The Wooden Yacht – A Classic Gift

News that French actor Olivier Martinez recently purchased White Wings for his Australian singer girlfriend Kylie Minogue caused a flutter at All At Sea. Surely this wasn’t the Joel White-designed W-76 Class sibling to Wild Horses, a popular Spirit of Tradition competitor in the Caribbean? And if so, should we expect to see the 5’1”, 6-stone starlet at the helm of the 76′, 52,900-pound thoroughbred next year?

However, a few enquiries were enough to establish that Martinez and Minogue are in fact now the proud owners of an altogether
different namesake, the 1938 Alberg-designed 50′ sloop built by JJ Taylor and Sons of Toronto. In a typically Gallic display of impeccable taste, Martinez snapped up the yacht for his diminutive sweetheart in a St Tropez auction for 370,000 Euros.

Since Minogue is more accustomed to Stiletto than starboard heels, (not on the teak deck!) are the attentions of the fashionable set about to turn away from gleaming, triple-tiered Tupperware towards the far more sophisticated Classic yacht? Are masts the new motor? Could the finish of one’s mahogany come to command more respect than the size of one’s helipad?

Wouldn’t it be poetic if, while the battle rages between the billionaires to build the biggest super-yacht, the real kudos turns out to be
in tracking down and owning a Classic that is, for the most part, one of its kind. Let Messrs Abramovich, Allen and Ellison raise each other up the LOA leader board each year, adding on cinemas, swimming pools, recording studios and tenders the size of car ferries to their vessels. Instead, here’s to the kind of discerning, stylish celebrity who likes nothing more than relaxing with a glass of 1961 Chateau Petrus after a hard day buffing brass.

 

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