The super maxi (racing yachts under 100’ or 30m) are increasingly popular and as more yachts are launched the competition gets better. Super maxis are raced in all the large worldwide yacht events from the Fastnet to the Sydney to Hobart to the Middle Seas race.

LEOPARD 3 is a racing sailing yacht, as launched in 2007. She is a new concept for a 100ft super maxi from Farr Yacht Design.  LEOPARD 3 meets the demanding requirements of a luxurious, signature charter yacht, as well as a passage record breaker and a race winning super maxi in a fantatic new concept developed by Farr Yacht Design.

Racing maxi ‘Maximus’ is definitely the latest and most impressive super maxi to ever appear on the world stage.  She may even represent one of the biggest design leaps in all monohull yachting. The name comes from Maximus' unbridled maximum power to weight ratio. Maximus is quite a step forward in design and technology in the world of yachting and when compared to other super maxi designs (notably Zana/Conical Minolta & Scandia). This is perhaps not surprising given the project mission – To design, build and successfully race the world’s fastest and most innovative monohull under 100 ft with adherence only to the rules of science and experience. There are no class rule handbrakes here!

Why is Maxims set to be the fastest thing afloat and beat every other monohull she mixes with? Simple really - her team. She has the best possible design and building team, willing and extremely capable owners and a fantastic sailing crew. As with anything, if you want to do something great you need to gather around great people. EBS Yachting (Maximus) has achieved this without compromise.

Every now and then in history you can get a congregation of amazing people in one area and place – a class of genius. The Maximus team is comprised of perhaps the most outstanding individuals and companies in ocean yachting in the world. As it turns out they are almost all New Zealanders. Anyone heard of Greg Elliot, Clay Oliver, Chris Mitchell, Southern Spars, North Sails, Cookson Boat Builders? Why not throw in a nuclear physicist/innovator and a very successful race campaigner and businessman as the owners, into the mix!

At her launch Maximus was dressed in modernist silver and measured in at 100 feet or 30.5 meters in length overall, weight unknown. She made quite an impressive sight. In the words of Stewart Thwaites who was there (the owner, campaigner and racer of super maxi Konica Minolta): “It just looks beautiful really…”.  The old adage in Aeronautics that ‘if the plane looked good to the eye, she would fly well’, perhaps rings true here with yachting also.

The key with making a yacht fast is high power to weigh ratio, achieved with strategic weight distribution, high righting moment and low weight, yet strong materials. When righting moment is high, more horse power can be designed into the rig and sails. The hull, spars and sails therefore need to be light and the bulb on the keel deep and heavy. Class rules traditionally hamstring a designer from the challenge of taking design and technology to its full potential. This is not the case with Maximus. Throw in a streamlined, easily driven hull and a skillful crew and you have all the ingredients for speed.

Weight to power ratio and righting moment has been maximized in Maximus by an extremely frugal addition of weight throughout all parts of the yacht. The hull and much of the equipment and fittings are completely composed of carbon. So too are the spars – the mast could be lifted by one very well balanced Scottish caber tosser! Further weight is stripped down with the absence, rather alteration, of some fittings normally found on yachts, such as cleats and many usually conventional winches – the luff is tensioned down rather than pulled up with a halyard. The winches that are used are also made from carbon. Add to this a revolutionary rotating mast (the first for a monohull) for more efficient use of the wind (and less drag) and a keel which telescopes into itself and cants to a larger angle than ever before.

Perhaps unexpectedly, safety has not been compromised is favour of performance alone. Crash bars have been fitted in strategic places (carbon fiber off-course) and the hull has been designed, by Greg Elliott, with higher than necessary top sides to minimize the crew’s exposure to fast moving deck wash. Maximus is fully equipped with safety gear, has a strengthened canting keel and is able to function completely manually, without auxiliary power. It is not hard to understand why the team has a particular emphasis on safety and prudence as they are in uncharted territory in yachting with respect to boat speeds and pressures.

The Velocity Prediction Analysis suggests that Maximus will smash speed records with her long straight lines, low drag, high righting moment, maximum power to weight ratio, efficient and huge sail area, rotating mast, and extra canting keel. Add to this an excellent managerial and sailing team and she is likely to not only find racing regatta line honors but dissolve opponent’s spirits in her wake in the process.

