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Rolex Swan Cup 2014 to mark 30th anniversary of relationship between Rolex, Nautor’s Swan and YCCS

September 01, 2014

This year will see one of the sporting world’s most enduring partnerships celebrate a significant milestone: the 30th anniversary of the relationship between Rolex, Nautor’s Swan luxury sailing yachts and the Yacht Club Costa Smeralda (YCCS), partners in the biennial Rolex Swan Cup. One of the world of sailing’s signature regattas, this year’s event will run in the fantastic Sardinia yacht charter destination – Porto Cervo from September 8 to 14.

Eurosia during the 2004 Rolex Swan Cup - Photo: Carlo Borlenghi/ROLEX

Eurosia during the 2004 Rolex Swan Cup - Photo: Carlo Borlenghi/ROLEX

The 2014 Rolex Swan Cup will once again provide the dynasty of elegant Swan yachts an opportunity to engage in close racing in the challenging and scenic waters off Porto Cervo, Sardinia. Following directly on from the Maxi Yacht Rolex Cup, held at the same venue, this year’s 18th edition will provide a typically graceful spectacle conducted in the traditional spirit of ‘gentlemen sailing’.

Shared values

“The Rolex Swan Cup is one of the iconic regattas in the world. It is rewarding to see how it builds up and is consolidated event after event,” explains Leonardo Ferragamo, Chairman of Nautor’s Swan since 1998. “It represents the utmost co-operation between three great entities: Rolex [title sponsors since 1984], the Yacht Club Costa Smeralda [event organizers] and, of course, Nautor’s Swan.” Fittingly, 2014 also marks the 30th year of the partnership between Rolex and the Yacht Club Costa Smeralda.

Start Swan 45 Class

Start Swan 45 Class - Photo: Carlo Borlenghi/ROLEX

“The event embodies several values, first of all the pleasure of owning a Swan,” continues Ferragamo, a long-time and passionate Swan owner and sailor. “A Swan owner is a person who really loves their boat and is full of pride, dedicating time and energy to their yacht. Swan owners have passion and a noble approach which is characterized by the racing and the competitive spirit that shines through at the Rolex Swan Cup.” These principles firmly align with those of Rolex. For over a century the Swiss watch brand has derived inspiration from people and events that define quality, precision and prestige.

Tradition & innovation

Rolex has championed innovation from the very beginning, adapting to dynamic, changing lifestyles and pioneering the development of the wristwatch as early as 1905. The brand is at the origin of numerous major watchmaking innovations, such as the Oyster, the first waterproof wristwatch, launched in 1926, and the Perpetual rotor self-winding mechanism, introduced in 1931. In the course of its history, Rolex has registered over 400 patents. Famous worldwide for the chronometric precision, robustness and reliability, and uncompromising quality of its timepieces, Rolex seeks to promote the virtues of excellence across a wide spectrum of activities, from sports – including yachting – and exploration to the arts.

On board Cuor di Leone, 2006 Rolex Swan Cup - Leonardo Ferragamo and Rolex Testimonee Paul Cayard

On board Cuor di Leone, 2006 Rolex Swan Cup - Leonardo Ferragamo and Rolex Testimonee Paul Cayard - Photo: Carlo Borlenghi/ROLEX

Likewise, Nautor’s Swan has been synonymous with elegance, style, innovation and reliability throughout its nigh-on 50-year history. When he founded the company in 1966 in Pietarsaari, Finland, Pekka Koskenkyla was inspired by hundreds of years of Finnish boatbuilding to build high-quality, high-performance sailing yachts. Ninety-five different models of Swans have been produced, measuring, from the first design, some 11 metres (36ft) through to an ambitious 39.9m (131ft).

Sparkman & Stephens of New York, one of the most acclaimed yacht designers at the time, was persuaded to draw the lines of the first Swan yacht, which was built in fibreglass. Prior to this point, nobody had built a boat over 10 metres long in this material. Fibreglass was then still new to yacht building, but would dominate mass production of boats in years to come. Proof of the longevity and quality of these designs are demonstrated by the large number of Sparkman & Stephens yachts still competing at the Rolex Swan Cup today.

