The Triton


Star Sapphire doesn’t disappoint


Sometimes, a yacht’s name is pretty clear, honoring a wife or children, or perhaps how the owner’s wealth was acquired.


Sometimes, the name on the stern tells just the beginning of a story.


On the 117-foot M/Y Star Sapphire, the name only tells part of the story. The owner’s previous yacht was Star Love, a 57-foot Carver, and he wanted to keep “star”, said Mate/Eng. Sebastien Lafaille, who offered a tour yesterday. And the owner’s favorite color is blue, so that explains the rest.


You have to step aboard and get the full picture. The full blue picture, to be precise.


It begins with the blue sodalite from Zimbabwe that frames the bar in the salon. Other blue marble lines counters and buffets, is in bathrooms and staterooms.


Blue Murano glass accents doors and windows, grace tables and hang from the ceilings.


The owner didn’t start out to make a statement.
“He didn’t intend to build a yacht,” Lafaille said. “He visited boats for two years, but they all looked the same to him so he decided to build his own. For sure, that way, it would be different than all the others.”


The owner, a retired heart surgeon and also the captain of the yacht, made trips to the quarry in Italy to hand-pick his marble and hired German craftsmen to recreate a basketweave pattern he’d seen on the dining room floor.


The owner and his wife lived aboard for four years, traveling all that time, but put the yacht on the market last year due to health issues.


“The price is down now so there’s been a ton of interest,” Lafaille said. “It’s one of those boats, you either love everything about it or you hate it. I’ve never heard anyone say ‘oh, it’s OK, it’s just like all the others’.”


Other boats have interesting stories behind their names.


M/Y Golden Compass, the 151-foot Picchiotti formerly known as M/Y Southerly, was named after the young-adult fantasy novel of the same name. (The book is known as “Northern Lights” in the UK and Australia.) The novel is set in a parallel universe where human souls exist externally in the form of animals that accompany their humans through life.


Speaking of the arts, the 170-foot (52m) Amels M/Y Marjorie Morningstar is named after the 1958 movie of the same name, a coming-of-age story about a Jewish girl in 1950s New York City. An artist, the girl wants to break from the traditional social and religious tenets expected of her and follow an unconventional path.


And you might have done a double-take when you saw M/Y Blind Date at Ramp E and then again on Dock D. The two yachts were once owned by the same owner, but the 161-foot (49m) Trinity (in the IYC display at Ramp E) sold three years ago and was not renamed. It’s back on the market, sharing show fame with the 134-foot (41m) Lurssen.


Lucy Chabot Reed is editor of The Triton. Comments are welcome at


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