An Island Escape

Porquerolles
Porquerolles

Within a short cruising distance from Toulon or St Tropez, Île de Porquerolles is the largest island off the French Riviera coast and the most accessible of the trio of islands – the other two are Île de Port Cros and Île du Levant – that make up the Îles d’Hyères. An essential destination on any luxury yacht charter on the French Riviera – Find out more in Porquerolles : Secrets of an Island Paradise

Also see: 10 Days in the South of France, Sardinia and Corsica onboard a Luxury Yacht Charter

5 Reasons Why Every Charter Yacht Needs a Spa Therapist

Angels On Board
Angels On Board

Even if your yacht has a stew/masseuse, there are many reasons why getting a dedicated spa therapist on board is the ultimate luxury experience.

1. You can have a massage every day, whenever you like

Massage and beauty treatments are similar to food on charters – you should be able to have a much as you desire! Having a dedicated spa therapist on board allows you to luxuriate in a treatment every day, whether it’s a massage, a manicure, a beauty facial or a yoga lesson. Instant pampering whenever you wish – it’s the definition of luxury.

2. You will feel like you have landed in Paradise

Imagine drifting into supreme relaxation to the sound of the ocean, as you have your feet massaged on deck. Or the fresh morning sea breeze on your face as you do some gentle yoga stretches on the swim platform. Relax, unwind and get into holiday-mode as soon as you step on board.

3. It will be a perfect balance to the rest of your itinerary

Whether your itinerary is packed with shopping trips and partying, or hiking and watersports, holistic treatments are an ideal way to restore your body. We massage away stresses, aches and pains, leaving you renewed and refreshed to enjoy the rest of your day. We can also help you to balance out the chef’s culinary offerings with a gentle daily fitness or yoga session. Our aim is for you to finish your charter feeling like new.

4. You and your guests deserve the best

Stew/masseuses are unlikely to have as much training or experience as freelance therapists, and have lots of other duties to do on board. A dedicated therapist will be able to focus all their energy on your wellbeing, and will be professionally trained and experienced. On a recent charter, one of our clients wanted to really spoil his guests, so he employed not one but two therapists. In his words: “I don’t know why every yacht charter doesn’t have an Angel on board!”

5. It’s far easier than trying to source local therapists

Picture this – you’re anchored outside St Tropez, it’s August, and after lunch you’d love a massage. You could go ashore, but it’s hot and crowded; getting a local therapist to come on board for an hour in high season is both expensive and logistically challenging. And if you are in a more remote location – forget about it! Having a spa therapist on board for the duration of your trip is convenient, cost-effective, and your guests are guaranteed their privacy.

Angels On Board
Angels On Board

This article was written by Emmeline Gee, Superyacht Charter Massage Therapist & Yoga Teacher.

To book a spa therapist, yoga or fitness instructor for your next charter, please contact:

Angels On Board – Tel. +34 628805588 or visit www.angels-on-board.com

Check out 5 Charter Yachts With Exceptional Wellness Facilities

St Tropez as a Yacht Charter Destination

Yachts in the Port of St Tropez
Yachts in the Port of St Tropez

St Tropez on the French Riviera remains for many the quintessential luxury yacht charter destination in the Mediterranean. Every summer, luxury yachts on charter fill the Port of St Tropez. St Tropez is so popular with luxury yachts, that in July and August, there are often many hundreds of yachts anchored in the bay outside the port and at nearby Pampelonne beach. Berths inside the Port of St Tropez are like gold-dust and those wanting to visit St Tropez on their luxury yacht charter need to book many months in advance in order to guarantee that all important berth inside the harbour. St Tropez offers it all to guests holidaying on a luxury yacht, great beaches, restaurants, shopping and nightlife but beautiful quiet anchorages are only a short cruise away! Since it rose to fame in the 1960s, St Tropez has remained the ultimate summer playground for the world’s jet-set, and despite competition from other destinations around the Mediterranean, St Tropez shows no signs of relinquishing its’ crown!

Ever wondered what it might be like to spend some time on a luxury yacht in St Tropez? Check out An Essential Guide to Yacht Charter in St Tropez

Other useful yachting articles: 10 Days in the South of France, Sardinia and Corsica onboard a Luxury Yacht CharterSouth of France Yacht Charters & Yacht Charters on the French Riviera

L’Opéra

Since opening in 2014, L’Opéra has fast become one of the coolest and trendiest restaurants in St Tropez! From the most beautiful terrace in all of St Tropez, guests have fabulous views over the huge yachts in the port with the stunning backdrop of the Citadel and the old town of St Tropez. Come here for a glass or two of champagne, or a beautiful dinner by the water. The terrace is fabulously elegant, with its all white furniture and beautifully dressed staff. At night, the atmosphere is truly magical with the lights from all the superyachts shimmering in the port. Diners are treated to an exciting show featuring dancers and musicians, right in the middle of the restaurant.

L’Opéra – Résidence du Port, 83990 Saint-Tropez, France

Tel. +33 4 94 49 51 31 www.opera-saint-tropez.com

French Riviera Helicopter Transfers

Helicopters over Port of St Tropez

As the summer gets off to a warm start this June, travelling by road around the French Riviera becomes more and more frustrating. With so many tourists arriving on the French Riviera by car, what better way to begin your yacht charter in the south of France than to arrive by helicopter! Avoiding all the motorway nonsense, the slow procession of cars through the winding roads of the Var en-route to Pampelonne beach and the chaos of La Croisette in Cannes! Whether arriving by plane to either Nice, Cannes or St Tropez, a helicopter transfer is simply the best way to stay relaxed and take the most direct route and enjoy stunning views to begin your luxury vacation or business event on the French Riviera.

There are several helicopter transfer services running between Nice, Monaco, Cannes and St Tropez and the cost of flying by helicopter is surprisingly low, in many cases no more expensive than a regular taxi!