Prizegiving at the YCCS Piazza Azzurra, 2012 Rolex Swan Cup

Prizegiving at the YCCS Piazza Azzurra, 2012 Rolex Swan Cup - Photo: Carlo Borlenghi/ROLEX

The first Swan model was the Swan 36, a yacht that introduced a significant number of innovations, several of which were aimed at improving steering stability, such as: positioning the rudder fully aft, separating it from the full length of the keel and thickening the aft section of the keel. The Swan 36 proved equal to more traditional wooden boats in general handling and safety, but outshone them with better performance under sail and improved living space.

This small but impressive beginning ensured the growth of the most revered boat builder in the world, one that would shape the history of sailing. Nautor’s Swan quickly became synonymous with quality, elegance, reliability and prestige. All Swan yachts are marked simply by an unmistakable ‘arrow’ – indented in every hull – a mark so iconic that the brand name is not needed to identify the yacht afloat.

PLENTY, testifying the strong winds during the 2008 Rolex Swan Cup

PLENTY, testifying the strong winds during the 2008 Rolex Swan Cup - Photo by Rolex/Kurt Arrigo

In the 1980s, Nautor’s Swan entered a new era with the appointment of naval architects German Frers as its house designer. Frers has been responsible for the design of all production Swan yachts since, and has helped the Finnish builder reinforce the vital balance between producing boats dually designed to race and cruise. In 2012, Nautor’s Swan celebrated the launch of its 2,000th boat, the Swan 90S superyacht Freya. Similarly, integrity, consistency and reliability are the foundation on which the peerless reputation of Rolex watches is built. These virtues apply to every aspect of the company’s activities, from the manufacture of each timepiece, in which every element – from the rotor to the bracelet – meets the highest standards, to the quality of after-sales service worldwide.

World-renowned sailor and Rolex Testimonee Paul Cayard is a long-time admirer of Nautor’s Swan yachts and a frequent competitor at the event: “The Rolex Swan Cup in Porto Cervo is a historic event in our sport because it has a lot of tradition. The Swan yacht has gone through a gentle evolution over the years, but has always maintained its style, class and quality.”

2006 Rolex Swan Cup - The Swan 45 fleet cross tacking upwind

2006 Rolex Swan Cup - The Swan 45 fleet cross tacking upwind

Competition and camaraderie

The five classes of Swan yacht competing in Porto Cervo this year are: the Maxi (18.29 metres and above), Grand Prix (18.28m and below), Classics (vintage/historical designs by Sparkman and Stephens), Club Swan 42 and Swan 45. The latter, the Swan 45 one design class, will compete in its own World Championship. Winners of all categories will be awarded a coveted Rolex timepiece.

Ferragamo draws pleasure at seeing the ClubSwan family of owners and enthusiasts united both at the Rolex Swan Cup in Porto Cervo and, since 2013, at the biennial Rolex Swan Cup Caribbean which takes place at the YCCS’s stunning base in Virgin Gorda, British Virgin Islands. It creates a genuine sense of belonging in the sailing world: “The atmosphere is friendly and sporting; people like being here together, racing their boats and sharing their experiences,” he says. This passion for yachting and the event’s Corinthian spirit are sentiments embraced wholeheartedly by Rolex.

Dubai Maritime Vision 2030 supported by Dubai Maritime Sector Strategy

September 01, 2014

H.E. Sultan Bin Sulayem, Chairman of Dubai Ports, Customs and Free Zone Corporation and President of Dubai Maritime City Authority (DMCA), the government authority responsible for regulation, coordination and supervision of all aspects of the maritime sector in the fabulous Middle East yacht holiday destination – Dubai, has underlined the important role played by the Dubai Maritime Sector Strategy (MSS) in support of Dubai Maritime Vision 2030.

H.E Sultan Bin Sulayem, Chairman of Dubai Ports, Customs and Free Zone Corporation and President of DMCA

H.E Sultan Bin Sulayem, Chairman of Dubai Ports, Customs and Free Zone Corporation and President of DMCA

The vision aims to develop, regulate and promote the local maritime industry while at the same time reinforce Dubai’s position as a world-class, premiere international maritime hub. H.E. Sultan Bin Sulayem’s statement was given during a recent DMCA supervisory coordination meeting that showcased the latest updates and achievements in the efforts to boost Dubai’s maritime competitiveness and offer key foundations to raise the bar on the local maritime industry in line with internationally recognized standards and best international practices.

