So you’ve bought yourself a superyacht. Nice work. But before you start popping champagne corks and acting like you’re in an episode of Succession, have you thought about where to dock it?
This is arguably the most important consideration for any self-respecting billionaire. After all, when you’ve forked out on a floating mansion you want people to be able to admire it (from a distance, of course. You wouldn’t allow the great unwashed on board).
Luckily, we’re here to help. At Almagrove, we know a thing or two about luxury goods having spent 30 years lending against high-value assets. And after much debate, we’ve come up with this list of five majestic marinas worthy of their considerable mooring fees.
Don’t forget, if you need to free up some funds without a lengthy application process, Almagrove can help. We lend against boats, vehicles, antiques, jewellery and more. Get a quote today.
Yas Marina, Abu Dhabi, UAE
Superyachts are synonymous with the playboy lifestyle. And a key item on any bon vivant’s to-do list is tying up his Sunseeker close to a Grand Prix track on a Formula 1 weekend.
The Yas Marina Circuit is the most expensive F1 race venue ever built, costing more than $1billion when it was completed in 2009. And because the local authorities still have a few quid to recoup, you’d better believe those berthing fees aren’t cheap – if you’d like a track view it’ll cost in excess of £60,000.
What do you get for your money? Well, there’s a generous allocation of race passes for you and your crew; concert tickets (Rihanna, Pharrell and Guns N Roses have played race week in recent years); and reservations at the local fine dining establishments such as Cipriani. There’s also a concierge service to help you access anything you may need to host your very own F1 superyacht party.
Marina di Portofino, Italy
If you’re a Hollywood somebody, the chances are you’ll want to spend your summers living ‘La Bella Vita’ on the Italian Riviera. The jewel in the Ligurian crown is arguably Portofino, with its pretty pastel-coloured cribs surrounding the azure waters of the marina, where many a mega yacht is moored.
On your visit, expect to rub shoulders with the likes of the Kardashians, Chris Hemsworth, Jay-Z and Beyonce, who’ve all been spotted mooching around the village in recent years.
We mention Beyonce, and that leads us tenuously onto the topic of ‘buoyancy’, which will certainly be affected by scoffing many platefuls of the local pasta, Pesto al Trofie. Important to know, should you attempt to swim in the sea.
Yacht Club Monaco Marina, Monaco
Billionaire with a big boat? You’ll feel right at home in Monaco. The obvious plus point is the principality’s approach to tax, which, if you decide to take up residency, means you’ll have more money to spend on ‘must-have’ luxury items. You’ll find these on sale in the city-state’s many designer boutiques, which are Monaco’s answer to British high-street staples such as B&M or Poundland. Although needless to say, the price points are slightly, well… different.
When it comes to mooring up, the Yacht Club Marina has the high level of prestige you’re after. It was founded in 1953 by Prince Rainier III (also known as Mr Grace Kelly) and hosts a quarter of the world’s largest superyachts. The combined square footage of these vessels probably exceeds that of Monaco itself.
Port de Saint-Tropez, France
Just up the coast from Monaco is Saint-Tropez. This French Riviera town has been a favourite haunt of the stars ever since the 1957 film And God Created Woman… in which Brigitte Bardot’s seductive temptress shocked straight-laced cinema goers so much that the film was banned in several US states.
Once you’ve moored your yacht, or rather, watched your crew do it (incidentally, a berth costs around €6,500 a night in high season) you’ll probably want to head to Pampelonne Beach to be seen. This is about as A-list as it gets, but it won’t take long in that Mediterranean sun before your skin reaches peak levels of leatheriness.
At that point, it’s time to head inside one of the many exclusive clubs lining the seafront and enjoy some VVIP treatment. Order a Jeroboam of champagne to your table and you’ll be surprised at how many new friends you make.
Dubai Harbour, Dubai
Dubai Harbour is the newest entry on this list, having only become fully functional in the last year. Because of that, a lot of the adjacent luxury shopping malls, restaurants and cafes haven’t actually opened yet. But there should be plenty of room for your mega yacht; the harbour’s marinas can host as many as 700 boats, including vessels up to 160m.
If you’d like to stretch your legs, all power to you. But you don’t have to – the harbour provides a buggy service to help guests move around. Sites to explore include the nearby Palm Jumeirah with its five-star resorts and chic beach clubs, the entertainment hub at Bluewaters Island or the famous Dubai Hills golf course. Of course, if you have your own private helicopter, it all looks much better from the air.