Heli Air Monaco - Helicopter

HELI AIR MONACO operate out of the Monaco Heliport in the Principality of Monaco. Running a complimentary shuttle service, HELI AIR MONACO will collect guests direct from their Monaco hotel or apartment and whisk you straight to your helicopter before departing for Nice, Cannes or St Tropez. For regular scheduled flights, HELI AIR MONACO operate over 50 flights per day between Monaco and Nice Airport. Taking off on the hour and every half hour from Monaco and quarter past the hour and every half hour afterwards from Nice, with each flight taking only 7 minutes! Road transfers are included in the cost but advance booking is recommended for this service. HELI AIR MONACO also offer bespoke French Riviera panoramic helicopter flights, ski packages and private charter flights throughout the year. They also offer a helicopter aerial filming service.

Please contact HELI AIR MONACO for further details:

www.heliairmonaco.com  +377 92 050 050

Helicopter flying over the Port of St Tropez

HELI SECURITE are predominantly based out of Nice, where most international flights arrive into, but they also have hubs at Cannes-Mandelieu Airport and at La Mole airport in St Tropez and run regular flights out of all three. HELI SECURITE also arrange special helicopter transfers during all of the major events that take place in Cannes. So if you’re arriving for a MIPIM yacht charter or hiring a yacht at Cannes Lions, why not avoid the traffic and arrive relaxed direct into Cannes Port by helicopter! After a hectic round of business meetings, why not extend your yacht charter and take a steady cruise along the coast to Portofino for the evening before heading back to Nice by helicopter? HELI SECURITE also operate throughout the winter season and run regular flights to the French and Swiss Alps for ski enthusiasts.

For further details please visit HELI SECURITE:

www.helisecurite.fr   +33 4 94 55 59 99

Helicopter flying over the islands off Cannes, France

AZUR HELICOPTERE operate flights mainly into Cannes, but also to major cities such as Lyon, where they maintain a hub for transporting guests around the Rhône-Alpes region and for helicopter transfers to the French Alps. They also run helicopter flights between Milan and Geneva as well as hopping across the Mediterranean to the beautiful island of Corsica! Offering a totally bespoke service AZUR HELICOPTERE can arrange helicopter transfers for special dinners, concerts, sailing regattas, boat shows and all of the Cannes events. And should you ever wish to sit up front and take the controls, AZUR HELICOPTERE also operate a fully licensed professional flying school at Cannes-Mandelieu Airport!

For further details please visit AZUR HELICOPTERE:

www.azurhelico.com +33 4 93 90 40 70

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5 Great Day Boats on the French Riviera!

Luxury Yacht Day Charters

With summer fast approaching and Monaco Grand Prix yacht charters in full swing this weekend, the Côte d’Azur is brimming with fabulous charter yachts taking guests between Monaco and St Tropez, enjoying the hottest venues all along the French Riviera.

But which yacht to choose?

Here’s a look at five of the best open yachts available for day charters:

LA BELLINI Yacht
LA BELLINI Yacht

LA BELLINI – A Sunseeker Predator 64 from 2012, this great little yacht punches well above its weight, with her sleek lines, ample sunbathing space and elegant interiors. Cruising at a comfortable 25 knots, LA BELLINI can touch 35 knots flat out for those days when you’ve perhaps spent too long shopping in St Tropez and have to get back in time for a dinner in Monaco!

With her home berth in Port Gallice, Juan Les Pins, she’s perfectly positioned for days out to Cannes, Monaco, St Tropez or anywhere in between!

AMADEUS Yacht
AMADEUS Yacht

AMADEUS – Another Sunseeker Predator, AMADEUS is the larger 72 model, this time from 2008. Based close to Antibes, she is perfectly located for cruising in any direction. Highly customised to the very best standards, this yacht offers guests a luxurious venue for a day out on the water. With plenty of outdoor entertaining space she’s the perfect yacht for enjoying an alfresco lunch anchored in a quiet bay with friends and family. Equipped with a powerful Williams Jet Tender and an array of water toys, there’s fun, fun and more fun on the menu onboard this great yacht. Most guests tend to relax and enjoy proceedings from the aft deck where your very own chef will have the BBQ going to satisfy hungry teenagers at the end of an afternoon in the water.

LIZZI Yacht
LIZZI Yacht

LIZZI – A Lazzara LSX 75 yacht, LIZZI is a fabulous yacht for cruising along the French Riviera with one of the lowest fuel consumptions found on this size and style of yacht. Still she’s happy cruising at 20-25 knots. As an American built yacht, LIZZI boasts great interior volume as well as excellent sunbathing areas. A fantastic choice for hopping from bay to bay along the Côte d’Azur.

LOW BLOW Yacht
LOW BLOW Yacht

LOW BLOW – Fast and sporty, this Baia 78 motor yacht cruises comfortably at 40 knots with a dazzling top speed of 45 knots! LOW BLOW has plenty of great deck space, along with a first class music system so is the perfect yacht for a lively group looking to get from A-B quickly whilst enjoying top tunes along the way! Based close to Cannes, LOW BLOW is perfectly located for day charters to St Tropez or Monaco.

OF VILLA ROMANA Yacht
OF VILLA ROMANA Yacht

OF VILLA ROMANA – The legendary Mangusta 80 Yacht! OF VILLA ROMANA is perhaps one of the finest refitted Mangusta 80 yachts available to charter. Based in St Tropez, she is always ready to go at a moments notice, whether it’s “around the corner” to the beach at Pampelonne for a quiet lunch or blasting up the coast for that important reservation at Plage Mala at Cap d’Ail, near Monaco! With impressive deck space, OF VILLA ROMANA is the perfect yacht on which to enjoy a stylish day out on the water. Her permanent berth in the Old Port of St Tropez is a huge selling point!

