yacht julianne owned by Larry and Joan Castellani

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My Life in Boats: Larry Castellani reveals his yachting résumé

23 June 2023 • Interview by Grace Trofa

A life well lived is a life with family and a boat large enough for everyone, the owner of Julianne tells Grace Trofa.

We got involved with boats the old-fashioned way – my father in his infinite wisdom bought a 16ft [5m] Lapstrake fishing boat with a 25-horsepower Evinrude engine. Instead of using it to fish, we used it to water ski on Lake Ontario, in western New York. We were a large Italian family, very close, and we enjoyed the heck out of it. My mom and dad had 12 children. My father founded a supermarket company and we always joked that he got into the food business out of self-defence. Next, my father bought a 25ft [7.6m] cabin cruiser, and we’d go to the Thousand Islands.

The Thousand Islands, where Larry grew up cruising

The boats got bigger and then when I married Joan, we got our own boat, a little 35ft [10.6m] Sea Ray. We were blessed, everyone was in good health and my father taught us to appreciate Mother Nature. With bigger boats, we ventured further north into the Great Lakes, and we also had a condo for decades in Sarasota, Florida, where the kids grew up and my parents retired.

Julianne is a 90ft Outer Reef Classic

We very much enjoy custom-building and designing boats. My wife does a terrific job on interiors and decor. We renovated a 90ft [27.4m] Burger and had fun with that. And for a couple of years we used a 50ft [15.2m] Eastbay that we operated with no crew, and we kind of like that, just the two of us. But I have to say we have been blessed with great crew, very little turnover and a terrific captain, Tim Hull. He was with us also for the five years when we had a Northern Marine expedition yacht; we built it with the capability to go around the world. But, in short order, we discovered our desire to be offshore at great distances in unpredictable weather far exceeded our tolerance.

Larry and Joan Castellani

We then went into boats that are more designed for southern boating and built a 70ft [21.3m] Outer Reef. We enjoyed the process, working with sales rep Joel Davidson and CEO Jeff Druek. At the christening, with our family growing with grandchildren, we commissioned a 90ft [27.4m] Outer Reef Julianne. It was a two-year build. We’ve had it for a year now and already put 900 hours on the engines. The boat is always accessible to us, we have wonderful accommodations in Longboat Key, and we’ve had a seasonal dock up north for five years in Essex, Connecticut. We like the ambience of New England, the safety, the many small harbours, and I always enjoy bicycling around town.

The Thousand Islands, where Larry grew up cruising
Credit: Getty Images

I tell my wife the best investment I made in my life was to buy her a wedding ring. I’m lucky – we just celebrated our 50th wedding anniversary, and we are still dating. Any wife who says “let’s spend the weekend on the boat,” even though the boat is just a few miles from the house, is a keeper. I’ll summarize it this way: the most memorable nights we have had are when the whole extended family is together, having dinner on deck and watching the sunset. That’s what it is all about.

More about this yacht

Outer Reef Yachts   27.43 m •  2021

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