Owner’s are an elusive breed. Secretive, humble and always modest, despite
their obvious trappings of the good life. The Owner of Nordic Star is no
exception, however, he was more than happy to welcome Boat Owner on board
his glorious 1978 CRN, without a non disclosure agreement in sight. His passion
for this yacht is understandable given her beauty and he is more than happy
sharing the story, which as it happens, just like a classic movie, is one filled with
adventure, sadness, but as always, a happy ending.
The Owner’s story starts in London, many moons ago. As an experienced
aviator, he never dreamt of becoming a boat owner. Spending his time above
the Thames, the pleasure craft below never interested him.
At the time, he was giving feedback to Honeywell NASA to develop a newfangled
navigation system called Global Positioning System. He was the first to
try it in a helicopter and soon became known as a GPS expert. As the system
gained popularity, he was contacted by a good friend with a brand new 60ft
Sunseeker, who couldn’t work his out. So, out he flew out, configured the GPS
and enjoyed the water so much, he asked if he could come on the next trip. And
the one after.
This went on for 10 years, but the actual boat bug didn’t bite until 5 years ago:
“I came to Dubai on a business trip and ended up buying an apartment in the
Marina,” said the Owner. “It was here, with the Arabian Gulf only minutes away, I
turned to my wife and said: ‘why don’t we own a boat?’ Two weeks later, we did.
I don’t muck about!”
A Windy diesel bought from Fancy Yacht’s Jyrki was now part of the family
and was kept outside the apartment. Built for the Norwegian fjords, it was ideal
for the Yacht Club rallies, but a return to Europe for a business trip was about to
turn the Owner’s life upside down...
He was involved in a serious accident in the South of France. To cut the story
short, after waking up in hospital two months later, the Owner, immediately sold
his business’ and told the wife: “We’re buying a boat!” Like he says, he doesn’t
With plenty of healing time on his side, he researched the yacht market, with
the South of France, Italy and Greece marked as potential boating gold mines.
And so, he went on a mission, visiting as many marinas as he could, looking at
every type of boat with but one prerequisite: it had to be top class. “I’m classic,”
said the Owner. “I don’t care about age, just quality.”
The journey ended instantly in Sanremo on the coast of Italy: “I stood on the
pontoon, saw the wood through the glass - this is it. Nordic Star is the one.”
Following a sea trial, the Owner flew Jyrki over for his advice while commissioning
a survey and a mere 7 days after arriving in Sanremo - she was his.
To the Owner’s delight, Nordic Star’s history was full and well documented.
She was one of the most chartered boats in the Med and the previous Owner
had employed a fantastic crew, with an experienced captain, his wife, who was
the chef and a Scottish engineer. The Owner had kept her in Italy, close to the
spare parts and she was so successful, she was booked a year in advance.
However, Nordic Star’s new Owner decided she needed some extra “tender
loving care” and left an overhaul team in charge for three months to clean,
replace and maintain. Her charms soon had him back though and he lived on
board for 3 months: “The more we got to know her, the more we fell in love,” said
the Owner, but last year, the time came to bring her back to Dubai. The options
were sail or container and they decided to sail. A delivery crew was flown in, but
the Embassy advised against it due to the escalation in the Egyptian crisis and
the job was left to Peters & May to deliver Nordic Star to Jebel Ali, just in time
for her first booking at the F1 in mid October.
Nordic Star is now very much at home here, with Walidia Yacht Events
organising her expanding diary. The Owner together with Walidia wish to return
her to her crown of Queen of Charter, however, as there are only five late ‘70s
CRNs left in the world, she doesn’t come cheap, it’s an appreciating asset. For
her size, she will probably be the most expensive charter in the UAE. And, as it
happens, by far the most exquisite..