All of these fantastic day charter yachts are available to charter on the French Riviera with Bespoke Yacht Charter – www.bespokeyachtcharter.com

7 Days on the French Riviera

Nice
Nice

Ever wondered what it’s like to charter a luxury yacht on the French Riviera. In just seven days, take in such fabulous destinations as St Tropez, Cannes, Antibes, Nice, Cap Ferrat and Monaco, as well as visits inland to Eze Village and St Paul de Vence.

Highlights include:

  • Shopping in Cannes
  • Dinner at La Palme d’Or
  • Pampelonne Beach and Club 55
  • The Old Port of St Tropez
  • VIP Room and Caves du Roy
  • Hotel du Cap-Eden-Roc on the Cap d’Antibes
  • Dinner at La Colombe d’Or
  • Paloma Beach on Cap Ferrat
  • Plage Mala on Cap d’Ail
  • Visit the Casino de Monte-Carlo
  • Dinner at Alain Ducasse at the Hotel de Paris
  • Visit Portofino in Italy and the fabulous Hotel Splendido

Click here to read the full article: French Riviera Yacht Charter Itinerary

Other useful yachting articles: 10 Days in the South of France, Sardinia and Corsica onboard a Luxury Yacht CharterA Guide to Luxury Yacht Charter & Yacht Charters on the French Riviera

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A Guide to Luxury Yacht Charters

CLOUD 9 Yacht
CLOUD 9

Why Charter a Yacht?

To put it simply, there really is no better way to take a holiday. The perfect destination, a fabulous yacht and great professional crew will offer you the most amazing holiday experience you’ve ever had. Whether you’re looking to spend some quiet time with the family in peaceful anchorages or an action packed holiday with friends, visiting all the hotspots of the French Riviera, anything is possible on a yacht charter. Imagine the best hotel in the world with only your favourite food and drinks, great staff and best of all, it moves each day to where you want to be. And all of it is just for you and your guests! Breakfast in Portofino, lunch in Monte-Carlo, dinner in Cannes, this is reality on a crewed luxury yacht charter!

Which Yacht to choose?

There are more than 2,000 superyachts, motor yachts and sailing yachts available to charter worldwide in sizes from 20-100+ metres. In order to decide which sort of yacht is going to work best for your specific needs, it is important to consider various factors.

Sailing Yacht or Motor Yacht?

If you’re looking for the ultimate in luxury, a floating 5 star hotel with jacuzzis, a spa and mind-blowing cuisine, then a motor yacht or superyacht is probably the yacht for you. Most motor yachts over 100ft will have stabilisers making the experience comfortable at sea, both when underway and at anchor. On the largest of motor yachts, it would be fair to say that often one could forget one was even at sea. Sailing yachts tend to appeal to the more adventurous person who really enjoys being at sea, rather than just looking for a way to get from Cannes to St Tropez and to show off! That’s not to say that sailing yachts are any less luxurious than motor yachts. Modern sailing yachts of 40m and up offer a level of luxury that is very similar to a motor yacht, though interior volume and hence cabin sizes tend to be smaller. Catamarans appeal to many as they provide the volume of a motor yacht with the sailing experience.

Crew!

Don’t choose a great yacht, choose a great crew! A yacht’s crew are the single most important factor in ensuring an amazing yacht charter experience. An older yacht with an fabulous crew will make for a far more enjoyable experience than the latest flashy vessel with a so-so crew onboard that don’t really like working together. Your broker will be able to match you to the yacht and crew that are perfect for you. Tell them about your favourite cuisine for example, and they’ll find the yacht with just the right Chef! Fancy learning to wakeboard? Your yacht charter broker will find you a yacht with a professional wakeboard instructor onboard! The most important thing is to find a yacht where the crew are a “team” that love the yacht and most importantly love working together! Your broker will be able to send you references and testimonials from previous happy charterers.

Where to go?

Following the international jet-set, large yachts tend to charter in the Mediterranean in the summer months and move to the Caribbean for the winter season. Less mainstream yachting destinations like the South Pacific and the Far East are becoming more and more popular though. Traditionally the vast majority of Mediterranean yacht charters consisted of a week or two of back and forth between St Tropez and Monaco. Charterers are now wanting to do much more than this and many yacht charters on the French Riviera will also take in Corsica and Sardinia and perhaps Portofino in Italy. Charters in the Croatia and Turkey are now every bit as popular as the traditionally well known destinations in the south of France. Some people know exactly where they want to go? If you don’t, then your broker will have lots of suggestions that might really inspire you!

When to go?

The Mediterranean charter season is split into three distinct seasons, High Season being July and August, Low Season being June and September and the other months would be considered Off Season. There are exceptions to this of course, most notably the Monaco Grand Prix and Cannes Film Festival in May each year. The period around these two events on the Côte d’Azur is very much considered high season. The same goes for the MIPIM real estate event in Cannes every March where yacht charters are incredibly popular. Yachts have the highest charter rates in High Season, reducing somewhat for Low Season and further still for the Off Season. In order to decide which season works best for you, it is important to consider what you are looking to get from the experience. If you’re looking to experience the buzz and nightlife of St Tropez, then it really has to be done in July or August. If however, you are looking to spend quality time on a yacht with friends and family, enjoying great food and weather, then June and September are great times in all Mediterranean destinations especially the south of France. To those in the know, September is the best month of all to charter. Rates are lower than July/August, the sea is at its warmest, the ports less crowded, though still with enough people around to ensure a great atmosphere!

Budget

When deciding what you would like to pay for your charter, it is important to factor in the costs you will need to consider in addition to the charter fee. VAT – The amount of VAT charged will vary depending on where you charter, but you need to add 5-20% tax to the charter fee in most European destinations. Montenegro is unique in Europe in that VAT is not applied to yacht charters.

