Accor ‘talking to Dubai’ to help finance Orient Express superyachts

Accor is in talks with Dubai to help finance the building of two €800 million superyachts under the Orient Express brand, the Financial Times reported.

Dubai Holding, Emirati ruler Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid al-Maktoum’s investment vehicle, was said to be in discussions with the French hotel group. 

The Orient Express yachts are being built at the French Chantiers de l’Atlantique shipyard and are set to launch in 2026 and 2027. 

Orient Express owner Accor has been seeking a backer to help finance the construction.

The first to launch – the Orient Express Silenseas – is set to be the world’s largest sailing ship at 220 metres long, with 54 suites costing as much as €20,000 per voyage.

The ship will use three rigid sales to use the wind to help it navigate, alongside a hybrid system powered by liquified natural gas (LNG).

Accor announced the project a year ago, saying that a letter of intent had been signed with the shipyard for two vessels. 

The company said at the time that the yachts will be financed up to 80% by commercial banks, with the remainder provided by a consortium of equity partners in which Accor will have a minority stake.

Accor and Dubai Holding declined to comment to the FT.

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