The superyacht homeport of Porto Montenegro
is continuing its expansion with a new marina layout, featuring even more superyacht berths and a headline-stealing 250m berth (820’)
located on one of its outer quays meaning the marina can comfortably accommodate any the largest non-commercial yachts afloat.
It was less than a decade ago that a young developer team backed by some of the world’s most influential businessmen arrived at what was once a derelict naval base in Montenegro’s Bay of Kotor
. Despite a prolific naval heritage that goes right back to the time of the Venetian Empire, the end of the Yugoslav era had not been kind to the area and a massive clean-up operation was required before any construction work could begin.
Once underway however, the marina village’s development has been remarkably consistent, powering through the 2009 downturn and quickly emerging as a genuine challenger to the more established marinas of the western Med. This is at least partly due to the considerable financial backing the project received combined with a sustained, strategic re-positioning of this corner of the Adriatic Sea into one of the leading yacht hubs
in the region.
Talk to any of the onsite customers though and they will all tell you the same thing, that it is all about the customer service experience
once you get here. The predominantly local marina and village teams set out to incorporate the kind of standards one normally expects from five-star hospitality brands, having identified another gap in the market for truly outstanding, personalised service delivery in their competitor marinas. Recognition from the industry has come in the form of the 2015 TYHA “Best Superyacht Marina of the Year”
award followed by a second place award this year as well.
Over the past decade, the Mediterranean has seen several superyacht marinas constructed or re-constructed in various regions. These newer marinas clearly have the goal of attracting the new generation of yachts. Size is key, as larger megayachts are being delivered these days and in the years to come. In terms of super-sized berths, here are some of the marinas in the current leader-board in the Mediterranean.
Porto Montenegro – 250 m
One Ocean Port Vell – 190 m
Flisvos Marina– 180 m
Port Vauban, Antibes – 165 m
Vilanova Grand Marina – 160 m
PortoMirabello, La Spezia – 140 m
Mandalina Marina, Croatia – 140 m
Port Dénia, Costa Blanca (Spain) – 138 m
Grand Harbour Marina, Malta – 135 m
Port Tarraco – 130 m
Palma de Mallorca – 130 m
Limassol Marina – 110 m
Palmarina, Bodrum – 105 m
Marina di Stabia – 100 m
Porto Cervo – 100 m
It is however difficult to give a complete and definite ranking of marinas with megayacht berths. How does one even define a megayacht berth?
Here, we have chosen to exclude berths that are used both to moor cruiseships and megayachts so the berths in this list are strictly for the use of private yachts and could be used over long periods by the same yacht.
For instance, the ports of Cannes, Nice and Monaco on the French Riviera have docks that can accommodate megayachts well over 100 metres in length. They are also located in highly attractive destinations but these berths are only for short stays as they are also used for other purposes. In addition, shipyards have moorings too. Newbuild and refitting facilities such as can be found in La Ciotat
could be considered in this type of ranking however they are not marinas and therefore fall outside of these rankings.
The size of the berths alone does not make a harbour a megayacht marina of course
. Through the decades, various Mediterranean destinations have evolved and adapted to be able to accept bookings from larger yachts. These yachts, due to their size, their crew, and their expectations, had different uses than dayboats, and therefore different needs and requirements in terms of services and facilities.
It is still early days to tell how the arrival in such great numbers of this new wave of megayacht is going to impact marinas and their various cruising grounds as these luxury vessels usually should have a larger autonomy and consequently should be less dependent on marinas, at least on paper. Ultimately though, it is most likely the experience that megayachts receive in these superyacht ports and the level of convenience perceived by both owners and crew that determines how long passers-by will see these behemoths moored in the quays of their local marina.
>> Access Berths in Porto Montenegro
>> Access Berths over 100 m (328’)
MooringSpot, February 2016.