APA – The Advance Provisioning Allowance is a cash float given to the Captain in advance of the charter to provision the yacht as per your exact needs and to cover all the costs incurred during the charter. These include, but are not limited to; Fuel, Food, Drinks and Port Charges. The amount requested as APA is typically 25-30% in addition to the charter fee. Your Captain will keep full accounts with supporting receipts for the entire charter. This will be presented to you for approval prior to disembarkation. Once agreed, you will either be refunded monies not used or asked to pay for any excess.

Gratuities – A yacht’s crew works incredibly hard to ensure that a luxury yacht charter remains the ultimate holiday experience! Two to three hours sleep a night is not uncommon! It is customary but completely at your discretion to leave a gratuity for the yacht’s crew at the end of the charter. This should be given to the Captain, who will distribute it equally amongst all crew members. Your broker will advise you on what is customary in the part of the world you’re chartering in, but as a guide 10% is considered a good tip in the Mediterranean if you feel that you have received exceptional service.

This very brief introduction to the world of luxury yacht charter was written by Alex Coles – Alex is a charter broker at Bespoke Yacht Charter, a London and Côte d’Azur based company offering superyacht charters on the French Riviera and throughout the Mediterranean. The charter brokers at Bespoke Yacht Charter have over 13 years experience arranging luxury yacht charters on the finest crewed yachts in the world. They would be delighted to introduce you to best holiday imaginable and to guide you every step of the way!

Other useful yachting articles: 10 Days in the South of France, Sardinia and Corsica onboard a Luxury Yacht CharterYacht Charters on the French Riviera

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Classy Runabouts!

Classic Rivas at the Monte-Carlo Beach Hotel
Classic Rivas at the Monte-Carlo Beach Hotel – Photo: Alberto Cocchi

As the Côte d’Azur season is just around the corner, how will you be arriving for lunch this summer? On a classic Riva, admired and loved by all, or perhaps your choice will be the avant-garde VanDutch, a benchmark for modern design and technology?

The legendary models from Riva conjure up nostalgic images of the late fifties and sixties when Brigitte Bardot could regularly be spotted driving hers around the bay of St Tropez. Nounours – her actual yacht which has been fully restored was recently put on the market for sale and is expected to reach in excess of 100,000 Euro – maybe more. Who wouldn’t want to own a little bit of St Tropez history! Thanks to the likes of Bardot and the popularity of the beach clubs at Pampelonne (and the limited number of classic Rivas built), these fabulous style icons have truly endured the test of time! Classic Riva boats remain highly valuable sort after collectables that many a playboy or girl desires, regardless of how many coats of varnish they require each year to stay looking pristine!

Riva
The beauty of a classic Riva!

At the opposite end of the scale is the phenomenal VanDutch! First launched in 2008, these unique avant-garde yachts are the product of Dutch design and craftsmanship at its finest. Using the most sophisticated technology, VanDutch have created a sleek, elegant design with all the class you’d expect from a classic but with none of the drawbacks of high maintenance.

VanDutch Style!
VanDutch Style!

The epitome of modern day Riviera chic, VanDutch boats are hugely popular on the Côte d’Azur. Whether you’re being collected from your hotel to whizz around to your trackside yacht to enjoy the Monaco F1 Grand Prix, or if you’re heading for lunch at Plage Mala, or zipping from your house in Port Grimaud for a lazy lunch on Pampelonne Beach, VanDutch boats are just super cool!!

Riva – www.riva-yacht.com

VanDutch – www.vandutch.com

Bespoke Yacht Charter – www.bespokeyachtcharter.com

The 10 Largest Yachts in the World

There was a time when a yacht of 50m was considered to be a large yacht. But times, they are a changing… In 2015, a yacht needs to be well in excess of 120m to even get into the Top 10!

Here’s a countdown of the current Top 10 largest yachts in the world:

10. AL SALAMAH – 139.29m (457ft) AL SALAMAH was delivered to her owners in 1999. The project was started by HDW in Kiel, Germany and the yacht was finished at the Lurssen shipyard in Bremen, Germany. AL SALAMAH was known as “Project MIPOS” during the yacht’s construction, standing for mission possible! At the time of her delivery, she was the 3rd largest yacht in the world but has rapidly slipped down the rankings every year since which is a sign of how larger and larger yachts are being built. The yacht has a capacity of 36 guests plus crew. Very little is known about the yacht other than that she was built for the Saudi Arabian Royal Family. The fact that this superyacht now flies the flag of Bahrain may be a clue as to who the current owners are. AL SALAMAH is often to be found along with many other larger superyachts in the port of Piraeus, Greece.

Superyacht Al Salamah
AL SALAMAH

9. OCEAN VICTORY – 140m (459ft) OCEAN VICTORY is a 140m motor yacht built by the Fincantieri shipyard of Italy and delivered to her owner in 2014. The yacht’s exterior lines are the work of Espen Oeino with interiors by Alberto Pinto. The yacht is believed to have no less than 6 swimming pools and a top speed of 19.6 knots. The construction and delivery of this superyacht was highly secretive and very little is known of the yacht or her ownership. This is the yacht that knocked David Geffen’s RISING SUN out of the top 10 largest yachts.

Ocean Victory superyacht in Montenegro
OCEAN VICTORY

8. YAS – 141m (463ft) This unusual yacht was built at the ADM shipyard in Abu Dhabi, UAE. YAS was constructed on the hull of 1970s Dutch Navy frigate that was purchased by the Abu Dhabi Navy. It is believed that a second very similar superyacht project is underway, also based on the hull of a naval frigate.

