When David Beckham attended Riva’s one hundred and eightieth anniversary gala in Venice, he wasn’t solely there so as to add stardust and glamour to the black-tie occasion. Actually, the England soccer icon — who actually wore a black tie — does appeal to publicity as one of many world’s most recognisable sporting figures.
Nonetheless, the 47-year-old was additionally invited to Riva’s glamorous gala at Gran Teatro La Fenice as a result of he’s a Riva proprietor and as a result of he starred with Italian actor Pierfrancesco Favino and Ferrari F1 driver Charles Leclerc in Riva The Persuaders!, the quick movie that debuted that night.
Alberto Galassi, CEO of Ferretti Group and a long-time Riva proprietor, was a loyal viewer of The Persuaders! action-comedy TV collection of the early Nineteen Seventies starring Roger Moore and Tony Curtis.
Although he’s a Board Member at Manchester United’s rivals Manchester Metropolis, Galassi was delighted Beckham agreed to star in a movie that options high-speed motion in Ferrari and Maserati vehicles then Riva yachts in opposition to the backdrop of Monaco and the Côte d’Azur.
“I really feel very fortunate to have David Beckham as a pal and because the star of a Riva manufacturing. David isn’t solely a British fashion icon and one of many world’s most admired celebrities but in addition a passionate Riva proprietor,” Galassi says.
“After we invited him to participate in Riva The Persuaders! he instantly jumped on board with nice enthusiasm. This enthusiasm shines via within the quick movie and I imagine is likely one of the causes for the nice response and tens of millions of views it’s receiving on social media.”
Model Past Boating
In actual fact, 2022 marks a number of anniversaries for Riva, together with 200 years for the reason that beginning of founder Pietro Riva and 100 years for the reason that beginning of Carlo Riva, his nice grandson, who handed away in 2017. It’s additionally 60 years for the reason that launch of the long-lasting Aquarama, which offered a staggering 765 models from 1962 to 1996, and was honoured on the gala night on Venice’s Grand Canal.
In entrance of the Riva Lounge on the Gritti Palace, an Aquarama was showcased on a floating platform beside the brand new Anniversario, an 18-boat, limited-edition collection honouring the 18 a long time Riva has been afloat.
The boat has been additional honoured in Riva Aquarama, a brand new e book of pictures revealed by Assouline to have a good time ‘the sixtieth anniversary of the launch of probably the most lovely boat of all time’.
The model’s visibility in wider tradition was documented two years in the past within the Riva In The Film quick movie starring Favino and a 300-page e book paying tribute to the 69 movies Riva yachts had appeared in.
Riva’s enchantment past boating — very similar to Beckham’s past soccer — can also be mirrored within the rising collection of Riva Lounge and Riva Privée ‘locations’ providing cocktails and branded merchandise in lodges, eating places and golf equipment within the likes of Venice, Monte Carlo, Formentera, Mykonos and Palm Seaside.
Every is adorned in basic Nineteen Fifties Dolce Vita fashion and options hallmark particulars discovered on Riva yachts in addition to the model’s aquamarine and mahogany colors, with the newest Riva Lounge primarily based in Porto Cervo over the summer season.
And if you’ll want to see a slice of the model’s historical past, there’s a 3,200sqft everlasting Riva exhibition on the Lake Como Worldwide Museum of Classic Boats, the place the seven historic boats embody the classic HaLu from the Nineteen Thirties, two Sequence R fashions, a uncommon racer fitted with Guzzi engines and a Florida with particular Scottish Madras upholstery.
“Riva is de facto one thing else,” Galassi says. “It’s the one nautical model everybody is aware of, even when they’re not taken with boats.”
The Legend, The Artwork
Galassi turned CEO of Ferretti Group in 2014 however his connection to Riva spans virtually 5 a long time and he understands in addition to anybody what makes the model so particular. He owns a Rudy and an Aquarama, and was shut associates with Carlo Riva, however his attachment to the model started again in 1974, when he was 10 years outdated.
That’s when Galassi’s father and his pal purchased a Riva Rudy, a mannequin launched in 1972 and later owned by the likes of actor Sean Connery and Jackie Stewart, the three-time F1 world champion.
“My first connection to the Riva delusion is linked to childhood, with the enchantment and amazement typical of that part of life. I’ll all the time carry in my coronary heart the magical second when this marvellous motorboat was delivered to the dock of our household dwelling on the Adriatic coast,” he recollects.
“As a toddler, I used to be used to spending time on the seashore, so I bear in mind the sense of freedom I felt the primary time we left the shore behind us and ventured out into the open sea. That indescribable feeling is identical one I nonetheless have at the moment, irrespective of which yacht I’m on. And the Riva Rudy remains to be ours – I might by no means half with it.”
Childhood reminiscences apart, Galassi believes Riva is the yachting model that comes closest to true artwork on the water, possessing DNA that places qualities like magnificence and elegance above developments and fashions.
