Phuket Boating: Cruising like a missile

PHUKET: Range to target: under 3,500 nautical miles. ‘Aye aye, Sir,’ says your skipper and you’re underway. With a long-range cruising capability of 2,000nm at 11 knots, or 3,500nm at 8 knots, the Princess 88 Motor Yacht defines the luxury nautical version of the “great escape”.

Having a non-stop range of more than 6,400km in a single trip – about the same as many long-range intercontinental ballistic missiles (ICBMs) – raises a few eyebrows over what might be required to complete such a trip.

Worry not, even though the flybridge hot tub, hydraulic foldout saloon balcony and aft garage (no joke) are “optional extras”, the 13,000 liters of fuel that can be stored on board will get you there, and the cocktail bar comes standard with an ice maker.

If you’re in a hurry, and your target is closer to home, the deep-V hybrid hull and the twin engines can get the “cruiser” up to speeds of 27 to 30 knots – impressive for a boat that displaces the best part of 70 tonnes. It also means less ice will be needed for the trip.

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The latest version of the luxury flybridge yacht literally wowed visitors at the Singapore Boat Show in April.

“The Princess 88 shown at Singapore is the first in Southeast Asia,” explains Rico Stapel, head of Marketing & Charter at Princess Yachts South East Asia, located at Phuket’s Boat Lagoon.

“No doubt, the luxury yacht was long awaited in Asia. Powerful, agile, graceful and elegant – it has no equal in long distance cruising. The boat is now based in Phuket, here at the Boat Lagoon.

“In every sense, the Princess 88 Motor Yacht bridges the gap between flybridge cruiser and superyacht, for a truly world-class, on-water experience.”

Below deck, the yacht offers designs of four or five cabins, with the four-cabin option comprising a VIP-cabin in the bow of the boat, two guest cabins with a double or twin bed and a luxurious master stateroom the entire 20-foot width of the hull.

Up top, the vast flybridge and huge cockpit with dining area, bar and optional jacuzzi provides plenty of space in which to dine and entertain. On the main deck, if desired, you can install a folding balcony, separated from the passenger compartment by glass sliding doors.

“The expansive lounge and dining area is flawlessly decorated and full of light. The main control room and a well equipped galley are separated from the guest area and have a private walkway for the crew,” explains Rico.

“The interior styling and detailing is exceptional with the finest fabrics and finishes adopted throughout. The expansive saloon and formal dining area are exquisitely furnished and bathed in light from large panoramic windows on either side.”

The Princess name has become synonymous with all that is finest in luxury motor yacht design and as part of the Louis Vuitton Moët Hennessy (LVMH) family, has become a brand of distinction around the world.

“The LVMH luxury portfolio unites many of the world’s most aspirational brands, including Louis Vuitton, Christian Dior, Fendi, Moet & Chandon and Feadship: brands which have achieved iconic status through that rare combination of tradition and innovation, creativity and cutting-edge design,” says Rico.

“Princess Yachts Southeast Asia takes pride in providing luxury new and used yacht sales, dedicated service as well as yacht management in Thailand, Singapore, Malaysia and Indonesia.

“We have been the only authorized dealer for the timeless and prestigious Princess Yachts from the UK since 1995. We also offer premium brokerage yachts from all over Southeast Asia.”

The yacht charter division specializes in luxury cruises not only in Singapore and Thailand, but also all of the best cruising destinations in the Andaman, Mergui, Komodo and the Maldives.

“We pride ourselves on integrity, reliability and passion. Our sole mission is to provide the best possible maritime turnkey experience, from the moment one starts thinking about purchasing or hiring a yacht and every day after that,” says Rico.

“What better way to truly explore Phuket than from the luxury of one of our motor yachts. Our charter fleet ranges from 13 to 40m, including many brand-new and fully equipped Princess Yachts.

“Our yachts go not only to all the famous locations, such as the beautiful islands, crystal clear water and sandy beaches found in and around Phang Nga Bay, James Bond Island, Phi Phi Island and Maya Bay, but also to some hidden gems.”

Also on offer are a variety of activities, including snorkelling and cave kayaking.

“Maybe you prefer the simplicity of one of our all-inclusive packages or you would like to custom tailor your cruise by choosing from a variety of gourmet menus, wines and adding spa massage or a diving lesson in your language? In any case, we will work for you to make your cruise uniquely yours,” Rico teases.

To those who take such good advice on board, and especially those with a Princess under them, perhaps Rico’s renowned sign off to all his missives seems most appropriate: “To a day well lived.”


For more information contact Rico Stapel, head of Marketing & Charter at the Princess Yachts South East Asia – Phuket Office. Tel: 076-239739. Fax: 076-239739. Mobile: 086-690 0444. Skype: ricostapel. Website:

— Chris Husted

Thai Life

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