H.E. Sultan Bin Sulayem said, “Dubai Maritime Vision 2030 is positioned as a strategic base to promote Dubai and its highly competitive maritime segment. In fact, Dubai is as equally competent with other leading maritime and logistics centres in the Middle East and North African (MENA) region and the rest of the world. To achieve the goals set out by Dubai Maritime Vision 2030, industry players in the emirate must work closely and intensify their efforts in reaching this vision.”

“The local maritime industry is considered to be a key cornerstone in the unified efforts to drive sustainable growth and overall development in the future. It is also a major partner in the move to further enhance Dubai’s regional and international competitiveness. Moreover, the Dubai MSS is a key step forward in aiming to make a difference in the maritime industry and increase its contribution to the country’s GDP, which is poised to enhance its position as one of the leading value-added economical industries in Dubai, following the vision and directives set forth by H.H. Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai,” H.E. Sultan Bin Sulayem added.

During the meeting, participants discussed current performance indicators and the execution stages of the Dubai MSS, which has so far resulted in the creation and implementation of new regulations and guidelines that ensure further compliance with the highest maritime standards in safety and operations management. These efforts are not only aimed at meeting the objectives set by the Dubai MSS but also to help increase productivity, competitiveness and the creation of an integrated and highly-sustainable maritime environment that can respond effectively to market changes and emerging trends by continuously attracting regional and international investors into Dubai.

The local maritime sector recently made major leaps in terms of its direct contribution to Dubai’s GDP, which amounted to 4.6 per cent or the equivalent of AED 14.4 billion. Maritime operations, maritime engineering, ports and shipping come as leading marine components that contribute to the local economy, followed by maritime and recreational services and different offshore support services. These components played an active role in supplying the labor market with more than 75,000 promising job opportunities to meet the demand for qualified human resources, especially in maritime operations, maritime engineering and ports, which accounted for 51 per cent and 25 per cent of the employment rates within Dubai’s maritime sector, respectively.

H.E. Bin Sulayem commended the ongoing efforts made by Dubai MSS team to make a positive change in the emirate’s maritime industry via a series of pilot initiatives focused on implementing modern regulations and legislation; applying the highest standards in maritime safety; developing integrated logistics programs and improving the emirate’s infrastructure in order to establish clear and strong foundations aimed at creating a vibrant and secure maritime sector that can act as a key driver for economic development.

H.E. Bin Sulayem further added that the positive results achieved by the DMCA can be attributed to the fruitful cooperation between government and non-government entities and the unlimited support given by the Dubai Executive Council. He also called on the attendees to remain committed in developing all components of the local maritime sector and make the best out of potential opportunities to help accelerate Dubai’s transformation into one of the most advanced maritime centers in the world.

“The Dubai MSS is gaining strategic momentum with a strong focus on developing essential maritime industry components. We are confident in our ability to achieve significant results and make a radical shift in lifting the local maritime sector to a higher level of growth and sustainability in collaboration with our strategic partners in the public and private sectors. We look forward to further work on the application of maritime strategic axes, which will have a central role in the local maritime sector’s move to help drive in more economic growth and turn Dubai into a major centre of entrepreneurship and investment,” H.E. Sultan Bin Sulayem concluded.

Flushline™: Flush sliding doors and windows for superyachts by Fehrmann

September 01, 2014

Flushline™ represents a dream design with flush sliding doors and windows for superyachts, developed by the Hamburg-based Fehrmann, from the Working Group DEUTSCHE YACHTEN. The company has supplied its products to such outstanding vessels as mega yacht Octopus, superyacht Samar (ex Lana), motor yacht Siren, luxury yacht Vava II and Lady Moura.

Flushline door by Fehrmann

Flushline door by Fehrmann

The gold bronze tinted glass panels enclose the deck saloons of the mega yacht. Whether and where windows or doors break the clear lines cannot be seen with the naked eye, for the Flushline™-principle closes them flush with the wall. That looks really elegant and ultra-modern and is, in addition, weather tight, noise and vibration insulating and, if required, can be fire and bullet proof as well. Flushline™ sends the designer of every extremely large yacht into raptures.

Flushline hull window with electric opening

Flushline hull window with electric opening

While regulations and standards mean that many futuristic designs quickly reach the limit of their feasibility, the Hamburg company simply turns the tables. ‘Function follows form’, declares Henning Fehrmann,The designer must be free and bold when it comes to the glazing of mega yachts’. His company arranges the implementation of design aspirations and ideas. ‘Freedom to design’ says Fehrmann, in his eyes often flounders too fast on technical shortcomings in the super yacht industry.

