60 years of MBS
“Vous êtes le premier à tirer des ficelles dans la mer” (“You are the first to pull strings in the sea”). Thus, wrote Prince Rainier III of Monaco to Carlo Riva when he saw the first two floating pontoons in the beautiful bay of Port Hercules. It was 1959 and the "nautical pioneer" chose Monte-Carlo as a showcase for his shining mahogany motorboats, creating the second Riva station, the Monaco Boat Service, now lead by his daughter Lia. "I always get excited when I think of those years and the trust and respect that Monseigneur placed in me, giving me blank paper to build the pontoons", said the nautical entrepreneur of Sarnico, much loved by the Monegasques and the Grimaldi family. In 2005 Prince Albert II of Monaco, president of the Yacht Club, awarded him with the prestigious title of “Personnalité de la Mer”, plaque placed next to the legendary navigator Tabarly and to King Juan Carlos of Spain.
Carlo Riva will not attend the inauguration of the new headquarter of the historic Yacht Club of Monaco of which he is a historic partner. Not to be a snob, but simply for age reasons: at 92, the fatigues begin to be felt. But it will be the lounge dedicated to the Aquarama to talk about him, of his rêve d’acajoux, the dreams in mahogany that agitate the desires of the shipowners of the whole planet. Speechless is the feeling that usually people have when it comes to enter the gallery of Quai Antoine 1er built in 1962 and dug under the fortress of Grimaldi Palace to accommodate 100 boats. The hands of the clock moved forward, new yachts and new designs were born, but for Riva’s mahoganies time stopped. "The greatness of a nautical brand, capable of keeping up with times and meeting the challenges imposed by the market, lies in continuous research and innovation, never getting tired of experimenting to get the best, always and in any case", concludes Carlo Riva that has always loved this work philosophy.