Ulmarra resident Stan Peacock snapped this photograph of the super yacht Samara heading down river today after it moored overnight at Ulmarra. The vessel has been in the Clarence River at least since Saturday.
Ulmarra resident Stan Peacock snapped this photograph of the super yacht Samara heading down river today after it moored overnight at Ulmarra. The vessel has been in the Clarence River at least since Saturday.

Who owns this super yacht making a splash on the Clarence?

A 24-METRE catamaran complete with its own helicopter has been intriguing Clarence Valley residents for the past few days.

Ulmarra resident Stan Peacock is not easily awed as his neighbour Colin Wilcox has an ex-NZ Navy vessel moored at his wharf, but the catamaran named the Samara was a first for him.

"I've never seen a boat with a helicopter on board in the Clarence River," he said.

Mr Peacock said the Harwood Bridge had been raised to let the Samara travel up the river to Ulmarra, where it moored for at least one night.

"When I took photos of the boat it was heading downriver again," he said.

The Samara was moored at Iluka on Saturday and onlookers were treated to the sight of the helicopter launching from its custom-made flight deck.

A Google search for the boat turned up a couple of interesting articles.

The population of Norfolk Island were just as excited as Mr Peacock when the catamaran arrived in June last year, judging by an article in Norfolk Online.

A magazine devoted to Australian superyachts, Ocean, published a feature on the Samara in November last year.

Neither article has published a name for the owners, who are a Canadian electrical engineer and his botanist wife.

According to Ocean, they approached New Zealand yacht building firm Pachoud with the specs for a:

"Capable, expedition-ready motor yacht equipped for live-aboard cruising anywhere in the world. It had to be practical, robust and offer the comfort and convenience of a luxury home, which it would become for extended periods.

"With the owner's background in electrical engineering, the vessel would be packed with technology, providing a high degree of autonomy and making crew optional, but remain simple to use. It would be fuel- and energy-efficient, and incorporate almost military levels of equipment redundancy.

"Oh, and the owner wanted to fly a helicopter on and off the vessel, refuel the aircraft and carry out routine aircraft maintenance on board."



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