Monaco Yacht Show unveils its biggest superyacht fleet ever

Ships worth combined total of $4.29 billion

By Tamara Hardingham-Gill, CNN
Getty Images

Monaco

(CNN) - Ever wanted to see what more than $4,000,000,000 looks like when it's floating on the water? The glitzy European principality of Monaco is about to make that happen.

It's not dumping actual dollar bills into the sea, but is instead assembling $4.29 billion worth of ocean-going real estate in one of the most opulent displays of superyachts ever assembled in one place.

Now in its 29th year, the Monaco Yacht Show is the glitziest event on the yachting calendar. Over the course of four days, Port Hercules, the only deep-water port in the tiny country on France's Mediterranean coast, will welcome 125 superyachts.

Kicking off on September 25, the show attracts the crème de la crème of the international luxury yachting sector, bringing together prospective buyers, superyacht builders and designers, brokers and suppliers.

Record-breaking fleet

This year looks set to be its most impressive so far, with 44 new yachts making their debut alongside some of the largest vessels ever exhibited at the event.

According to Johan Pizzardini, the yacht show's communications and media manager, the total value of superyachts in the port will stand at around 3.9 billion euros ($4.29 billion), with onboard facilities including everything from helipads, to lavish beach clubs and spas.

"In terms of gross tonnage, it's the most voluminous fleet of superyachts we've ever had in Monaco," he tells CNN Travel. "The average is around 800 [gross tonnage. The average asking price of 37.8 million euros ($41.5 million)."

The show, held at the close of the Mediterranean charter season and the start of the Caribbean charter season, attracts around 30,000 visitors annually, including Prince Albert II of Monaco.

"The unique aspect of the Monaco Yacht Show is that it's built entirely around superyachts [yachts measuring longer than 24 meters],"says Rumble Romagnoli, CEO of Relevance, a luxury digital marketing company specializing in Monaco yacht marketing.

"It's also the only show where you can meet and learn about the entire supply chain for the superyacht industry, including suppliers of the latest gadgets, toys, electronics, and equipment, as well as interior designers, crew, and even tenders."

Some superyachts are more super than others. Tis, which measures 111 meters -- and will more than likely take center stage -- has no fewer than two helicopter pads on board.

Built by German shipyard Lürssen and designed by British studio Winch Design, it's the largest yacht ever to go on display at the Monaco Yacht Show.

The 80-meter-long Excellence, also from Winch Design, is another top draw, featuring a swimming pool and platform, along with a hot tub and beach club.

Unique designs

"As a showcase for the latest and best superyachts on the water, nothing compares to Monaco," says Stewart Campbell, editor of Boat International.

"Tis is a true global explorer yacht with interiors worthy of Versailles.

"Excellence, another German-built yacht, has extreme styling, with masses of glass and a reverse bow. There really is nothing else like her on the water."

Campbell points out that the changing face of superyacht design is proudly on display with this very modern fleet.

"The days of all big yachts looking the same is long gone," he adds. "Owners are really pulling out all the styling stops and challenging shipyards and designers to come up with boats that are truly unique. "

When the Monaco Yacht Show launched nearly three decades ago, there were around 30 boats in the harbor, the largest measuring around 50 meters.

However, the event has evolved significantly with the boom of the superyacht industry.

Organizers work hard to ensure the fleet is new and different every year, stipulating a selection process whereby brokers are only allowed to exhibit a yacht for a maximum of two consecutive years, while a shipyard can only display superyachts delivered within the past two years.

Glamorous backdrop

"If you miss one Monaco Yacht Show and come the year after, you won't see the same fleet," says Pizzardini.

"You'll have to go to one of the shows held in Turkey, Germany or the UK to see those that were exhibited in Monaco the year before."

It aims to lure both current owners and charterers as well as prospective clients, who don't necessarily know much about yachting, but are keen to enter the scene.

While the unique fleet on show is undoubtedly the main attraction here, guests are also treated to a glamorous opening gala, along with numerous gatherings onboard the superyachts.

In addition, MYS has a premium "Sapphire Experience" service that provides a concierge facility to potential charterers or buyers.

The exclusive service can't be bought -- those who receive it are specially selected in the run-up to the event, with individuals deemed most likely to purchase or charter superyachts given priority.

With its glamorous casinos and top restaurants, Monaco provides the perfect setting for this renowned annual gathering.

"The Monaco Yacht Show is not only a boat show," explains Pizzardini. "It's a rendezvous of the social elites.

"With superyachting as a backdrop, they can discuss business with their peers. To be there with all the glitterati under the light of Monte Carlo by night is a great way to network."

Monaco Yacht Show 2019 runs from Sept. 25 to Sept. 28.

The-CNN-Wire ™ & © 2019 Cable News Network, Inc., a Time Warner Company. All rights reserved.