Octopus is one of the largest superyachts in the world and also one of the most secretive, that is until she was put up for sale last year. Now under new ownership and available for charter, she embarked on a two-year round-the-world tour at the end of 2021 starting in the Galapagos Islands.
Commissioned by Microsoft co-founder Paul Allen, Octopus was built in steel by German yard Lürssen and delivered in 2003. At the time of her launch, she was easily the largest explorer yacht ever built and heralded a new era of superyachts built to travel to the ends of the earth, equipped with scientific and research equipment and all the little (and not-so-little) luxuries expected of a vessel of this size. With exterior design by Espen Øino and interiors penned by Jonathan Quinn Barnett, Octopus remains, to this day, one of the most impressive yachts on the water.
"[Octopus] is the best possible platform for people wanting to go beyond your typical charter experience," says Sacha Williams, director of charter marketing at Camper & Nicholsons. "Where most yachts will remain tethered to areas with easy shorelines and a lot happening in the coastal regions, this is opening up opportunities in places such as Papua New Guinea, Madagascar and Antarctica. All of these places are on the bucket list but we are going to be led by charter demand."Read More/Inside Octopus: Origin story of the 126m superyacht finally revealed
Her ice-class 1A steel hull means she can travel further than most while her two helipads allow guests to be whisked to shore for polar expeditions on land. Since her delivery, Octopus has explored the coast of Antarctica, traversed the Northwest Passage and even discovered the wrecks of long-lost WW2 battleships off the Philippines.
After a decade of extensive travelling, Octopus checked in for a refit at Blohm+Voss in 2019 where a few tweaks were made to prepare her for the charter market. Work was mostly superficial with new custom furnishings and the removal of a recording studio which has since been replaced by a bar. Accommodation is offered for a total of 12 guests, including a private owner’s deck complete with its own elevator and observation lounge.
Octopus is home to seven tenders, which are stored out of sight in a drive-in garage that qualifies as a "mini marina". The biggest tender is an 18-metre Delta 54, built in carbon with a top speed of 30 knots, and the yacht is set to take delivery of a Triton 3300/6 submarine. Other standout features include a glass-bottomed underwater observation lounge, smoothie bar, a cinema, wine bar, and a basketball court.
On the bridge deck, also dubbed the entertainment deck, guests will find a heated freshwater swimming pool with a retractable glass floor that raises to deck level to provide an extended area for entertaining. A bar, spa pool and pizza oven are also found nearby. "Fun. Fun. Fun. That is the ethos of Octopus," says Williams.
What's more, Octopus is powered by two-hybrid ABB Industry AG E-Motors that limit her environmental footprint wherever she roams. She can reach a top speed of 19 knots when underway and is equipped with a globe-trotting range of 12,500 nautical miles when cruising at 12 knots.
Octopus is listed for charter with Camper & Nicholsons asking $2,200,000 per week. The yacht will remain in the Caribbean this summer before heading to Antarctica for the winter.