Superyacht YAS Abu Dhabi
YAS

7. EL HORRIYA – 145.7m (478ft) EL HORRIYA is the Presidential yacht of Egypt. The yacht was built in the UK in 1865 and was present at the opening of the Suez Canal four years later. The yacht lives in Alexandria, where she is looked after by the Egyptian Navy.

Classic yacht El Horriya
EL HORRIYA

6. PRINCE ABDULAZIZ – 147m (482ft) PRINCE ABDULAZIZ was built in Denmark in 1984 as the Royal Yacht of the late King Fahd of Saudi Arabia. The yacht’s home port is Jeddah but during summer months, she can sometimes be seen in the Mediterranean, often in Cannes, France and in Marbella, Spain. Despite constant refits, the yacht is showing her age and a replacement modern superyacht is likely on the way.

Yacht Prince Abdulaziz
PRINCE ABDULAZIZ

5. TOPAZ – 147.25m (483ft) TOPAZ is the third largest yacht ever delivered by the Lurssen shipyard of Germany. Amazingly, Lurssen were involved in the construction of no less than six of the top 10 largest yachts! The yacht was delivered in 2012 and her owner is believed to be from the UAE.

Superyacht TOPAZ
TOPAZ

4. AL SAID – 155m (508ft) AL SAID is the yacht of the Sultan of Oman. This superyacht is believed to have a top speed of around 25 knots. The yacht is said to accommodate 65 guests, looked after by a crew of 150. The yacht features a concert hall that it is said can accommodate a 50-piece orchestra!

Yacht Al Said
AL SAID

3. DUBAI – 162m (531ft) DUBAI is the Royal Yacht of Dubai and belongs to His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum. The yacht was purchased by the Dubai Government as a unfinished project having initially been commissioned by Prince Jefri of Brunei before the project was abandoned in 1998. The yacht was eventually launched by Platinum Yachts in 2006 and is based unsurprisingly in Dubai.

Superyacht Dubai
DUBAI

2. ECLIPSE – 162.5m (533ft) Until recently, ECLIPSE was the largest yacht in the world. This immense superyacht was delivered to her Russian owner in late 2010 by the Blohm + Voss shipyard of Germany after a five year construction period. ECLIPSE features a 16m swimming pool, the largest ever installed on a yacht. The yacht also accommodates three helicopters! This yacht is thankfully used by her owner a great deal and is seen in locations all over the world.

ECLIPSE yacht Roman Abramovich
ECLIPSE

1. AZZAM – 180m (590ft) Current holder of the title of the largest yacht in the world. AZZAM was like many on this list, built by the Lurssen shipyard in Germany. The project was a highly secretive one and very little is known about AZZAM other than that the yacht is believed to be capable of an astonishing 31+ knots due to her groundbreaking water-jet systems!

Superyacht AZZAM
AZZAM

Also see: The 10 Largest Sailing Yachts in the World

 

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The Pink Elixir of the Côte d’Azur!

The Pink Elixir of the Côte d’Azur
The Pink Elixir of the Côte d’Azur

With the temperatures rising, restaurant terraces and beach clubs are getting busier by the day and the pink elixir of the Côte d’Azur is being consumed in ever increasing quantities! Rosé wine just doesn’t taste right anywhere but in Provence and on the Côte d’Azur, and if you’re anywhere on the Riviera then consumption is a must! Provence is renowned for producing the best rosé in the world, the warm climate and sandy soils are perfect for the vines. Rosé is growing in popularity in part perhaps due to the purchase of several well known vineyards by celebrities such as Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie. However rosé has kept its classless, elegant appeal and is the drink of choice for the summer season for everyone from clientele of the local bar tabac to guests of prestigious beach clubs, villa garden parties and superyachts. From St Tropez beach clubs to yachts anchored at Plage Mala, all you will see are bottles and bottles of Rosé, from Magnums of Chateau Rasque at Paloma Beach to Domain Ott on the huge yachts anchored off Cap Ferrat.

It’s a fact that the paler the colour, the better the taste, but apart from the world famous Garrus from Chateau d’Esclans, which is perhaps the best rosé ever produced with a price tag to match at €99 per bottle, the most expensive isn’t necessarily always the best!

Here’s a look at 5 of my favourites:

Château Rasque at Paloma Beach on Cap Ferrat
Château Rasque at Paloma Beach on Cap Ferrat

Château Rasque – Famously served in magnums rather than regular sized bottles in many a beach club, this rosé is one of my favourites and perhaps has one of the highest consumption rates throughout the summer season. Robust enough to be served with anything and equally great as an aperitif. Served as the house rosé in some of the most elegant establishments on the Côte d’Azur this has to one of the highest contenders for the most elegant and consistently brilliant rosés.

Around €16 per bottle – www.chateau-rasque.com

Château Sainte-Marguerite
Château Sainte-Marguerite

Château Sainte-Marguerite – The cru-classé from the Fayard family run vineyard is wonderfully delicate and pale, with subtle flavours, it makes a fabulous companion to a fresh Mediterranean summer lunch, or to just enjoy on its own. A true classic!

Around €13.50 per bottle – www.chateausaintemarguerite.com

Domain Ott - Château Romassan
Domain Ott – Château Romassan

Domain Ott – Château Romassan –  Affectionally named “Over The Top”, this is perhaps the most famous rosé in the world and certainly a favourite with celebrities, often to be discovered in large quantities at many flamboyant parties, especially during the Monaco F1 Grand Prix and the Cannes Film Festival. This is indeed an excellent rosé, slightly more robust than the very pale rosés and therefore a superb all rounder. This wine is as perfect served with red meats as it is grilled prawns and fresh fish. Not the best value rosé on offer, but certainly one of the most popular.

