Photography by Coast/Destination NSW
As winter makes its approach to Sydney, it brings with it one of the most anticipated events of the year, Vivid Sydney.
The largest event of its kind in the world, Vivid Sydney is a festival of light, music, ideas that sees the city and the harbour transformed into a mesmerising playground of light art.
Viewing Vivid can often be marred by the chilly winter winds. Luxury charter cat, Coast accommodates for this by offering a heated and covered main saloon, with guests still having the option of sauntering up to the alfresco style bar on the upper deck. In addition, the company waives the normal four-hour minimum for booking charters.
“We understand that with the cold weather, people don’t want to be out on the Harbour for four hours,” says Kate Falconer, who co-owns the business with her husband, Captain Mark Falconer. “So we offer the option of two or three hour charters particularly for the Vivid Festival.”
Plans for the festival this year include an outdoor ‘gallery’ of extraordinary lighting sculptures, a cutting-edge contemporary music program, some of the world’s most important creative industry forums and, of course, the spectacular illumination of the Sydney Opera House sails. Vivid Sydney 2017, takes place from Friday 26 May to Saturday 17 June.
Over 2.6 million people attended the festival last year, but perhaps those who took it in from the harbour had the best vantage point. To help more people do that this year, Coast Harbour Cruises is offering specialist Vivid cruises on thier 21.6 metre Suncoast catamaran, Coast. One the features of the boat that makes it particularly adapted to viewing the Vivid sights are the two 360 degree walk-around-decks on both levels that allow you to take in the changing backdrops and sounds of the festival from all angles.
Anticipating the needs of guests is Kate’s forte, acquired from years of experience in the superyacht industry. Kate was Purser on a 110-metre yacht and her husband, Mark was Captain on 70-metre yacht. They both worked in the Med, Florida, Sardinia and Mexico for many years.
Then 10 years ago, Kate and Mark decide they want to come back to Australia and start a family. “Our passion is boats and we wanted to have our own charter business, using all the experience we had gained from the superyachts,” says Kate.
“We are well practised in having great attention to detail.”
In addition, Kate prioritises hiring former superyacht staff and she is onboard as a cruise director for every charter to ensure that a high standard is maintained. Kate comments that Coast particularly suits charters for large corporate groups because as a catamaran, it’s very stable. Guests can therefore allay their concerns about sea-sickness.
The Suncoast catamaran can host up to 135 people with guests having the option of choosing the charter style that suits their group, a big corporate cocktail shindig or a small family buffet. The charter company has its own catering business, thereby allowing them the flexibility to create menus that suit the range of the palate of their clientele and have direct control over the quality.
As the city turns into a splash of lights, colour and music from 26 May to 17 June, there is nothing better than taking it all from the warm enclosure of a charter yacht idyllically moored for the best vantage point on the Harbour.