Wednesday, 12th March 2014
ALL CHANGE FOR YACHT CHARTERS
New yacht brokerage and charter specialist Cecil Wright is making bold plans to surpass its established competition.
THE TELEGRAPH LUXURY, MARCH 12, 2014
John Pawson may be best known as an architect, not least of the penthouses that sit on the roof of the forthcoming Edition hotel in Miami and the W in Jaffa. But he is also a designer of yachts, notably the 164ft (50m) 10-berth ketch Baracuda. She’s a sublimely beautiful vessel, with the sort of light-filled, deceptively spacious interiors you’d expect from the master of minimalism: understated and ingeniously specced right down to the Hans Wegner Wishbone chairs around the dining table.
The exterior, however, comes as more of a surprise for her hull is finished in a silvery gray, “reminiscent of a fish’s scales”, in Pawson’s words. While her sails are purple, “evocative of the murex dyes reserved for the togas of Roman emperors and used by Cleopatra for the sails of her barge”. So she is always the standout boat in the marina.
This summer she could be yours for a week’s sailing in the Mediterranean, presupposing you have a minimum of $175,000 (£105,000) to spend, through the new brokerage and charter specialist Cecil Wright & Partners.
For Chris Cecil-Wright this small company has a clear advantage: “All the established companies have huge overheads and can’t really take advantage of the great deals when they come along” “The market has been quite low,” says Chris Cecil-Wright, who after 20 years based in Monaco with Edmiston, one of the most venerated players in the industry, decided to set up on his own, “and I’d been developing ideas about how I thought a business should be run. All the established companies have huge overheads and can’t really take advantage of the great deals when they come along. I want to keep overheads to an absolute minimum, which all the fantastic technology we have now makes possible, so that we can focus on client relationships and passing on the best prices.”
Hence the fact that he has on his books a 10-berth 115ft (35m) Benetti motoryacht, Enchantress, starting at €85,000 (£71,000) a week, a comparative steal in this rarefied world if you consider that Moran Yachts is asking a reported €1 million (£836,000) a week for Quattroelle, a 289ft/88m Lurssen-built motor yacht with eight staterooms and a gym designed by Usain Bolt.
The 290ft Nirvana even has a reptile house located between the main saloon and the dining area. As to Baracuda, “She’s a wonderful Perini Navi,” he says. “Minimalist interior, funky colouring, a big high-performance sailing boat so that you get all the fun of sailing her, but with the volume and comfort of a motoryacht.” That said, Cecil-Wright competes at the very highest level too, offering charters on, among other “some of the biggest boats”, 269ft (81m) Alfa Nero (from €840,000/£700,000 sleeps 12), which has interiors by the revered Alberto Pinto; and 290ft (89m) Nirvana (from €900,000/£750,000, sleeps 12), which has six decks, two helipads, a cinema and, unusually even by the excesses of superyacht attributes, a reptile house located between the main saloon and the dining area.
Nirvana is also for sale through Edmiston with an asking price of €230 million (£190 million). Compared with which, 135ft (41m) fivecabin Ocean Sapphire, designed by Norman Foster, seems a bit of a bargain at €7.9 million (£6.6 million).
Especially in light of the theory that the new generation of superyacht owners is likely to comprise a growing proportion of tech tycoons, whose fortunes have been made on making things ever smaller, more digitised and more virtual, so prizing pared-down design over excessive length.Download Article