Genoa – September 2018, the evocative setting of Port Hercules in Monte Carlo, hosted the annual edition of the Monaco Yacht Show, the international showcase for large yachts. Among them was El Leon, a 54-metre aluminium ship delivered to the owner a few months earlier by the Tuscan shipyard Overmarine. At the helm was Paolo Bozzo Costa, a 48-year-old Genoese, who, after following the construction of the yacht belonging to the Mangusta Gran Sport 54 M series for about three years, was preparing to plan the cruise season.
Today, almost three years after that meeting, with the pandemic hopefully declining, we have tracked down El Leon in Southeast Asia in the Banda Sea area (Indonesia). Commander Bozzo Costa talks about how the Covid-19 season was lived in command of a superyacht committed to going around the world.
“We started the Atlantic crossing in November 2018. Christmas in the Caribbean and then, once we had crossed the Panama Canal, in January 2019 we headed to the Galapagos and then returned to Costa Rica”, explains Mr Bozzo Costa. Then the yacht moved to British Columbia where the summer cruise began, for about 1,500 miles from Seattle to Juneau in Alaska. On board, through the satellite antenna, the crew learned what was happening in the world with the spread of Covid-19 and El Leon which, in the meantime, had arrived in French Polynesia with the owner on board, was blocked by the lockdown.
To try and spend this period in the best possible way, some activities were organised to keep the crew’s morale up: gym, fishing and cooking lessons. Finally, since the end of last year, El Leon has moved to Asia where she will remain for the whole of 2021 before returning to the Mediterranean in the first months of next year thereby concluding the world tour.