x Abu Dhabi, UAEThursday 27 July 2017

Get 'moor' than you bargained for in the UAE

The Life: Watch the Abu Dhabi F1 Grand Prix in style next year - just buy a berth for as little as Dh16,455.

Yas Marina, Abu Dhabi. Yachts in Yas Marina during F1 event. Fatima Al Marzouqi / The National.
Yas Marina, Abu Dhabi. Yachts in Yas Marina during F1 event. Fatima Al Marzouqi / The National.

As my friend and I were shopping for the holiday season last week, he casually asked me: "If you could have any materialistic thing in the world, at any price, what would it be?"

It is a pretty standard question, one that kids often ask of each other, but my answer had not changed since I was in the playground: "Probably a Ferrari or a nice boat."

This week, I found out how much it costs just to park a boat. It is a tad more expensive than running a car.

Just the berth for an eight-metre boat at Yas Marina costs Dh16,455 (US$4,480) a year. However, the price does come with some racing-related perks that only two other marinas in the world can offer.

The boat owner immediately qualifies for a berth at the Abu Dhabi Formula One Grand Prix. Only Monaco and Valencia also offer berths with the opportunity to see cars racing at 300kmh.

Rates increase at Yas based on the size of the boat, with track views starting at Dh30,800 for 15-metre berths and running up to Dh491,400 for 120 metres. All berths over 30 metres have a track view and a 50-metre berth costs Dh204,750. If F1 does not take your fancy, then Yas Marina has some other nice extras to entice captains to moor, including VIP tickets to one of the 2012 Yas Island show weekends and discounts to other events.

And just to illustrate the extravagance of it all, berth holders are also entitled to a free trip in a seaplane, organised by Seawings. They can fly direct from Yas Marina to Dubai Marine Beach Resort or have a guided tour of Abu Dhabi from the air.

There are also the usual services you would expect from a marina, such as a concierge and restaurants and bars.

Yet, even though this all sounds very enticing, given the cost of running a boat, I will have to stick with my Ferrari, thanks.


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