Foster turns his hand to timeshare luxury yacht
Thursday 30 April 2009
He is the visionary behind some of the world's most avant-garde buildings, including the Swiss Re "Gherkin" in the City of London and New York's Hearst Tower. Now, Sir Norman Foster has turned to boat design, creating four 134ft luxury yachts to tempt the super-rich.
The British architect was commissioned to design a quartet of unique vessels by the company YachtPlus, which will charge an eye-watering €1.9m (£1.7m) for one-eighth of a share in a boat. In return, each owner is entitled to 30 nights on board per year.
The scheme is billed as a way for millionaires to maintain an aura of wealth even while they are feeling the pinch.
"Good design is about a commitment to finding the right solution – no matter whether we are designing a building, a new city or a kitchen," Lord Foster said yesterday. "Part of the special appeal was to combine the emphasis on the views and the light with an architecture of movement – to integrate the lifestyle element with the hydraulics and the mechanics of boat design."
Last weekend, the company launched the first yacht, Ocean Emerald in the Italian port of La Spezia. Each yacht costs €16m (£14.4m) and will be entered into the "fractional ownership" scheme rather than being sold outright.
Owners will have to fork out an additional €200,000 (£180,000) to pay for the vessel's maintenance, seven crew members, mooring charges and "lifestyle management service". After the eight-year contract expires, the boats will be sold, with the owners receiving the proceeds on a pro-rata basis.
The price sounds prohibitive, but Norman Foster's design is sure to have architects across the globe salivating. Each yacht has four decks with 5,285 square feet of internal and external living space. The five suites, capable of billeting up to 12 guests, have luxury Italian furnishings.
TVJamie's Sugar Rush reveal's campaigning chef's new foe
Arts & Ents blogs
- 1 What marriage would look like if we actually followed the Bible
- 2 If these extraordinarily powerful images of a dead Syrian child washed up on a beach don't change Europe's attitude to refugees, what will?
- 3 'Heartbreaking' Syria orphan photo wasn't taken in Syria and not of orphan
- 4 Bob Geldof offers to take four refugee families into his home 'immediately' as he condemns humanitarian crisis as a ‘f**king disgrace'
- 5 Orthorexia nervosa: How becoming obsessed with healthy eating can lead to malnutrition
Three million books were judged by their covers - this is what happened
Anne Hathaway is already being stung by Hollywood ageism, aged 32
No Escape, film review: Thriller generates plenty of excitement but soon collapses
The Lobster trailer: Colin Farrell has 45 days to find a lover or he'll be turned into an animal
Spanish town saved by botched restoration of century-old Christian 'Ecce Homo' fresco of Jesus
Britain to take more refugees as Cameron bows to pressure after more than 250,000 back our campaign
Senior British politicians tell David Cameron: When dead children are being washed up on beaches – it's time to act
Jeremy Corbyn calls Osama bin Laden's killing a 'tragedy' - but was it taken out of context?
If these extraordinarily powerful images of a dead Syrian child washed up on a beach don't change Europe's attitude to refugees, what will?
Make your voice heard: Sign The Independent's petition to welcome refugees
If you're not already angry about the refugee crisis, here's a history lesson to remind you why you really should be