Sailing yachts traditionally make up about 18% of the overall world fleet. Still viewed by many as “a pretty idea with too much work and not enough comfort attached” (to quote one YPI client) they are seen as the choice of enthusiasts and those who don’t mind working at sea - a notion which doesn’t sit at all well with many of today’s owners.
But there seems to be a groundswell of change that has been ruminating around the industry over the last few years and which is not showing any signs of slowing.
In 2011, there were 27 new orders for sailing yachts. 39 pre-owned vessels were sold averaging 32.8-metres (m) in length, EUR 5.5 million in Asking Price and 16 years in age (although that is slightly skewed by LULWORTH which was 91 years old at the time!)
So far this year, there have been 7 new orders for sailing yachts including the largest sailing project ever at 147m and one project for 85m. Over 20 vessels have come to the market for the very first time including the latest and most technically advanced J-Class in the world, RAINBOW (now for sale with YPI) and there have been 7 sales including the largest of the last 18 months at over 50m.
The number of sailing yachts taking part in the increasing array of regattas around the world continues to grow as does the amount of people chartering them. So just what are new buyers seeing in sailing yachts today?
WHAT IS THE ATTRACTION?
For the yachting aficionados we mentioned earlier, it’s the thrill of the race, the excitement of the challenge and working together as a team that makes the sailing experience so much more than anything motor yachts can offer. But today, sailing yachts are also being chartered and purchased by people who are not a part of the enthusiast or regatta set.
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“Being at sea on a sailing yacht is an entirely different experience to being on a motor yacht,” explains Head of YPI’s sailing division, William Bishop. “Sailing yachts allow you to enjoy the journey as much as the destination. There are few people not captivated by the beauty and grace of a sailing yacht gliding into anchorage at sail. They slice through the water with the only noise you hear being the wind and the sea and the sound of nature itself. For many, sailing is being a part of what is around you…not an observer.”
Sailing yachts can be enjoyed by anyone wishing to buy or charter a yacht. Whether you are looking for the type of exhilarating performance offered by a carbon 100’ yacht or the majesty and comfort of the largest J-Class on the ocean, sailing yachts offer many things for many people.
“They are the ultimate in naval architecture,” explains Patrick Renar, Yacht Manager with YPI Management. “Sailing yachts are a part of the heritage, the myth and the love of the sea. They represent a vibrant marine history, an art and an industry that is developing faster than ever before.”
For many of today’s buyers and charterers, sailing yachts underscore an important shift in our sense of priorities when it comes to the world around us.
“Sailing yachts also tend to be more economical to run than motor yachts,” explains Will. “It doesn’t matter how much money you are worth, money saved on fuel is money that can be enjoyed elsewhere. They are also environmentally responsible. They use wind power, they recycle and store energy. ETHEREAL, for example, uses a hybrid electric-diesel propulsion system and lithium batteries that charge when the yacht is under sail. And these innovations come without any need for compromise on the luxury of the experience onboard.”
Long gone are the days when sailing yachts meant cramped living spaces and hard work.
“Some sailing yachts are becoming increasingly popular for charter,” explains Head of YPI Charter, Fiona Maureso.
“Yachts like WINDROSE and VALQUEST offer considerable space for guests, whether it is for dining, entertaining or sleeping, and are equipped with all the latest entertainment and communications technology. The crew on sail yachts offer the highest standards of service and can be as present or as discreet as required. If guests wish to participate in the sailing, they are welcome to do so. If, however, they prefer to sit back and watch, there will always be someone to top up their glass.”
“All sail yachts have engines so they don’t have to rely on the wind,” explains Will. “Most sailing yachts can motor up to speeds of 10 knots. There also exists a hybrid between sail and motor yachts. Motorsailers give owners and guests the freedom to cruise the yacht either under sail or under power at even greater speeds, as well as offering more deck space than traditional sail yachts and increased storage for water sports equipment.”
For yacht owner and entrepreneur Jan-Eric Österlund, the choice of yacht for his now famous two-year voyage around the world was critical. He told YPI: “Either type of yacht, motor or sail, would have allowed such a voyage of discovery to happen, but it was the harmony and balance provided by ADELE (the 54.9m Vitters seen below) that was key to the wondrous experience we all enjoyed.”
Well known for its sailing yacht expertise, YPI has sailing yachts for charter or purchase covering the whole range of sizes and designs available. “The world’s best sailing yachts for sale today are available through YPI,” explains Will. “We have the latest and most technologically advanced J-Class to date, the recently launched RAINBOW; the multi-award winning METEOR and WINDROSE; not to mention the stunning CYCLOS III, ANNAGINE, GWEILO and a host of others designed and built by the world’s leading shipyards and designers.”
Potential buyers can also benefit from the ‘YPI Try Then Buy’ offer which allows parties interested in purchasing one of the Group’s sailing yachts to test out the yachts first-hand by chartering on preferential terms and conditions.
“So many of our owners buy their first yachts this way,” explains Will. “We want to make sure our clients acquire a yacht that is right for them rather than ending up disappointed one year down the road. The ‘YPI Try Then Buy’ is by far the best way of getting to know a yacht and how it performs.”
The YPI Group has a long and successful tradition working with sailing yachts. “Over the last 40 years, we have bought, sold, managed, crewed and chartered some of the world’s most renowned sailing vessels,” explains YPI Group CEO, Bertrand Vogèle. “It is important for clients who charter or buy, that our teams have an acute understanding as to how these yachts perform. That’s what makes the difference.”
To find out more about SAILING YACHTS for sale through YPI and the ‘YPI TRY THEN BUY’ offers:
To find out more about SAILING YACHTS for charter through YPI:
The book “Exploring With Adele” by Jan-Eric Österlund featuring stunning photography of the author’s two-year voyage around the world is available at all good bookshops and through all quality online sellers.