In a few months Germany‚Äôs Lurssen will launch the¬†Topaz, which at just over 482 ft. will become the world‚Äôs 4th largest yacht. The only larger vessels will belong to the Sultan of Oman, Dubai ruler Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, and of course Roman Abramovich.¬†Topaz‚Äôs anonymous owner has been unusually press shy, but we‚Äôd placed our money on Crown Prince Sultan of Saudi Arabia, whose current vessel, the 465-ft.¬†Al Salamah was also built by Lurssen in 1999 and is ripe for a replacement. Unfortunately, the Prince passed away in late October, which leaves the fate of the¬†Topaz uncertain if he was indeed behind the commission.
Can Lurssen find a new customer for a $350 million megayacht? Perhaps if some deep discounting comes into play. In terms of Middle Eastern magnates, it would be rather impolitic for anyone not of royal blood to acquire the vessel. The other option of course is for an oligarch to snap it up, putting vodka tycoon Yuri Scheffler‚Äôs 433-ft.¬†Serene in its place. Aside from features one can take for granted such as a helipad or two and a swimming pool, no real details about the vessel have been released. That may be just as well since the new owner will of course want to personalize the yacht.