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Super Maxi 86, WAY OF LIFE

McConaghy Boats, Super Maxi 86 Built 2003 / €700,000, + VAT

Super Maxi 86, WAY OF LIFE 1 Main

Broker’s Comments

WAY OF LIFE, formerly MORNING GLORY is quite simply an iconic Super Maxi 86, with an enviable racing history across the globe.

This record-breaking canting keel Super Maxi, built by McConaghy Boats, has had a strong presence in the USA and Mediterranean Maxi racing scene since new.

She was built originally as MORNING GLORY, alongside PYEWACKET – as a sistership, and encompassing the new (at the time) technology and design thinking of the CBTF (Canting Ballast Twin Foil).

Her immediate successes in the top offshore events at the time made the world turn their heads to canting keel technology. The hull form is surprisingly narrow compared with today’s wide reaching machines that reduce drag as righting moment comes mainly from the canting keel.

The clever rotating canard, or forward rudder is operated at the helm, and either independently, or fixed at a ratio with the main rudder, a very clever system.

Although arguably not quite as powerful reaching, she still holds her own in VMG, and flat water and capable of competing alongside the world’s most competitive yachts.

Recently under the guise of VESPER PI, she claimed line honours against some of the Mediterranean’s fastest Maxis and proved to be competitive in the 2019 Rolex Capri Sailing Week, and since then a top performer in the famous Barcelona race.

Now under new ownership and given a new lease of life with substantial investment in recent years. With replacement PBO standing rigging in 2019 – saving more weight aloft, and she has a substantial sail wardrobe.

This yacht is still taking line honours victories and offers a superb and fast platform for offshore and inshore racing.

Available immediately for charter or for purchase.

A 2019 survey is available.

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Yacht Details

  • Builder: McConaghy Boats
  • Model: Super Maxi 86
  • Yacht Name: WAY OF LIFE
  • Hull Designer: Reichel Pugh
  • Year Built: 2003
  • LOA: 87’3” / 26.60m (inc. bow sprit)
  • LWL: 78’8” / 23.99m
  • Beam: 15’7” / 4.75m
  • Min Draft / Max Draft: 7’3” / 2.20m
  • Displacement: 21,495kg / 47,388lb
  • Berths: 15 berths in 1 cabin(s) / 1 head/WC(s)
  • Engine Count: 1 Yanmar 4LHA-HTP Diesel
  • Country: Koper, Slovenia
  • Asking Price: €700,000, + VAT

Contact Details

ben-cooper-2019, Berthon Brokerage

Ben Cooper Berthon UK Tel: 0044 (0)1590 679 222 E-Mail: [email protected] Click image for full broker profile.

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Inside The Wild World Of Super-Maxi Yacht Racing

The world’s fastest and most advanced sailing seafarers head to the Caribbean to compete in the yachting world equivalent of F1.

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I hit the tarmac in Sint Maarten in the Netherlands Antilles revved up to partake in the yachting world equivalent of Formula One for the weekend. Hopping onto a screaming machine taming the forces of nature to barrel along billionaire style. For it was the St. Maarten Heineken Regatta and I was going racing aboard a super-maxi yacht .

Held annually this is one of the highlights of the yacht racing world’s calendar, drawing the best boats and crews from all over the world to pit their machinery and knowhow against each other during a long weekend of hard racing, hard partying and camaraderie—all on one of the most welcoming islands in the Caribbean.

The super-maxis are the ultimate racers of the yacht world and are governed by a set of rules which describe them as monohulls of more than 100 feet in length, with a keel and no limit on the number or type of “appendages.” Pure bucket-list stuff, where if you have to ask what it costs you clearly have no idea what you are getting into. At the end of ancient maps, uncharted waters were simply marked with mystical creatures and the notation, “here be dragons.” Well that is where I was headed. And fast.

Installed at the newly-opened Morgan Resort & Spa in this Dutch West Indies idyll, I inhaled deeply of the view; and pondered what a view it was, out over turquoise waters and clear blue skies gusting 25-plus knots of wind. For things were about to go super-maxi off the beaches of Sint Maarten, in the form of a ride aboard one of the most legendary racing yachts on the water today—Leopard 3.