The fashions’ clear traces, luxurious styling and detailed craftsmanship are famend, drawing eyes wherever Rivas seem internationally. And the timeless enchantment of Rivas means loyalty to the model is commonly lifelong, as if every proprietor is shopping for greater than a yacht.
“I’m a terrific lover of artwork, from which I continually draw inspiration. Considered one of my favorite artists is Lucio Fontana, a person of such genius that he managed to make his artwork seem easy at first look, whereas containing a really wealthy, virtually inexhaustible universe of meanings,” says Galassi, an skilled artwork collector.
“Riva is artwork. Every new mannequin is a masterpiece, a novel murals that enchants with its design, its magnificence, the novelty of the options on board. Riva can also be a lifestyle, a method of experiencing the ocean, a badge of magnificence you put on as an proprietor.
“Once I have a look at my Aquarama, I see a real murals, the results of the genius of Carlo Riva and the all-Italian capability to mannequin masterpieces. I see custom, innovation and efficiency, all amalgamated by a timeless magnificence I do know won’t ever tire me or some other proprietor.
“And behind all it is a historical past during which high quality has all the time been an obsession, as confirmed by the 22 coats of varnish that the craftsmen of Sarnico apply earlier than a ship is prepared.”
Artwork can also be the driving drive behind Mauro Micheli, who has designed all of Riva’s yachts for nearly three a long time since co-founding Officina Italiana Design in 1994. He attended an art-focused highschool in Bergamo after which the Accademia di Brera in Milan, solely studying yacht design after becoming a member of Riva in 1984.
“I by no means imagined I’d stick with the identical model for nearly 40 years. In actual fact, I didn’t even assume I’d be a yacht designer — I studied artwork,” Micheli smiles. “However for me, a ship just like the Aquariva is sort of a sculpture.”
A part of Ferretti Group since 2000, Riva at present produces fashions throughout 4 ranges: Open (27-88ft), Sportfly (66-88ft), Flybridge (90-130ft) and Superyachts upwards of 50m (164ft).
The yachts are constructed throughout three shipyards together with the seven-hectare La Spezia facility, dwelling since 2004 to all 76-130ft fashions together with the brand new 102’ Corsaro Tremendous and 130’ Bellissima, a world premiere at this 12 months’s Monaco Yacht Present.
On Italy’s east coast, the eight-hectare Ferretti Group Superyacht Yard in Ancona is the place Riva’s metal fashions have been constructed — together with a number of models of the 50Metri — since 2014.
Nonetheless, probably the most iconic Riva facility is the four-hectare facility in Sarnico on Lake Iseo within the inland province of Bergamo, northeast of Milan, and the place all smaller fashions from the Iseo (27ft) to the 68’ Diable are produced.
It’s the place Carlo Riva remodeled the model after the Second World Battle, however Sarnico can also be the place the enterprise began in 1842 when his great-grandfather Pietro was commissioned to restore fishing boats devastated by a storm, later establishing a shipyard along with his son Ernesto.
At first of the twentieth century, the enterprise continued underneath the management of Serafino, Ernesto’s third-born son. Within the Nineteen Twenties, following the First World Battle, the shipyard began to give attention to racing boats, with highlights together with a Riva AZ 3 successful the 431km Pavia-Venice race in 1930.
Carlo Riva joined the household enterprise from a younger age and took the lead following the Second World Battle, launching its first manufacturing boat, the Corsaro, in 1946, adopted by the Ariston and twin-engine Tritone in 1950 then the Sebino and Florida two years later.
Gino Gervasoni, husband of Carlo Riva’s sister, joined the administration staff in 1950, whereas designer and naval architect Giorgio Barilani was one other key addition in 1956. But the corporate’s actual stars had been the ‘mahogany girls’, as Carlo Riva favored to name his fantastically varnished vary of fashions.
Riva embodied La Dolce Vita on the water within the Nineteen Fifties and ’60s because it turned the boating model of alternative for royalty and celebrities, its enchantment solely heightened by the 1962 launch of the Aquarama, whose early homeowners included Sophia Loren.
Anita Ekberg had a Tritone, as did Prince Rainier and Princess Grace of Monaco. Peter Sellers and Britt Ekland owned an Ariston. Brigitte Bardot had a Junior, whereas Elizabeth Taylor and Richard Burton used one as a young for his or her 46m Kalizma.
“Carlo Riva boats will all the time and endlessly be probably the most lovely and fascinating on the earth,” Galassi says.
Nonetheless, by the late Nineteen Sixties, Carlo Riva began to ease out of the enterprise. In 1969, he offered the corporate to American agency Whittaker whereas remaining as Chairman and Normal Supervisor. Composite manufacturing began with the Bahia Mar 20 and Sport Fisherman 25 in 1970, however he resigned the next 12 months, handing over the reins to Gervasoni, his brother-in-law.
“I had the nice fortune to know Carlo properly and I’ll all the time be glad about sharing a part of my journey with him. For me he was a mentor, an inspiration and an instance of dedication and ingenuity,” Galassi says.
