CHRISTINA O Most Famous Yacht in the World is Near Lokrum

Author(s): Olja Ljubišić Photographer(s): Goran Mratinović
‘Starting life in World War Two as a Canadian frigate, Christina O was purchased in 1954 by Greek shipping magnate Aristotle Onassis, who transformed her into the most luxurious private yacht of her time. She went on to host a wealth of illustrious guests, ranging from Marilyn Monroe and Frank Sinatra to John F Kennedy and Winston Churchill,’ Yacht Charter Fleet says about Christina O.  

'The story of the Christina O – originally christened the HMCS Stormont in 1943 – is as long and varied as the list of famous faces that have graced her decks. The boat began as a river-class anti-submarine frigate commissioned by the Canadian navy, as part of North-Atlantic convoys during the Second World War, before going on to serve in various historic battles, including the battle of the Atlantic and the D-day landings in 1944. She remained a military vessel up until 1954, before going on to began her rise to becoming yachting royalty.

She was purchased by shipping magnate Aristotle Onassis for her scrap value of $34,000, who began a complete new refit to transform it into the mega-yacht it is today. The refit ended up costing $4,000,000. A relatively small figure by today’s standards, especially in regard to a super-yacht, but in a world firmly in the grips of austerity after World War Two, this figure and indeed the boat itself was the stuff that dreams were made of. Right then, Onassis set a new standard of luxury for people to aspire to,' the Gentlemans's Journal informs.

'This was a floating pleasure palace, complete with a lavish master suite- known as the Onassis suite, eighteen state rooms, enough to comfortably accommodate 36 guests, the pastel colour scheme of each of the cabins was apparently the decision of Jackie Onassis. Several spacious living areas, both outdoor and indoor, all connected by a spiral staircase; a swimming pool with a mosaic floor that at the push of a button could be transformed into a dance floor and a helicopter pad.

Once the refit was complete, she was rechristened Christina after Onassis’ first born daughter and she became a symbol of the glamorous jet-set lifestyle many dreamt of living and when on to host several lavish parties with guestlists full of some of the most well-known people of the time including, Frank Sinatra, Marilyn Monroe, Richard Burton and Elizabeth Taylor, to name but a few. The yacht was also where Onassis would spend time with his mistress, the world famous opera singer Maria Callas ,before he began his courtship of Jackie Kennedy. The yacht was also the setting for their wedding ,as well as the reception for the wedding of Rainier lll of Monaco to Grace Kelly. Onassis, and by definition the Christina, epitomised the roguish glamour of the mega-rich.'

Christina O is available for weekly charter from 560,000 Euros. The yacht is currently near Lokrum Island and leaves for Kotor this afternoon.