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Inside the $70 million yachts Jay Z rents

BEAM Staff
June 8, 2018

With a net worth of over $1 billion when coupled with that of his wife Beyonce, Jay Z has rapidly emerged as one of the most influential men in the hip-hop industry. Having purchased the most expensive house in LA, earlier this year, the pair has also been known to rent some of the largest superyachts available, some of them had just left the shipyard.

Most often, the yacht associated with Jay Z and Beyonce's vacation by mainstream media is the 65-meter Galactica Star. The second largest vessel ever built by Heesen Yachts, one of the most exclusive yacht builder based in the Netherlands, the 65-meter reportedly belongs to Nigerian billionaire, Kola Aluko, active in Africa's oil industry.

Though the yacht was never advertised publicly for charter, she was rented out by a few high-profile people at a price that Business Insider puts at $900,000 per week. Expenses for fuel, food and beverages onboard are typically added on top, making up another 25% over the initial rent price. Featuring a helicopter pad, a Jacuzzi, beach club and spa pool, the yacht is one of the most exclusive ever built in the Netherlands.

Whereas it is unknown how much Jay Z and Beyonce eventually paid to rent this yacht in 2013 and 2014, building such a yacht would cost €60.7 at the Dutch shipyard. Adding in customised features and layouts is also likely to push the price of the boat even higher. From signing of the contract, such yachts take near 3 years to build.

Capable of reaching a top speed of 28 knots, double that of other superyachts of this size, Galactica Star features 6 cabins capable of accommodating up to 12 guests. One of them is a master suite that stretches across the full beam of the main deck and comes complete with two dressing rooms, bathrooms and a separate office space.

Aft of the main deck is a lounging area with a glass roof and a spa pool with a glass bottom. Underneath the pool is a large beach club area with sofas and guest space near the sea, which can be accessed through a foldable swimming platform which stretches over 10 square meters. The beach club, a popular feature on modern superyachts, can also be converted into a cinema.

On either side of the master cabin are located two panoramic windows, one of which can be opened to gain access to a private balcony that sits next to the master suite's office. Whilst a common feature onboard cruise ships, balconies have only recently found their way onto superyachts and remain a rare feature on boats of any size.

Forward on the bow of Galactica Star is another lounging area that stretches across the whole width of the boat. In the front of it is the yacht's helipad, which can be used by the owner to drop guests on and off when the yacht is at anchor.

Fully staffed by a crew of 13, the 65 meter comes complete with a team of private chefs and stewardesses, which can typically come up with any type of cuisine guests onboard are looking for. With a total gross tonnage of 961 GT, Galactica Star can reach a top speed of 28 knots, making it one of the fastest boats in her class.

At the time when Jay Z and Beyonce rented Galactica Star, she was the largest yacht ever built by the shipyard. Since, however, an even larger superyacht was built by Heesen, measuring 70-meters in length, called Galactica Super Nova. Following these two builds, the Dutch shipyard announced plans to start building even larger yachts and compete in the 100m+ market.

Born in 1969 in New York, Jay Z, or Shawn Corey Carter, which is his legal name, the rapper has had a prolific career in hip hop ranging back to 1986. Throughout the years, he sold over 50 million albums and 75 million singles, racking in 21 Grammy awards. Currently valued at $810 million by Forbes as the world's second richest rapper, behind P. Diddy, most of his fortune comes from touring and concerts.

Another source of revenue for Jay Z comes from Roc-A-Fella records, an independent label he co-founded with Dash and Burke in the 1990s and later sold it to Def Jam Recordings. The rapper also established a sports management division, Roc Nation, which later got him a small ownership percentage in the Brooklyn Nets. In 2015, Jay Z bought Swedish startup Tidal for $56 million and entered music streaming. In early 2017, Sprint acquired a 33% stake in the company for $200 million, in a deal that valued the company at $600 million.

Jay Z's business career has also mirrored the success of his activity in the rap game. One of the brands he co-founded was Rocawear, along with Damon Dash, he later sold the rights to the brand for $204 million. Also active in real-estate, Jay Z made a series of investments in hotels, he was also a part-owner of the Brooklyn Nets NBA franchise.

Married to Beyonce, Jay Z also owns a Bombardier Challenger 850 private jet, which his wife bought him for father's day in 2012, its value is estimated at $40 million. In 2018, the pair acquired the most expensive house in LA so far this year, paying $88 million for the 30,000 square feet property.

Photos by Heesen / Jeff Brown