Whose boat is best? As Jeff Bezos’s $500M superyacht takes to the water after five-year construction – we compare it to the world’s other great floating palaces
Here we take a closer look at the superyachts owned by the uber-rich, from pharmaceutical tycoon Ernesto Bertarelli to DreamWorks Pictures founder David Geffen and Jerry Jones, the owner of the NFL’s Dallas Cowboys.
These vessels are heaving with ultra-luxurious features such as swimming pools, basketball courts, wine cellars and onboard cinemas – and come with eyewatering pricetags as standard. Here’s the lowdown on these lavish vessels…
KORU – OWNED BY JEFF BEZOS, CEO OF AMAZON
Jeff Bezos’s Koru megayacht is reportedly set to be delivered to the Amazon founder within the next couple of months
Koru – which means ‘new beginnings’ in Maori – is the most recent build from shipyard Oceanco, based in the Netherlands
The Amazon CEO’s new superyacht cost $500million (£415million) and measures 127m (417ft) in length. He’s pictured above on holiday with his girlfriend Lauren Sanchez
Bezos and Sanchez at a New Year’s Eve party on a luxury yacht in the Caribbean at the end of 2021
Bezos enjoy a yachting break with his girlfriend Lauren in St Barts in December 2021
Bezos and Sanchez relax on a boat during their Caribbean trip in December 2021
The Amazon CEO and Sanchez boarding a yacht in Saint Tropez, France, in 2019
Bezos and Sanchez leave the Le Club 55 restaurant during their holiday in St Tropez
Bezos and Sanchez unboarding from a yacht for a stroll in St Tropez
LENGTH: 416ft (127m).
HEIGHT: It will be the tallest in the world, measuring over 230ft (70m) tall – nearly half the size of the Great Pyramid of Giza. Reportedly upkeep of the vessel will cost around $25million (£21million) annually.
COST: $500million (£415million).
POWER: It features three enormous masts so it can be powered largely by kinetic energy from the sails.
CONSTRUCTION: Koru – which has a name that means ‘new beginnings’ in Maori – is the most recent build from shipyard Oceanco, based in the Netherlands.
FEATURES: Not much is known about the interior of Bezos’s superyacht, but it’s thought that one standout feature will be a swimming pool. It will sail alongside a smaller 250ft (76m) support vessel – reportedly currently being built by Damen Yachting in the Netherlands – that’s speculated to feature a helicopter landing pad, and an array of toys including luxury cars, jet skis, speedboats, and perhaps even a personal submarine.
BACKSTORY: Reportedly, the megayacht is set to be delivered to Bezos within the next couple of months. When it was being built, Bezos allegedly asked the Dutch city of Rotterdam to temporarily dismantle the 95-year-old Koningshaven Bridge in order to allow his yacht to pass under it – but his request was reportedly refused.
FORCE BLUE – OWNED BY BERNIE ECCLESTONE, FORMER FORMULA 1 CEO
Former Formula 1 CEO Bernie Ecclestone bought the Force Blue superyacht in 2021
Perks on board include a fully equipped spa, a gym, a cinema, and areas dedicated to lounging and sunbathing
Ecclestone bought the 207ft- (63m) long superyacht for €7.4million (£6.6million) at auction
LENGTH: 207ft (63m).
COST: It’s worth $25million (£21million), but Ecclestone bought it for €7.4million (£6.6million) after it was seized by police from its original owner and auctioned off.
SLEEPS: It can accommodate up to 12 guests.
FEATURES: Perks on board include a fully equipped spa, a gym, a cinema, and areas dedicated to lounging and sunbathing.
BACKSTORY: The former Formula 1 CEO bought the yacht in 2021.
GALAXY – OWNED BY DAVE HAGEWOOD, VIDEO GAME DEVELOPER
Dave Hagewood bought the Galaxy superyacht – a model that dates back to 2005 – and had it retrofitted
Hagewood’s 56m- (184ft) long vessel was built by Italian yacht company Benetti
Cosmic artwork – such as a sculpture of an astronaut – features throughout the vessel
Hagewood’s superyacht includes a master suite that has its own music studio
LENGTH: 184ft (56m).
FEATURES: Cosmic artwork – such as a sculpture of an astronaut – features throughout the vessel, there’s a space for playing the piano and dining, and the master suite has its own music studio. ‘I wanted it to be my spaceship, hence the name, and design-wise, I wanted to steer everything back to that theme,’ Hagewood told Boat International. Hagewood has also revealed that he wanted the ambience on the boat to reflect the creative atmosphere of the annual Nevada festival Burning Man.
CONSTRUCTION: Built by the Italian yacht company Benetti.
BACKSTORY: The boat was originally delivered in 2005 and used as a charter yacht, but video game developer Hagewood subsequently bought it and had it retrofitted.
VAVA II – OWNED BY ERNESTO BERTARELLI, PHARMACEUTICAL TYCOON
Vava II features a fold-down beach club, a pool and four tenders to ferry passengers to shore
Pictured to the right are Swiss pharmaceutical tycoon Bertarelli and his ex-wife Kirsty Bertarelli on board Vava II in 2017
Ernesto’s luxurious superyacht was built by 200 craftsmen in Plymouth
LENGTH: 318ft (97m).
CONSTRUCTION: Commissioned by Swiss pharmaceutical tycoon Bertarelli in 2007, it was built by Devonport Yachts in Plymouth, England. Two hundred craftsmen were enlisted in the build.
