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The 2023 superyacht summer recap: Jeff Bezos is now king of the high seas

bezos yacht
Jeff Bezos and Lauren Sanchez are the king and queen of yacht season. They were spotted posing on Bezos' new megayacht Koru in Portofino (left) and making a pit stop in Ibiza.MEGA/GC Images
  • For billionaires and their celebrity friends, warm weather means it's yacht season.

  • Jeff Bezos recently debuted his $500 million megayacht Koru, which criss-crossed the Mediterranean.

  • Here's a recap of some superyachts that made headlines this summer — and the famous faces spotted on them.

Jeff Bezos made headlines in 2019 for a rare appearance partying at sea on David Geffen's yacht, the Rising Sun, with ex-Goldman Sachs CEO Lloyd Blankfein and model Karlie Kloss.

Four years later, Bezos is no longer Amazon's CEO, and he's spent the last few months earning a new title: king of the high seas. As 2023's yacht season comes to a close, it's clear that Bezos' brand new $500 million superyacht won the summer.

Many of the world's rich and famous have shied away from being spotted vacationing on yachts. Warner Bros. Discovery CEO David Zaslav made that mistake early in the season, sparking backlash after hosting a lavish soiree overlooking a bevy of yachts on the French Riviera, just weeks after the Hollywood writer's strike kicked off.

But Bezos and his superyacht guests appear undaunted by coverage of their travels.

Bezos named his megaboat Koru, after a Maori symbol of growth (perhaps a reference to being the world's largest sailing yacht at 417 feet long) and new beginnings.

Koru took its maiden voyage to Gibraltar in April, and a flurry of photographed stops followed: In May, a shirtless Bezos and his now-fiancee Lauren Sanchez — who has a striking resemblance to the sculpture on Koru's bow — took the yacht for a spin off the coast of Spain, before sailing it to the Cannes film festival.

In June, Koru made its way to the Italian Riviera, where the couple posed for photos on the ship's deck. Then it stopped by the Italian island Capri, before posting up at nearby Positano, a cliffside town that's become a favorite of celebrities and travel influencers.

There, the yacht played host to an engagement party for Bezos and Sanchez, which reportedly drew guests including Bill Gates, Whitney Wolfe Herd, Ari Emanuel, and Leonardo DiCaprio. Just a week later, the couple was seen strolling the streets of Dubrovnik, Croatia, with Orlando Bloom, Katy Perry, and Usher.

Yacht season's runner-up: billionaire Barry Diller's Eos

Eos yacht
The Eos, owned by Barry Diller and Diane von Furstenberg, is a yacht-season staple.Horacio Villalobos / Getty Images

Another highlight of this year's yacht season was the 305 foot-long Eos, owned by billionaire Barry Diller and fashion designer Diane von Furstenberg, which also had a busy summer criss-crossing the Mediterranean.

A staple of superyacht season, Eos' 2023 summer schedule included an early stop in Mallorca, where Diller and von Furstenberg hiked with Oprah Winfrey and Gayle King; a trip to Greece where von Furstenberg visited with British Vogue editor Edward Enninful and Valentino cofounder Valentino Giancarlo Giammetti; and a stop on the Amalfi Coast where von Furstenberg snagged a picture with Kris Jenner.

In August, the ship made its way to Croatia, where its owners dined with Hollywood A-listers Candice Bergen, Emma Thompson, and Jason Blum, as well as Diane Sawyer and Creative Artists Agency partner Bryan Lourd.

The Eos docked in Venice to end its summer season, where von Furstenberg hosted the annual DVF Awards — and began furnishing one of her dry-land residences.

Not too far away in Venice's harbor was Maìn, Giorgio Armani's yacht, on which he hosted guests like Sydney Sweeney and Kerry Washington as part of his One Night Only fashion event earlier this month.

Many of the world's other famous superyachts — and the folks who frequent them — appear to have largely avoided the public eye this summer.

"In a world of long-lens constant paparazzi, there is a place for relaxed privacy that many of us take for granted," a longtime superyacht employee, who requested anonymity to speak candidly, recently told Insider.

That's likely the privacy that Geffen is enjoying on the Rising Sun, the yacht where Bezos was photographed a few summers ago — and on which Geffen infamously self-isolated in March 2020.

While the ship has been keeping a low profile this yacht season, it's reportedly been spotted in Capri and Mallorca, though without its typical celebrity entourage on board. Most recently it made a splash in a place not typically known for attracting the world's most expensive crafts: Portland, Maine.

Read the original article on Business Insider