A while back, we heard the news about Jeff Bezos’ new $500 million super yacht that is going to be so big it will have its own yacht. In fact, it will require the disassembly of a historic bridge in order to pass through and make it to the ocean. Let’s compare how Amazon founder’s vessel resembles and differences from the yacht built for Apple cofounder: now deceased Steve Jobs.
Bezos’ superyacht has sparked more controversy lately as it is reportedly too big to fit underneath the historic Koningshaven Bridge in Rotterdam. This structure dates back to 1879, and although bombed by the Nazis in World War II, it was rebuilt after the war.
News that it must be partially disassembled for the Bezos-owned vessel has angered local residents. According to Dutch News.nl, the bridge was renovated in 2017 and city officials promised it would not be disassembled again.
How does the Y721 differentiate from Venus, now owned by Steve Jobs’ family? We will be looking at its length, cost, construction, design and current location.
Jeff Bezos’ yacht, codenamed Y721, measures 127 metres in length. Once it is launched later on this year, it will be the world’s largest sailing yacht. Yacht built for Jobs, Venus, is smaller: 78.2 metres, a bit over half as long as Bezos.
While building Venus, the entire project was surrounded by secrecy. However, in the case of the Y721, information regarding the project first came from Brad Stone’s book “Amazon Unbound”.
The Y721 sailing vessel is made from both aluminium and steel, and is being built at the moment in the Netherlands by famous privately owned custom yacht shipyard Oceanco. Bezos commissioned the yacht in 2018, and the first glimpse was made in 2021.
This superyacht will be a sailing ship with three massive masts that aids its movement. So far, it is not clear whether it has a backup diesel propulsion, but it is likely it does for electric power. Previously, Oceanco has built other sailing yacht designs (like the famous Black Pearl) that are powerful and ecologically friendly, so it is most likely Amazon’s founder will also aim for an environmentally-friendly yacht.
On the other side, diesel powered Venus has been constructed out of lightweight aluminium and features glass windows along its hull. The ship was designed by Philippe Starck and was built at Headship, launched in 2012, a year after Jobs died. This means the late Apple cofounder never set foot on the vessel.
Venus is a motor-powered ship that features a pair of MTU 16V 4000 M73 Marine Diesel engines and has a maximum speed of 22 knots.
The Y721 wins as the most expensive one, with a big price tag of €430 million, or about $485 million. Venus on the other side was constructed at a cost of €105 million euros, or about $118 million at the time. With current inflation, the cost now would be about $128 million.
The Y721 has a black hull and white superstructure, with an overall design aesthetic described as “classic” by the boating community. According to “Amazon Unbound”, the superyacht is “one of the finest sailing yachts in existence” and it will feature “several decks and three enormous masts”. Moreover, it will have a secondary support boat built alongside the main ship.
On the other hand, Venus is more on the sports, high-tech aesthetic. It features a modern white design with aluminium and glass, as well as various details expected from a ship co-designed by Jobs himself.
In Apple fashion, several innovative features make Venus stand out. There is a false top deck that conceals antennas and receivers, and there is also an extensive glass window that surrounds its exterior. Regarding its interior design, this is a close secret.
We know the Y721 is being constructed at the Oceanco shipyard in Alblasserdam, about 20 kilometres away from Rotterdam. The only route to the sea is past the Koningshaven Bridge.
As it has yet to launch, Y721 has not been in open waters, and it is still unclear as to why the shipbuilding firm has built this vessel in a yard that would require the disassembly of the bridge. Specially because the mast height and draft was known before the construction work began.
Venus was also built in The Netherlands, however, at the Koninklijke De Vries shipyards owned by Feadship in the dutch city of Aalsmeer. Since launched in 2012, it has sailed across the world and is spotted in various ports. Currently the yacht is owned by Steve Jobs’ widow, Laurene Powell Jobs.
Images from Boat International