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Dennis Jarvis, through Creative Commons

Sailing away from Sorrento, heading toward Capri, on the south side of the Gulf of Naples.

Out of this world

Summer 2012 presents a far better option than contemplating a space flight: Sailing the Web’s luxury yachting itineraries provide a sense of exclusive excess, writes Stanley Moss


Above From 30 to 90 m, Sailing the Web has numerous yachts to choose from.


Its not too late to plan your luxury vacation for summer 2012, but still a year too early to plop down $300,000 on a single ticket for seven minutes of microgravity aboard Virgin Galactic’s suborbital thrill ride. Currently, there’s no possibility of immediately floating around the edge of outer space, however, you do have the alluring possibility of luxuriously floating around inner space.
   For the same budget, why not consider taking eight to ten friends on a luxury yacht for a private cruise in temperate waters? Outer space it’s not, and you can dine on the catch of the day and quaff fine wine at a fraction of the cost of space travel, instead of slurping baby food in the company of folks you may or may not want to sit next to; space cadets like Ashton Kutcher already hold reservations. Alternately, you can sunbathe on a private deck instead of being strapped into a seat, and you can choose to do nothing more strenuous than turn the pages of your trashy novel, instead of undergoing three days of training on how to use a zero-gravity toilet.
   The same three hundred large could buy you and your lucky pals a holiday of exclusive excess, plying the seas and coasts of exotic locales easily accessible to major European airports. On charters like these you can do as much or as little sailing as you like, book top chefs for on-board feasting, drag along your own sommelier or Ayurvedic guru, or hop from port to harbour, sampling the best of exclusive gourmet restaurants known only to insiders.
   A look at several proposed itineraries for summer 2012 from Sailing the Web has some tantalizing prospects, starting at about $10,000–$50,000 per week, depending on just how obscenely luxurious the yacht you choose, how long you can break away, and how indulgent your tastes for sightseeing, outdoor activities, snorkelling, fishing, and the finer things of life. For those truly addicted to the territory beyond the stratosphere, Yachting Passion even proffers superb sail and motor yachts from 30 to 90 metres, with over-the-top service in the $60,000 to $1 million per week range. Time for blast-off, everyone!
   The Balearic Islands off the east coast of Spain have a reputation as party central and a land of discos. But Ibiza, Mallorca, and Menorca boast a wealth of unknown pristine beaches and secluded coves where you can swim and dive in crystal-clear waters, when you’re not clubbing, shopping or haute-dining onshore. Valdemessa has a Chopin museum, and Alcudia is known for exceptional Roman ruins. Charters shove off from Palma de Mallorca.
   History buffs love Marmaris in Turkey, a treasure trove of ancient cities, The coastline has Roman settlements and remnants of Byzantium. You can visit undisturbed sunken ruins, Lycian rock tombs, even the Greek ghost town of Kaya Koy. Visitors dine in restaurants with scenic views overlooking idyllic yacht anchorages and fragrant pine forests. There’s an abundance of wildlife viewing possibilities (turtles, herons, kingfishers), and even a spectacular and undisturbed butterfly valley.
   South of the Golfo di Napoli, the Bay of Naples, Italy’s legendary Isle of Capri and Amalfi coast beckon the luxury traveller with a succession of breathtaking islets and beaches including famous Blue Cave and Emerald Cave. You could easily get shanghaied at the trendy community of Positano with its reputation for glamorous shopping, fast convertibles and famous faces. Only an hour away by boat you discover pristine and remote locations for swimming, in the throes of prosaic island scapes.
   Sailing the Web lists over 900 sailing or motor yachts, 30 to 90 m. Somewhere in that vast universe of possibilities an unforgettable sailing experience awaits you, one which could easily be characterized as out of this world. •


For more information, visit or, or email Luca at Sailing the Web partners have a history of over 150,000 miles sailed. Luca Magni also serves as vice president of a great European luxury hotel brand.


Stanley Moss is travel editor of Lucire.




Above Cabrera, an islet in the Balearic Islands, Spain.


Outer space it’s not, and you can dine on the catch of the day and quaff fine wine at a fraction of the cost of space travel, instead of slurping baby food in the company of folks you may or may not want to sit next to; space cadets like Ashton Kutcher already hold reservations





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