When you buy yourself a nearly-new, two-year-old superyacht that measures an impressive 272 feet bow to stern, there’s only one thing to do with your new toy: Send it back to the builder to make it bigger.
And while it’s in the yard being stretched by almost 20 feet, you give it a new top-to-bottom paint job, add a second helipad, reconfigure the cabins, and have a complete overhaul done to all the mechanical systems. Finally, after relaunching your now re-imagined, better-than-new 292-foot world-girder, you cruise it for a year, then put it back on the market with a non-trivial $195 million price tag.
This is the award-winning Here Comes the Sun, the biggest yacht ever built by the Dutch yard Amels, and widely acknowledged as the pride and joy of New Zealand billionaire and passionate superyacht collector Graeme Hart.
The yacht hit the headlines when it was delivered in 2017 and showcased at that year’s Miami International Boat Show. With its head-turning exterior design by Britain’s Tim Heywood and luxurious interior by fellow Brit Andrew Winch, it was the undisputed star of the show.
The original owner was reportedly Russian drilling industry tycoon Alexander Dzhaparidze, known for naming his superyachts after Beatles tunes. Before Here Comes the Sun, he owned the Amels-built Imagine before moving on to another Heywood/Winch-designed Amels, the 197-foot Come Together.
After being snapped up by the new owner in late 2019, Here Comes the Sun went back to the Damen Yachting/Amels sheds in Vlissingen in southwest Holland for what would turn out to be a near-total makeover.
Dutch naval architects Azure Yacht Design were called in to mastermind slicing open the hull and adding the 20-foot extension. They also stretched the sundeck to create that second helipad—there’s also a touch-and-go pad on the foredeck—big enough to land a Bell 429 or Airbus H145.
Other major modifications would include expanding the beach club, extending the swim platform and adding hydraulic bathing steps, plus the addition of a state-of-the-art wellness center with sauna, plunge pool, massage room and beauty salon.
The refit also saw the swimming pool on the main deck—once again the key word here—stretched to 23 feet, while two new bridge-deck VIP suites were added, each with 39-foot-long private balconies.
Saving one of the biggest jobs until last, the entire yacht was sanded, re-faired and re-painted, switching out the original, rather milquetoast, beige-yellow hull color to a classy navy blue with stark white topsides.
“It was a huge scope of work. To pull it off in just over a year was a real credit to Amels,” said Colin Boyle, the vessel’s captain since 2019, who helped project-manage the refit during the 16-month stay in the yard.
Damen Yachting sales manager Michael Coens added: “Many of the same craftsmen and women who were meticulously involved in the original build, worked on her during the refit, remolding and reshaping her into the new masterpiece she is.”
The refit was rewarded with the “Best Rebuilt Yacht” trophy at the 2022 World Superyacht Awards.
Accommodations-wise, within the 292-foot length, sprawling 47-foot beam, and 2,955 gross tonnage, the yacht can accommodate 20 guests in 10 cabins, tended to by a crew of 27.
Without doubt, one of the standout features is the truly massive, full-deck owner’s suite. It comes with a master bedroom boasting forward views through 180-degree wraparound glass, a private lounge with a balcony, office, his-and-hers bathrooms and spacious dressing room.
For relaxation, the owner can kick back in a huge private salon with comfy sofas, dining area, bar, and pool table. Towards the stern, there’s the full-beam owner’s sun deck with sofas, lounges and a dining table for ten. Steps away is a tiered movie theater.
Powering the yacht is a pair of 3,000-horsepower Caterpillar diesels which deliver a top speed of 17.5 knots, a 13.5-knot cruise speed and range of over 10,000 nautical miles at 10 knots. Quantum zero-speed stabilizers ensure no Moet is spilled while under way.
Naturally, there’s no shortage of water toys. The main tender is a sleek, custom-built 34-foot limo built by Germany’s Yachtwerft Meyer and painted in matching navy and white. There’s also a 30-foot RIB and 23-foot Super Air Nautique wakesurf boat. Plus, a small armada of Sea-Doos and seabobs.
The vessel is listed jointly with brokers Fraser and Burgess.
Click here to see more images of Here Comes The Sun.