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Monthly Archives: August 2015

282ft Spielberg Yacht SEVEN SEAS For Sale

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Call it, “Life imitating art.”  When under siege by a great white shark in the 1975 film, JAWS, actor Roy Scheider’s character exclaimed, ‘We’re gonna need a bigger boat.’

It seems the film’s director Steven Spielberg has taken that sentiment to heart, as his 282 foot superyacht is up for sale, and it is scheduled to be replaced with an even larger vessel.

The Spielberg yacht SEVEN SEAS, built in 2010 by Dutch yard Oceanco, has lived up to its name. In 2013, the famous director, his wife Kate Capshaw, and their seven children took the yacht on a 30,000-mile round-the-world cruise.

Profile of Spielberg yacht Seven Seas from the bow

Over the years, many famous Hollywood celebrities have been guests onboard the yacht, including Gwyneth Paltrow, and Leonardo DiCaprio.  According to the UK’s Daily News, a friend of the director said, Steven didn’t realize how much he’d enjoy cruising the ocean. Now he’d like to spend more time exploring the seas, and bring a few friends along for the ride. So he’s upgrading to a bigger yacht.”

When not in use by Spielberg and his family, the Monaco yacht charter vessel is available for hire. This season’s charter rate in the Mediterranean is $1.2 million per week. “She has always been a favorite charter yacht,” says Jana Sheeder, President and yacht charter Maven of 1-800 Yacht Charters.

steven spielberg, his dog, and family members onboard dinghy during yacht charter

If you’re considering renting the yacht this summer, you might have to wait until September, as the legendary director and his family have spent a considerable portion of their summer vacation onboard, and were recently spotted taking in the sites of Portofino, Italy.  Even the family dog is along for the ride.

Lucky pooch!

For information on chartering Oceanco yacht SEVEN SEAS or a similar vessel, please contact 1-800 Yacht Charters at info@1800yachtcharters.com

 

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Big VAT Increase For Greece Yacht Charter Fleet Takes Effect

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A new, higher VAT (Value Added Tax) rate went into effect for all charters that commenced after July 20, 2015 in Greek waters.

greece yacht charter yacht hire rent yacht

The new legislation [N.4334 (??? ?’ 80/16-07-2015)] raised the overall VAT from 13% to 23%, however, lower rates apply to certain charters, based upon the duration of the hire.

There are two VAT categories for charters lasting 3 days or longer:

  • Category I – vessels licensed to perform international cruises: 9.2% (previously 5.2%).
  • Category II – vessels licensed to perform long range cruises within Greek waters: 11.5% (previously 6.5%).

For short term charters, up to 48 hours, there are no discounted rates, and full VAT of 23% is due (previously 13%).

Jana Sheeder, President of 1-800 Yacht Charters, points out the new VAT rates affect ALL charters taking place after July 20, 2015 – even if the charter agreements were signed in prior months.  “With the current economic crisis in Greece, we’ve been anticipating  some form of VAT austerity,” says Sheeder. “With each charter agreement we prepare, we add a clause indicating that the charterer is responsible for any increase in VAT – this way, there are no surprises.  The more details we cover with our clients, the smoother their Superyacht Experience will be.

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QUESTION TO YOU:  How will the increase in VAT on private luxury yacht charter vacations in Greece effect the number of yacht charters?  Will clients seek alternate destinations or, “grin and bear it” to enjoy a Greek yachting holiday?

Let us know your thoughts, and we will share your comments with our readers AND send you a free complimentary Eco-tote bag!  Email your comments (and your mailing address!) to info@1800yachtcharters.com

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In Wake of Cecil the Lion Killing, Delta Airlines Bans Animal Trophy Shipments

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We often write blogs about airlines in terms of flights and service to popular private yacht charter destinations, but this post will deviate to highlight a move which we applaud:

In response to the global outcry after the tragic news of the killing of Cecil the lion, Delta Airlines has announced that it will no longer allow the shipment of big game hunting trophies on any of its flights, around the globe.

Cecil the lion who was killed by Walter J. Palmer, the dentist who was a trophy hunter

The Airline released this official statement:
“Effective immediately, Delta will officially ban shipment of all lion, leopard, elephant, rhinoceros and buffalo trophies worldwide as freight. Prior to this ban, Delta’s strict acceptance policy called for absolute compliance with all government regulations regarding protected species. Delta will also review acceptance policies of other hunting trophies with appropriate government agencies and other organizations supporting legal shipments.”

