The newly-crowned world’s largest yacht took the seas – a £400million (€462m) behemoth which is a staggering 590ft long.
The yacht, called ‘Azzam’, was built by a German firm and has beaten Roman Abramovich’s 533ft ‘Eclipse’ to the top spot.It can travel in excess of 30 knots with power coming from a combination of two gas turbines and two diesel engines with a total of 94,000 horsepower.
Azzam is rumoured to be built for powerful Saudi billionaire Al-Waleed bin Talal, who also owns a giga-yacht dubbed Kingdom 5KR.The actual owner is unknown.
Engineer Mubarak Saad al Ahbabi directed the construction of Azzam, with technical engineering by Lürssen, exterior design by Nauta Yachts and interior design by Christophe Leoni. Following a year of engineering, the yacht was built in three years, which is a record building time according to Superyacht Times. Among the original specifications was the ability to travel at high speed in warm and shallow waters, while providing luxurious and sophisticated accommodation. the yacht is longer than a BritishType 45 destroyer. She managed a top speed in sea trials of 31.5 knots.
Just building the yacht cost a staggering $605 million — a fee which doesn’t even begin to take into account the sky-high costs of its annual upkeep. In his book on the Lady Linda superyacht, author G. Bruce Knecht said that, “operating and maintaining a yacht is at least 10% of what the thing cost.” By which estimation, just keeping the Azzam on the water could cost as much as $60 million every year.
The project was brought to fruition by Mubarak Saad al Ahbabi, who assembled a triumvirate of yacht-building super stars: the Azzam’s engineering was done by premier German shipbuilding company Lürssen, the exterior design was by Nauta Yachts and the interior was composed by Christophe Leoni.