Around €23 per bottle – www.domaines-ott.com

M de Château Minuty
M de Château Minuty

M de Château Minuty –  Not the most prestigious rose from this legendary Château but one of my all time favourites and a first choice for me every time if available. This wine is light, fresh and easy to enjoy with food or on its own. As the Château states “The M range is a real moment of pleasure and happiness to share with good friends and extend that holiday feeling.” This for me explains the wine perfectly and makes it my all time favourite!

Around  €10 per bottle – www.minuty.com

Miraval
Miraval

Miraval – The only rosé wine in Wine Spectator’s Top Wines of 2013, this is considered by many to be the best of the best. First released as a 2012 vintage by new owners Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie in partnership with the Perrin family of Château de Beaucastel, the wine sold out in a matter of hours and has now become “THE” rosé. It is delicious and certainly in my humble opinion a serious contender as the best of the best. Previously released as “Pink Floyd” for many years by the former owners as the legendary rock band recorded their seminal album “The Wall” at the Château back in 1979.

Around €15.50 per bottle – www.miraval-provence.com

MIDEM 5-8 June 2015 in Cannes

MIDEM 5-8 June 2015 in Cannes
MIDEM 5-8 June 2015 in Cannes

MIDEM stands for Marché International du Disque et de l’Edition Musicale. It is an annual event for the music industry that has been held since 1967. The event is organised by REED MIDEM, a leading trade show organiser and responsible for most of Cannes’ important events. Every year, MIDEM brings to Cannes thousands of musicians, agents, producers, music executives end entrepreneurs, a venerable who’s who of the music business! Artists and record labels showcase new material with performances and concerts throughout the event. MIDEM also hosts various forums where attendees can listen to experts speaking on critical issues facing the music world, and participate in discussions on current trends and where they see the industry heading. In today’s digital download and streaming age, it is more important than ever for the music industry to adapt in order to stay relevant. MIDEM in Cannes is a very important gathering of minds in that regard, bringing together as it does, all the key players from all over the globe. MIDEM is typically attended by upwards of 7,000 people, representing over 2,000 companies from tiny startups to huge multinationals. As with all the events in Cannes, MIDEM centres around the Palais des Festivals adjacent to the Port of Cannes. Unique to Cannes, it is possible to combine exhibition space in the Palais des Festivals with a yacht in the port outside to use for entertaining. Renting a yacht for MIDEM has become a popular choice, all the more so now that the event has moved from January to the month of June, with much warmer weather! Cannes is a summer playground and what better way for a company to make waves at MIDEM than by chartering a luxury yacht on which to entertain clients and launch new products. The yacht can be used to take your most important clients out for the day on the water, a trip to Club 55 in St Tropez perhaps, or to the beach at La Garoupe on the Cap d’Antibes. The yacht will also act as a floating meeting venue and entertainment platform on which to host lunches, drinks receptions and parties. And of course, the yacht also offers luxurious accommodation for you and your guests right in the centre of Cannes, at the heart of the action!

MIDEM 2015 takes place from 5-8 June at the Palais des Festivals in Cannes www.midem.com

Read more in Planning the Perfect Event Charter in Cannes

Club 55 in St Tropez by yacht!

Arrive in style at Club 55 in St Tropez on a Riva yacht!
Arrive in style at Club 55 in St Tropez on a Riva yacht!

Of all the beach clubs at Pampelonne Beach, Club 55 is the original and in many people’s opinion still the best! No holiday on the French Riviera is complete without a day spent sunbathing and dining at this effortlessly chic and understated beach club in Ramatuelle, close to St Tropez. Long lunches of fresh fish, salads and copious amounts of rose between friends at Club 55 create memories that last long beyond the summer! And to those in the know, there is only one way to arrive at Club 55, and that is by boat. Why battle for hours in July traffic jams on the coast when you can rent a yacht to collect you from your villa on the Cap d’Antibes, or your hotel in Monaco and whisk you off to St Tropez in style! Your yacht will collect you from the port of your choice anywhere on the French Riviera before heading to Plage de Pampelonne and Club 55 just moments from St Tropez. Your yacht’s crew will welcome you with a bottle of champagne and canapés to enjoy on the trip to St Tropez. Travelling by yacht really is the ultimate way to travel, feel free to work on your tan, or even take a swim on the way. Once you arrive at Club 55, your Captain will either take you ashore in the tender or Club 55 will send their water taxi to the yacht to pick you up. And when you’ve had your fill of sunshine and great food, your yacht will be waiting to speed you back to wherever you want to go. There really is no more relaxing a way to spend the day on the Côte d’Azur!

Bespoke Yacht Charter have a huge number of yachts available to charter in St Tropez – Fast day boats from 40-130ft to suit all budgets will take you anywhere you want to go on the French Riviera in the ultimate luxury!

You may also be interested in 10 Days in the South of France, Sardinia and Corsica onboard a Luxury Yacht CharterYacht Charters on the French Riviera

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St Tropez – The original luxury yacht charter destination!

Yachts in the old port of St Tropez
Yachts in the old port of St Tropez

The town of St Tropez on the Côte d’Azur is one of the original summer holiday destinations in the Mediterranean, and today it is even more famous than it ever has been. So what turned the little Provençal fishing port of Saint-Tropez into the legend that it is today? What was once a sleepy and rather quaint town had already begun to attract famous faces like Coco Channel as early as the 1920s, but it was the Brigitte Bardot film “Et Dieu Créa la Femme” (And God Created Woman) that marked the birth of St Tropez as a summer holiday destination for the international jet-set. The year was 1955 as reflected in the name of the beach restaurant “Club 55” at nearby Pampelonne beach in Ramatuelle, which began life as a humble seafront canteen for the film’s cast and crew!