Other air carriers including Air France, KLM, Iberia, IAG Cargo, Singapore Airlines and Qantas have also stated that they also intend to ban the transport of trophy-hunting kills.

Cecil the Lion was a popular animal at the Hwange National Park in Zimbabwe and served as an icon for conservation efforts. He was killed by Walter James Palmer, a Minnesota dentist in early July, after being lured out of the protection of the national park. Cecil wore a tracking collar and scientists at the University of Oxford had been following and studying him since 2008.

It was wrong to kill Cecil – our opinion. According to the Zimbabwe Conservation Task Force, it was also illegal. The government of Zimbabwe is seeking to extradite Palmer to answer for his actions.

Jana Sheeder, President of 1-800 Yacht Charters, supports the decision made by Delta and other airlines to ban animal trophy shipments. “Back in April, a ban was initiated by South African Airways, and then joined by Emirates, Lufthansa and British Airways,” said Sheeder. “Cecil’s killing has created a global outcry, and if there is any good to come from Cecil’s death, it is the heightened awareness of our need to protect our natural resources. We applaud Delta and the other airlines for their new policy banning animal trophy shipments.”

Sheeder concludes, “We live in an era of dwindling wildlife. Our own yachting industry is working to safeguard our reefs and vanishing marine life. The same safeguards are critical for all threatened species, both in the sea and on land. Big-game trophy hunting does not and should never again hold the allure it may have had in Teddy Roosevelt’s day.”

UPDATE — Delta Airlines has officially been joined by American Airlines, United Airlines, and Virgin – and per sumofus.org, British Airways, Air France, KLM, Singapore Airways, Lufthansa, Air Emirates, Iberia Airlines, IAG Cargo and Qantas have already banned the transport of animal trophies.

From The New York Times, this ban was initiated by South African Airways in April, and Emirates, Lufthansa and British Airways later joined. These airlines pledged not to carry big game trophies, including elephants, rhinos, lions and tigers as cargo.

 

WHAT DO YOU THINK?   Should Big Game Trophy Hunting Be Banned?  Send us an email and tell us how you feel (include your contact information and mailing address), and we’ll mail you an eco-friendly tote bag, compliments of 1-800 Yacht Charters!  Email us at info@1800yachtcharters.com

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Island Escape –  Feadship Yacht Charter Vessel Commits to Caribbean for Winter 2015

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After extended summer use by her owner, Feadship yacht HURRICANE RUN has committed to the upcoming winter 2015 Caribbean charter season.

Feadship yacht Hurricane Run profile on yacht charter

As of the date of this post, the yacht’s calendar is wide open for bookings in St. Martin, St Barts, and the Virgin Islands.  For year-end reservations over the Christmas or New Year’s holidays, the yacht requires a minimum 10-night reservation.  Charters of 5 nights or longer will be accepted for all other open dates.

Her weekly rental rate is $350,000 for the holidays, and $295,000 for all other winter dates.  Rates are plus all running expenses – items such as food, fuel, dockage, etc.

Built in 2009, Feadship yacht HURRICANE RUN was the recipient of the 2010 world Superyacht Award for “Best Interior Layout and Best Interior.”  Her bright, contemporary interior was designed by the famous Terence Disdale.

Onboard amenities include:

  • Excellent sundeck layout
  • Large swim platform
  • Enormous saloon
  • Mini gymnasium which can be converted into a guest cabin for a nanny or security staff
  • Zero-speed stabilization for comfort while at anchor
  • Fast, reliable WIFI internet
  • Full-beam master suite with private study

Her crew received an excellent testimonial from a charterer last December:

“It is not possible to have another New Year celebration experience like we had on Hurricane Run! No words can describe the Hurricane Run crew. Our children, grandchildren, nanny and I have made lifetime friends with each one. We can never thank you enough for such a special week!”

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Contact us right away to reserve Hurricane Run for your next family vacation in paradise.

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Smaller PWC Better Fit for Private Yacht Charter Vessels Under 100 feet?