Flushline Pantograph door

Flushline Pantograph door

Besides the highest level of design freedom, the Fehrmann products meet the extensive regulations specified in PYC, SOLAS, MCA, LY3 and ISO and from the classification of this yacht. But not only that, they have developed safety standards in house and improved them. Even with glass sliding doors the continually improved Flushline™-principle has set the worldwide standard. Weathertightness is guaranteed by the Fehrmann all-electric Flushline™-door without the need for inflatable seals; and crushing – incidentally not specified in any standard – prevented on Fehrmann’s doors by a braking distance of only 20 millimetres.

Flushline Pantograph door open

Flushline Pantograph door open

Not only doors and windows, but also glazed sun roofs can be integrated into a yacht’s design. Thus the Yoga room on the sun deck can become the open air gym in the twinkling of an eye. All is designed, constructed, manufactured and fitted as a made-to-measure project. Says Fehrmann: ‘We are in business to provide the technical know how to implement individual designs’.

Maxi Yacht Rolex Cup 2014 to start today

September 01, 2014

An international fleet of 35 Maxi yachts have reached the fabulous Sardinia yacht charter destination – Porto Cervo for one of the sailing calendar’s great annual occasions. This year marks the 25th edition of the Maxi Yacht Rolex Cup, a competition sponsored by Rolex since 1985 and organized by the Yacht Club Costa Smeralda (YCCS) as well as the International Maxi Association (IMA). The event represents a meeting of elegance, power and speed. Weeklong racing will kick off today, on Monday, September 1, 2014.

Dockside preparations at the Yacht Club Costa Smeralda - Photo credit to Rolex Carlo Borlenghi

Dockside preparations at the Yacht Club Costa Smeralda - Photo credit to Rolex/Carlo Borlenghi

Riveting racing

Three-time runner up sailing yacht Alegre starts off as one of the favourites. Andres Soriano’s 2013 launch will be expected to use last year’s strong showing to good measure. Soriano’s former Alegre, now Swiss Alex Schaerer’s luxury yacht Caol Ila R, is one of four other boats in the championship reserved for racing Mini Maxis. 2012 champion Bella Mente yacht and Artemis/George Sakellaris’s sailing yacht Shockwave both represent the United States while Sir Peter Ogden, from the United Kingdom, will be expected to mount a serious challenge with his latest version of Jethou.“One day out, it looks like it’s going to be a terrific week,” explains Principal Race Officer Peter Craig. “We’re going to see plenty of breeze during the first three days of racing. What makes this regatta stand out is the boats, the crews. For big boat racing it doesn’t get any better. I don’t think there’s anywhere in the world that people talk about that is better sailing.”

Skippers Briefing at the YCCS clubhouse - Photo credit to Rolex Carlo Borlenghi

Skippers Briefing at the YCCS clubhouse - Photo credit to Rolex/Carlo Borlenghi

In terms of tight competition, the spotlight will shine brightly on the fifth running of the Mini Maxi Rolex World Championship. At the outset of the week the most pressing question on the sunkissed docks of the YCCS is how Niklas Zennström’s Rán 5 will perform on its championship debut. Rán’s crew has a strong Porto Cervo pedigree, Zennström is the defending champion and with his former yacht Rán 2 won the competition three times. However, in a competition defined by marginal gains she will need to adapt to the challenging environment seamlessly. Curiously, Zennström will come face to face with the boat he helmed to three world titles, now a key rival in the hands of Italian Roberto Tomasini Grinover and renamed Robertissima III. The clash between Zennström’s new and old boat will be an intriguing one.