At a touch over 100 feet, this carbon fiber/Nomex-hulled missile can shoot through the water at over 40 knots when at full tilt downwind. Fully rigged with over 15,000 square feet of thermo-formed carbon composite sails on her 154-foot carbon fiber mast and rigging, she is an extreme machine that has won everything from the Rolex Maxi Cup to Les Voiles de Saint-Tropez, set trans-Atlantic speed records, and carried her racing crew of 20-plus souls to victory across the globe.

Designed by the legendary Farr Yacht Designs based out of Annapolis in Maryland, she is wide—22 feet at the widest point of her beam—and perfectly suited for fast offshore racing with more than a few tricks up her sleeve. Her “appendages” include a keel that cants up to 40 degrees, stabilizing her as if 200 extra crew members were sitting on the rail, and twin asymmetric lifting dagger-boards located either side of the mast to perfectly balance the sail forces when racing at full tilt.

cost of super maxi yacht

The days of ex-NFL linebackers with 22-inch biceps grinding the winches of racing yachts are mostly behind the likes of Leopard 3, which features hydraulic winches, but the combination of almost military discipline and ballet-like choreography among its professional racing team are a delight to behold. The Captain and tactician calling the moves with precision timing, and an otherworldly sense of the wind down to the second, divining increases and decreases in invisible forces as if Merlin himself were aboard as the team trims sail to maximize speed at all moments.

The real key to the deployment of this technological wizardry is the team which employs it. As with Formula One, two things are necessary in spades—enormous amounts of money, and enormous amounts of skill and experience on the team. One begets the other, but it also pays for the eye-watering expenses of maintaining the boat and crew in peak condition with every carbon sail, titanium nut and bolt, and carbon fiber piece in optimal race-ready condition. Like life, things wear out, break, and go amiss.

I’ve been on boats that have snapped masts, lost sails, hell, almost sank. And for mere mortals if this happens you go bankrupt. But in the world of billionaire yacht-racing, you just Fedex a new carbon fiber mast half way around the world overnight, and have it fitted to keep you racing the next day. I saw Larry Ellison do this at Antigua Race Week one year when his yacht Sayonara snapped its mast—and it says everything you need to know about sailing super-Maxi style.

cost of super maxi yacht

LawConnect sailing, bow sprit close to the camera.

LawConnect training for the 2021 Sydney Hobart. Pic - Andrea Francolini/Law Connect

Aerial shot of LawConnect sailing on Sydney Harbour.

Sailing on Sydney Harbour. Pic - Salt Lab Productions

Looking down the bow sprit, crew members working on it, under temporary cover.

Getting the bowsprit ready. Pic - Andrea Francolini/Law Connect

Crew sitting on the side of the boat on the dock.

From left to right: Lucas Chapman, Charlie Wyatt, Christian Beck, Ty Oxley, Selma Raso and Rachel Williams. Pic - Andrea Francolini/Law Connect

Sydney Hobart super maxi’s secret weapon

It took a few goes for the LawConnect team to smash the champagne bottle on the newly extended bowsprit of Christian Beck’s 100ft super maxi, but they eventually got there, christening the rebranded Juan-K 100 ahead of the 2021 Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race.

It was a strong turn out, with over 50 in attendance to celebrate the yacht’s official partnership reveal with LawConnect.

The partnership company is a lawyer directory website, where individuals and groups can find the right lawyer who meets their specific needs.

At the event, a very impressive looking bowsprit was a talking point. According to Beck, the super maxi, formerly known as InfoTrack and before that Perpetual Loyal, boasts the largest sprit in the fleet, and potentially the world.

The purpose of the extended bowsprit is to increase the yacht’s overall performance. It increases the sail area by 15 per cent and allows the yacht to better perform upwind by having the sails sitting further forward. In addition, the crew can run three sails at once rather than two and in lighter winds it provides extra power and speed.

LawConnect sailing straight towards the camera, the harbour bridge in the background.

Beck, entrepreneur and founder of Leap Legal Software (creator of LawConnect) said the extended bowsprit could be the difference between first and second place.