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The sales market for waverunners and jetskis – also known as personal water craft (PWC) – has been on the decline for several years, in part due to the fact PWC have become so gigantic, powerful, expensive and fuel hungry.

While the price issue is of lesser concern to the owners of charter yachts, the size and fuel consumption issues do factor into the decision of whether or not a megayacht will carry one or more of these toys onboard for the use of the charter guests.

Now, a smaller, lighter, and far more fuel efficient model has been introduced, and it might have an impact on smaller megayachts, particularly in the 80 to 100 foot range.

Sea-Doo Spark raspberry and silver jetski personal watercraft

The Sea-Doo “Spark” is approximately half the price, half the weight and half the power of a regular midrange PWC, and burns nearly ten times less fuel than other waverunners.

Storage space is a major concern on yachts in the 80 to 100 foot range. The aft garage on a mid-size megayacht is rather tight – yet carrying an assortment of watertoys is important as many charterers clamor for water-based activities during their time onboard.  Indeed, it’s hard to imagine a Florida yacht charter vacation, in the warm, pristine Florida Keys, without spending time in the ocean, snorkeling, wakeboarding, and riding along on a waverunner.  The Spark is smaller and lighter than other PWC, and it is easier to get in and out of a cramped yacht’s toy garage.

Many vessels forgo carrying a large PWC, not just because of the size but also because the typical PWC guzzles LOTS of fuel, requiring the storage of large amounts of gasoline to operate the waverunners. This is both problematic and, for yacht owners and crews concerned about sustainability, an ecological issue.

The Spark is the most fuel efficient PWC on the market, burning just 7.3 liters (1.9 gallons) of fuel per hour on the 60-horsepower model, or 9 liters (2.4 gallons) per hour on the “High Output” model. Compare this to a 250-horsepower Sea-Doo RXT-X model, which swallows 76 liters (20 gallons) per hour, and the Yamaha FX Cruiser requiring 80 liters (21 gallons) per hour.  Carrying a Spark on a charter yacht would require less gasoline to be stored, and leave a far smaller carbon footprint on the environment.

Yes, there is a trade off in top-end speed, but many charterers have little-to-no experience on a PWC, and high speed can be quite dangerous.  In fact, operating a large PWC often requires a special license.  Consider the typical language used on most charter agreements between clients and the owners of the yacht for hire.  There is often a clause that states:

“The use of any personal watercraft (waverunners) is at the operator’s sole risk and is only permitted subject to the operator having the applicable license, if required, and meeting local regulations.
Any liability arising from noncompliance regarding the use of personal watercraft is entirely at the operator’s risk.”

For most charterers, the speed of the Spark should not be an issue, as the Spark can easily hit 80 kilometers per hour (around 50 mph)!

Sea-Doo Spark personal watercraft with man riding and nose of waverunner in the air - fast

It’s too early to tell how the charter industry will react to the Spark, and whether owners of mid-size megayachts will choose this new PWC for their toy garages. At approximately half the price and half the weight, the Spark delivers 90% of the speed (and fun) of a more expensive PWC.  Hopefully that will be enough to “spark” an interest in eco-friendly yacht owners…

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WHAT do you think? Will the Spark catch on with megayacht owners and crews?  Share your comments with us, and we’ll send you a complimentary eco-friendly tote bag, courtesy of 1-800 Yacht Charters.

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Superyacht Offers Venice Film Festival Yacht Charter Experience in September

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Looking for a way to entertain potential clients during the upcoming Venice Film festival 2015?  Nothing says, “Thank you for the opportunity” to a prospect quite as well as a soiree onboard a multi-million euro megayacht.

The Festival runs from September 2 through 12, and the Royal Denship yacht FORCE BLUE is available for hire in Venice and is offering a discounted rate to secure a booking.  Normally priced at €235,000 per week in September, the 207 foot yacht has lowered her price to €195,000 per week (a savings of €40,000).

George Clooney and date on the red carpet at the Venice Film Festival

Along with Cannes, Venice has long been considered one of Europe’s most glamorous, buzzy film events.  A-list celebrities, but more importantly, film makers and buyers attend in the hopes of securing lucrative deals to promote and release independently produced movies.

