Princess Yachts is making news this fall at the boat shows from Europe to Florida with word of its new Princess 35M, a 115-foot motoryacht that will be a smaller sibling to the Princess 40M. A new build is always exciting, but while the bigger sister may be a few years older, she’s the one that has charter clients buzzing this winter—because two of the 40Ms Princess has already launched are being made available for charter.
Hull number one made a huge splash after launching in 2012 and arriving in the Caribbean with some serious megayacht features, including fold-out decks, a luxury interior by Bannenberg & Rowell, and a crew that included a chef who trained aboard the far larger Christensen megayacht once owned by golfer Tiger Woods.
Imperial Princess, even at a weekly base rate of $140,000 for 10 guests, was immediately pegged as a standout value in her size range because stepping aboard her felt almost like stepping aboard a 150-footer whose weekly base rate could easily be $50,000 higher. That’s expected to remain true this coming winter, when Imperial Princess will be taking charter bookings in the Caribbean and Bahamas.
Meanwhile, Hull number three in the Princess 40M series just launched this year and is called Solaris. Her owner is working through Imperial Yachts to bring the same level of modern yacht charter experience to the Maldives in the Indian Ocean.
Solaris has a sixth guest stateroom for a total of 12 beds, along with a full-beam gymnasium and a healthy complement of water toys—again, megayacht features in a smaller, more economical package. Her weekly base rate is higher than her sistership’s, at €140,000 (about $176,000), and it reflects the additional guest cabin along with the destination. While Imperial Princess is going to have plenty of 130-footers to compete with for charters in the Caribbean this winter, Solaris will be a unique gem in the remote Maldives.
The Maldives are southwest of India’s tip, with a chain of 26 atolls comprising the entire island nation. They’re about as flat as islands get, with an average height less than 5 feet above sea level, and they’re home to fewer than 300,000 people. Cruising through them is an unforgettable experience with water all around, uninhabited beaches and islands at every stop, and maybe one or two other boats in view the entire day.
It’s hard to think of a better place to charter one of these luxurious motoryachts, bringing five-star accommodations to the heart of solitude. We can only hope that when the first Princess 35M’s launch, they, too, will end up positioned in some equally interesting charter locales.