“He was obsessive about excellence and really strict with himself earlier than he was with others, a top quality that took his boats to the highest of the world. He was not solely an excellent boat builder and a grasp of fashion but in addition a revolutionary industrialist and a pioneering entrepreneur to whom our nation owes a lot. Riva is a part of the heritage not solely of the boating business however of Italy.”
Design & Management
Riva highlights from the Nineteen Seventies included the Superamerica flybridge mannequin, which launched in 1973 and had a 20-year manufacturing run in sizes from 42-50ft. Within the Eighties, launches included the Corsaro 60 in 1982, whereas newcomers included a junior rent who would grow to be Riva’s key designer for the next a long time.
Micheli was in his mid-20s and had little curiosity in boats or design when he gained a contest in 1984 to turn into an assistant designer in Riva’s technical workplace, with the artwork pupil happening to work alongside the esteemed Barilani and inside designer Mauro Pagani for a few years.
Even Gervasoni was impressed by Micheli’s capability to attract freehand, though the-then CEO ultimately left the yard in 1989, so ending the Riva household’s 147-year involvement within the firm a 12 months after it was purchased by British group Vickers, which included Rolls- Royce.
The 58’ Bahamas, introduced in 1991, was the primary yacht Micheli labored on. Three years later, he teamed up with Sergio Beretta, a multi-lingual businessman, to kind Officina Italiana Design, which has since designed all Riva yachts.
“It’s pure,” says Micheli, when requested in regards to the accountability of designing for such an iconic model. “It comes from my very own intuition.”
Riva moved into its second golden period after returning to Italian possession in 2000 when Ferretti Group purchased the shipyard from Stellican, a London-based personal fairness agency. Early Riva fashions underneath the Ferretti Group included the Rivarama, a 44ft one-cabin cruiser that launched in 2002 and offered 140 models.
Nonetheless, when requested for his three favorite designs for Riva, Micheli first names an earlier mannequin, the Aquariva, the retro 33-footer that has offered 260 models when mixed with the Aquariva Tremendous, which is amongst Riva’s present Open fashions.
“Aquariva is sort of a automotive design,” he says. “I’m proud as a result of it has been produced for over 20 years with hardly any adjustments to the unique design.”
His different two favourites are the Rivamare — the 39-footer that launched in 2016 and sits above the Aquariva within the Open vary — and the then-flagship 110’ Dolcevita, which debuted on the Monaco Grand Prix in 2018 earlier than turning heads at that 12 months’s Cannes Yachting Pageant.
“I really like the Rivamare and likewise the 110’ Dolcevita, which is completely totally different, an enormous boat but has additionally had nice success out there.”
Beretta, Micheli’s enterprise companion, says Riva’s distinctive heritage is ingrained within the design studio, however that the model and its boats preserve evolving, mirrored within the transfer into bigger sizes, new applied sciences and design adjustments.
“Yearly, new components turn into a part of the brand new Rivas,” Beretta says. “With every mannequin, we attempt to embody a recent contact, and this turns into a part of the model. Riva remains to be basic, nevertheless it’s a dynamic model that’s all the time evolving, not caught up to now.”
Beretta pinpoints the flagship 50Metri for example of Riva’s timeless fashion, saying it doesn’t have the attention-grabbing options of many similar-sized superyachts however will stand the take a look at of time.
“Riva boats don’t exit of style. For instance, I feel the 50Metri will get extra appreciation the extra time passes. It was designed with that intention, to not be flashy however lengthy lasting in its enchantment.”
Though the size of the 50Metri distances it from Riva’s basic mahogany runabouts from its first golden period, the model’s first metal megayacht gives a continuation of Carlo Riva’s imaginative and prescient and ambitions.
Within the Nineteen Sixties, his designs included the Caravelle (74ft) and Atlantic (88ft) collection constructed within the Netherlands, whereas different designs included the 100ft Vespucci constructed by CRN in 1978. Nonetheless, he handed away two years earlier than first 50Metri was unveiled in 2019.
“Considered one of my biggest satisfactions in work coincides with an equally nice sorrow, as a result of sadly Carlo was by no means in a position to see the Riva 50Metri, the crowning achievement of his dream of the metal and aluminium superyacht,” Galassi says.
“Once I talked to him about it, he advised me, ‘Make her lovely and make her totally different, so that you recognise she is a Riva’. I feel he’d be extraordinarily pleased with this distinctive work of naval artwork.”
Carlo Riva gave the model an unrivalled legacy in yachting. And with the corporate now properly into its third decade underneath Ferretti Group, the indicators are robust that Riva is in good fingers because it navigates its method in the direction of its two hundredth anniversary.
“Undoubtedly, Riva will preserve its international enchantment within the coming a long time. Riva is a timeless icon of magnificence, which has handed via varied eras, gaining an increasing number of followers and acclaim,” Galassi says. “‘I’ve obtained a Riva’, ‘I’ve seen a Riva’. These are phrases that can all the time make the guts beat sooner.”
This text first appeared on Yacht Model.
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