Former Dutch warship becomes a luxury superyacht attraction in Málaga

by Lorraine Williamson

MÁLAGA – Málaga inaugurated a new dock a few weeks ago to house so-called ‘mega yachts’. Due to their size, these ships cannot dock in many ports. Furthermore, one of the first guests turned out to be impressive. 

The municipality, therefore, invested more than €10 million in adapting the facilities of docks 1 and 2 of its port. As a result, 31 berths have been created to accommodate superyachts up to 180 metres in length. These huge vessels should provide an annual economic impact of just over €104 million. And, furthermore create at least 800 jobs. 

While only time will tell if the estimate of this economic profitability will come true, the Andalucian port has already managed to attract one of the largest pleasure crafts in the world to its facilities. 


Last Saturday, the yacht ‘Yas’ checked into the new dock, automatically becoming the largest vessel to ever visit the IGY Malaga Marina facilities. The ‘superyacht’ is 141 metres long and has a capacity of 60 guests. Málaga Hoy newspaper reports that it has cost $180 million and needs between $20 and $30 million a year to maintain. 

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The current owner of ‘Yas’ is Hamdan bin Zayed Al Nahyan. He is a member of the royal family of Abu Dhabi and very active on social media, with almost 15 million followers on Instagram. In this social network, Zayed also shared images of the interior of his luxury ship. 

Yas, a yacht with Dutch history 

However, the ship had other owners before it came into the possession of the Saudi royal family. It started life as a vessel in 1978 as a Dutch warship and was named Piet Hein F-811. After completing military service, it was sold to the United Arab Emirates Navy in 1998. Piet Hein F-811 was renamed Al Emirat. 

Yas has kept the hull of the frigate and was redesigned by the Paris studio Pierrejean Designer; a company dedicated to the renovation of aircraft and private yachts. 

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