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Understandably, new superyacht launches get the most attention in the yachting world, but for those who understand and appreciate the finer things in life, there is nothing more precious than a classic yacht. They may not be as flashy and pretentious as modern yachts, but these decades-old vessels are a living work of art and are bound to turn heads whenever they cruise by. Madiz, one of the few yachts from the early 20th century still on the water today, is one such beauty and a priceless piece of yachting history.

122-year-old classic yacht Madiz
20 photos

Photo: Camper & Nicholsons

Delivered in 1902 by Ailsa Shipbuilding in Troon, Scotland, Madiz (originally named Triton) is as majestic as it is unique and is looking for a new discerning yachtsman who wants to own and love a grand classic. The 122-year-old yacht is offered for sale by broker Jean-Marie Recamier and yacht sales advisor Jessica Ruez of Camper & Nicholsons International.

To better understand the historical significance of this vessel, know that Madiz is the oldest yacht in the world with a steel or iron hull to have Lloyd’s classification, and at 55.4 meters (182 feet), it is also the largest classic motor yacht currently for sale. According to the listing, there is no other yacht of this age, size, and original standing still in existance.

As mentioned, it was built by now-defunct Scottish yard Ailsa Shipbuilding on the banks of River Clyde, the cradle of one of the first and most famous shipbuilding industries in the world. In the 1900s, one-quarter of all the vessels built in the world were constructed there, with the “Clyde-built” denomination becoming synonymous with high quality and exceptional craftsmanship.

122\-year\-old classic yacht Madiz

Photo: Camper & Nicholsons

Commissioned by James Coates Jnr, a super-rich and successful Scots businessman, as a support vessel for his schooner, Madiz was designed by legendary naval architect George L. Watson, who established the very first yacht design studio office in the world. The famous yacht designer was also behind several other prestigious classics like Britannia, the most successful racing yacht of all time, and the America’s Cup challengers Thistle, Valkyrie, and Shamrock II.

From delivery to the present day, Madiz has lived a pretty eventful and exciting life. It was used as a purely pleasure watercraft until 1914, then it was put into service as a patrol boat in both World Wars, and eventually returned to private usage and served as a pleasure cruiser in the Mediterranean. The classic vessel has passed through the hands of several distinguished owners and was last refitted in 2007.

In the late sixties, Madiz was acquired by Greek businessman Costas Keletsekis, who was captivated by its rich heritage and timeless elegance. The yacht, however, was long past overdue for an overhaul by this point in time, and Keletsekis saw its true potential and committed to rebuilding it from the keel up to bring it back to Lloyds classification.

122\-year\-old classic yacht Madiz

Photo: Camper & Nicholsons

The hull and mechanical systems were thoroughly restored to a high modern standard, and the original coal-fired steam engines were replaced with new diesel engines from MTU Mercedes Maybach. Luckily, much of the original woodwork, including the teak decking and interior paneling, was salvageable, so the yacht still retains its original charm and unique features, with the added benefit of modern upgrades.

Madiz exudes the unmistakable style and grace of its era, but despite the fact that it has survived two World Wars and has sailed thousands of miles, it doesn’t look aged. It is fully operational and offers the same level of comfort and luxury as its contemporary counterparts. Those lucky enough to step onboard will notice that much of its interior retains the Cuban mahogany used in the master staterooms and the oak used in salons and other social areas.

If you’re wondering what it’s like to cruise onboard this classic gem, nowadays, the yacht dazzles guests with its unique finish, great attention to detail, and extravagant interior style that follows the same British Victorian themes of the 1900s. Madiz offers accommodation for as many as 14 guests across seven spacious staterooms on the main and lower deck. It operates with a crew of ten to ensure a relaxed and hassle-free luxury yacht experience and is served by two elegant 6-meter (20-foot) tenders.

122\-year\-old classic yacht Madiz

Photo: Camper & Nicholsons

The owner of Madiz will enjoy private deck access from their lavish master suite, as well as a Jacuzzi-style tub. Guests onboard will benefit from ample outdoor deck areas with dedicated spaces for dining and lounging, such as an open sundeck with excellent water views and shaded seating areas.

In terms of performance, the revamped vessel is powered by twin diesel Mercedes engines delivering 550 hp. It can reach a maximum speed of 11 knows and a comfortable cruising speed of 10 knots, with an impressive range of up to 2,750 nautical miles (5,092 km) from its 50,000-liter fuel tanks.

This one-of-a-kind vessel received further mechanical updates in 2009 and was available for private charter before the 2020 health crisis. Madiz is currently lying in Perama, Greece, where it can be viewed by appointment. The asking price for this classic beauty is €9,750,000 ($10,675,860) with VAT paid.

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