Almost Famous: Superyachting Posted by Jo Stewart - 17 January 2017 What it’s like to live on a superyacht (for five days) Hamilton Island is one of Australia’s prime locations for superyacht spotting and the ultimate place to begin a cruise around the Whitsunday Islands in luxury. Hamilton Island Airport is the reason window seats are considered prime real estate. When flying into one of Queensland’s most prized holiday islands, passengers around me cranes their necks to catch a glimpse of the Whitsunday Islands below. As one of the lucky ones who’ve nabbed a front row seat to the greatest show on earth, I make the most of my prime position by taking in the glorious sight of the evergreen Whitsunday Islands surrounded by the bluest of blue seas below. It's mandatory to look out your window when flying into the island.. Image via @seewantshop On approach the Whitsundays are a beyond-beautiful sight to behold. However, this is just the preview before the star attraction, which will see me stay on Hamilton Island at qualia and then cruising the Whitsunday Islands aboard a 39.6 metre superyacht called Silentworld. The spectacular Silentworld sailing at the Whitsundays. Image via Silentworld. So how did I end up in this envious position? Well the life of a travel writer is often filled with extraordinary experiences, but at the same time there are many very ordinary experiences that come with frequent travel. Delayed flights, homesickness, jet lag and turbulence that frays your nerves are all by-products of a life spent on the road. However once in a while, an out-of-this-world trip opportunity comes up and silences all of those minor annoyances. Being invited to Hamilton Island to spend five days cruising around on a superyacht is an opportunity you RSVP to before you’ve even been invited. Hint: the answer is ‘hell yes’. A Long lunch at Pebble Beach at qualia adds to the luxury experience. Image from Hamilton Island. Image from Hamilton Island. On our arrival we are whisked away to the island's luxury resort qualia, where we will spent a day and night before we board our superyacht. The resort is nothing short of spectacular and I'm instantly feeling relaxed as I step into my own private pavilion. But I'm not in my room for long and after freshing up, it's time for lunch at coveted Pebble Beach restaurant. Our dining location delivers more stunning views of the Whitsundays and our group enjoy sampling a range of locally sourced seafood. Later, the fun continues and our hosts drive us up to One Tree Hill to sip on cocktails for sunset. The next morning we make our way down to Hamilton Island Marina, where we tuck in to delicious macadamia and maple pancakes at the Marina Café. While Silentworld is awaiting us, we can't help but take the opportunity to have a sneak peek at Dent Island, where the local golf course is situated (this proves to be part of the fun of superyachting, where it's all about what you want to do). While not being much of a golfer myself, the trip is worth it for the fun golf buggy tour around Hamilton Island Golf Club. This reveals killer views and I leave with a newfound appreciation for clever golf course design, which incorporates natural elements into the mix, instead of strangling nature to suit the course design. Golf course with a view. Image from Jo stewart. For someone like me not accustomed to living the high life, stepping onto a superyacht is like walking into a movie. Inside, there are suites with spas, flat screen televisions and at times, better Wi-Fi than I have at home. Up on deck there’s a Jacuzzi as well as sun beds, lounges and a table perfect for alfresco dining. Coincidentally, the 29 degree temperatures are also perfect for alfresco dining, so every morning we feast on croissants, fruit salad, yoghurt and smoothies out on the deck surrounded by the eye-watering blues of the Coral Sea. Seating here each day to dine becomes one of my favourite parts of yachting. Image from Jo Stewart. Relaxed, friendly and not at all pretentious, the crew on board Silentworld have thought of everything (and I mean everything) before you have even thought of it. Forgot your toothbrush? No worries Silentworld has you covered with all ensuites coming full stocked with every toiletry imaginable, from toothpaste to deodorant. Run out of sunscreen? Not a problem because there’s a variety of sunscreens, creams and after-sun lotions all conveniently located up on the deck. Thirsty? Simply request a cocktail or wine, or go to the bar and pour yourself