The luxury market is continuously exploring new ways to help the uber-rich spend their money. The sea still remains a prime spot, allowing its explorers exclusive time off in the private surrounds of a mega yacht. Owning a vessel of this size means not only initial capital outlay – often into tens, and sometimes hundreds, of millions – but also annual running costs that stretch well into seven figures. A large part of those costs are incurred by mooring fees – after all, a yacht has to be berthed somewhere. To moor in one of the world’s most exclusive (and expensive) marinas during high season, a mega yacht owner can be expected to pay up to $4,130 per night, and during prime time events such as the Monaco Grand Prix rates can skyrocket to $100,000 or more for a five-day stay in Monaco’s prime berths. Here is our list of the five most expensive, and most desirable, places to park one’s mega yacht.
Marina di Capri You can expect to pay around $4,000 per night in high season for a place to dock in this Italian marina. Capri has been a favorite with the rich and famous for many years now. In the 1950s, the likes of Clark Gable, Sofia Loren and Jackie Kennedy would congregate on the island. Today, it is not unusual to see both of David Geffen’s yachts, Rising Sun and Pelorus floating out at anchor, with a never-ending flow of A-List celebrities. Frequesnt guests George Clooney, Beyoncé, and Jay Z are also often seen exploring the tiny island, or gracing one of its ultra- exclusive nightclubs.
Marina di Portofino High season prices skyrocket up to $3,335 per night for a mooring in this exclusive marina. Portofino was once a small fishing village and has only one road in and out, which incidentally is usually closed, allowing the area to remain unspoiled. Arguably one of the prettiest harbors out there, Marina di Portofino is where only the wealthiest can afford. It has only 14 berths maximizing the privacy and therefore the exclusivity of the marina. If you get a spot, expect to mingle with the likes of Steven Spielberg (owner of the yacht Seven Seas), Coldplay front man Chris Martin and pop singer Rihanna. It is also a favorite spot for Russian billionaire Andrey Melnichenko, owner of the 119 metre Philippe Starck-designed mega yacht A.
Porto Cervo To moor your 50-metre-plus yacht in this super-luxe port it is going to set you back up to $3,100 a night in high season – and why not, seeing that back in 1959 Prince Karim Aga Khan carved out this village as a private retreat for his wealthy friends and family. Today, it is a little different from HRH the Aga Khan’s original dream. The “village” today is made up of high-end boutiques, and designer nightspots including the nearby infamous Billionaire nightclub that attracts celebrities like Hayden Panettiere and the hot new couple who was seen yachting everywhere this summer- Zac Efron and Michelle Rodriguez. The world’s largest mega yachts are often seen gracing the surrounding seas too, including the 110 meter Dilbar, and Serene, the world’s ninth largest yacht.
Port de Saint-Tropez Saint Tropez in the south of France has long been associated with the rich and famous. Originally made famous by Bridget Bardot in the 1950s, this French Riviera town still holds the heart of jet-setters, models and celebrities alike. The town has largely kept its quaint charm with its narrow streets. The marina doesn’t actually allow yachts over 70 meters, instructing them to drop anchor out of port. Bernard Arnault’s Amadeus is often seen floating off France’s Côte d’Azur, along with the iconic 88 meter Maltese Falcon, originally built by US venture capitalist Tom Perkins and now owned by Elena Ambrosiadou. Hotel million-heiress Paris Hilton is another fan of Saint Tropez and can be found sampling the delights of La Voile Rouge – one of the most expensive beach clubs in town. This summer Saint Tropez was particularly hopping with music stars. Rihanna, Gaga and Bey & Jay all moored here.
Ibiza Magna This marina is often referred to as one for the young, rich and trendy. Ibiza Magna is located minutes away from the island’s casino strip and infamous nightclub Amnesia – renowned for extortionate bar prices, all-night parties and Kardashians- where Paris Hilton was DJ-in-residence this past month. For those with yachts below 60 meters be prepared to pay up to $3,660, and for yachts over this length, once again the preference is to drop anchor outside of the main port. The Indian steel billionaire Lakshmi Mittal’s yacht has been seen out at anchor here, along with arguably the most famous yacht in the world – and the current largest yacht on the planet – Eclipse, owned by Roman Abramovich. In August, Ibiza may as well be Malibu. Carbon Beach billionaires like Steve Ellison and Yuri Schefler mingle with the neighbors Will Smith, Orlando Bloom, and Leonardo DiCaprio, who regularly rent villas on the island.
For most mega yacht owners or mega yacht charterers, you could say that these pricey mooring fees are nothing but a drop in the ocean, but it’s not only the very rich and very famous who get to enjoy mega yachts in these exclusive locations – you can too, if you have the wherewithal to charter one of these magnificent vessels. Reach out to Douglas MacFarlane of Lomond Yachts.; they have exclusive charter listings with some of the most magnificent vessels on the ocean.