“We’re on a trajectory here,” he said. “This will be my fourth Sydney to Hobart [aboard the super maxi]. The first year we came 24 th , the second year we came fourth and the third year we came second. So, if this trend continues, we should come first this year.”

Christian Beck behind the wheel.

It wouldn’t be the first time the yacht took line honours the 628-nautical-mile race. In 2016, Perpetual Loyal, owned Anthony Bell at the time, broke the race record, finishing in one day, 13 hours and 31 minutes (the record was broken by Jim Cooney and Samantha Grant’s LDV Comanche in 2017).

On board for the 2016 record was long-time crew member and Boat Captain Ty Oxley, who will be racing in his 19 th Sydney Hobart this year. The 46-year-old has won line honours three times, the first aboard Ludde Ingvall’s maxi Nicorette in 2004, then on Anthony Bell’s Investec Loyal in 2011, and the last time aboard Perpetual Loyal (also owned by Bell). Oxley is looking to turn his three wins into four. To win, there is no room for error.

Ty Oxley

“The gel of the team is really good,” Oxley said at the launch. “Last time I won [line honours] the Hobart race it was exactly the same, it was the teamwork that led us to beat Wild Oats and hopefully it’ll be the same again.”

The super maxi has 15 professional crew on board, in addition to Beck, and five Leap employees.

“It takes time to build the team, get the boat right. But I think we’re at that stage now,  where we’re getting to the peak of what our performance should be,” Oxley said.

The win won’t come easy. Beck and team will be kept company by the two other super maxis in the fleet: Peter Harburg’s RP 100 Black Jack (2009 line honours winner under the name Alfa Romeo) and Seng Huang Lee’s Dovell 100, SHK Scallywag 100.

Aerial shot of LawConnect with kite.

The three yachts will compete against one another for the first time this year in the Cruising Yacht Club of Australia’s (CYCA) Blue Water Pointscore Cabbage Tree Island Race, 1.4km off the entrance to Port Stephens (to be held this weekend). The 172-nautical-mile race will be LawConnect’s first race with the new bowsprit.

Oxley said he and the team have 14 to 16 consecutive days of training planned (including Cabbage Tree Island and the SOLAS Big Boat Challenge on Sydney Harbour), to ensure that everything, from crew work to the new bowsprit, is in top form.

They’ll also use this time to train the five Leap employees chosen for the experience of a lifetime.

“They’re part of our crew so there’s not anyone who’s just a passenger. They’ve got a crew number and they’re able to participate in the race,” Oxley said.

LawConnect crew behind the wheel.

Leap sales director Selma Raso is one of the lucky ones, sailing in her first Sydney Hobart, with little sailing experience, on a super maxi.

But the 32-year-old is up for the challenge.

Selma Raso

“It’s the kind of stuff you don’t say no to,” Raso said. “And it’s hopefully going to send a message as well. I run a team of sales people, with quite a lot of females on the team. If anything, I want them to lead a fearless life. Just to have them see [what I’m doing] as something they can aspire to is rewarding.”

Raso, along with four other amateur sailors, will be on sail handling duties. Raso is looking forward to finding out what that entails in the intensive training period.

“I hope that means carrying sails not selling because I’m a sales manager. Please don’t tell me I’m doing that, I thought this would be a break!”

Selma Raso pulling up the life raft in the swimming pool.

Raso couldn’t be happier about being on board a Sydney Hobart line honours contender.

“It would be incredible if they do [win], particularly after last year and the race not happening. I know everybody worked so hard,” she said.

The Sydney Hobart was cancelled last year, days before the start date, due to a NSW Covid-19 outbreak that translated to a 14 day lockdown in Tasmania for all taking part.

The crew couldn’t be more excited to get to Hobart, preferably with the other 105 competitors in their wake, following a year off.

Law Connect sailing on a kite run towards the Harbour Bridge and Opera House.

“My dream as a child was to do the race,” Beck said. “I used to watch it as a kid on the TV. And once I did it, I decided I wanted to win it. We’ve been working very hard to do that.”

And could another race record be in the books? Oxley’s not ruling it out.

