Apr 15 2021 All Articles

What it's like to own a superyacht

What it's like to own a superyacht

What is it like to own a superyacht? Not too many can probably answer that question. For most, owning such a floating palace is the stuff dreams are made of.

CNN travel went to those in the know to post the “what’s it like” ownership question.

Spanish businessman Joaquín Folch-Rusiñol Corachán is the proud owner of a 36.8 metre superyacht that spends most of its time sailing the sunnier waters of southern Europe. He says his yacht, with its four generously proportioned cabins, is like a second home – and he and his wife (and sometimes their two children and two grandchildren) live on it from early May to the beginning of October. During the European winter months, the yacht is based in the Royal Yacht Club of Barcelona, from where the family occasionally take her out on good weather days.

Estimated at USD$10 million, the yacht’s top speed is 31 knots, which is important to this boat owner who loves speed (he’s a self-confessed adrenaline junkie who also races cars and motorcycles). The yacht is not, however, party central.

"We are very sports-oriented, the whole family," says Folch-Rusiñol Corachán. "So when we go to the Balaerics, which is well known for the parties, we don't live that kind of lifestyle. On the contrary, we go to bed early, wake up very early, gym, swimming, bicycling, running."

The kind of lifestyle he and his family live doesn’t lead to paparazzi attention. And his superyacht isn’t as super as many.

Folch-Rusiñol Corachán’s journey to superyacht ownership began with his parents. Owning a custom-built superyacht was all about continuing a passion passed down by his late father, who bequeathed him a wooden motor yacht, that he'd bought in the 1970s. He was then bitten by the fancy boat bug and there have been a few upgrades since the wooden yacht.

Superyachts are part of this Spaniard’s life in more ways than one. He’s also a World Superyacht Awards judge, involved in handing out prizes to owners of some of the swankiest vessels afloat.

As for what his friends think, are they jealous? He’s not really given that much thought.  "They wouldn’t be jealous of the amount of money and work it takes to keep such a boat immaculate though," he says.

Ah yes, the cost. Of course, owning a superyacht involves not only the substantial initial outlay (think tens, or sometimes hundreds of millions) but also the annual running costs that stretch well into seven figures.

Towergate Insurance has compiled an infographic that details where those costs potentially sit. For example, annual running costs has fuel at USD$400,000; dockage at USD$350,000; vessel insurance at USD$240,000; maintenance and repairs at USD$1 million… and of course there’s the cost of staff – crew salaries could reach as high as USD$1.4 million per year. Note: these can be considered conservative as the figures are a few years old.

Here is some interesting “did you know” information about superyachts:

  • Superyachts tend to be purchased by Ultra High Net Worth Individuals (the benchmark is someone with net asset worth over at least USD$30 million – some argue USD$50 million.) It is estimated that the world population of UHNWI is about USD$200,000
  • Americans, followed by Russians, feature most highly in terms of superyacht ownership
  • Luxury yachts top the list of the 10 most expensive asset purchases recorded
  • Many superyacht owners keep their vessels for no more than three years before selling up.

Check out the Towergate Insurance site for more information, including who owns superyachts valued at USD$500 million and USD$600 million.

And… don’t forget to keep on dreaming!

Looking to cover your own superyacht in New Zealand in 2021? We also cover trailer boats or jetskis!

No matter what your plans are on the water in 2021, Mariner Insurance is here to support you. We have been offering Kiwis specialist marine insurance in New Zealand for over a decade with cover for all types of boats and watercraft. Just talk to us about what you’re doing on the water, and we can tailor one of our insurance policies to fit.