For those with millions of extra dollars to spend on new thrills, a luxury submarine might be the next must-have item.
Graham Hawkes, inventor of the “underwater plane,” made his debut at the Monaco Yacht Show this week in a bid to entice billionaire boat owners to take the plunge, according to Bloomberg.
“This is literally like flying underwater,” Hawkes, a U.K.-born ocean engineer who has spent decades designing cutting-edge diving suits and submarines, said in an interview. “Once you’ve done that, you don’t want to do anything else.”
MSN reports that the newest models of the submarine can reportedly dive as deep as 5,000 feet and include air conditioning and sound systems, and cost up to $4.2 million. That price tag doesn’t include the "shadow" vessel that may be needed to tow the sub if your yacht can't handle an 18,000-pound load.
“There is a change in attitude of super-yacht owners,” Bert Houtman, founder and chairman of the Netherlands-based U-Boat Worx, told Bloomberg. “They’re fed up with drinking white wine and riding jet skis so they’re looking for another thrill.”
U-Boat’s five models equipped with bubble-shaped acrylic windows can hold between two and five people and sink to between 100 meters and 1,000 meters underwater. Rival Triton, which is based at Vero Beach in Florida, is pushing the depth limit to 1,650 meters for similar battery-powered technology.