“It’s a bit early yet [to make that prediction]. I’ve broken the record before, so let’s just wait and see.”

By Greta Quealy

M.O.S.S Australia


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What Is A Maxi Yacht?

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Wondering what is a maxi yacht? This type of large sailing vessel is extremely popular in the Whitsunday Islands , which happens to be one of the world’s most breathtaking sailing destinations! So if you’re planning a boat trip through the Whitsundays , you may want to brush up on your knowledge of maxi yachts and consider hopping on one for your exploration of the Coral Sea!

yacht at sea

A maxi yacht generally refers to a racing yacht that is over 21 or 22 meters in length (68-71 feet). Though they are often built and designed for racing, many maxis are converted into tour boats after their racing careers. But many maxis have fascinating histories, whether it’s competing in the Sydney to Hobart Yacht Race or taking on global sailing expeditions. 

Because these boats are built with premium materials and engineering processes, they have superior speed and sailing capabilities compared to other catamarans or power boats. A maxi yacht can cost millions of dollars to build and maintain, so you can be sure you’re stepping aboard a top-notch vessel when you hop onto a maxi! 

Atlantic Clipper

Maxi Boat Tours In The Whitsundays

If you’re looking for the ultimate sailing experience in the Whitsundays , a maxi yacht boat tour is the way to go. They are some of the fastest boats, meaning you can cover more ground and see more sights in less time. Most maxi tours are 2 nights, with either 2 or 3 days for exploring. So you’ll get to pack in so much sightseeing in the Whitsundays during your tour!

Super maxi yachts are also the most spacious options for boat tours in the Whitsundays. There are often extensive cabins and saloons that allow ample space for relaxing on board. Often carrying groups of around 20-30 passengers, you’ll have a fun, social experience aboard a maxi yacht. 

Check out our top maxi tours here!

tour group on board a boat

Best Super Maxi Yachts in the Whitsundays

Once you’ve decided to board a maxi yacht for your Whitsunday adventure, you may be wondering what are the best super maxi boat tours to choose from. Here is a quick overview of the top maxi yachts where you can have the sailing experience of a lifetime in the beautiful Whitsunday Islands . 

All maxi sailing tours visit the iconic Whitehaven Beach and Hill Inlet Lookout , as well as numerous marine life-rich snorkeling spots . They also include all food throughout the tour, and many are BYO alcohol. 

group tour whitehaven

British Defender

British Defender is one of the most incredible maxis in the Whitsundays! At 77 feet long, this sturdy and spacious vessel was built in 1989 and has sailed all over the world. There are 3 bathrooms on board, each with a hot shower, as well as single and double bunks that can fit a total of 28 guests. 

As you sail to Whitehaven Beach and numerous excellent snorkeling spots over 2 day and 2 nights, passengers can get involved and help the crew with sailing! British Defender is also the only maxi in the Whitsundays with air-conditioning! If you’re visiting Tropical North Queensland during the hot summer months, you’ll definitely want that air-con so you can eat, sleep, and relax in comfort. 

British Defender is also available for private charter!

British Defender at sea

This 3-day, 2-night maxi tour is another one of the top sailing tours. Apollo has an extensive and successful racing history! This boat has won every major race on the east coast of Australia and is now one of the most comfortable tour boats in the Whitsundays. 

On your tour with Apollo, you’ll visit gorgeous local spots like Stonehaven Bay, Nara Inlet, Langford Reef, and of course, Whitehaven Beach . Apollo also offers the perfect balance of fun and relaxation. This 75-foot-long maxi has space for 26 guests, so you can make new friends but it’s not a party boat so you’ll be able to enjoy some serenity on your tour as well. After being fully refitted in 2022, Apollo is running better than ever!

Apollo is also available for private charter!

sailboat whitsundays

Siska offers a 2-day, 1-night tour that is the perfect social experience for young people ages 18-35. With only 24 guests on board, you’ll be able to make new friends without feeling too crowded on this luxurious maxi yacht. 

There is a spacious saloon with two dining tables, and an extensive awning that will provide some shady relaxation spots when anchored. Because Siska only runs for 2 days and 1 night, it’s a great overnight maxi tour for those who are short on time. But if you have at least 2 nights to spare exploring the Whitsundays, British Defender or Apollo are the ideal options!

