San Diego When David Copley isn't busy shedding reporters and other employees who worked for his late mother's rapidly shrinking newspaper chain, he can be found on the gentle Mediterranean waters off Nice and Antibes, between Monte Carlo and Cannes, on the French Riviera. At least that's where his new yacht Happy Days has been lately sighted, according to Monaco Yachts, a website dedicated to photos and news of luxurious water toys belonging to the rich and famous. Copley's boat, launched from the Seattle shipyards of Delta Marine last spring, was photographed on September 16 and 18 of last year, according to a caption beneath a photo of the sleek white craft, which sports an elaborate complement of electronic gear on its mast. Another photo shows an intrepid worker, suspended on ropes, washing the windows. Happy Days was later spotted after arriving in the vicinity of Saint Barthélemy, an island in the French West Indies, according to a caption on a photo posted December 29.
Another website, Yachtspotter, traces last autumn's westward progress of the Happy Days from Saint-Tropez on October 7 through the Strait of Gibraltar on November 3 across the Atlantic to Port de Gustavia on St. Barths on November 16. The boat was also seen there the day after Christmas, the site reports. Notes the yacht builder's website: "With her broad 34-foot beam, Happy Days offers 7,500 square feet of living space. She features a master suite on the upper deck with its own lounge forward and an intimate dining area aft. Two VIP staterooms are on the main deck, and four guestrooms are on the lower deck. An elevator serves all four decks."
The description continues, "This 50 meter full-displacement motor yacht is the fourth project built in this series. In order to satisfy the Owner's request for more interior volume, Delta modified the hull tooling to both extend the length and widen the beam. The sun deck is designed for entertaining, complete with day head, Jacuzzi tub, sunning chairs, bar and outdoor galley. This deck will offer its guest shade under a lightweight, contemporary bimini that supports the mast, radar and communication systems."
And when he's not aboard his yacht, Copley can take to the air in the Copley Press-owned G-IV executive jet built by Gulfstream Aerospace. According to registration records on file with the Federal Aviation Administration, the plane, which seats 22, was built in 1990 and is based at Lindbergh Field's Jimsair.