Love it or hate it, there is no denying that this little town is well and truly on the map! Up there with the big boys, London… Paris… New York… St Tropez! Perhaps the most famous town on the French Riviera, St Tropez is invaded in July and August, with over 100,000 visitors a day pouring into the town from all directions. Traffic is a total nightmare in the high season, it can take two hours just to get from the St Tropez autoroute exit into the town itself. As much of a cliché as it may be, it really is better to come to St Tropez by yacht or by helicopter from Nice or Cannes! The French jokingly refer to St Tropez as “St Trop”… “trop” meaning too much, or excessive. And it is true that when you come to St Tropez, all the displays of excess that you have read about in newspapers and magazines, really are there for all to see. But St Tropez is fun, really good fun! No yacht charter on the Côte d’Azur is complete without at least a day spent here and you really don’t need to be a billionaire to enjoy it, though it certainly helps!

Here’s how to do St Tropez in style!

  • Arrive by yacht mid morning, the view of the old town crowned by the Citadel of St Tropez is utterly beautiful! Moor your yacht sternto on perhaps the most famous quay in the world, outside the legendary Sénéquier if you can get the berth, as it’s the one everybody wants! (Saint Tropez luxury yacht charter)
  • Have coffee in one of the cafes on the Old Port followed by some shopping. St Tropez has it all when it comes to shopping, from a genuinely good food market, through to rather tacky gift shops, to the high end designer boutiques of Chanel, Hermes, Louis Vuitton, Christian Dior, Prada and Gucci. Christian Dior and Chanel are particularly special, both boutiques being housed in fabulous turn of the century villas right in the centre of town.
  • After some shopping, head to the gorgeous Place des Lices, a fabulous square near the centre of St Tropez, where the locals play pétanque under the shade of the plane trees. There are some great cafes here and it is the perfect place to enjoy a cocktail or a glass of champagne before heading back to the yacht in the old port.
  • Around 1pm, St Tropez sees something of a exodus as yachts of all shapes and sizes throughout the port start up their engines. They’re all heading for the same place… the beach clubs at Pampelonne in nearby Ramatuelle. Nearly thirty beach clubs occupy a pristine 4.5km stretch of golden sand that is perhaps the most famous beach in the world, certainly one of the most photographed! Unlike beaches elsewhere on the French Riviera, Pampelonne beach is not overlooked by ugly apartment buildings but instead by gentle rolling hills dotted with vineyards and spectacular luxury villas. It is to these beach clubs, that the famous.. and the not so famous flock to in summer months. With names like Tahiti, Nikki Beach, Les Palmiers and Bagatelle, each one of these beach clubs has its own unique vibe with great food, water sports and live music. You need to arrive by yacht… that’s just the way it’s done! Plenty of swimming, sunbathing and a long lazy lunch from 3pm to 6pm is the way to do it!
  • Back to St Tropez for sundowners on the port! Sénéquier is the place to be. This cafe and its quirky triangular red tables feature in almost every photo taken of St Tropez. In many ways, Sénéquier is St Tropez! People watching is the order of the day as the afternoon morphs into the evening and St Tropez really comes alive. The Bar du Port is also great fun, with excellent music!
  • The best place to eat in St Tropez is on the deck of your own yacht in the port. You choose the time, the food and always have the best table in the house! There is a certainly satisfaction that comes from sitting on the deck of a yacht, glass in hand, surveying the amazing food before you as scores of tourists glare at your every move, their eyes looking like they are about to detach from their heads at any moment. Should you not wish to dine aboard, there are some superb restaurants in St Tropez. Highlights include chic fine dining at La Vague d’Or at La Residence de la Pinede and great food with a brilliant atmosphere at Le Quai, a fabulous hybrid restaurant/club on the port that puts on a fabulous dance cabaret show that you really need to see!
  • After dinner, head to the VIP Room in the new port or to Les Caves du Roy at the Byblos Hotel. Both of these clubs have great music, great crowds and epitomise the hedonistic vibe of St Tropez. The perfect way to end your day in St Tropez!

St Tropez is one of the most popular destinations on a French Riviera Yacht Charter!

Check out our Guide to Luxury Yacht Charter

More articles on luxury yacht charters on the French Riviera: 10 Days in the South of France, Sardinia and Corsica onboard a Luxury Yacht Charter & Yacht Charters on the French Riviera

SENEQUIER

SENEQUIER
SENEQUIER Cafe in St Tropez

The SENEQUIER cafe in St Tropez is one of the world’s legendary people watching locations and a must visit on any St Tropez yacht charter. From June to September each year, this waterfront cafe provides a glimpse into the world of the holidaying superrich for anyone that cares to pull up a seat! Enjoy a sundowner as you watch the glamorous jetset get ready for dinner on the back of their huge yachts. SENEQUIER started in 1887 as a bakery in St Tropez selling the locals their favourite breads, croissants and pastries. It is now a legendary bar, cafe and restaurant open from first thing in the morning until the early hours. Grab one of the unique red triangular tables and enjoy the quintessential St Tropez experience!

SENEQUIER – Quai Jean Jaurés, 83990 Saint-Tropez – www.senequier.com

Here’s an article on SENEQUIER and other places to visit in the old port of St Tropez

Vilebrequin Swimming Trunks

Vilebrequin Rolling Stones album cover swimming shorts

If you’ve spent any time at all on the Côte d’Azur, either on the beach or by a pool, you’ll have spotted numerous pairs of these fabulously loud and fun swimming trunks! Worn by everyone from children through to the discerning elder gentleman, they are called Vilebrequins and they are incredibly popular on the French Riviera and in all Mediterranean hotspots. Vilebrequin swimming trunks come in loads of fabulously fun and unusual designs and you can’t help but feel happy when you wear them!

Vilebrequin father and son swimming trunks

Vilebrequin are known for their “Father & Son” concept, it is a common sight to see a Father and Son in matching trunks! Vilebrequins are available in a huge range of designs including limited editions. A visit to a Vilebrequin store on the French Riviera is a must!