Siska is also available for private charter!

siska sailboat at sea

Live chat with our travel experts or call us at +61 7 4914 2425 if you have any questions about planning your Whitsunday sailing trip!

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Abandoned yachts crash in value. We recommend that even if you are trying to sell your yacht that you use the yacht for a minimum of two weeks per year so that systems are tested and working every six months. There is nothing worse for a yacht than not being used. If you truly are not going to use the yacht then you should sell it immediately for the first genuine offer as every dollar you put into maintenance will not be recovered at the time of the sale.

We did not build this version with sailing yachts in mind. Early in our development of this version we decided to exclude sailing yachts as a few of the major cost drivers scale very differently for sailing yachts compared with motor yachts. For example: To calculate paint costs we reviewed the surface area of over 100 large yachts and created a formula for painted surface area to length. Sailing yachts just don’t scale in a consistent way. Similarly crew numbers don’t scale in the same manner that they do for motor yachts. If there is sufficient demand we may build a sailing selector switch into a future version of this tool.

We hate to hear when yacht owners were told by their broker to factor in 10% of the purchase price to operate the yacht. This over used saying is sadly right occasionally (particularly for newer yachts in the $20-30M range)… but just because a broken watch tells the right time twice a day you shouldn’t rely upon it to tell the time. As yachts get older their capital value decreases but their maintenance costs increase. There is no way that a fixed 10% of purchase cost rule can be true… if your broker told you this rule then you need a new yacht broker… we know some good ones. 😊

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New maxi launched

Yachting World

  • July 20, 2005

New 30m super maxi launched in Sydney ready for Sydney Hobart

The world’s newest super maxi yacht, Sydney-based New Zealander Neville Crichton’s 30m (98ft) Alfa Romeo, hit the water in Sydney Harbour late yesterday, her owner’s sights set firmly on winning line and handicap honours in the Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race 2005.

The striking-looking boat, long and narrow and painted silver with blue stripes, will have its towering 44m high rig stepped today or tomorrow, and is expected to have its first sail at the weekend.

The super maxi, already on the register of the Royal New Zealand Yacht Squadron, will make its racing debut at the Hahn Premium Race Week at Hamilton Island in late August, representing New Zealand.

It will then be sailed to New Zealand for further sea trials before returning to Sydney to contest the Rolex Trophy and the Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race in December.

Alfa Romeo will be one of at least five maximum-sized super maxi yachts expected to contest this year’s Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race, the others being the yet-to-be-launched Wild Oats, the New Zealand boats Maximus and Konica Minolta and Skandia from Victoria.

The new Alfa Romeo is again a Reichel/Pugh design with a canting keel, main rudder and canard for’ard rudder. It was built by McConaghy Boats in Sydney’s northern beaches suburb of Mona Vale entirely of carbon fibre using the latest technical advances,

The hull and keel were transported by road from Newport to White Bay in Sydney on two low-loaders in the early hours of Monday morning and following the attachment of the keel and rudders, the boat went in the water at 3pm yesterday.

Owner Neville Crichton has yet to see his new boat in the water, he is currently on his way to Europe on business.

No detailed specifications have been released about the new Alfa Romeo, other than its LOA of 30 metres (98 feet), but the mast is expected to tower 44 metres above the deck whilst the total sail area is understood to be a third bigger than that of the previous 90-foot Alfa Romeo.

Despite the fact that the boat is 98ft LOA compared with the 90ft LOA of the previous Alfa Romeo, it is understand that the hull of the new boat is less than a tonne heavier.

Crichton’s Alfa Romeo was the second application to enter for this year’s Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race received by the CYCA Sailing Office. Another New Zealand boat, the 10.97m Nevenka the first and the West Australian Lidgard 33 Balance the third to enter since the notice of race was published.

