It is now 10 years since Bravo’s hit series, Below Deck first captivated audiences round the world with its enticing blend of the yachting industry’s opulence and all the drama from reality tv. In 2020, the show launched the spin-off series, Below Deck: Sailing Yacht which marked a departure from the motor yachts that have always been used in the franchise. Here’s an inside look on board the luxury sailing yacht, PARSIFAL III, which has been the setting for all four seasons of the spin-off.
What sets Below Deck: Sailing Yacht apart from the other series in the franchise is, as the title suggests, that it takes viewers on board a whole new type of yacht: the sailing yacht. With this change comes a set of brand new challenges (read: drama) as this type of boat depends heavily on wind conditions– requiring a seasoned crew equipped with handling unforeseen conditions that will affect both the vessel’s maneuverability and thus the charter guests’ on-board comfort.
Sailing definitely adds an element of unpredictability … there’s always danger in everything.' - Captain Glenn Shephard
Unlike motor yachts, sailing yachts also have considerably less space: from smaller galleys and crew stations to cramped and crowded crew quarters close to the guest cabins, the crew are under more pressure than ever to provide top quality service to guests as tensions and love triangles have little room to be aired out. With many of the deck duties taking place in the midst of guest areas, it is tough to hide any squabbles and mishaps which will affect the all-important tip that the charter guests leave before they disembark.
As in the other Below Deck series, each season is filmed over 6 weeks in the summer charter season, with a new group of charter guests appearing each week.
Navigating the Mediterranean waters is PARSIFAL III’s full-time captain, Glenn Shephard who has worked on the vessel for over 10 years. Keeping both the captain and the boat the same across all 4 seasons, this marks yet another first in the franchise, which has typically varied the boats from season to season and has replaced the full-time crew with a temporary cast during filming. Fan favourites among the cast include Chief Officer Gary King and Chief Engineer Colin Macrea who have been caught in a love triangle in the latest season. There might be some franchise-firsts in Below Deck: Sailing Yacht , but drama remains a steady constant.
Delivered by the Italian shipyard, Perini Navi in 2005, PARSIFAL III is famed for her tasteful, ultra-modern interior. She can hold up to 12 guests across 5 cabins, which include the master suite, 2 double cabins, and 2 twin cabins. Each room features stunning high-gloss wood panelling in either dark ebony or light sycamore, which perfectly complements the white furniture and upholstery. In addition to the monochrome color palette, the boat also boasts of having a deck jacuzzi and a hydraulic swim platform– offering luxury charter guests flexibility in where they choose to soak.
After a day of watersports, take advantage of the al fresco cinema set up with your favourite drink in hand. With such an impressive list of amenities, it is no surprise that PARSIFAL III was chosen for the Below Deck franchise’s latest instalment– she is indeed one of the most sought after sailing yachts on the charter market.
The boat and crew might stay the same, but each season of the spin-off show has been filmed in different locations across the Mediterranean:
The first series was filmed from the start of June until the end of July 2019 around Corfu in the Ionian Sea. Cruising at a speed of 10 knots, Captain Glenn took charter guests round the island and to neighbouring beaches on the mainland.
Filmed in the summer following the outbreak of Covid-19, Glenn cruised round Split, Croatia from the end of July until early September.
While season 5 has not aired yet, our intelligence shows that it has been filmed between June and July 2023 around Ibiza– returning again to the Balearic Islands.
S/Y PARISFAL III charters from approximately $248 000 plus expenses. If you are interested in recreating the Below Deck sailing charter experience in the Mediterranean, then speak to your preferred charter broker about booking PARSIFAL III.
SAMPLE ITINERARIES FOR YOUR NEXT MEDITERRANEAN YACHT CHARTER