Maxi Yacht Rolex Cup Event Map - Photo credit to Rolex/KPMS

Maxi Yacht Rolex Cup Event Map - Photo credit to Rolex/KPMS

Style and power

Elegance will be provided by the J-Class. At 43,7m (143ft) superyacht Lionheart – a replica of the original 1930s design – is the largest boat in attendance. Competition will be provided by superyacht Rainbow, charter yacht Ranger, charter yacht Shamrock V and defending champion luxury yacht Velsheda. Boats which weigh in excess of 170 tonnes and possess a sail area close to 1,000m2 require expert handling. Style and top quality racing is always provided by the Wally class which features nine boats including both defending champion – Jean-Charles Decaux’s 80-ft super yacht J-One – and two Wally Centos in Sir Lindsay Owen-Jones’s superyacht Magic Carpet Cubed and Thomas Bscher’s Open Season. Pursuers of power will be impressed by the Supermaxis, imperious goliaths measuring upwards of 100-ft. The 2014 title is up for grabs with three-time winner luxury yacht Nilaya not in attendance. Three contrasting designs –  superyacht Firefly, Inoui and charter yacht Viriella lock horns. Lord Irvine Laidlaw’s Wally 82.8m hybrid yacht Highland Fling, competing in Maxi Racing, will be among the fastest boats on show.

Coastal races through La Maddalena archipelago are forecast for today’s first day of competition. The long wait is now over, the compelling verdicts will be delivered on the water throughout the week.

AYSS – A co-sponsor of the Welcome Party at 2014 Newport Charter Yacht Show

August 28, 2014

The Newport Charter Yacht Show 2014 was a huge success. From June 23 to 26, the event hosted an amazing line-up of 27 world-class yachts, available for rent in the lovely America yacht charter location – New England this summer. This year, the Association of Yacht Support Services (AYSS) co-sponsored the Welcome Party, followed by morning forums as well as evening networking events.

Newport Charter Yacht Show 2014 - Photo by Billy Black

Newport Charter Yacht Show 2014 - Photo by Billy Black

The show was skillfully managed by the Newport Exhibition Group who organized the yachts to be viewed by brokers, owners, charter agents and vendors.

The yachts participating ranged from 24 to 70 Meters and hosted shore-side events including Chefs competitions, Broker lunches, Tablescaping competitions and evening “yacht hops” with different themes, where signature cocktails were served by well dressed crew.

Queensland’s Sanctuary Cove Marina accredited ‘Fish Friendly’ status

August 28, 2014

Queensland’s Sanctuary Cove Marina, a beautiful Australia yacht charter location, has been accredited ‘Fish Friendly’ status by the Marina Industries Association.

Caption L to R  Keith Allardice, Helen Motteram and John Hogan at Sanctuary Cove Marina

Caption L to R: Keith Allardice, Helen Motteram and John Hogan at Sanctuary Cove Marina

Fish Friendly accreditation is an information campaign and accreditation system focusing on marina fish habits and developed by the NSW Department of Primary Industries (DPI) in collaboration with the Marina Industries Association (MIA) and the NSW Boating Industry Association (BIA).

The initiative is attached to MIA’s International Clean Marinas Program and is available to luxury yacht marinas across the Asia Pacific region. Additional fish friendly criteria and an audit are requirements to achieve ‘Fish Friendly Marina’ accreditation.

Sanctuary Cove Marina, a world-class facility and the venue for the renowned Sanctuary Cove International Boat Show, is the first marina to be accredited ‘Fish Friendly’ in south east Queensland. There are now 11 marinas recognised or in the process of being accredited as ‘Fish Friendly’ throughout Australia. The initiative has received positive support from numerous government departments and authorities across Australia.

“Marinas can provide important habitat for fish. The Fish Friendly Marinas program has been developed to inform marina managers on how to maximise benefits for fish, and recognise those operators actively working to improve fish habitat,” said MIA Director, John Hogan in presenting the award to Keith Allardice, Executive General Manager at Mulpha Sanctuary Cove (Developments) Pty Limited.

“I congratulate Sanctuary Cove Marina today which holds Level 3 International Clean Marina status on its significant commitment to protecting and preserving the marina’s valuable marine habitat and communicating its efforts to customers and visitors.”

Helen Motteram, Marina Operations Manager at Mulpha Sanctuary Cove Marina Ltd said the initiative is an important development. “It is essential marinas continue to set the highest environmental standards. Marinas are the ideal location for many community members to see and learn about native fish and the aquatic environment. Clean Marinas and the Fish Friendly accreditation add-on demonstrate that industry, with support from government, is best able to set the standards that meet and exceed community and government expectations.”

“We are proud to be accredited with this exciting new environmental initiative and are committed to ensuring our marina is of the highest environmental standard through participation in programs such as Clean Marinas. We have all fully embraced the opportunity to meet the Fish Friendly criteria,” Ms Motteram said.

