’t epic enough.
‘joyMe is currently the largest yacht under the Croatian flag available for charter on the Adriatic, which makes her one of the best (and most attractive) options for exploring the coast of Croatia and Montenegro, or for taking in an F1 race.
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