FEATURES: There’s a fold-down beach club, a pool and four tenders to ferry passengers to shore.
RISING SUN – OWNED BY DAVID GEFFEN, FOUNDER OF DREAMWORKS PICTURES
Rising Sun has a whopping 82 rooms, and features a gym, a basketball court, a wine cellar and a cinema
Businessman David Geffen, who founded the film studio DreamWorks and several record labels, has owned the superyacht since 2010
LEFT: Pictured clockwise from the top left is Gayle King, Diane Sawyer, Maria Shriver, Oprah, Geffen and Julia Roberts on Rising Sun in 2015. RIGHT: Oprah is seen celebrating her birthday on the ship
LENGTH: 138m (453ft).
COST: It cost at least $300million (£250million), with some reports suggesting it could be worth as much as $590million (£498million).
CONSTRUCTION: The superyacht was originally built in 2004 by Germany’s Lurssen at its Bremen shipyard for Larry Ellison, CEO of Oracle Corporation.
FEATURES: The ship has a whopping 82 rooms, and features a gym, a basketball court, a wine cellar and a cinema.
BACKSTORY: Businessman Geffen, who founded the film studio DreamWorks and several record labels, has owned the superyacht since 2010, after initially buying a half-share of the yacht in late 2006. The mogul has hosted a long list of celebrities on the ship, including Barack and Michelle Obama, Leonardo DiCaprio, Bruce Springsteen, Julia Roberts, Oprah Winfrey and Orlando Bloom.
BRAVO EUGENIA – OWNED BY JERRY JONES, OWNER OF THE DALLAS COWBOYS
Bravo Eugenia cost an estimated $225million (£188million) to $250million (£207million)
It’s thought that Bravo Eugenia has a yearly upkeep cost of about $15million (£12.4million) to $20million (£16.6million)
Bravo Eugenia features a helipad so guests can land in their choppers, as well as a beach club and ‘Teppanyaki bar’
NFL Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones named the boat after his wife, Eugenia Jones
LENGTH: 358ft (109m).
COST: It cost an estimated $225million (£188million) to $250million (£207million), with a yearly upkeep cost of about $15million (£12.4million) to $20million (£16.6million), according to Boatsafe.
POWER: Its highest speed is around 18 knots.
SLEEPS: There are seven cabins that can accommodate 14 guests, and there are quarters for up to 30 crew members.
FEATURES: There’s a helipad so guests can land in their choppers, and a beach club and ‘Teppanyaki bar’ to keep them entertained when they’re on board. There’s a heap of wellness offerings too – a gym, a swimming pool, a sauna and steam room and a massage room. Plus, there’s a garage to store water toys and jet skis.
BACKSTORY: The NFL Dallas Cowboys owner, 80, bought the boat in 2019, and it’s named after his wife, Eugenia Jones.
AZZAM – FORMERLY OWNED BY THE LATE SHEIKH KHALIFA BIN ZAYED BIN SULTAN AL NAHYAN
Above is the $600million (£498million) Azzam megayacht, which is the world’s longest superyacht
Azzam was built for Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan (pictured foreground), who was the president of the UAE from 2004 until his death last year
LENGTH: 591ft (180m) – making it the world’s longest superyacht.
COST: $600million (£498million).
CONSTRUCTION: It was built in 2013 by the German shipyard Lurssen Yachts.
BACKSTORY: It was built for Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan, who was the president of the UAE from 2004 until his death last year.
DUBAI – OWNED BY SHEIKH MOHAMMED BIN RASHID AL MAKTOUM, PRIME MINISTER OF THE UAE
The Dubai superyacht was designed by British yacht designer Andrew Winch and built in collaboration with the German shipyards Blohm and Voss, and Lurssen
Dubai is owned by Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum (pictured centre), the vice president and prime minister of the UAE and the ruler of Dubai
LENGTH: 531ft (162m).
COST: $400million (£332million).
CONSTRUCTION: It was designed by British yacht designer Andrew Winch and built in collaboration with the German shipyards Blohm and Voss, and Lurssen.
BACKSTORY: The build commenced in the late 1990s and the vessel was launched in 2006. It’s owned by Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, the vice president and prime minister of the UAE and the ruler of Dubai.
AL SAID – FORMERLY OWNED BY THE LATE SULTAN OF OMAN
Al Said, measuring 509ft (155m), was made by the German shipyard Lurssen and launched in 2007
Al Said was formerly owned by the late Sultan of Oman, Qaboos bin Said Al Said, who died in 2020
LENGTH: 509ft (155m).
CONSTRUCTION: It was made by the German shipyard Lurssen and launched in 2007.
BACKSTORY: Al Said was originally owned by the late Sultan of Oman, Qaboos bin Said Al Said, who died in 2020.
A+ – OWNED BY MANSOUR BIN ZAYED AL NAHYAN, DEPUTY PRIME MINISTER OF THE UAE
Pictured above is the 147.25m- (483ft) long A+. The ship, previously called Topaz, cost a whopping €400million (£356million)
A+ is owned by Mansour bin Zayed Al Nahyan (pictured), the deputy prime minister of the UAE
LENGTH: 483ft (147m).
COST: €400million (£356million).
CONSTRUCTION: It was constructed by Lurssen in Germany and launched in 2012.
BACKSTORY: The vessel – which formerly went by the name of Topaz – is owned by Mansour bin Zayed Al Nahyan, the deputy prime minister of the UAE.