“We will continue to support the MIA in these very important programs which demonstrate the industry’s commitment to sustainable practices.  The MIA leads the industry in developing consistent best practice management of the waterways in which marinas operate and Sanctuary Cove Marina is very proud to uphold such practices.”

Six prominent awards for Curvelle catamaran motor yacht QUARANTA

August 28, 2014

With “Best Concept Yacht under 50m” won in 2011 during her construction, and five more prizes in 2013- 2014 since her launching, the 34m (110’) catamaran charter yacht “quaranta” has been the proud winner of six prominent awards.

Curvelle QUARANTA superyacht - profile.jpeg

Curvelle QUARANTA superyacht - profile.jpeg

“We are extremely satisfied and grateful for this enthusiastic endorsement from the superyacht owners, builders and design arenas. The smart thinking and innovation that went into the design of “quaranta” has been very well received”, says van Zanten, the founder of Curvelle.

Sundeck  Curvelle Quaranta catamaran.jpeg

Sundeck Curvelle Quaranta catamaran.jpeg

Years of experience in yacht consulting and construction convinced him that a fresh way of thinking was needed to deliver an efficient, cost effective, flexible and more accessible yacht, while maintaining beautiful exterior lines, luxurious and spacious interiors. Believing that the catamaran platform offers the key to achieve this, he put together a talented team of designers, naval architects and marine engineers from various continents to produce range of superyacht catamarans with a clear design focus, without re-inventing the wheel, but with attention on producing a very attractive superyacht catamaran. The result speaks for itself and is clearly endorsed by the numerous awards that motor yacht quaranta has won.

Curvelle Catamaran Quaranta Saloon.jpeg

Curvelle Catamaran Quaranta Saloon.jpeg

The innovative catamaran superyacht quaranta impressed judges with her many unusual features such as flexible cabin layout, allowing multiple cabin configurations, all guest cabins on the main deck with extra-large windows, stern platform for tender launching,  swim/beach platform, reduced mobility access and carbon fibre composite construction.  Judges also complimented the exterior styling, spacious deck and interior guest areas and the construction quality.

Following is a list of the awards and their organisers:

World Superyacht awards, Neptune Trophy May 2014

Now into its ninth year, the World Superyacht Awards honour the finest new superyacht builds delivered in the past twelve months. The image of the coveted Neptune trophy has become synonymous with excellence in superyacht build and design.

WSA 2014 for superyacht QUARANTA

WSA 2014 for superyacht QUARANTA

The judges praised superyacht quaranta for “her particularly handsome appearance and highly successful layout that incorporates excellent deck spaces, six pleasantly large guest cabins of adaptable configuration positioned on the main deck, and a single saloon on the upper deck, all complemented by an attractive style of interior design.”


RED DOT Award  Product design, Yachts July 2014

Statement by the jury: “The Curvelle Quaranta, with its graceful design and luxurious outfitting, exhibits a very high quality of form throughout.”

Red Dot Award for QUARANTA Yacht

Red Dot Award for QUARANTA Yacht

The Red dot award is an internationally recognised  Product Design prize from Design Zentrum Nordrhein Westfalen in Essen, Germany. The 40-member expert panel for the Red Dot Award: Product Design 2014 was impressed with the high design quality of luxury yacht “quaranta”. In the current competition, the international experts discussed and evaluated 4,815 entries from 53 countries. But only designs which won over the jury with quality and innovative strength won an award.

Golden Award by A Design Italy, Aug 2014

The Golden A’ Design Award is a prestigious award given to top 3% percentile designs that have carried out an exemplary level of greatness in design. The designs are judged by a panel of three different juries , composed of Academic, Professional and Focus Group Members.The award is the indicator of quality and perfection in design, and recognized worldwide. Winning the A’ Award is a certificate of excellence for designers, a proof of quality for companies. A’ Design Award differentiates from any other design competition, design contest and prize by several aspects: The following adjectives are how A Design define themselves: Collaborative, Innovator, Smart, Fair, Scientific, Thoughtful, Munificent, Beneficial, Philanthropic and Beautiful.

World Yacht Trophy, at the Cannes Boat Show, September 2013,“Most Innovative Yacht under 50m.”

Organized by the Luxmedia Group – publisher of the international magazines ‘Yachts’ and ‘Invictus’ – these are considered among the most prestigious awards in the Yachting Industry.


