M.Y. Elle makes it to the headline yet again. This time she is selected Charter Yacht of the month by Charterwave.com. Kim Kavin visited this beautiful luxury yacht in December 2008, and this is how she describes her:
Don’t let the original build year of 1993 fool you. Elle's owner has invested a lot of time and money making this yacht into a modernized version of her former self. The 150-foot motor yacht, built by Tacoma shipyard in the United States, used to go by the names Samantha Lin, Dream, Contemplation, Fortunate Sun, and Zsa Zsa.
She got her current owner in 2006, and he kept her for personal use until late summer 2007, when he began an extensive refit. The work lasted from fall 2007 until spring 2008 and cost about $5 million, bosun Sebastian Slighting told me during my tour, adding, “He really made it into the boat he wanted it to be.” Among the refit’s details are: new zero-speed stabilisers, new teak on all decks; new carpeting, furniture, curtains, and other soft goods; a new audiovisual system including flat-screen televisions and iPod docking stations; WiFi throughout the yacht, plus V-SAT-based television; all new air conditioning systems; a rebuilt galley; engine upgrades and rebuilds; and all new water sports gear.
“The owner has also invested in crew,” Slighting said, explaining that the owner is a scuba diver who has hired four crew members who are also certified dive masters. (There are 10 crew altogether.) I noted that the owner is also apparently into water sports in general, what with Elle carrying two 21-foot tenders, a pair of Wave Runners, two sea kayaks, an inflatable canoe, and lots of other little toys such as water skis and wakeboards.
After the refit, Elle was in the Mediterranean, which means that my visit in December 2008 coincided with the yacht’s first Caribbean season post-refit. Her interior décor was lovely, if traditional compared with a lot of newer motor yachts in her size range. Think wall sconces and scenic murals as opposed to overhead lighting and contemporary artwork.
There are also a few truly traditional spaces onboard, including the formal dining area, which is its own room separated from the main saloon by walls (unlike on many other motor yachts). Elle has a master cabin on the main deck plus four guest cabins on the bottom deck—and all five of the cabins have king-size beds. That makes her a good choice for five couples interested in splitting the lowest weekly charter rate of $168,000