When we asked the great and the good what Monaco means to them, the answers were diverse and passionate in equal measure. However, only one mentioned conservation – and more should have.
The principality is home to one of the greatest ocean-loving showcases of our time. The Oceanographic Museum (it even calls itself “the temple of the sea”) was famously directed by Jacques Cousteau and founded by Prince Albert I.
And 10 years ago this year, the latter’s great grandson, Prince Albert II, launched his own foundation, which specifically sets out to protect the environment and to encourage sustainable development. One of its projects involves reducing plastic in the Mediterranean, and after reading our feature on a forthcoming documentary, A Plastic Ocean, which sheds light on this horrific issue, we hope you, like us, will better understand the small steps we can all take to help save our seas.
You’ll build a bit more muscle picking up this month’s issue. I recommend 10 reps per arm, and then a long, deep read, followed by a nap, preferably on the sundeck and within easy reach of an icy drink. At just over 400 pages it’s one of our biggest issues ever, which seems appropriate seeing as it features one of the biggest sailing yachts ever built.
Getting a boat like Aquijo into print is never simple, but the effort is always worth it, especially when measured against the long hours invested by yard, designers and owner in building her. Bill Tripp called the creative challenge presented by the yacht “intense”.
The story of Just J’s is pretty intense, too, but for slightly different reasons. In 2014, Dutch yard Hakvoort had €110 million in orders for two yachts, but then both contracts were cancelled within weeks of each other. I won’t spoil it, but it’s a great tale and, like the best stories, has a very happy ending.