Turkish Composite Manufacturers Association (TCMA) award Oct 2013  “Most Innovative Composite Marine Product”, Turkey

As the 4th largest shipbuilder worldwide, Turkey delivers numerous composite yachts annually. It is a great honour to be recognized among these as “most innovative” for charter yacht quaranta’s carbon fibre composite hull and superstructure construction, built in Tulza, Istanbul.

Design ET AL, International Yacht Awards 2011, “Best Concept Design under 50m”

Hosted by leading interior design magazine design et al, The International Yacht & Aviation Awards reward the best in design from across the globe. Shortlisted entries are presented online, and voting is open to industry professionals as well as design et al readers, clients and customers.

‘Marina Hall of Fame’ Status for Empire Marina Bobbin Head, Sydney

August 27, 2014

Empire Marina Bobbin Head, positioned in the fabulous Australia yacht charter destination – Sydney, has been inducted into the newly created Australian ‘Marina Hall of Fame’ by the Marina Industries Association (MIA) at a ceremony, which took place at the luxury yacht marina. The Hall of Fame was created to recognize marinas that have consecutively received Australian Marina of the Year, and are therefore ineligible to re-enter the competition for a period of four years.

1.	Darren Vaux, Director EMBH  receiving the Hall of Fame Certificate from Colin Bransgrove, MIA

Darren Vaux, Director EMBH receiving the Hall of Fame Certificate from Colin Bransgrove, MIA

Empire Marina Bobbin Head won Australian Marina of the Year in 2009/10 and again in 2011/12.  The marina is rated 5 Gold Anchors and is certified as a Level 3 International Clean Marina and Fish Friendly Marina, making it one of the most highly awarded marinas in Australia. The marina is a 200 berth, full service marina. The marina is also proactive with environmental initiatives including a large solar array, rainwater recovery and advanced pollution prevention. The marina is host to more than 50,000 visitors per year and the kiosk, bar and boat hire make the marina a vibrant and attractive destination for boaters and the local community.

2.	(l-r) Colin Bransgrove, MIA; Darren Vaux, Director, Empire Marina; John Lawler, Director, Empire Marina and	Mark Wellstead, Service & Operations Manager, Empire Marina

(l-r) Colin Bransgrove, MIA; Darren Vaux, Director, Empire Marina; John Lawler, Director, Empire Marina and Mark Wellstead, Service & Operations Manager, Empire Marina

In making the presentation MIA Executive Officer Colin Bransgrove said Empire Marina Bobbin Head was a most suitable marina to be the first to receive this prestigious recognition. “The marina has been transformed into a state of the art facility and attractive visitor destination under the leadership of Darren Vaux, Director of Empire Marina. The MIA marina awards supported by Club Marine provide valuable recognition of industry excellence. The awards also create a benchmark for other marinas to aspire to. Hall of Fame status for Empire Marina Bobbin Head puts the spotlight on the level of marina facilities and services that are proving very successful in the Sydney market place.”

Darren Vaux, Director of Empire Marina said: “We are delighted to be the first marina inducted into the Australian Marina Hall of Fame.  In the end, it’s all about the customer, listening to what they want and striving to exceed their expectations through a process of continuing improvement.  This award further motivates us to stay on the top of our game.”

Maxi Yacht Rolex Cup 2014 to kick off this week

August 26, 2014

A collection of some of the world’s best, fastest and most famous Maxi yachts will be hosted by the fabulous Sardinia yacht charter destination – Porto Cervo for the 25th edition of the Maxi Yacht Rolex Cup from 31 August – 6 September. The event will mark the 30th year of the relationship between event organizers Yacht Club Costa Smeralda (YCCS) and title sponsor Rolex.

Maxi fleet during 2013 event - Photo by Rolex/Carlo Borlenghi

Maxi fleet during 2013 event - Photo by Rolex/Carlo Borlenghi

What’s new this year?

The Maxi Yacht Rolex Cup always welcomes new, cutting edge designs for whom the ultimate proving ground is the event’s myriad of challenging and rocky racecourses. Last year the eye-catching launch was Sir Lindsay Owen-Jones’s Wally Cento superyacht Magic Carpet 3. In 2014 another highly successful businessman passionate about sailing arrives in Porto Cervo with a new build. Niklas Zennström recently launched the Mini Maxi Rán 5 and seeks to continue his impressive run of success at the competition.