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The Real Costs of Owning a Superyacht [Complete Guide]

The Real Costs of Owning a Superyacht [Complete Guide]

November 25, 2019 1:00 pm

Owning a  superyacht  is a status symbol available only to the world’s wealthiest individuals and corporations. Although there is no strict definition, the Red Ensign Group Yacht Code is applicable to “motor or sailing vessels of 24 meters in load line length and over…and which, at the time, is in commercial use for sport or pleasure and carries no cargo and no more than 12 passengers 1 .” There are currently just over 10,000 superyachts in the world with around 200-250 new builds delivered each year. The vast majority are  motor yachts , with sailing yachts counting for less than 20% of the total. The world’s largest private vessel, Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan’s 180m (590-foot) AZZAM,  cost $600 million to build when it was delivered in 2013. Eight of the ten most expensive luxury acquisitions of all time were superyachts.

cost of super maxi yacht

Purchase Cost

Buying a new or used superyacht will most likely cost the buyer several million dollars. Pricing varies widely based on the yacht size, age, and other factors such as builder, guest capacity, speed, range, and more. The market is worldwide and extensive. Any potential buyer would be well-advised to engage a professional, certified broker to guide them in the selection of their dream yacht and through the myriad of complications in making the purchase.

  • • Financing the Purchase
  • • Immediate Post Purchase Costs

cost of super maxi yacht

Operating Costs

In years past, owners and their brokers would work on 10% of the purchase price as an estimate of annual operating costs, but the vast range of yacht size, operating location, and usage profile makes this approach less useful without giving the question more thought. Building a budget for a yacht requires consideration of the following elements:

Crew – Salary, payroll taxes, recruitment fees, uniform, health insurance, food, and travel for vacation and repatriation are all crew-related costs. A good guide for salary costs is published by Dockwalk magazine every year based on an extensive survey of the crew and placement agents. Using their most recent article as a guide, a crew of eight full-time crew on a 150-foot yacht will cost over $650,000 per year in salary alone. Get a complete crew cost breakdown.

Dockage – Unless the owner plans to spend the year at anchor, then keeping the yacht in a marina incurs a significant cost. Dockage is normally sold per foot of the yacht’s full length and per night, although contract rates for longer periods may be available. High-quality marinas in peak seasons are currently running in the $6-8 per foot per night range. Electricity, fresh water, and waste removal are all additional costs to be considered.

Fuel – The captain or engineer should be able to provide the fuel consumption per hour at any given speed, so if a yacht owner knows roughly how much he wants the boat to travel, then he can estimate the total fuel consumption and budget the fuel cost. There is also the fuel cost for generators, particularly at anchor. A typical 150-foot motor yacht cruising at 12 knots will consume in the region of 150 U.S. gallons per hour. At today’s fuel prices, that’s going to be close to $500 per hour. 500 hours per year will give us the main engine fuel budget of around $250,000. To this, we must also add the generators’ fuel consumption at anchor plus any additional cost for tenders.

Communications – Everyone onboard, crew and guests, want to remain connected to their social media, streaming services, and email. The technology available in this area moves fast and with 5G coming online, near-shore costs will likely come down. For those who want broadband speed while offshore, costs are high and depend on the upload/download speeds required. Start with an estimate of $4-5,000 per month and work from there. Additional communications costs include satellite TV subscriptions, crew cell phone costs, mail, freight, and more. Get a complete communication cost breakdown.

Maintenance, Consumables, and Other Operating Costs – Having considered crew payroll, marina costs, fuel, and internet, the budget will start to materialize. One must take all other costs into account, such as hull insurance, liability insurance, maintenance and consumables, warehousing, safety and survey costs, upkeep of the navigation outfit, computing support, car rental, and more.   

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cost of super maxi yacht

This should not be considered a financial guide. For a more accurate estimate, contact Clive McCartney .

1 Red Ensign Group Yacht Code Section A 1.2(1) 

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How Much Does a Yacht Cost to Build?

The cost to build the world's largest superyachts is a closely guarded secret.

By Kim Ayling

The freedom that comes with owning your own yacht is unrivaled and, if you have the funds to do so, the joy of building your own is even better. However, with prices easily creeping up into the hundreds of millions, and even billions, we ask the all-important question: how much does a yacht cost to build?

Unsurprisingly, the total cost to build the world’s most famous yachts is a closely guarded secret, but there are a few fairly reliable estimations sailing around the industry. One standard way to work out how much a yacht will cost to build is price per gross weight. However, while this can be a helpful guide in valuing yachts, it doesn’t always correlate.

