Savarona 124.28m (407'9") | 1931
Savarona was built in 1931 for Emily Roebling Cadwalader, granddaughter of John A. Roebling who designed the Brooklyn Bridge. In 1937 she was purchased as the presidential yacht of Kemal Atatürk, the founder of modern Turkey. Following his death, she was passed on to the Turkish Navy and her condition deteriorated.
In 1989 she was leased from the Turkish government by Kahraman Sadikoglu, who spent $35 million on her refurbishment, including the replacement of her original steam turbines with modern diesel engines. Available for charter, her guests have included the Sultan of Brunei, King Juan Carlos of Spain, Princess Diana, Valentino and Tom Cruise.
- Builders: Blohm + Voss (1931) / Kahraman Sadikoglu (1992)
- Naval architecture: Cox & Stevens (1931)
- Interior design: Donald Starkey (1992)
Issham al-Baher 115.76m (379'9") | 1973
Thought to be a gift from Stavros Niarchos to King Fahd of Saudi Arabia, this yacht has now been renamed Issham Al Baher following the launch of Al Salamah in 1999. Advanced in years, this one-time royal yacht has been passed one rung down the ladder of Saudi Arabian royal yacht ownership. However, it is possible that Issham al-Baher remains a state-funded vessel as the crossover between state and private funding among the Saudi royal family is unclear.
- Builder: Hellenic Shipyards
- Naval architecture: Maierform
- Exterior styling: Cesar Pinnau
- Former names: Al Salamah, Prince Abdulaziz, Atlantis
Christina O 99.14m (325'3") | 1943
Christina O is the largest North American-built yacht in existence. Perhaps fortunately, little remains of her original structure as she was built in Canada as HMCS Stormont, an escort frigate for North Atlantic convoys during World War II. She was subsequently purchased by Greek shipping tycoon Aristotle Onassis, who, in 1954, converted her into the most spectacular yacht of the era, renaming her Christina after his daughter.
Onassis used his yacht to entertain many of the world’s rich and famous, including his mistress, the opera diva Maria Callas, and Sir Winston Churchill. Purchased by a consortium that includes an Irish bank and Greek interests and renamed Christina O, she was comprehensively rebuilt in Croatia in 2001. The yacht retains many of her original features, including the swimming pool with a copy of the Minoan mosaic from the royal palace at Knossos at the bottom. The yacht is available for charter and was featured in volume 15 of The Superyachts book.
- Builder: Canadian Vickers (1943) / HDW (1954)
- Designer: Cesar Pinnau (conversion)
- Former names: Argo, Christina, HMCS Stormont
Sea Cloud 96.35m (316'1") | 1931
When stockbroker and yachtsman Edward F Hutton married heiress Marjorie Merriweather Post in the 1920s, he introduced her to yachting aboard his three-masted schooner Hussar. Post and Hutton later built an even larger yacht, Hussar II, which was designed by Cox & Stevens and built by Friedrich Krupp in Kiel, Germany. Launched in 1931, it had panelled saloons and seven lavish cabins.
When the couple divorced Marjorie kept the yacht and renamed her Sea Cloud. She served as a patrol vessel for the US Coast Guard during World War II and in 1955 was sold to the Dominican Republic dictator Rafael Trujillo, who renamed her Angelita. After his overthrow, she was acquired by Clifford Barbour, who renamed her Antarna. New German owners rescued her from neglect in 1978, returned her name to Sea Cloud, and rebuilt her in Bremerhaven.
The yacht now charters in the West Indies during winter and in the Mediterranean in summer, operating with 60 crew and offering 34 cabins. She is featured in volume 3 of The Superyachts book.
- Builder: Friedrich Krupp Germaniawerft
- Naval architecture: Cox & Stevens
- Former names: Angelita, Antarna, Hussar II, Patria
Nahlin 90.22m (296') | 1930
This classically elegant yacht has an enviable pedigree, having been designed by the revered naval architect G L Watson for the British aristocrat Lady Yule. While owned by Lady Yule she was loaned to Britain’s King Edward VIII for a cruise with his American lover and future wife Wallis Simpson, a trip that surely played a part in Edward’s decision to marry Simpson and set himself on the path to abdication.
She later became the Royal Yacht of King Carol II of Romania, who named her Luceafarul. After the overthrow of the monarchy, the yacht, now renamed Libertatea, served as a floating restaurant and fell into almost terminal disrepair.