Vilebrequin turtle print kids swimming shorts

Believe it or not, Vilebrequin shorts do actually come from St Tropez! The company was started in the Riviera hotspot by Frenchman Fred Prysquel, a motoring journalist and photographer in 1971 and has grown today into a highly prestigious global brand with stores in such places as New York, Paris, London and Beverly Hills. And here’s an odd bit of trivia for you if you’re wondering what the name means. Vilebrequin means “Crank Shaft” in French, reflecting Mr Prysquel’s passion for cars!

Vilebrequin navy blue linen shirt

Vilebrequin also make a range of linen shirts, beach towels, beach bags etc. Vilebrequin also produce a full ladies range of bikinis, swimming costumes and clothing. You can find Vilebrequin stores in Monaco, Nice, Juan Les Pins, Cannes and St Tropez or buy them online at int.vilebrequin.com If you’re planning a rent a boat on the French Riviera, you need a pair or two!

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Pampelonne Beach in Saint Tropez

St Tropez Plage Pampelonne
Pampelonne Beach near Saint Tropez

The 4.5km stretch of golden sand that runs along Pampelonne bay near to Saint Tropez forms one of the most well known beaches found anywhere in the world! The beach clubs here are legendary, from the hedonistic madness of Nikki Beach to the sophistication of Club 55, Pampelonne Beach is the place to be every summer. Pack your linen shirt,  your Vilebrequin swimming trunks, Tod’s driving shoes and head for your favourite beach club. Lazy days in the Mediterranean sun, fuelled by copious amounts of Provence rosé and cool tunes await. Bespoke Yacht Charter have written a great article on Pampelonne Beach and some of the better known beach clubs in Saint Tropez!

Cool St Tropez Beach Rides!

Fiat Jolly
Fiat Jolly

Leave your Ferraris and Lamborghinis at home this summer! If you’re looking for the ultimate way to arrive at Club 55 or Les Palmiers this summer, you need one of these chic Riviera beach buggies. So much cooler than a supercar, these fun summer vehicles are extremely popular all along the Côte d’Azur but especially in St Tropez where they are often seen parked behind the luxury charter yachts in the harbour.

Here are three of the best:

Fiat Jolly

Based on the 1958 Fiat 600, these fabulous little cars look absolutely fantastic with their wicker seats and fringed sun awnings! Originally built for some of the most prestigious yachts and hotels in the world, these cars are extremely rare. It is estimated less than 100 exist. There are lots of copies but the originals are the ultimate in beach auto chic!

Mini Moke in St Tropez
Mini Moke in St Tropez

Mini Moke

Another great looking and fun little classic and a lot easier to find than the Fiat Jolly! The Mini Moke is of course based on the legendary Mini and it is just as nimble. Fabulous fun to blast around the roads above Pampelonne! Built between 1964 and 1993, there are always lots of these great little cars on the market. A very common sight in front of Sénéquier on the old port of St Tropez.

Citroen Mehari
Citroen Mehari

Citroen Mehari

A quirky French version of the Mini Moke. The Mehari is a plastic bodied beach buggy based on the marvellous Citroen 2CV. These cars are legendary on the Côte d’Azur. Over 140,000 were built so they are relatively easy to find. The 4×4 version is particularly sought after and is very rare!

Côte Weddings – Wedding Planner on the French Riviera

Côte Weddings - Wedding Planner on the Côte d'Azur
Côte Weddings – Wedding Planner on the Côte d’Azur

Anne Ager, at Côte Weddings, is an experienced Wedding Planner, who has combined her renowned culinary and hospitality talents, with her insatiable love affair with France, in order to create prestige “haute couture” weddings on the Côte d’Azur  –  and in many other regions of France – including Paris. Anne believes passionately in turning dreams into reality, and she and her team are sparkling with new and original ideas for your ‘destination marriage with a difference’! Based in Antibes, in the very heart of the South of France, Anne has her fingertips on everything that offers the latest trends and styles in luxurious weddings.

Château in St Tropez
Château in St Tropez

Whether your dream location is a spectacular ‘hidden’ château in St Tropez, a vineyard in the Var, a luxury 5**** seafront hotel, a private beach at sunset, or a yacht in Cannes, everything can be arranged with superlative finesse and style. Côte Weddings only works with the crème de la crème of service providers, in order to realise your wildest aspirations and expectations, and to offer a wedding day that is beautifully coordinated and utterly breathtaking.

Wedding on Cap d'Antibes
Wedding on Cap d’Antibes

No wedding celebration is too large or too small, and no two weddings are the same! Anne and her team have arranged intimate weddings or Vow renewals for just two people in Monaco, up to very grand 5-day affairs on Cap d’Antibes for 500 guests. From the moment that you say “Yes” to Côte Weddings, they make all the arrangements for you, and they are in touch with you throughout the planning stages (often up to 1 year in advance). You can make changes as the planning progresses, and add in extra requests from your personal “wish list”. Anne also creates a personalised Pinterest board for you, within Côte Weddings Pinterest boards, and only you have the password. This creates a recorded visual of wedding elements that have been proposed: venue(s), celebrants, bouquets and floral decorations, hair stylists musicians/DJ’s, etc. ……. and you can add your own ideas and visuals as well. A great advantage when deciding and planning at a distance!

Côte Weddings does not just offer the celebration services suggested. They can also provide you with contacts for private transport (airport transfers, etc.), specially selected accommodation suggestions for guests, and arrangements for menu pre-tastings (for those who can make an advance visit), and arrange for a Ceremony rehearsal.

For further details, please contact, Anne Ager at:

CÔTE WEDDINGS

www.coteweddings.com

+33 (0)6 61 24 99 16

info@coteweddings.com

http://pinterest.com/coteweddings/