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Charter yachts take honors at the World Superyacht Awards 2023

By Nina Done   23 May 2023

The 18th edition of the World Superyacht Awards kicked off with cocktails in Turkey’s vibrant capital, Istanbul over the weekend, and saw an impressive selection of charter yachts win a coveted Neptune trophy during the exclusive prize-giving ceremony. 

The annual black-tie gala dinner event celebrates the world’s finest superyachts of the year, recognising and rewarding ingenuity and craftsmanship in the design, engineering and construction of the luxury yachts. 

Using a secret ballot system by an independent judging panel made up of experienced superyacht owners, the World Superyacht Awards are the only peer-reviewed yachting awards in the world.

Hosted at the elegant Mandarin Oriental along the glittering shoreline of the Bosphorus, the elite of the superyacht world, owners and industry leaders gathered to celebrate this year’s event where 15 Neptunes were up for grabs, including the coveted Motor Yacht of the Year and Sailing Yacht of the Year awards. 

In an event that saw 49 nominees fight it out across 15 categories, charter yachts were awarded trophies in 7 of the categories. Here are the charter yachts that picked up a trophy at this year’s World Superyacht Awards;

Winner: Motor Yacht of the Year


Charter yacht KENSHO

Scooping the top award of the evening, the striking 75m (247ft) Admiral superyacht KENSHÕ was declared the winner by a comfortable margin, having wowed the judges with her owner-driven attributes, charter-focused amenities, high ceilings and Zen-calm interiors. She has also been lauded for her innovative engineering, harvesting power from five variable-speed generators using a diesel-electric propulsion system.

Kensho from €900,000 per week + expenses

Winner: Best rebuilt Yacht


Charter yacht MARALA

Following an extensive refit over two and a half years at the Pendennis Shipyard in Falmouth, UK, the 59m (193ft) classic yacht MARALA – originally built by Camper & Nicholsons in 1931 – has been lovingly restored to her former glory. Judges were impressed by the meticulous work undertaken to preserve her period features while paying homage to her fascinating storied history, such as her time in military service. Her interiors have also been given the full treatment, with a distinct nod to the avant-garde design influences of the era that can be seen throughout her interior spaces and accommodation.

Marala from €220,000 per week + expenses

Winner: Best Refitted Yacht


Charter sailing yacht ATHOS
Main Profile

Catching the judges’ eye, they felt the arresting 63-meter schooner yacht ATHOS merited this coveted accolade chiefly for the exceptionally high-quality work undertaken by Royal Huisman’s refit yard in Amsterdam. Under the supervision of her original architect, Andre Hoek, ATHOS was given new booms, sails and lightweight carbon-fiber rigging, as well as an extended stern to accommodate a larger cockpit adjoining the new owner's cabin, and newly repositioned navigation station. 

Athos from $220,000 per week + expenses

Winner: Sailing Yachts, 30m to 49.9m


Charter sailing yacht SORVIND

Built in Cape Town by Southern Wind Shipyard in 2022, the 35m (114ft) sailing yacht SØRVIND has already enjoyed a slew of nominations for her interior design, naval architecture and outstanding exteriors, so it might not come as a huge surprise that she scooped the Sailing Yacht gong in her category after impressing judges by her high-performance capabilities, charter-focused amenities, Scandi-cool interiors and highly practical accommodation layout. 

Sorvind from €85,000 per week + expenses

Winner: Displacement Motor Yachts 499 GT and Below, 30m to 39.9m


Charter yacht UNKNOWN

Benetti's Oasis 34M yacht UNKNOWN is certainly no unsung wallflower, garnering a raft of accolades since her arrival onto the scene in 2022 that lauded her strong connection with water and nature through her extensive glazing, harmonious indoor/outdoor areas and the Italian yard's award-winning Oasis Deck®. This is precisely what inspired the judges, who admired the yacht’s open aft beach club spanning across two decks, culminating in the infinity pool that straddles two levels, and additional sense of space created by her fold-down bulwarks – deployed for guests to enjoy while at anchor. They were also impressed by the number of alfresco relaxation and entertainment areas peppered across her deck spaces, which they considered truly remarkable for her size category and worthy of a Neptune.

Judges’ Commendation: Displacement Motor Yachts 499 GT and Below, 40m to 44.9m


Charter yacht ACE

Deemed by the judges as “an enviable all-rounder”, the 44m (145ft) yacht ACE has certainly proved a standout contender since her launch earlier this year. Built by the up-and-coming Conrad Shipyard in Poland, the judges admired the yacht for her striking good looks, convivial crew areas and technical engineering features. Already a finalist in her category at the International Yacht and Aviation Awards 2023, superyacht ACE also wowed the WSA judges with her generous proportions, reimagined deck spaces and elegant interiors. 

Ace from €240,000 per week + expenses

Winner: Displacement Motor Yachts, 500 GT to 1,499 GT


Charter yacht COME TOGETHER

It was inevitable that the successful pairing of the esteemed Espen Øino and Damen Yachting would end up scooping an award for their geometrically striking yachts that turn heads wherever they cruise, with the Amels 60 Limited Edition yacht COME TOGETHER proving no exception. Renowned for their next-generation design culture, Damen have been instrumental in creating yachts that not only deliver on space and luxurious comfort but also harnessing a raft of sustainable features, which ultimately won over the judges. Notable features include the seamless blend between Winch Design’s masculine interior scheme with Espen Øino’s angular and geometric exterior styling, the yacht’s innovative sundeck layout and hybrid-propulsion technology. 

Come Together from $450,000 per week + expenses

Judges’ Special Awards


Charter yacht Coral Ocean

Narrowly missing out on the Best Refit Award, the judges had been so impressed by her transformative upgrade that they felt the vast 73m (238ft) superyacht CORAL OCEAN deserved one of their special awards. Suitably impressed by her charter-rich amenities, the Lürssen yacht now features an entirely rebuilt sundeck, with sumptuous loungers and a glass-bottomed spa pool adjoining a central deckhouse housing an informal dining area, bar and TV lounge, with an integrated state-of-the-art sound system creating the perfect day to night party hub. Originally designed by the award-winning London-based studio Bannenberg and Rowell, the superyacht's styling now offers a neutral scheme with subtle color accents and Art Deco-inspired geometric motifs throughout.

Coral Ocean from €650,000 per week + expenses

The World Superyacht Awards will be back again next year to herald another superb selection of superyachts. 

If you would like to learn more about chartering an award-winning superyacht, please reach out to your yacht charter broker.

Instagram credits: @fraseryachts & @njordbybergman


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