AQUIJO - The sailor's dream
For many years the general wisdom when it came to sailing yachts was that the bigger they were the less fun they would be to sail. You needed to make a choice between luxury and manoeuvrability. There were smaller sailing yachts with elegant steering, but limited room for entertaining on deck, or larger yachts with ample space for dining halls and on-deck Jacuzzis, and these larger yachts were said to have ‘lumbered’ in the water.
This dilemma, however, may have finally been solved, after two of the Netherlands’ greatest ship makers, Vitters and Oceanco, engineered AQUIJO, designed by Bill Tripp: the enormous luxury sailing yacht which is harder to pronounce than it is to sail.
What is AQUIJO like?
AQUIJO is an awesome 282 feet in length, and rivals many motor yachts of similar size in terms of space and facilities. The interior was designed by the renowned yacht design, netspace engineering and consultancy rm Dölk- er + Voges and can accommodate up to twelve people in its seven cabins, including a vast bridge deck Owner's suite that opens to a private terrace with gimballed dining table and two lower deck VIP suites, both of which can be divided into two separate cabins.
AQUIJO offers many possibilities for entertainment, with a 24 person dining area on deck, a barbeque, three outdoor bars, and a sky-lit lower deck beach club with a Jacuzzi pool, steam bath and sauna. Visitors on board can enjoy the sailing experience from the flybridge, where there is a second panoramic view. The Jacuzzi is surrounded by sunpads and gimballed tables so you won’t spill your champagne.
The yacht can be explored with the help of its elevator, which also allows disabled access. For those looking to take the fun off-ship there is a wide selection of water toys, including kayaks, wakeboards, and diving gear.
Taking AQUIJO to sea
With all these features it can be easy to forget that this is a true sailing yacht at heart, and it’s here that AQUIJO truly sets herself apart.
AQUIJO is 282 foot long with an above sea level mast height of 88.4 metres, and an internal volume of over 1,500 gross tons. To put that in perspective, AQUIJO is a sailing yacht that is almost as long as London’s Big Ben is tall.
When those enormous sails are unfurled, this is a yacht that is fun to manoeuver with a high level of responsiveness, reaching speeds of up to 25 knots. Steering is firm and steady with powerful feedback, the colossal keel can be adjusted with the touch of a button, and the helm will always feel in control and at ease.
AQUIJO is available to charter through Y.CO, accommodating up to 12 guests and offering an attentive crew of 17. The yacht is for charter in the Mediterranean this summer from €400,000 per week.
© Stuart Pearce