a sneaky whisky while no one’s looking. Hungry? Apart from being served a buffet breakfast each morning, a lunch of share plates every day and by night, a multi-course dinner prepared by a classical trained chef, there’s also impromptu canapes and a basket full of fruit, Lindt balls and nougat if you ever feel peckish between meals. When I wasn't on a sun lounge you could find me in this spa. Image fron Jo Stewart. However, while you’d be forgiven for thinking that it’s all about eating, drinking and relaxing while on board, most of our time is spent enjoying the region’s considerable natural charms. A lung-busting climb to the top of Whitsunday Peak offers a chance to burn off the decadent desserts we’ve been consuming each night, snorkelling Great Barrier Reef allows us to try to find Nemo (I didn’t find Nemo but almost all of the rest of the supporting cast), a helicopter ride over the reef reveals the diminutive beauty of Heart Island, and a beach cricket session on Whitehaven’s famed silicon sand gives us a chance to introduce overseas guests to the wonders of a sport so many find difficult to wrap their heads around. Enjoying a snorkelling adventure is all part of the fun. Image from Hamilton Island. Ultimately, I learn that when you’re on a superyacht off Hamilton Island, the voyage can be whatever you want it to be. Whether you want to drop anchor at a secluded spot like Cid Harbour for a dip, cruise into Hamilton Island Marina to eat at a world-class restaurant or head to coral cay for a spot of snorkelling, the world is really yours when you’re on a superyacht (no wonder celebrities are such fans). Enjoying sunsets aboard our yacht becomes a nightly ritual. Image fron Jo Stewart. Cruising back into our berth at Hamilton Island Marina, I consider overpowering the crew and making off with Silentworld (if only I knew how to steer a yacht). Mutiny jokes aside, returning home to suburban Melbourne isn’t something I’m quite ready for. There will be loads of washing to do, grocery shopping to complete, and traffic to sit in. And quite frankly, I’m not interested in any of that since I’ve just spent five perfect days in paradise with nothing on my mind but what cocktail I’d like served to me in the afternoon as I read magazines on deck. Just like any traveller who has been fortunate enough to experience First or Business class flights, stepping back down to travel in economy is a rude awakening. In all likelihood my next boat ride will be in a tinnie but I’ll always have memories of Silentworld to keep me afloat. Saying goodbye is always hard. Image from Jo Stewart. Also, anytime I want a taste of the high life I can always return to Hamilton Island where luxe hot spots like qualia, the Beach Club Hotel and the Yacht Club Villas await. With any luck I’ll get to savour another slice of paradise soon. Want to plan your own yachting adventure at Hamilton Island? Whether it’s a day-trip sailing to explore the Great Barrier Reef, or a week sailing the Whitsundays on a luxury yacht, Hamilton Island offers a whole range of memorable charter experiences, which will have you enjoying the luxe life. Alani Charters on a day tour to Whitehaven beach. Image from @AlaniCharter instagram Alani Charters Explore this stunning part of the world on board a beautifully maintained, 82-foot motor yacht suitable for a large group or six people over night. AWOL Luxury Charters Explore the beautiful Whitsundays on the luxurious and exclusive Lazzara LSX-78 Luxury Yacht. AWOL and its’ Crew will aim to deliver your ultimate luxury day trip in the Whitsundays. Sir Thomas Sopwith Experience the Whitsundays on board a spectacular, luxurious yacht. This is a true, premium sailing experience and one you'll always remember. Ricochet Luxury Sailing Catamaran Ricochet is a unique 47ft state of the art carbon-fibre catamaran that offers an exhilarating sail without compromising on comfort and sophistication. No expense has been spared on her design and construction to ensure she is light, fast and luxurious. About the Author Jo is a Melbourne-based writer and communications professional who contributes words and images to a variety of publications. Combining her love of writing with her passions has seen a focus on travel, sustainability, wellness and pop culture. This trip was not her first yachting experience, as she lists as a career highlight living on a 75 foot yacht for more than 51 days straight as part of an expedition, which took her to Antarctica, Chile, Argentina and the Falkland Islands.