LENGTH: 257ft. 8in. (78.5m)
SHIPYARD: Great Lakes Engineering, USA
Delphine, the last private yacht to navigate with a steam boiler, has had a remarkable history. Great Lakes Engineering Works built the yacht for car industry magnate Horace Dodge who tragically passed away prior to her launch in 1921. She had some illustrious voyages, mainly on the Great Lakes, but was primarily used for cocktail parties. During one such event in New York in 1926, she caught fire and sank. Horace Dodge’s widow, Anna, lovingly restored Delphine, named after their only daughter. She lost the vessel once again in 1942 when the US Navy requisitioned her to serve Admiral King during WWII. After the war Anna Dodge bought Delphine back and she kept her at her private dock until 1967. In 1998 Belgian blue jeans magnate Jacques Bruynooghe purchased Delphine, by then a rusty mess in a port in Marseille, and took the vessel to Belgium for a lengthy restoration. He and daughter Ineke worked with a team of designers and craftsmen on the successful $55-million, meticulously documented project, but it was not trouble-free. Although he received kudos for returning the yacht to life, Bruynooghe was forced to defend his reputation in court. He was vindicated when the Gent Court of Appeals acquitted him and all co-defendants of breaking labor laws by employing foreign nationals as craftsmen. Princess Stephanie of Monaco christened the yacht on September 10, 2003. Delphine and her steaming smoke stack became a frequent and welcome sight in Monaco and the Riviera. A Turkish bath, sauna, and a 30,000 sq. ft-deck are at the disposal of 26 guests, along with 13 suites, including two VIPs and two children’s suites. The yacht occasionally charters (a descendant of Horace Dodge reportedly chartered the yacht for their wedding a few years ago), but this labor of love has also been for sale through Edmiston since late 2008.
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