Monaco - The world on one stage

“All the world’s a stage, and all the men and women merely players” is the Shakespeare quote that comes into my mind as I look out over the Port Hercules Marina on a warm morning in Monaco. The stage in this story is the Monaco Yacht Show (MYS), my favourite time of year for the past 6 years. The players are many. The shipyards, brokers, bankers, owners, management companies, family offices, surveyors, refit yards and hundreds of other roles to play. 

In this annual performance of the MYS, the stars of the show are usually the yachts themselves, however it initially appeared that it wasn’t going to be quite the same. Lurssen had no showcase yacht, neither had Heesen. Oceanco’s A-list celebrity had weather issues and cancelled the brokers open evening the day before the show.  The drop outs continued, with Oceanco’s Jubilee cancelling viewings. We could see from the white horses in the water just how choppy it was and assumed that was the reason.

Our first yacht on Day One however brightened our day and we started to feel good. Cloud 9, has some beautiful interiors with colours which were pleasing to the eye.  British company Winch Design are the team behind many of the interiors on display today. Built by CRN, a brand of the Italian shipbuilder Ferretti, she should definitely be on the shortlist of any client looking for over 70m. 

The next yacht brought us back down to earth. Illusion Plus is a yacht by Pride Megayachts. With her axe bow and classic lines, she seemed worthy of her design award, given to them day before. We were saddened to see such poor quality interiors however. Much of it was unfinished, rushed out of the yard to take the 5 week journey from China to Monaco, it felt like the wrong decision. Any new owner will have to send her back to the yard to complete, taking another 6-12 months.

At the yacht show a trip out to see yachts at anchor is a bit of a challenge to plan. Tenders are often busy, locations to pickup are never clear and, on this occasion, I was still getting agreement on the time for my client to get onboard one on his shortlist. After several phone calls, gently prodding tender operators and agreeing with various brokers that my client was indeed a genuine buyer, we got on board in the early afternoon.  

The yacht in question was Lurssen’s Kismet. There was some uncertainty if she’d be in the show, and whether indeed she was for sale. The interior of this yacht is exquisite. With a wide range of luxury features and styling that were creative and unique, it was clear this was another success story between owner creativity and Lurssen’s quality build and delivery.  To top it off, the Red Arrows display commenced while we were on board and the port was in lock down. We were treated to a delightful airshow and were guests of the crew’s hospitality including champagne and hors d'oeuvre.

Tomorrow we see two of Oceanco’s highly rated yachts, Dar and Barbara and we assume these will be the star performances to bring this year’s yacht show to an exciting finale.

Douglas Mcfarlane is Founder & CEO of Lomond Yachts.

This article first appeared in Billionaire Chronicle.