It seems the current trend in catamaran ownership is to go bigger! Stephen Cockcroft has in recent years consulted with several clients to buy Flagship catamarans like Lagoon 77, Lagoon 620, Fountaine Pajot Ipanema 58, Lagoon 52, Fountaine Pajot Saba 50 etc. into crewed charter all over the world.
These luxury catamarans are not only a great vacation and adventure travel holiday for you and your family but also serves as your own private all-inclusive tropical resort, anywhere in the world.
But these catamarans are expensive to buy and expensive to maintain and all of our large catamaran buyers look for a way to offset the cost of ownership. There are several ways to achieve your goal of owning a luxury charter yacht in an exotic location. You can buy a big sailing catamaran and sail it yourself or you could hire a crew to sail you around and simply enjoy the lifestyle OR you could do what most savvy owners do and find a way for the yacht to pay its own way.
Most of our owners of catamarans over 50ft, place these catamarans into one of several crewed charter programs. The basic idea is that the boat is operated as a business, which enables the owner to reduce the cost of ownership through the use of available tax advantages and income from charter to pay for the boat. All our owners in these programs have successfully created small businesses and achieved their ultimate goals. It is the most cost effective way to own a big luxury catamaran!
Our experienced team assists and guides owners on how to operate a catamaran as a luxury charter vessel. We show you how to:
We provide you with the following to set up your crewed catamaran
In this case, the owners live aboard, are personally the crew and operate their catamaran as a business. Owners make their “home” their business and enjoy the idyllic sailing lifestyle. There are two options available to the owner operator.
We have helped several couples put this together. Hank & Michaele of catamaran "Feel the Magic", a Voyage 50 and Kristiann & Graham of catamaran “Allende”, a FP Helia 44 are two such couples. These dynamic sailing teams live-aboard on their catamarans while chartering and they act as the crew. They are living their dream while creating a strong business and paying off their future cruising boat. It allows them to enjoy a lifestyle rich in experience and they get to do what they love! According to Hank and Michaele, "…this experience has far exceeded anything we could ever have imagined."
A professional paid crew (not the owners) maintains and runs your catamaran as a small business in the location of your choice. You as the owner have the ability to vacation
aboard your luxury catamaran at any time. You enjoy the five star services offered by your experienced crew, just like a guest would when chartering the catamaran.
The owner chooses the equipment and configuration of the catamaran suited to their family's needs and offer the catamaran to the charter market as if a private vessel. The owner enjoys all the benefits of a crewed yacht while offsetting a significant part of the cost of ownership through charter. The owner’s day-to-day involvement will be less intense, as your crew will be managing the "business".
"Lady Katlo, a Lagoon 620", falls into this category. Our clients and owners of Lady Katlo, Kathy and Mackie, are busy professionals and their time to run a yacht charter is limited, so they hired a professional crew to operate the boat.
It gives them peace of mind and they have the boat moved to the location of their choosing whenever they want to use it. "We like to fly to our yacht, get on board, relax, and enjoy the lifestyle immediately," explains Mackie.
Best of all, not only do they get to enjoy the yacht, but the costs of owning Lady Katlo are significantly reduced through tax advantages and charter income. Check out this stunning 62-foot catamaran in the video at right.
Lady Katlo is currently in a crewed charter business in the BVI.
We have recently also sold a Lagoon 77 into this program. This is a true mega yacht and the flagship for Lagoon Catamarans. While the boat is being built, the owner and our team are setting him up to do crewed charter in the Mediterranean in the summer and in the Caribbean in the winter. Like Lady Katlo, they will use a professional crewed charter yacht clearinghouse and marketing agency like Charterport BVI, Nicholson Yachts or Charterworld.com to manage their calendar, bookings and marketing.
In the hands of the professionals, this luxury catamaran becomes a completely stand alone business with a permanent crew. A Yacht Management company will provide a comprehensive range of services to maximise the owner's enjoyment of their yacht, minimise the risks and liabilities associated with yacht ownership, control the costs of yacht operations and protect the significant capital investment that a yacht represents. See the video of the "Birth of the Lagoon Seventy 7" below.
Charter companies like Dream Yacht and The Moorings offer “By The Cabin” charters on their bigger catamarans that allow the charter guest to enjoy an all-inclusive luxury crewed charter for the price of a stateroom. The boat can also be reserved as a private charter for one party by booking all the cabins. It is very affordable and very popular with charterers.
The boat owner places the boat into service with a crew, with one of these companies. The charter company is responsible for bookings and management and the owners get to use the boat for up to eight weeks a year, fully crewed and catered. These programs normally run for 72 months and the owner is paid 8.5% guaranteed income per annum by the charter company and has no out of pocket expenses to operate the boat except to pay the mortgage.
Placing a new yacht into the program provides all the benefits of owning a deluxe sailing yacht minus the expense and challenges of traditional ownership. Typically, this program is reserved for large catamarans (over 50 feet). To optimize revenue, these boats can follow the sun into warmer waters to make year-round chartering possible. We have several owners in this program, operating very successfully in the Caribbean.
Our complimentary personal consultation is structured to provide expert advice on how to create your own crewed charter yacht business on a large catamaran.
* Please Note: This information is general in nature and purchasers are encouraged to seek experienced legal counsel in yacht acquisition planning and implementation. Catamaran Guru is not a licensed Tax Attorney or CPA and is not qualified to give legal advice, but we can put you in touch with experts who are.