Patient is very bad, but resilient.

Patient is very bad, but resilient.

A yacht with a unique destiny awaits the saviors.

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Williamsburg is one of the largest and most famous mega yachts built in the 20th century. She drove the US presidents, received people of Winston Churchill caliber on board, was a combat ship in the US Navy, served as a research vessel and even served as a floating restaurant for a while. And now - forgotten by grateful descendants, rusted to unrecognizability, stands for the second decade in the Italian marina, hoping to revolt in former glory.

Hope is there - the safety margin in the 74-meter steel hull is such that the boat can be recovered even now. Another thing is that a complete restoration, according to other estimates, will cost about 100 million euros (sic). This is not counting the €8.8 million that is now being asked for for the boat itself, as it is. You have to be a big connoisseur of history, so that with such figures you don't immediately run away and order a couple of, say, new custom «Fedshypovs» - and fill them up for change until they are very old.

However, potential buyers at Williamsburg say there are - just because of history. The yacht was built in 1930 at Bath Iron Works in Maine. The customer, railway magnate Hugh Chisholm, named her Aras and sailed with her family every summer until 1941, when the boat suddenly became the property of the U.S. Navy.

Having received the onboard armament and the name Williamsburg, in her first combat campaign, she left on December 6, 1941 - exactly a day before the famous attack on Pearl Harbor. The boat served in the Icelandic area until 1945, when it was demobilized and left for Washington as a presidential yacht.

Until 1953, Williamsburg served the presidents of the United States: first Harry Truman, then Dwight Eisenhower. While the latter preferred to rest on a farm in Pennsylvania, Truman liked to spend time on a yacht. His library contains dozens of photographs aboard Williamsburg, including those of Prime Minister Winston Churchill.

After being discharged from the presidential service, the boat was converted into an oceanographic vessel - the presidential chambers were removed and the laboratory and aquarium were equipped on site. In this form under the name Anton Bruun our heroine honestly served for 15 more years, furrowing the oceans for science.

And then a lane of misfortunes began - then the floating dock sank, in which the wrecked ship was being repaired, then disappeared with money, the organization that was struggling to restore Williamsburg, then there was simply no strength or opportunity to restore the huge ship.

As a result, the boat is now on the Navalmare shipyard balance sheet, waiting for the saviors. Brokers believe they may find them, as she is now the «last un-renovated yacht from this period... and the only un-renovated presidential yacht». If the revival does take place, Williamsburg could become «a boutique» charter yacht for the most discerning clients.

Anyway, we sincerely hope that it is too early to dot this story and that the zigzags of interesting boat destiny are not over yet.

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