At Home With Devon & William Logan Aboard ‘The World’
Published August 1, 2012
Whether snorkeling with sea turtles and Technicolor fish in the Indian Ocean, standing on the rim of a live volcano in the South Pacific, or exploring the icy white wilderness of Antarctica, Devon and William Logan are sailing the world on the biggest adventure of their lives. Seven years ago, they purchased an apartment on The World, the only private residential community-at-sea, a sleek ship that has visited more than 800 ports in 140 countries since it first set sail in 2002. “Every day you wake up,” says William, “you’re in another wonderful place.” For the yacht’s 130 owner-families, like the Logans, The World offers global travel, with high-end facilities, luxurious amenities, and personal service.
Roughly half the residents are Americans; the rest hail from Europe, Asia, Australia, and South Africa. While about ten percent live on the ship full-time, most residents come and go, depending on the yacht’s itinerary, spending about four months on board each year. The average age is 64, but beyond that, says residential director Roz Colthart, the profile of residents is too diverse to categorize. The one thing they all have in common is a “hunger for adventure, travel, and enriching experiences.”
The Logans, real estate investors from Point Loma with three adult children, first learned about The World while watching a special on the Travel Channel. They were so intrigued that they “tested the waters,” joining the ship on a three-week trip to Southeast Asia where they toured Vietnam’s Ho Chi Minh City on scooters, and hiked the jungles of Malaysia. The Logans soon were hooked – line and sinker.
They liked the fact that, unlike most cruise ships, The World spends less time at sea and more time in port, an average 280 days a year. “You stay in place for a couple of days, not just one, so you have more time to explore and ‘live the city you’re in,'” William explains. The ship is also small enough that it can visit anchorages that larger ships can’t, what the Logans call “the hidden gems.” Gems like Christmas Island, a coral atoll in the Pacific island nation of Kiribati, where they found “a huge, thriving bird colony and the most pristine reef we have ever dived in our lives.” In Kotor, Montenegra, a Balkan town surrounded by towering mountains on the shores of the Adriatic Sea, they joined expatriates at a backyard barbeque. And in Fowey, England, townspeople lined the cliffs of this medieval harbor town to wave as The World sailed in.
For the Logans, it’s not just the places they visit, it’s the experiences they have along the way. At Ackergill Tower, a 15th century Scottish castle by the sea, shipmates took part in games, falconry, and archery (the men, of course, were outfitted in kilts). “It was like stepping back several hundred years,” Devon recalls. “After dinner we listened to ghost stories by the old caretaker, and sat in front of a roaring fire. It was magical.” Seeing newborn Cheetah cubs on a South African safari, exploring the sunken ruins of Cleopatra’s Palace in the waters off Alexandria, Egypt, and racing about Corfu in a “road rally” organized by shipmates, are just a few of the Logans’ treasured memories. “The ship isn’t just a bunch of steel,” says William. “It’s a living, breathing society.”
When at sea, the ship bustles with activity – lectures by renowned speakers, golf lessons, art exhibits. “There’s zumba, there’s poker, there are cocktail parties,” says Devon. “The only way not to be involved is to hide.” Facilities include a 7,000-square-foot spa for pampering between ports, two swimming pools, tennis and paddle courts, and a jogging track. A retractable marina at the stern allows for all manner of water sports from kayaks to zodiacs. In the evening, it reverts to a deck for dining and dancing beneath the stars. There’s a full-service fitness center, and golf facilities include driving ranges, putting greens, and a simulator offering a virtual round or two at top courses around the globe. If you prefer the real thing, the ship’s golf pro will book a foursome at prestigious courses from Scotland’s Kingsbarns to California’s Pebble Beach. And there are other perks: residents had breakfast with noted architect Robert Trent Jones Jr. before playing his course at Poppy Hills. Avid golfers, the Logans say their most memorable outings have been at “unique and often rustic courses most tourists never play” in Alaska and Portugal.
Residents can choose from four restaurants offering everything from Mediterranean to Pan Asian, and, of course, plenty of seafood. Portraits has the look of an elegant 1930s-era supper club. If residents prefer to eat “in,” chefs will personally prepare meals in their apartments, from a romantic dinner for two to appetizers and cocktails for a crowd. There are also several cocktail bars and lounges, including the Quantum Night Club. When in port, concierge can arrange culinary adventures, as elaborate as a five-course feast at a chateau in Bordeaux, or as simple as picking up ingredients at a market in Portofino.
After a day of exploring, the Logans return to their spacious, studio apartment (co-owned with another couple) with its living area and veranda, decorated with finds from their travels – an ostrich egg from South Africa, a soapstone elephant from Petra. There are no bags to unpack. Says Devon: “You really feel like you’re home when you’re here.” Altogether, there are 165 residences aboard The World, from studios to a six-bedroom penthouse. Residences now available for resale, from 337 to 3,000 square feet, range from $625,000 to $5 million, along with an annual ownership cost to cover fuel, housekeeping, crew, and other expenses. For the Logans and the other residents of this intimate floating city, the friends they’ve made and the experiences they’ve shared are priceless. Their ship, truly, has come in. aboardtheworld.com Andrea Naversen