SOCIAL HISTORY: CHRISTINA O – the greatest yacht of them all. Aristotle Onassis, Jackie Kennedy, Sir Winston Churchill, Maria Callas and the fabulous boat. The famous yacht heads up the Hudson River – 1960s…
In 1954 Aristotle Socrates Onassis created the greatest yacht of all, Christina.
Named after his beloved daughter, she was a sleek, 325-foot, shimmering-white masterpiece proudly displaying the Onassis signature, the yellow funnel.
(Above: Aristotle Onassis and Churchill in the yacht’s swimming pool. It doubled as a dance floor – Onassis’ party trick was to flood it while people were still dancing.)
While the ship had begun life in 1943 as the Canadian naval frigate Stormont, a convoy escort, Onassis purchased her in 1948 for just $34,000 and converted her during the early 1950’s into the most sumptuous private yacht that the world had ever seen, at the cost of more than $4 million.
(Above: CHRISTINA O’s canopied decks are the ideal venue for any extra special occasion – 1950s.) When Onassis bought the yacht in 1954, he converted the yacht at an expense of over $4 million, into the largest, most modern and most exalted yacht of her era. CHRISTINA O became his floating mansion and headquarters for over two decades until his death in 1975. Onassis’ guests on board the yacht were some of the most famous and influential people of the time. At night, CHRISTINA O served as the stage for Onassis’ celebrated social life, as he played host to Presidents and Prime Ministers, royalty and film stars.
(Above: Elizabeth Taylor and Aristotle S. Onassis aboard the yacht.) CHRISTINA O’s fame owes itself to names such as Maria Callas, The Begum of Aga Kahn, John Paul Getty, John D Rockefeller, Eva Peron, Richard Burton, Elizabeth Taylor, Marilyn Monroe, Frank Sinatra, Rudolf Nureyev, John Wayne, Greta Garbo and Dame Margot Fonteyn.