At the near-inconceivable age of 111-years-old, the 41.6m schooner sailing yacht, Invader, has been listed for sale with Mike Horsley of Edmiston. She has come onto the market with a humble asking price of €5.5 million.
Invader was launched on 11 July 1905 at a facility in Neponset, Boston, known as George Lawley & Son. She was commissioned by R.A. Rainey, who with his brother, shared a fortune earned in the coal industry by their father W.J. Rainey. She was designed by Albert Stanton Chesebrough, nephew of the great Nathaniel G. Herreshoff, a celebrated yacht design innovator, mechanical engineer and naval architect.
With a fine-lined steel hull, light displacement, drop-keel and an abundance of sail – and no propeller or shaft to begin with, until the installation of two 100hp Hall & Scott petrol engines in 1914 – her original build looked primed for the racing circuit. She had no initial success, until 1926, when she won the Trans-Pacific Yacht Race (Transpac), setting a new record; all in defiance of a two-day becalming in Hawaii. In this period of use, she is said to have hosted a number of stars on board, including Charlie Chaplin and Paulette Goddard.
Her range of uses has been as diverse as her chronicles. She was used as a patrol vessel during the war; moored in Miami in the late 80s as a floating restaurant with 200 seats; used for whale watching excursions; while a number of smuggling operations are also believed to have been undertaken.
In 2000, after a long search for a prestigious sailing yacht, Captain Giuliano Mussone came across Invader. Merely a stripped down hull at the time, she was transported to Viareggio from Bremen where, instead of entrusting an existing shipyard to do a restoration, he created a team of specialists, appointing himself as project manager. After an incredible restoration with C.E.D. La Spezia completing the naval architecture and engineering, and Anna Signorini refitting the interior, Invader now has all the amenities of a modern yacht while maintaining her original charm and character.
The Invader seen today has accommodation for six guests in three cabins; one 700hp Caterpillar engine capable of a 12.5-knot maximum speed; RINA Maltese Cross A 100:1 classification; great condition with low late usage; and an excellent asking price for what is a genuine antique.