Yacht owners take flight

Business Jet Traveler » February 2008
Microsoft co-founder Paul Allen’s 412-foot-long Octopus features one helideck
Friday, February 1, 2008 - 4:00am

Last fall at the prestigious Monaco Yacht Show, Eurocopter was in attendance-not to buy a yacht, but to sell a helicopter, or two or three, in a market in which helicopters are much in demand. In fact, it is rare these days to see any yacht longer than about 120 feet come off the design board without a helicopter flight deck. On larger vessels that must be anchored out rather than tied up dockside, the on-board helicopter is more than a luxury. For ship-to-shore transportation when the water is rough, and for flights to and from the nearest airport, mega-yacht owners consider it a necessity.

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““When I made the film The Invention of Lying, they gave me a private jet for getting back and forth between New York and London. I thought, ‘I will never use it’ but I ended up using it every weekend. You turn up, right, and the airport is completely empty. I mean, there’s just someone at the desk and then the pilot, who says, ‘Are you ready to go?’ and you say, ‘Don’t you want to see my passport?’ and he goes, ‘Oh yeah, I suppose I’d better.’” ”

-—actor and comedian Ricky Gervais