For example, it is thought that Lurssen’s 590-ft Azzam , which features a bulletproof owner’s cabin, an onboard golf practice suite and a submarine, cost in the region of $600m to build. At approximately 13,136 gross tons (GT), that would have made her around $45,676 per GT.

REV , on the other hand, which while still in construction is set to surpass Azzam as the largest yacht in the world at an impressive 602ft, is estimated to be costing around $350m to build. Her weight is thought to be around 17,440 GT, putting her at $20,069 per GT. Clearly, biggest doesn’t always mean most expensive. So what does affect the cost of a yacht build?

[See also: How Much Does it Cost to Charter a Yacht?]

REV Ocean yacht cost

REV is thought to be costing around $350m / ©REV Ocean

Custom vs pre-designed yachts

Firstly, you need to decide the kind of yacht you want: custom or pre-design. Naturally, a custom yacht build will be more expensive. But, for that extra cost, you will get full control over the design, the finish and everything in between.

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A pre-designed yacht on the other hand will save you both money and time. This category of yacht is built based on an existing model, with finishing touches such as interiors, tenders and layout completed when she’s bought. Obviously, this leaves owners with a lot less freedom over their yacht, but it is considerably cheaper and can be delivered in a matter of months instead of years.

Choosing a yacht builder

The world of shipbuilding is dominated by a few key players. For a fully custom build, the likes of Lurssen, Feadship, Oceanco and Royal Huisman (among several others) rule the roost. With builders like this, you can expect to pay a higher price, but for that, you’ll receive years of experience, industry prestige, and cutting-edge technology and techniques.

The most prestigious shipyards will also inevitably have the most skilled team. The team involved in building a yacht is, to put it simply, vast. From start to finish, hundreds of pairs of hands will be involved in the process, with the key players including a yacht designer (interior and exterior), a naval architect and an engineer, as well as a huge team of skilled laborers. There will also be an owner representative working closely with the shipbuilder to ensure the project is delivered in time and to the buyer’s exacting standards.

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The cost of your yacht build will of course include the wages of each of the experienced people involved in making it, so if you want the best, expect to pay for it.

[See also: Discovering the World’s Most Exciting Superyacht Concepts]

feadship project 817 superyacht

Viva by Dutch shipyard Feadship / ©Feadship

What affects the cost of building a yacht?

Naturally, a huge variety of factors will impact the total cost of building a yacht. Size is of course one of the main considerations, but materials are another key factor that will dramatically impact cost. Aluminum, for example, is favored for being an impressively lightweight hull material but ton for ton, it is far more expensive than steel.

Onboard technology will also see the final cost creep up rapidly. Demand for smart yacht technology, for example, is continuing to grow, with more owners wanting to replicate the ease of voice control tools that they enjoy in their home, onboard their yacht.

And things that we might take for granted on land such as high-speed WiFi become more complicated – and more expensive – on the water. Kitting your yacht out with a satellite dish can set you back anywhere up to $50,000 which while doesn’t sound much in the grand scheme of a multi-million-dollar ship build, is just one of many hidden costs.

How much do yacht toys and tenders cost?

The yacht itself is just the start of the story when it comes to working out costs. On top of the build, potential owners will need to kit out their boat with all the latest toys and tenders – from submarines to helicopters – which can add a serious amount to your total.

For example, a self-drive submersible by Triton Submarines , which will allow owners to see the underwater world in a completely new way, will start at around $15m. Similarly, while you can pick up a low-grade, second-hand tender for a few thousand dollars, a top-of-the-range option will easily creep into the millions.

Ultimately, the only way to work out exactly how much a yacht will cost to build is to make a serious inquiry with a broker, who will be able to connect you with a yacht builder. From here, you can collaboratively work together to ascertain your budget and exactly how much your perfect yacht will cost.

[See also: The Most Innovative Yachts of the 21st Century]

oceanco yacht builders esquel project on water

Oceanco, who made the sleek Esquel, is one of the best yacht builders in the world / ©Oceanco

Photo of Kim Ayling

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