By: Scott Way
Four-time NBA champion Tony Parker enjoyed a very, very long career in the NBA. 18 years, in fact. Assuming he was prudent and bought a couple Hondas instead of Lamborghinis during those 18 years, he likely saved up enough for a down payment on his latest purchase: a 115 foot long range expedition yacht.
Parker isn't the only pro athlete getting into yachting. A host of athletes have been getting their sea legs in new boats recently, including Tom Brady's Wajer 55S he took to the SuperBowl parade, and Michael Jordan's 80' Viking he uses for marlin fishing off the Carolina coast.
As for Parker, the longtime San Antonio Spur retired in November of 2019 and has been busy since leaving the hardcourt. He purchased an ownership stake in the OL Reign of the National Women's League Soccer in Washington state, and his Netlix documentary just came out. He is also 20% owner of French basketball club ASVEL in the French Pro A League and serves as the organization's president. All that proximity to coastal waterways has seemingly kickstarted an interest in yachting, so #9 made a serious investment.
His new ride, the Infinity Nine, is a 115 foot expedition yacht with a 25 foot beam from the AvA shipyard in Turkey. It boasts a steel hull and aluminum superstructure with a 6,500 nautical mile range for long range traveling in the Gulf of Mexico (Parker lives in Houston, TX, a short trip to the Gulf coast) and the Mediterranean (he was born and raised in France). The design and engineering was done in house at AvA's Antalya shipyard and is part of the company's Kando series of long range motor yachts.
The vessel has a max speed of 14 knots (16 mph) provided by two Volvo Penta 650 hp diesel engines and a cruising speed of 12 knots (14 mph). Performance and maneuvering is aided by Sleipner bow and stern thrusters, fin stabilizers, Simrad navigation electronics, and Beoning monitoring systems. There are accommodations for 12 guests over 6 en-suite cabins, with 1 master cabin and 5 guest cabins. The master suite is situated on the upper deck to provide a commanding view of the ocean and extends the full beam, creating an impressive space at over 300 square feet. Other highlights include a flybridge jacuzzi, a gym on the upper deck, leather furniture, satin wenge flooring, and American walnut trim and upholstery accents.
The vessel is nearing completion with an expected launch date of March 2021. While there isn't a basketball court on board, there's likely enough room on the aft deck for a quick game of 21 before dinner on the Mediterranean.