Do you have a few extra shekels and want to leisurely travel the world in style? Why not own a piece of your own cruise ship and literally travel The World?
Since its launch in 2002, The World has continuously circumnavigated the globe, spending extensive time in the most exotic and well-traveled ports, allowing her residents to wake up in a new destination every few days. Instead of going on vacation, you live your vacation 365 days a year. Sound expensive? You bet your bippee it is! But for some, it’s the only way to fly…er cruise.
At 644 feet, The World is the largest privately owned yacht on the planet. Each resident owns one or more of the 165 private onboard Residences, and collectively, they own the ship, ensuring their experiences – both onboard and off – are far beyond current luxury travel standards.
Travel itineraries, or The Program as it is referred to by the shipboard residents, is voted on and pre-planned a year in advance. The Program brings onboard experts in from all different fields – diving, wine tasting, world cultures – to prepare residents for each port they visit, and beyond. As time passes, neighbors become travel companions and travel companions become good friends.
The World lists its 2011 travel itinerary as follows:
“You begin the year at the bottom of the planet, exploring ice-covered Antartic terrain and Chilean fjords. In between you’ll wind your way up the intricate South American coast, bask in the Carribbean sun, and arrive in Central Park as the flowers begin to blossom. Then you’ll journey to the Western and Northern Europe, drift through the Med, and delve deep into Turkish history, African culture, and the wildlife of the Seychelles. Then end the year on the warm, vibrant shores of Cape Town South Africa.”
All that and more for the low price of (as of 2010) $600,000 USD for a 328 sq ft studio (Ocean Studio 661), Ocean Residence 1006 (2 bedroom, 2.5 bath) $2,950,000 USD, and The World Suite 1108/1110 is a bargain at $13,500,000 USD.
In addition, there’s the matter of a small monthly homeowner dues fee ranging from $20,000 per month (for the smaller units) and up, to cover fuel, crew, maintenance and a basic meal allowance for owners.
All things considered though, if you tally up a few round-the-world vacations À la carte, with airfare, the best hotels and all the extras, it starts to make a little more financial sense. And to figure in the appreciation and tax write-offs of owning your own travel residence. Maybe not a bargain still, but the average resident of The world isn’t a really much of bargain shopper either.
“Is that the sound of a Dom cork popping darling? Ah, Cin-cin my dear.”