Sailing Yacht A: are you sure this is a “sail” superyacht?

He’s a Russian billionaire, and Andrey Igorevich Melnichenko’s latest show of wealth — the world’s largest mega yacht — has definitely turned heads with its strange design.

The fancy yacht Sailing Yacht A, was spotted in Kiel, Germany yesterday as it was tugged from a port basin in preparation of its test voyage.


And with its masts towering up to 90 metres high, it was hard to miss.

Built by the German Naval Yards shipyard, it was designed by Philippe Starck, who has described it as a “stealth yacht”.

Sailing yacht A, starboard
OwnerAndrey Melnichenko, but seized by Guardia di Finanza
Port of registryHamilton, Bermuda
OrderedMarch 2011
Yard number787
LaunchedApril 2015
AcquiredMay 2017
IdentificationIMO number1012141[1]
StatusSeized by authorities
General characteristics
Tonnage12,558 gt
Length142.81 m (468.5 ft)
Beam24.80 m (81.4 ft)
Height~100.00 m (328.1 ft)
Draught~8.00 m (26.2 ft)
Installed powerVariable-speed diesel-electric plant
PropulsionLineshaft controllable-pitch twin screw
Sail plan3,747 m2 (40,330 sq ft) 3-mast schooner rig
SpeedCruising: 16 knots (30 km/h)Top: 21 knots (39 km/h)
Range5,340 nmi (9,890 km)

Sailing Yacht A is a sailing yacht launched in 2015. The vessel is a sail-assisted motor yacht designed by Philippe Starck(exteriors and interiors) and built by Nobiskrug in Kiel, Germany for the Russian billionaire Andrey Melnichenko.

Its propulsion consists of a variable-speed hybrid powerplant with two lineshaft controllable-pitch propellers that is sail-assisted by a three-mast fore-and-aft sailing rig. The freestanding carbonfiber rotating masts were manufactured by Magma Structures at Trafalgar Wharf, Portsmouth. Doyle Sailmakers USA manufactured the three fully automated carbon fiber/taffeta full roach sails. The furling booms were built in Valencia by Future Fibres. The rigging of the yacht was developed partially to be implemented on cargo ships and for commercial use. The vessel features an underwater observation pod in the keel with 30 cm (12 in)-thick glass. It is the largest private sail-assisted motor yacht in the world.

Sailing Yacht A was delivered by Nobiskrug on 3 February 2017, and left Kiel on 5 February 2017. It exited the Baltic Sea in light mode on near-empty fuel tanks in order to clear the Drogden Strait with minimum draught. It underwent final sea trials and the final fit-out at the Navantia shipyard in Cartagena, Spain. Boat International called it “the boundary-pushing superyacht”.

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