Luxury Toys


Riva Luxury Italian Yachts: The Favorite of George Clooney, Sophia Loren, and Sean Connery

Federico Tibytt


A cult brand for celebrities, athletes and royalty, Riva shipyards uphold their legacy with a wide variety of yachts, known for their style and sportiness. Discover the history of this Italian brand owned by the Ferretti Group.


The name Riva represents the purest luxury, elegance, exclusivity, glamour and sportsmanship in the collective consciousness of yacht lovers. In turn, Riva has been the cult brand of international celebrities, athletes and royalty since 1950.riva yachts, luxury yachts, ferretti yachts, george clooney, sophia loren, brigitte bardot, sean connery, grupo ferretti, riva ariston, riva aquarama, italian shipyards, celebrity yachtsThe Riva shipyard was founded on the banks of Lake Iseo, in Sarnico, Italy, in 1842, when a young ship builder by the name of Pietro Riva settled in Lombardy with the goal of providing services to owners of vessels which had been damaged by a raging storm. The quality and reliability of his work made him a local celebrity in a very short time, thus starts the legend.

Although Riva received public recognition rapidly, grew gradually through five generations that—throughout its history—respected the family legacy which dictated the pursuit of elegance, attention to detail and sportsmanship.

In the 1950s, Carlo Riva consolidated the brand image that continues to identify its vessels until today. In those years, its emblematic polished wooden boats with generous and perfectly constructed spaces attracted attention in exclusive marinas, beaches and lakes around the world. The most celebrated vessel of that time was the Ariston.

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“Designed with love, this model is born as powerful and pure as a pedigree horse. It will be unforgettable,” said Carlo Riva referring to the legendary ship. This stunning 21-foot boat with an internal engine stood out for its exquisite design featuring lines of polished wood that resembled a very elegant sportscar. Today, a copy of the Riva Ariston from the 1950s and 1960s is priced at around US $100,000.

Riva models were always objects of desire for yacht lovers because of the company’s evolution in technology, design and exclusivity. The materials, the streamlined shape, the interior designs and the engines are perfect illustrations of the most refined Italian style. Another iconic proclamation of the brand’s identity is the Riva Aquarama Lamborghini, a mythical model powered by a very powerful V12 designed by Ferruccio Lamborghini himself.

By 2000, Ferretti Group, the largest conglomerate of luxury crafts manufacturers in the world acquired Riva. Keeping the legacy of the Riva family, the brand now offers an extensive range of vessels—some more than 115 feet in length—that are real wonders of modern naval engineering.  ■

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