The tabloids have been on fire this week with revelations that superstar Jennifer Lopez has been celebrating her 52nd birthday in style, cruising the Mediterranean with on-again beau, actor Ben Affleck, aboard a stunning superyacht. J.Lo’s Instagram photos show the reunited Bennifer in top form. The power couple has also been snapped hanging out in tony Saint-Tropez, enjoying retail therapy in Monaco and strolling the romantic island of Capri, all from their private getaway, the 280-foot Lürssen-built superyacht Valerie.
Until now, little has been known about the 280-foot superyacht Valerie. But after 10 years of being the private retreat of a Ukrainian billionaire, the Valerie is now on the market for about US$130 million, or nearly RM550 million.
Until a buyer is found, it’s available for rent through Monaco-based Dynamiq Sales & Charter–which is also handling the sale–at a whopping $1.12 million a week. J.Lo is believed to have been the first to have booked.
The superyacht’s sleek, timeless lines are from the drawing board of Norwegian naval starchitect Espen Øino. He’s responsible for such superyacht icons as the 426-foot Flying Fox, the late Paul Allen’s 413-foot Octopus, and soon to be the world’s largest superyacht, the 600-foot REV Ocean.
“Valerie is still considered by many to be one of the most beautiful boats we have done with Lürssen,” Monaco-based Øino told Robb Report.
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With an impressive volume of 2,755 gross tonnes, the yacht has no shortage of interior space, with accommodations for 17 guests in nine cabins, including a truly hedonistic master suite. When Lopez and Affleck were aboard, they were pampered by Valerie’s crew of 27.
One of the multitude of design highlights of the yacht is its huge, private upper deck. Up top, there’s a 20-foot swimming pool, the inevitable hot tub, and a football field of lounge pads.
Steps away, protected from prying eyes and paparazzi lenses by towering sides, is a dining table for 10, complete with musical fountains that light up at night.
For additional sunning and dipping, Valerie’s vast forward deck, with a touch-and-go helipad big enough to land a Eurocopter EC130 or Bell 407, has another pool and a semi-circle of sunpads. The deck can also double as a golf driving range.
The sumptuous interior is the work of London-based designers Pascale Reymond and Andrew Langton, of Reymond Langton Design. They specified 7.5-foot-high ceilings and walls of full-height windows to provide full-on sea views.
The living areas have a formal, Art Deco look and feel, which contrast with the more-relaxed outdoor spaces. The fine detailing inside includes soft leather wall panels—even the elevator is leather-lined—wood flooring incorporating an intricate inlay, and the pièce de résistance: real butterflies set into brass detailing.
An equally jaw-dropping feature of the lounge is the floating Schimmel Pegasus grand piano, originally conceived by the eccentric German industrial designer Luigi Colani. The instrument costs around US$100,000.
One other headline feature, especially for the fitness-focused Lopez, is the wellness suite of the superyacht Valerie. It comes with a steam room and Hamman, and state-of-the-art Italian-made Technogym fitness equipment. After a hard workout, close by is a starlight-ceilinged massage room and beauty salon.
Instead of a stuffy formal dining room inside, the owner specified an alfresco dining area on the main deck just outside the salon. There’s seating for 14 around the inlaid, mirror-varnished oval table, with panoramic views over the aft deck.
To make sure the yacht can sprint from Monaco to Capri in time for sunrise, the steel-hulled Valerie is powered by twin 2,700 hp MTU V-16 engines sitting in a cavernous, double-height engine room. They deliver a top speed of 20 mph, though cruising at a more relaxed 14 mph, she has an easy transatlantic range of 6,000 nautical miles.
With a major refit in 2019 that saw fresh, bright-white hull paint and a comprehensive systems overhaul, plus a 10-year Lloyds survey completed in May this year, the superyacht Valerie is reckoned to be as good as new.
“This is a rare opportunity for someone to acquire one of the most impressive and impeccably maintained superyachts on the market, without waiting years for a new construction,” Maria Dobroserdova, Dynamiq Sales & Charter broker tells Robb Report.
By the end of this week, maybe J.Lo and Ben might end-up loving the yacht so much they’ll write a check.
Previously published on Robb Report.