Running a charter business comes with trade-offs. Sporadic use by the owner, in order to maintain a heavy charter schedule, can mean more wear and tear on the boat. An owner may also be relegated to less favorable dates while charterers enjoy peak season. Either situation can wear down the yacht, the crew and the owner alike. After 15 years of chartering as a client prior to buying his first yacht, the owner of the 197-foot (60-meter) Abeking & Rasmussen Dream (who prefers his name not be used in this story) was well aware of those dynamics—foresight that today allows him to run a top-shelf charter program while enjoying his yacht, and his passion for photography, to the max.
As for sacrificing prime charter dates, the owner takes a family-first approach. He says the secret to a successful charter program is more about quality than the number of weeks a yacht is booked. Some years, Dream charters more, and other years, she charters less.
New Sustainability Hub at the 2022 Monaco Yacht Show
The owner’s engagement paid dividends for Dream’s clients after the devastating 2017 hurricane season, which forced some yacht owners to write off their winter bookings completely. With his deep knowledge of the southern Caribbean, which was largely spared from the storms, Dream’s owner had many alternative itineraries in mind, and Dream enjoyed a busy season.
The owner is also thorough when it comes to upgrades and maintenance. Only a year after taking ownership of Dream, he commissioned a major refit by Bannenberg & Rowell Design.
And the day came when the risk to remain tight in a bud
was more painful than the risk it took to blossom.– Billi Reuss
Such freedom to roam has fueled another pride of passion for the owner: photography. Self-taught as a teenager, he honed his craft alongside professionals. Today, some of his most dramatic snapshots are on display throughout Dream. One of those works was recently featured in the Smithsonian Institution’s “Nature’s Best Photography” exhibition. Once again, he nailed the shot. Now it’s on display for Dream’s charter guests.