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Notiziario Italia Navigazione

Notiziario Italia Navigazione

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This is the Giorgio Cini, ex, and later Belem. The Belem was built by Dubigeon, Nantes in 1896 for Denis Crouan Fils, and put in the cocoa trade between Brazil and France. In 1914, the Duke of Westminster bought her for 3000 pounds and had the ship rebuilt as a luxury yacht at Harland and Wolff in Belfast. He had her for seven years, before Sir Arthur Ernest Guinness, the rich Irish brewer, bought her and rechristened her Fantome II. He was a keen sailor and sailed with her as far as Japan and Tahiti. After his death, she lay in the harbour of the Isle of Wight from 1939 to 1950. She was then bought by an Italian foundation for use as a schoolship for orphans, rebuilt as a barquentine, and given the name Giorgio Cini .
In 1972 she was aquired by the Carabinieri, who gave her up in 1979.
This was the opportunity that French ship enthusiasts had been waiting for, and in 1980 the square rigger returned home to France, with assistance from the French navy.
The Belem was rerigged as a barque and lay anchored for a short while as a museum ship in Paris. Since 1985, she have been sailing with paying guests from her old home port of Nantes, mostly in European waters.
(I can't understand why they have not gotten rid of that silly wooden balustrade aft though, it looked idiotic even when she was a yacht...). Regards, Stein.

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