Bespoke Living

Considering a Bespoke Yacht? Chris Cecil-Wright Has Your Solution

Whether you’re looking to build, buy, sell, or charter the perfect vessel, yacht brokers Cecil Wright & Partners is on to a winning formula

As a boy who spent his childhood messing about on boats, Chris Cecil-Wright never dreamed he would grow up to become one of the world’s preeminent yacht brokers. Today he’s renowned for selling the sleekest and best-equipped private vessels available, and also for building bespoke superyachts to precise specifications.

Were it not for an accident that ended a career in the armed forces, the principal of Cecil Wright & Partners would have looked to the sky rather than the water. “After military school at Sandhurst in Berkshire, England, I served as a tank commander with 1st The Queen’s Dragoon Guards and was training to be an Apache pilot,” he says. “When I crashed while paragliding and broke my back, yacht brokerage was always to be my next-best career.”

A portrait of Chris Cecil-Wright aboard a yacht
Chris Cecil-Wright believes the key to success in the yacht industry lies in forming strong client relationships. ‘When you have a good bond with someone, you can have frank discussions and understand their idea of value, size, and quality,” he says.

Surprisingly, it was the military that led Cecil-Wright back to the ocean. “They had several Nicholson 55s and I sailed in them on army expeditions,” he says. The Nicholson name is synonymous with yacht-builders boasting a brokerage arm, so he joined Camper & Nicholsons in 1994.

“After two years as a broker, their former MD, Nick Edmiston, invited me to join him in a new business he was setting up in Monaco. I was head of sales and involved in the rise of the Russian market.” While there are no formal barriers to setting up as a yacht broker, the Chris Cecil-Wright approach is all about credibility. “Being able to show you understand the many considerations an owner may not yet have thought of, and what you have done in the past.”

Those considerations range from all the technical aspects that facilitate speed and seaworthiness to ensuring sufficient space for storage and enough power to run air-conditioning units, wine fridges, and espresso machines, as well as the yacht itself. First, though, the client’s priorities are established. “They will have views on design as well as how they intend to use their yacht. I make recommendations based on my experience, but it is a partnership; building trust with the client is essential.”

Aerial view of a SuperYacht approaching an island
Cecil Wright & Partners regularly charters yachts such as the 36-meter (118 ft) My Zulu, which boasts accommodation for 10 guests and a crew of seven, as well as a hot tub on the upper deck and a swim platform that allows easy access to the water.

Cecil-Wright also helps clients by chartering out their yachts when not in use by the owner. “We do everything from designing a marketing campaign to ensuring legal requirements have been met.”

He will spend 2022 overseeing two big new builds, as well as managing a fleet for charter and acting as the agent for three new yachts up for sale. “Every completion ignites a shared sense of achievement; it’s about a commitment to quality, integrity, and authenticity. When I set up Cecil Wright & Partners in 2013, I built the business on the principles of strong client relationships and delivering what’s promised, and I’m convinced that’s a winning formula.”

Banner image: Madame Gu, one of the superyachts in the Cecil Wright & Partners fleet