If the superyacht industry continues to grow, it will have to offer clients more than just luxury and bliss on the Mediterranean coast. With increasing reliability and range, explorer yachts are changing the market for the better. It's hard to imagine a more eloquent symbol of success than owning a superyacht. Such ships require not only colossal money to purchase - they are also expensive to maintain [...]
If the superyacht industry continues to grow, it will have to offer clients more than just luxury and bliss on the Mediterranean coast. With increasing reliability and range, explorer yachts are changing the market for the better.
It's hard to imagine a more eloquent symbol of success than owning a superyacht. Such ships require not only colossal money to purchase - they are also expensive to maintain and use. Parking fees, maintenance funds and crew salaries are definitely not available to everyone. But it is also true that the number of very rich people is growing in the world. The challenge facing the superyacht industry - attracting the attention of as many of these rich people as possible. Which, in general, is not so simple.
According to the edition CEO TodayOnly 2.4% of those who can currently afford to own a superyacht do so. Part of the problem is, While these huge boats look impressive, they are not always as enjoyable. Many superyachts are designed for calm seas and calm sailing. They are often required to stay relatively close to shore-based support services in case something goes wrong. Exactly because of this reason Mediterranean boasts 70% superyacht trafficdespite the fact that it only has the world's 4% coastline.
While some superyacht owners are no doubt happy to enjoy the summer while drifting serenely across the Mediterranean, others crave more adventure. As a result explorer yachts - also known as expedition yachts - are becoming more and more popular. They are suitable for long sea voyages and provide the same comfort in both arctic and equatorial conditions. They are the ships most in demand among today's corporate clients. Can Explorers Dramatically Boost Industry Sales? Wait and see.
Driving a cool ship
Since the first superyachts were launched in the early 20th century, the industry has experienced a variety of approaches. Some yachts are more aesthetically focused, while others are more functional. Of course, there have always been yachts whose priority is long voyages, not calm cruising. But explorer yachts have only recently begun to enjoy noticeable popularity.
According to Veronica Schmid and Alistair Gill, directors Gill schmid design, a company specializing in yacht design, architecture and art services, this is mainly due to the fact that it took a long time for technology to make its way to customer requests.
"The superyacht industry may be slow to embrace new technology, but companies like ours, which have expertise in other areas and prioritize research and development, are eager to incorporate innovation."
“For example, developments in glass technology have not only allowed for new styling concepts, but also made it possible to enjoy the views more when you are on your yacht. Gaining new experiences is key today. This manifests itself in exploring new places, in the ability to swim in different conditions, to share this experience with family and friends. Adventure and a distinct lifestyle are what a new generation of yachts are looking for. As well as the opportunity to share your discoveries with like-minded people. "
Technical requirementsThe demands on developers and explorer engineers are certainly great. These ships must be fast and economical while remaining durable. In particular, boats that are able to travel in icy waters must withstand a collision with ice so as not to repeat fate. "Titanic" ... Besides, Polar Codewhich came into force in 2014, sets limits for shipbuilders to adhere to - while aligning them with the wishes of customers.
“Clients are looking for functional vessels - often ice-class - that will allow them to visit distant regions. But functionality shouldn't be bought at the cost of survivability, ”Schmid and Gill say.
"Yacht Explorer usually equipped with everything from tenders and submarines to helicopters; whatever the client requires. Recently we have been working on explorers that offer the luxury of a traditional superyacht but the characteristics of an exploration yacht. "
Given the long voyages they have to make, explorer yachts need more storage space and longer cruising range than conventional superyachts. Andrew Pezzini, founder of yacht management and brokerage Floating Life, believes that the minimum cruising range for an explorer should be 5,400 nautical miles. In addition to the challenges that come with building such a yacht, customers generally want her to have the comfort she is accustomed to in superyachts. By itself, a yacht capable of bypassing Arctic Circle, already looks impressive, but customers also want to see a pool, helipad and cinema on it.
Investing in adventure
Another reason why explorers are becoming more popular is because they can provide financial benefits that many "regular" superyachts cannot. Of course they are still not cheap - superyachts of any kind cost, on average, 10 times more per cubic meter than luxury cruise ships, - but they offer the best bang for your buck.
