124m Katara: A Royal Palace at Sea

By Heather Collier

Little is known about Katara, as she has remained shrouded in secrecy for more than a decade. Reportedly built for the Qatari Royal Family, this custom Lürssen superyacht instantly grabbed headlines as one of the largest yachts in the world.

Launched and delivered in 2010, this breath-taking $400 million floating palace is believed to be owned by Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa Al Thani, the former emir of Qatar, and was designed by Espen Øino, with interior spaces penned by Alberto Pinto.

Katara is rumored to feature a Beach Club with sea-terraces, a heli-pad, a cinema room, a Jacuzzi, several swimming pools, an elevator, an ample number of beauty salons and gyms, an array of jet skis, tenders, underwater lights, and other luxury ammenities.

Due to her lack of outdoor space and visible coverings, a lot of these ammenities are said to be inside the vessel or concealed for the benefit of privacy, with her interiors and specifications not publicly known.

The 7,922-tonne vessel offers more than enough room for those venturing on board, comfortably accommodating up to 34 guests and 95 members of crew, and at 124 metres long, she is said to be longer than a FIFA World Cup football field.

Katara is built with a steel hull and aluminium superstructure, with teak decks. Refitted in April of this year, she boasts a robust performance thanks to twin diesel MTU (20V 1163 M94) 20-cylinder 9,925hp engines, and cruises with ultimate stability at 15 knots, reaching a maximum speed of 20 knots.

As her name suggests, she is truly a remarkable 'celebration' of exceptional yacht-building; encapsulating the perfect balance between opulence and sophistication.

By Heather Collier
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