Sailing from port to port in peace and seclusion on a multi-million-dollar boat sounds appealing, but as any seasoned yacht owner can tell you, just cruising around can get a bit, well, boring.
To fully enjoy your luxury vessel, you need diversions. Maybe a sailboat or fishing and diving gear. Possibly jet skis, a seaplane or perhaps a submarine. But where does one stash all that gear?
Enter the support yacht. It’s essentially a boat designed to trail your main yacht and carry all the toys you don’t want cluttering up the mothership. Pioneered in the 1990s from old offshore oil and gas craft, support yachts have become as slick as the vessels they’re intended to serve.
Dutch shipbuilder Damen has delivered a half-dozen 70-meter support yachts with premium finishes like high-specification air conditioning and entertainment systems that start at around $50 million.
“A support yacht boosts the yachting experience in every way,” said Victor Caminada, marketing manager for Damen’s Amels division, which is exhibiting at next week’s Palm Beach International Boat Show. “Fun on the water, flexibility, spontaneity, more destinations. It’s very difficult and costly to achieve the same capability in one luxury yacht.”