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Inside the adventures of superyacht owners around the world

6 April 2021By Grace Trofa

Every month, superyacht owners reveal where they are in the world, how they're dealing with Covid-related disruption and share their future plans.

(Top image courtesy of Andrew Stutesman/Unsplash)

Georg Stratenwerth

Yacht: G2

Length: 39m

Year: 2009/2018

Location: Costa Rica

You were one of the first boats to get to the Galápagos when they reopened last year. What was that like?

It was amazing. When the world started opening up again in July 2020, we were on the very first flight from the UK to St Lucia. We set off on our passage from there, hoping that either the Galápagos or Costa Rica would open up once we got to the Panama Canal. Only on our way via the San Blas Islands did Ecuador finally decide to open up, so we became the very first yacht to arrive back in the Galápagos. None of the local cruising boats had resumed operation. As we came off the boat in Puerto Ayora, we were welcomed by the mayor of Santa Cruz, who had organised a special reception and a local band playing for G2.

How long did you stay for?

We spent three weeks diving and cruising around the Galápagos and it was truly magical. Many of the local animals come within touching distance; sea lions followed the tender and came to play with us when we were snorkelling and diving. No animal seemed to perceive us as a predator – many had probably never seen a human being before as we were the first to arrive on uninhabited islands after the lockdown. It was a tough situation for the local economy that is so reliant on tourism. 

How did your plans change due to the restrictions?

Covid-19 completely changed our plans. We were meant to be in the Galápagos much earlier than that, as we had planned to head to French Polynesia and end up in New Zealand by the end of last year. Like many other yachts, we were planning to be there for the America’s Cup. Instead, we decided to sail to Costa Rica and spend the winter there.

Wild animals in the Galápagos

What was the best thing about your time in Costa Rica?

The best things are the wonderful people, the many national parks and tropical forests and, of course, the diving. Costa Rica is very advanced: it abolished its army in the 1940s and invested in healthcare and education instead. Today the country generates 98 per cent of its electricity from renewables. Western countries have a lot to learn from this. We never planned to spend several months in Costa Rica but have no regrets. We sailed as far as the border to Nicaragua in the north, all the way south and then to Caño and Cocos Island

Cocos Island is a dream destination. How can you describe it?

As remote as it gets. The only way you can go there is by boat. It’s uninhabited apart from a few park rangers and it’s absolutely stunning, above and below water. It is one of the best dive sites in the world with ancient coral gardens and an abundance of sea life. Seeing half a dozen different types of sharks during one dive is not unusual

How has G2 handled all the bluewater passages?

We have been delighted. G2 eats up the miles and getting from A to B is a lot of fun – at least for those who like sailing. We have not been disappointed. It has become a home away from home and we ended up spending more time on board than initially planned. We hope to be back aboard in June, when we’ll join G2 in Tahiti. We’re still hopeful that New Zealand will make sense as a destination, just a year later than initially planned

Seven Sins

Owner of Seven Sins

Length: 52m

Year: 2017

Location: St Maarten

Have you managed to spend any time on board lately?

Yes, thankfully! In February we cruised around St Maarten and between St Maarten and St Barths. There were too many Covid restrictions to visit the other islands. Island-hopping, which we’d usually do, became almost impossible. But it gave us the chance to really explore St Maarten, which was quite interesting.

How has your Caribbean charter season been affected?

It has been OK. We were fully booked over Christmas and New Year, and the first three months of the year weren’t bad either. We even managed to squeeze in some of our own time aboard.

St Maarten

How are the crew?

We had a rigorous testing regime with the crew and guests, so the yacht really was a safe haven. Thankfully all the PCR tests we did came back negative. Everyone felt safe on board and our captain has set up strict protocols for crew

When will you bring the boat back to the Mediterranean?

She will cross in April – this will be the eighth transatlantic for Seven Sins. We’re hoping the world goes back to normal so we can get to the Sporades in Greece later in the season

All Inn

Owner of All Inn

Length: 40m

Year: 2008

Location: Fort Lauderdale

Was All Inn your first big boat?

It’s our biggest to date. We were partners with two other owners in a 30.5-metre Westship from 2014 to 2018 before we bought All Inn in July 2019

How has the pandemic affected your cruising?

We were in St Lucia when Covid hit last year and we were only there three days! Cruising opportunities have been limited since then. Ultimately, we strive to be on the boat for a week or 10 days every quarter

What are your summer cruising plans?

All Inn will be in the Bahamas until late April, then we’ll move her up to the north-east for mid to late summer. We love the Bahamas for all the watersports, but we’re planning on exploring some colder waters in 2022 when we take the boat to Alaska and the Pacific Northwest

You also own Perennials and Sutherland, two well-known brands for superyacht fabrics and furniture. Do you use the yacht as a showroom?

By default she is covered head to toe in our furniture and fabrics for sure! On the way to Alaska we hope to catch up socially with our many clients in California and Washington. Interestingly, when we bought All Inn she had 10 pieces of our furniture already on board as we have been a supplier to Westport for a couple of decades. The pieces were in great condition and many are still on board

When do you have most fun aboard?

We had occasion to have seven of our 16 grandkids on board in the Florida Keys and we had a great time. We were so happy to have them with us without their parents! But we like having friends on board, too. The boat is a terrific place to get to know folks and to firm up friendships