Checkmate has a special status also because it represents the 100th fiberglass superyacht built by Benetti since 1998. It also flaunts a 100 percent Italian DNA: designed by the renowned Stefano Righini, with naval architecture by the famous Viareggio-based Benetti shipyard, Checkmate reveals lavish interiors styled by Zuretti Interior Design.
As you've probably guessed, the yacht's name is a tribute to its original owner's passion for the game of chess. The owner was actively involved in the design process, which resulted in several customizations that set this 2013 model apart from the other units in the series. For instance, the sky lounge on the bridge deck is longer by two feet (0.6 meters), and the aft doors open to create a lovely al-fresco dining space with 270-degree views.
The other guests onboard weren't neglected either. The owner specifically chose different types of marble for each en-suite bathroom. In fact, the precious Italian marble is one of the trademarks of this ultra-glamorous yacht, together with the extensive use of cherry and Burr Madrona wood.
All of the four guest cabins are located on the lower deck, with flexible configurations. Checkmate can accommodate more than ten guests, and it also includes five separate cabins for up to nine crew members.
The owner's specific passion is also reflected in the main salon. Games tables normally sit in the upper deck lounges on most yachts, but in this case, the chess table takes center stage in the main salon. The circular ceiling designs in the main foyer and master suite, with contrasting black accents, are also inspired by chess pieces. Even the central staircase was discretely decorated with chess symbols.
Performance-wise, this Italian beauty can go a long way. Its twin Caterpillar diesel engines are in top shape, propelling it at a cruising speed of 13 knots (14.9 mph/24 kph). At an economical speed, Checkmate can cover up to 3,500 nautical miles (6,500 km).
Modern additions include Internet access, zero-speed stabilizers, and an enticing water toy selection. The generous beach club is perfect for swimming sessions and launching the yacht's luxurious tenders, a Suzuki-powered 33-foot (10 meters) Ocean Waves and an 18-foot (5.4 meters) Williams.
It sounds like a lot for a decade-old pleasure craft, but this is a Benetti, after all. This is one of the oldest luxury yacht builders in the world. According to industry statistics, it's also the world's largest yacht builder in terms of length and number of units. In other words, it's the builder with the largest number of orders for yachts over 37 meters (121 feet).
In 1980, Benetti delivered the biggest superyacht at the time, called Nabila. The 85.6-meter (280 feet) beast was custom-built for a famous Saudi Arabian billionaire and became world-famous as the Trump Princess after being purchased by Donald Trump. Today, it's still in operation under the name of Kingdom 5KR.
The Italian builder reached a huge milestone in the same year when the global pandemic broke out. Lana, IJE, and Luminosity were the first Benetti superyachts to exceed 100 meters (328 feet), paving the way for a new era of megayachts in the prestigious shipyard's future.