To charter a yacht for a special event normally takes many months of advance logistical planning, and securing dockage next to an event venue often requires a reservation a year or so in advance.   Fortunately, it is easier to secure last minute space in Venice, as the abundance of waterways make it easier to use the yacht’s tenders to get to and from onshore venues.

Force Blue superyacht available for Venice Film Festival blue hull white superstructure

Large yachts like Royal Denship FORCE BLUE become a venue unto themselves, and serve as a place to conduct private business negotiations, as well as entertain business associates and prospective clients.  With numerous entertainment areas, both inside the yacht and on her massive deck, hundreds of guests can gather to socialize.  After the guests leave, the charterer and a select number of special guests (totalling 12 or fewer) can use the yacht as a private floating hotel – with a full-time staff of 19 onboard to attend to meals and cater to the guests’ every whim.

The yacht’s onboard amenities include onboard cinema (perfect for private film screenings), full gymnasium, hairdresser’s room, and a spa center, featuring Hamman steam shower, mud bath, sauna, hydro massage Jacuzzi, and massage room.

Massage room of motoryacht Force Blue featuring massage table surrounded by aromatherapy candles, fresh flowers, and zen touches in a softly lit room with Marilyn Monroe portrait

Social gatherings can be upgraded to full-scale dance parties as the yacht’s aft bridge deck can be transformed into a disco.  There is a professional DJ station complete with psychedelic lights and disco woofer speakers.

A white carpet can also be laid down on the dance floor to allow guests to dance with their shoes on (most yachts do NOT allow guests to wear shoes ondeck).

Of course the one component that makes the yacht hire so unique and practical – total privacy: no one steps onboard the yacht without the Charter’s permission.  This discreet venue means businesspeople can negotiate deals in seclusion and entertain special guests – away from the attention of gawkers, competitors, and the paparazzi.

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To charter this yacht or plan a special event like a Monaco Grand Prix yacht charter, contact 1-800 Yacht Charters via our form, by email to info@1800yachtcharters.com or via text to our 24 hour Special Events Coordinator at 305-720-7245.

 

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WHO KNEW?  Spielberg Rejected Twice to Direct James Bond Movies

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Recently, we told our readers that Hollywood icon Steven Spielberg had put his spectacular Monaco yacht charter vessel up for sale.  The Spielberg yacht SEVEN SEAS is scheduled to be replaced with an even larger vessel.

In a, “Six Degrees of Kevin Bacon” kind of way, we thought it would be fun to look at an interesting tie-in between Spielberg and the James Bond movie franchise. After all, it is obvious Spielberg loves yachts, and most of us are familiar with the correlation of James Bond and fast, luxurious yachts.  In fact, there are several yachts named in honor of Bond films and currently available for private yacht charter  – yachts like OCTOPUSSY and CASINO ROYALE.

James Bond 007 movie The Living Daylights scene on yacht deck - Timothy Dalton - Belle Avery Kell Tyler in black bikini

So, back to the tie-in between Spielberg and Bond:

Did you know that Steven Spielberg Was Twice Rejected to Direct a James Bond Film??!!!

Yep, it’s true.

Spielberg has made no secret of his affinity for the Bond film franchise, and his desire to direct a Bond movie.

It turns out that he had two opportunities to pitch longtime Bond producer Albert R. Broccoli.  On both occasions, Broccoli said NO.

According to Broccoli’s daughter, Barbara (who took over the production reigns after her father’s death), a young, relatively unknown Spielberg made his first directorial pitch to her father early in his career.  Broccoli was impressed by the young director’s passion, but felt he lack the experience to helm a major title like Bond.

Barbara said her father told Spielberg, “Kid, ya gotta get some more films under your belt.

After Spielberg released one of his best-reviewed films, ‘Schindler’s List,’ he sent a letter to Broccoli asking again if he could direct a Bond movie. Barbara says her father once again turned down Spielberg, this time saying, “Now I can’t afford you!

steven spielberg standing behind a podium in front of Schindler's List writing on wall

It’s safe to say things turned out ok for Mr. Spielberg.  He’s directed over a dozen blockbuster films, and  when not in use by Academy Award-winning director and his family, his yacht SEVEN SEAS is available for hire in the Mediterranean at a price of $1.2 million per week…

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Interested in a yachting vacation this winter in the warm waters of the Caribbean?  Contact us and tell us your preferences!

