He may have made his millions in Silicon Valley as the CEO of tech company Oracle but for Larry Ellison the sea is his real home. Owner of 88 metre Feadship Musashi (and previous owner of Rising Sun), Ellison also helped America’s Cup Oracle Team USA to victory in 2010 in his yacht USA 17. The team then went on to win the 34th America’s Cup in 2013 and will hope to continue their victorious streak in Bermuda in 2017.
Humphrey Bogart was one of the best known celebrity sailors of his time and, along with his famous friends, graced some of the most beautiful restored yachts once owned by Hollywood stars. However, his true passion was day boat racing with his wife Lauren Bacall. He often competed in a regatta from Newport to Catalina Island, which has now been renamed the Bogart Series in his honour.
Even one of history’s greatest musicians occasionally suffered writer’s block and where better to look for inspiration than a beautiful yacht? In 1980 John Lennon (pictured above with his Beatles bandmates) took a 600-mile journey from Rhode Island to Bermuda aboard a 13.4 metre schooner called Megan Jaye. Hours after setting off the boat ran into a ferocious storm and, with the entire crew falling ill, it was left to Lennon to steer the ship to safety. This, it seems, was a powerful enough experience to help the former Beatle produce his final solo album Double Fantasy.
The world’s foremost male model is a well known classic car enthusiast but this year he will be swapping his driving gloves for a pair of boat shoes as he joins Vector Martini Racing’s iRace Pro Team. Gandy is the first of six celebrities to train as a powerboat racing pilot for an upcoming documentary in what is quite the change from his most famous yachting appearance to date - in a racy advert for Dolce & Gabbana’s sea-inspired men’s scent Light Blue.
It is a little known fact that Albert Einstein was an avid sailor – which is probably because it wasn’t exactly his forte. As many who knew him recall, Einstein was never happier than when gently cruising on one of his two beloved yachts Tinef and Tummler and seemed utterly unconcerned when he frequently ran aground or crashed into the dock. For this undisputed genius that was all just part of the fun.
Hollywood actor Morgan Freeman says the only time he’s ever experienced love at first sight was when he first set eyes on a sailboat in San Francisco Bay in 1961. Thus began a life-long love affair with sailing that has seen the actor cruise thousands of miles along the coast of his American homeland. Nowadays, however, Freeman is believed to spend much of his sailing time discovering the Caribbean aboard his Shannon 43.
Perhaps no one quite epitomises the glamour of the sailing lifestyle quite like the Kennedy family. Still well known for their nautical associations, it all began with JFK who liked nothing better than to cruise the waters of Nantucket in his 18.8 metre sailing boat Manitou. President Kennedy was also a Star class sailor and even set a speed record while competing in the 1938 Chicago-Mackinac Race.