Mini Maxi yachts BELLA MENTE and STIG - Photo by Rolex Carlo Borlenghi

Mini Maxi yachts BELLA MENTE and STIG - Photo by Rolex/Carlo Borlenghi

Where is the tightest competition forecast?

The appearance of Rán 5 will add intrigue to an already mouth-watering Mini Maxi Rolex World Championship. The class is continuing to grow, not only in numbers but in quality, as rivalries intensify. Zennström won three of the four championships to date with his former sailing yacht Ran 2, now competing as Robertissima III and helmed by Italian Roberto Tomasini Grinover. Hap Fauth’s United States entry luxury yacht Bella Mente is the only other boat to have won the title and will seek to better last year’s fourth place finish when poor performance in the longer coastal races cost her a podium place. Andres Soriano’s sailing yacht Alegre finished second last year in the boat’s debut at the event. Denied by mere seconds in 2013, a year on and with greater confidence in their boat’s potential, Alegre will be one of the favourites. Completing the roster are some great boats and experienced crews: Sir Peter Ogden’s Rán 5 will come face to face with Sir Peter Ogden’s latest iteration of Jethou and United States entries sailing yacht Caol Ila R and luxury yacht Shockwave, class winner at the recent Copa del Rey.

J Class superyacht VELSHEDA - Image credit to Rolex Carlo Borlenghi

J Class superyacht VELSHEDA - Image credit to Rolex/Carlo Borlenghi

And outside the Mini Maxi Rolex World Championship?

Five boats are set to take part in the J-Class which made its return to the event last year. A mix of replicas and restorations of original 1930s designs, this year’s fleet comprises sailing yacht Lionheartsuperyacht Rainbowcharter yacht Rangercharter yacht ShamrockVelsheda yacht. In comparison to the slick, carbon fibre, stripped-out racing boats, the J-Class provides a more genteel and elegant approach to sailing. Handling these boats is not easy though – loads are huge, complicated, everything needs to be executed precisely by up to 40 skilled sailors.

Sailing yacht RAN 2, Mini Maxi Rolex World Champion 2010, 2011 & 2013 - Photo by Rolex Carlo Borlenghi

Sailing yacht RAN 2, Mini Maxi Rolex World Champion 2010, 2011 & 2013 - Photo by Rolex/Carlo Borlenghi

And what are the largest boats?

The 67m (220-ft) mega yacht Hetairos set the record as the largest ever boat to compete at the event in 2012 when her immense 62.5m (205-ft) mast dwarfed over most of the fleet. The largest boats outside of the J-Class – where Lionheart measures 43.7m (143-ft) and Ranger 41.6m (136-ft) – are the two Supermaxis superyacht Firefly (35m, 115-ft) and charter yacht Viriella (36m, 118-ft). A near 40-strong fleet is expected to take part comprising boats from around 15 different countries.

Southport Yacht Club accredited as a Level 3 Clean Marina

August 26, 2014

Positioned on Queensland’s Gold Coast, a beautiful Australia yacht charter destination, the high profile Southport Yacht Club (SYC) has today been accredited as a Level 3 Clean Marina.

Clean Marina Accreditation for SYC

Clean Marina Accreditation for SYC

The International Clean Marinas environmental program is administered by the Marina Industries Association (MIA). Achieving a Level 3 accreditation requires a solid commitment from participating marinas and the rigorous process includes a site inspection assessed against a 103 point checklist. The site audit of key operational areas including inspections of mechanical activities, boat maintenance and storage, fuelling, facility management, workshop, mechanical, shipwright and boat repair, emergency planning and equipment and boater education. A written report with detailed feedback is provided to the marina.

Southport Yacht Club’s Waterfront Manager Mark Riddell said the achievement of Clean Marina accreditation was another important step in demonstrating SYC’s commitment to environmental best practice. “As a multi-faceted Club and Marina facility it is essential all components are operating both individually and collectively at the highest level of performance. The Clean Marinas program provides us with specific criteria to assess the environmental performance of our marina operations. The Clean Marina program complements our environmental policies, plans and operations.”

MIA Director, John Hogan said in presenting the achievement,” Southport Yacht Club’s achievement is important for the marina industry as it is a high profile marina and influential in demonstrating environmental leadership to the wider community. We now have 61 marinas across Australia and internationally committed to environmental best practise. The challenge for industry remains to continually increase the number of marinas committed to achieving Clean Marinas status.”