At the London Boat Show in 1959, Freddy Heineken convinced Carlo Riva that if he wanted to design larger yachts than the typical runabouts that Riva was and remains famous for, he should only cooperate with Feadship. The name for the limited series of Riva-designed, Feadship-built yachts ‘Caravelle’ was unanimously decided by both parties after […]
Since the sailing season in New England was becalmed by the COVID pandemic, Serena made a run down to West Palm Beach. Once there, she started her planned 10-year survey and electrical refit a couple months early. Our yacht’s arrival in Florida looked poorly timed when Tropical Storm Isaias began its trajectory up from the […]
Serena arrived in the Caribbean in November as deck cargo in St. Thomas, USVI. (See “Heading South, Serena Hitches a Ride.”) Once underway, she sailed east through the British Virgin Islands and across uncharacteristically placid seas to a winter home base in St. Maarten. Subsequent cruising took Serena south to St. Kitts and Nevis, and then to Antigua, farther east.
Serena arrived in St. Thomas by ship and soon motored east and south through the islands towards Antigua. One early stop was in Virgin Gorda’s North Sound in the British Virgin Islands in a quiet anchorage in front of Prickly Pear island. When the anchor hit the sandy bottom of the sound, Serena’s Caribbean cruising season was officially underway.
When summer ended in New England, Serena’s crew prepared her to sail for the U.S. Virgin Islands, and arranged to hitch a ride aboard the Schippersgracht of Amsterdam.
The boat-toting vessel arrived in Portsmouth, R.I., on November 5th, lifted Serena high out of the water and secured her on deck. The ship was expected to make stops in Philadelphia and Freeport, Grand Bahama, before arriving just outside of Crown Bay, St. Thomas, in mid-November.
Feadship, the Dutch builder known worldwide for its magnificent superyachts, first constructed the steel hull of Serena in 1964 to the design of legendary Italian boatbuilder Carlo Riva. In a nod to that era, when a relatively few private yachts of Serena’s scale were built, a recent edition of Pilot, the boatbuilder’s magazine, featured our yacht.
A Guest Blog by Chris Otorowski –
This year’s NYYC Commodore’s Rally was scheduled for the Exumas, a district of the Bahamas consisting of more than 365 islands also know cays. The water is breathtakingly beautiful here, but also very shallow and filled with reefs.
When the destination for the Rally was first announced, I looked at the charts and sadly concluded that Aphrodite, our newly acquired Swan, had too deep a draft to be on the Rally. So Shaun and I were delighted when Matt and Pam invited us to join them and NYYC Commodore Bill Ketcham aboard Serena, their 74-foot Riva Caravelle Feadship, just out of a winter refit in Fort Lauderdale.
Serena spent the winter in Ft. Lauderdale for systems and cosmetic upgrades, and after a spring cruise in the Exumas, she will join the classic ocean racing yawl Dorade in Newport, R.I. The high point of the season for both Serena and Dorade will be the New York Yacht Club’s 175th Anniversary Regatta, held in Newport in July. Designed by Olin Stephens, a longtime member of the club and legendary figure in the yachting community, Dorade is a sentimental favorite for many club members. Serena has been tapped for race-committee service by Clare Harrington, chair of the New York YC race committee.
Serena was commissioned dockside on July 5 at the New York Yacht Club Harbor Court clubhouse in Newport. The celebrants included several representatives from Feadship who traveled from The Netherlands to participate in the commissioning ceremony. H.J. de Vries shared his memories of the boat being launched at the legendary De Vries boatyard back in 1964. Other representatives of Feadship announced that Serena will serve as the first official flagship for the Feadship Heritage Fleet in the United States. Reverend Mary Johnstone gave a benediction followed by a formal declaration of commissioning by New York Yacht Club Commodore Phil Lotz.