Happily, she was found and recovered to England by Nicholas Edmiston and William Collier in 2000. She lay in a Liverpool shipyard for four years but has now been sold to a British owner, and her total restoration, under the management of G L Watson, was completed at the Blohm + Voss yard in Rendsburg, Germany, in July 2010. This included the replacement of almost 70% of her riveted shell plating and the provision of a totally new modern-classic interior designed by Rémi Tessier.
- Builder: John Brown & Co (1930) / Blohm + Voss (2009)
- Naval architecture: GL Watson & Co
- Interior design: Rémi Tessier (rebuild)
- Former names: Libertatea, Luceafarul
Norge 80.16m (263') | 1937
Aircraft manufacturer Thomas Sopwith commissioned this yacht as a tender for his pre-war America’s Cup challenge with the J-Class yacht Endeavour. One of her duties was to carry Endeavour’s racing rig across the Atlantic while Endeavour
Post-war, she was bought by the Norwegian people as a Royal Yacht for King Haakon. The yacht has since served his successor, King Olav V, and the present King Harald, a keen racing yachtsman, in the same role. She is crewed by the Norwegian Navy and frequently cruises the Norwegian coast and attends regattas as the mothership to King Harald’s racing yachts – the original purpose for which she was built.
- Builder: Camper & Nicholsons
- Naval architecture / interior design: CE Nicholson
- Former names: Philante
Al Diriyah 78.65m (258') | 1960
Al Diriyah is reported to be owned by Saudi Arabian Sheik Ahmed Yamani, the former Saudi oil minister who was instrumental in establishing the 1973 oil embargo. The yacht is named after a historic site in the former capital of Saudi Arabia.
- Builder: National Bulk Carriers
- Naval architecture: McClusky
Delphine 78.57m (257'9") | 1921
Automobile manufacturing mogul Horace Dodge named Delphine after his daughter, and his motor yacht was a familiar sight around Detroit and Chicago in the 1920s. She was equipped with an unusual quadruple steam expansion engine designed by her owner, which gave her an impressive top speed of 15 knots. During World War II she served as the flagship of Admiral King, the Commander-in-Chief of the US Fleet.
Laid up in 1962, she was bought by the Seafarers International Union for use as a headquarters ship but fell into disrepair in the early 1990s. She was later acquired by a Singapore company which planned to convert her into a mini-cruise liner for Asian waters, but this sale fell through. Happily, she was purchased by a Belgian woman, Ineke Bruynooghe, and a thorough restoration and conversion brought both the yacht and her original steam engines back to new condition. She is now available for charter. The only surviving steam-powered superyacht, Delphine is featured in The Superyachts, Volume 17.
- Builder: Great Lakes Engineering Works
- Designer: Henry J Gielow
- Former names: Dauntless, USS Dauntless
Lady Sarya 76.32m (250'5") | 1972
Lady Sarya, a classic from 1972, has unconventional looks for a superyacht. Two funnels are set aft in the superstructure, and a large swimming pool is positioned between them on the upper deck. Her tenders include a splendid Venetian taxi, while the owner’s suite has a door in the hull’s side that provides direct access to the water. Despite the size of the yacht she has only three guest cabins.
- Builder / naval architecture: Cantiere Navale Apuania
- Interior design: Rinaldo Gastaldi
- Fomer names: La Belle Simone, Lady Sarah I, Sarah
Talitha 75.28m (247') | 1929
This yacht was originally named MY Reveler and was built in 1929 for Russell Alger of the Packard Car Company. Sadly, Alger died before delivery and the yacht was purchased by Charles McCann, son-in-law of department store magnate F W Woolworth. She was used as a patrol gunboat by the US Navy during World War II and renamed USS Beaumont. She was laid up for a period in the late 1980s before being purchased by J Paul Getty Junior. Getty named her Talitha G after his first wife. The rebuild and subsequent refit by Devonport were so extensive that the finished yacht sailed under a Lloyds new ship classification certificate. Talitha G accommodates up to 12 guests and 17 crew.
- Builder: Friedrich Krupp Germaniawerft (1929) / Devonport Yachts (1993 & 2000)
- Naval architecture: Cox & Stevens
- Exterior styling: Cox & Stevens / Jon Bannenberg (rebuild)
- Interior design: Jon Bannenberg (rebuild)
- Former names: Carola, Chalena, Elpetal, Jezebel, Reveler, Talitha G, USS Beaumont
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