 

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Yacht Maven Tours James Bond Yacht Octopussy after $7M Refit

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Take an iconic former world-record holding yacht launched in the 80’s, add the allure of James Bond Agent #007, toss in wads of dough for refinements and upgrades, and the result is the spectacular, all-new Heesen motor yacht OCTOPUSSY.

Jana Sheeder, President of 1-800 Yacht Charters took advantage of an invitation to privately preview the “NEW” vessel near the owner’s winter home in Palm Beach, Florida, before the yacht enters the Bahamas yacht charter market.

We received an invitation to see the yacht at the conclusion of a 7 million dollar refit,” beams Sheeder.  “To be the first in the charter industry to see this yacht in person as it returns to the market is so exciting – we can’t wait to share our report and photos with our clients!

jana sheeder and captain laugh on top deck of motoryacht octopussy

Boarding to starboard, amidships and entering the interior passageway, visitors immediately catch a glimpse of the spectacular new décor by Jeff Lincoln of New York. Looking aft, the salon and dining area boast sumptuous fabrics and textures.  Sheeder notes how the designer stayed true to a classic yachting theme.  “The clean lines defined by white-on-navy color patterns add a great, crisp nautical flair, similar to the classic nautical clothing designs of Ralph Lauren.  You know you’re in a yacht but you feel like you’re in a modern New York City apartment. I also love how the blue highlights allow the interior areas to melt into the exterior decks and the dark blue hull.

OCTOPUSSY main salon and dining salon entrance with blue and white geometric carpeting, light wood walls, and white furniture

As Sheeder continues her tour of the yacht, crew members point out the numerous highlights of the refit.

You can tell every mechanical system and all interior surface areas – from the headliner to the flooring and wallcovering, and all of the furniture – have been renewed or replaced,” says Sheeder.  Heesen yacht OCTOPUSSY further benefits from a remodeled stateroom plan – with a combination of Queen and Twin berths as well as two Pullman berths for small children.

Additional highlights of the refit include the addition of a new sundeck, including extension of the uppermost deck, complete with raised sunpads and Jacuzzi-style hot tub.  “Adding the small sundeck with a hot tub is a great idea,” says Sheeder.  “Clients love to spend a day swimming and exploring the James Bond Thunderball Grotto in the Exumas in the Bahamas.  After a day at play, there’s nothing like soaking sore muscles in a ‘Jacuzzi’ as the sun sets over the ocean…

jana sheeder 1800yachtcharters president stands on dock beside motoryacht octopussy before inspection

Built by Dutch shipyard Heesen in 1988, this iconic yacht was true to the James Bond theme that underlines all of the famous films – whether a plane, car, or boat, it had to go FAST!  When first launched, the 143 foot vessel set a world record as the fastest superyacht in the world, hitting a top speed of 53.17 knots.  “The added renovations, and extensions have slowed her down a bit,” says Sheeder, “but not by much.”  Currently, the yacht can cruise at 25 knots, with a top speed of 35 knots.

The combination of speed in a setting of comfort and panache makes this an ideal yacht for exploring the Bahamas,” explains Sheeder. “Other yachts are stuck offering the traditional charter itinerary in the general area of Nassau, but this incredible yacht can get to remote islands far removed from the tourist areas.  After all, the idea is to enjoy a private yacht charter vacation – and this yacht can certainly deliver on that promise.

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james bond 007 octopussy film poster picture starring roger moore and maude adams showing maude with 8 arms and roger holding gun

 

 

Take the “James Bond Yacht Challenge” and win a prize!

Tell us the names of three 007–inspired yachts currently available for charter.  These are yachts named after actual James Bond movies. 

Need a hint? The yacht “Octopussy” is named after the 1983 film of the same name starring Roger Moore as James Bond.  Now you only need to name two more!   

Need another hint?  Go to  www.1800yachtcharters.com and use the SEARCH box in the top right corner of the homepage to search on names of James Bond movies.   

Email the names of three charter yachts named after Bond 007 flicks to info@1800yachtcharters.com, and we’ll mail you a special gift! 

[Note:  actual spies and secret agents are not eligible to play! LOL!!!]

 

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