“Much of the value of superyachts is driven by the level of fittings and furnishings,” Schmid and Gill say.
Typically, each of them is a unique and disposable item. This is reflected in the price. It takes a long time for designers to understand what customers want and give them exactly what they are looking for. But we notice that - especially for younger clients - the "interior aspect" fades into the backgroundcompared to the experience they can get on their ship. "
For those willing to part with their luxury asset temporarily, the exorbitant expense of an explorer yacht can be offset somewhat by incorporating it into the global charter fleet. With this approach, the charter company leases the yacht to paying clients and uses the proceeds to pay for its maintenance and service. While a regular superyacht is only used for five to six weeks a year, exploration yachts have a longer season due to their greater endurance and seaworthiness. That's why they are an attractive proposition for charter companiesespecially now, when the demand for such vessels is growing.
Unsurprisingly, ships are already under construction that hope to benefit from this nascent market. So, the Russian billionaire Oleg Tinkov builds a 77-meter icebreaking yacht, named La Datcha, which is scheduled for completion in autumn 2020. Tinkov is going to spend about 20 weeks on it, and in the free period it can be rented for an amount of 690 million euros per week ... Likewise, another 182m long similar vessel will be available for recreational purposes when launched in 2021.
While it is believed that superyacht owners are not worried about money, this is not entirely true.
The operating cost of such a vessel can be millions of euros per week. - even billionaires want to avoid spending of this magnitude if possible. Explorer yachts offer a potential solution to the huge long-term costs associated with owning a superyacht: they can be rented all year round and combine luxury with adventure that other boats cannot. It means that, while explorer certainly remains expensive, it is more of an investment than a financial hole.
Voice of the Greens
However, the growing popularity of exploration yachts is not without its problems. With superyachts exploring exotic territories, there are new environmental challenges, and they must be taken into account. The areas these ships can access, be it the Galapagos Islands or the North Pole, are some of the most fragile ecosystems in the world. Although potential damage to the environmentcaused by a handful of superyachts may be small compared to, say, the emissions from the petrochemical industry or the plastics industry, it cannot be ignored. Fortunately, the industry is keen to keep this aspect in mind.
Hybrid propulsion systems are constantly being improved and replaced by diesel engines.which, although relatively effective, create pollution, vibration and noise. These hybrid models typically use an intelligent, automated energy management system that switches between electric batteries and diesel power, whichever is most appropriate at the time.
Along with reducing fuel consumption by up to 11%, these units also cut the yacht's engine maintenance costs in half.
“Advances in environmental-responsive propulsion are extremely important,” Schmid and Gill note. - We believe that sustainable development is keyso the use of solar panels and ocean energy farms is one of the things we try to incorporate into every project we develop. ”
Moreover, industry bodies such as International Convention for the Prevention of Pollution from Shipscontinue to issue new environmental guidelines to be followed by courts. Explorer yacht owners they are also doing their utmost to ensure that their ships are a help rather than a hindrance to the environment. So Ace, superyacht operated by Vladimir Selar together with a 67.15 meter support vessel Garçon, formed environmental committee Ace-GARCON pollution control. In December 2018, the committee organized a massive clean-up of the Thai island Koh Yao Noiby removing more than 500 bags of plastic along with other rubbish. It is hoped that such programs will encourage more yacht owners to actively combat environmental degradation.
Of course, indulging in superyachts does not mean that they are sustainable in the first place, but it is not only about seeking adventure at any cost. The industry is clearly undergoing a change... While sipping champagne in beautiful, crystal-clear waters remains a great way to use such huge boats, it is no longer the only thing they do. The first summit will take place this year Explorer yachts in Monacoto bring together leading yacht designers, ship captains and adventurers to share their insights. The conference is likely to pick up steam as the superyacht market itself, according to forecasts will show an annual growth rate of 5.3% between 2018 and 2026. This dynamic is largely attributable to the popularity of exploration yachts.
Explore yachts allow you to reach parts of the world that most people can only dream of. As good as it is to drift in the Mediterranean, traveling the Amazon before heading for the Antarctic ice is an adventure that will take your breath away. This is why Explorer yachts could become the mainstay of the superyacht industry in the coming years.
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