Collectors and connoisseurs are eagerly looking ahead to the opportunity to acquire some of the world’s most exotic and exclusive vehicles when RM Auctions hosts its Monaco event in May. Alongside examples of historic cars from such celebrated marques as Ferrari, Bugatti, and Rolls-Royce, the exclusive evening sale will also proudly present a remarkable and historically significant 1958 Riva Tritone mahogany motor built for Prince Rainier Grimaldi and Princess Grace of Monaco.
The yacht was built in 1958 for its princely pirate-descendant with the beautiful name, Grimaldi. The 8m20 yacht is one of only 26 Tritones ever built. It is even ‘special’ in the world of Rivas – it has a closed deck in the back instead of a sun bed and two six cylinder engines instead of a double V8. Between 1957 and 1966 only a small number of Tritones were built. In the roaring sixties prosperity rose and members of royal families, captains of industry, artists and actors, rose to be international stars, the south of France and thus Monaco was “the place to be”. And a Riva was “the boat to be seen in”. This 1958 Riva Tritone TR62 must have received many VIPs and celebrities, guests of the Grimaldis, on its deck. And of course, Grace Kelly, the American actress, who became Mrs Grimaldi.
The yacht was always perfectly taken care of by an engineer of Riva Monaco Boat Service in Monte Carlo. When years later, the Grimaldi family no longer used the Riva, the prince gave it to the engineer who considered the boat as his own child. Delighted, but financially unable to restore it, the engineer finally sold the boat to an enthusiast who had been badgering him for years to buy it, always promising to restore the boat personally. It took this person twenty-five years of work before realising that he could not finish, was tired of it, and did not actually want it anymore. So it was sold to the present Dutch owner. Meanwhile, after a three year complete restoration of the Tritone, regardless of costs, the value of this Royal Riva has been estimated very high, also because of its magnificent condition and its royal history. It’s expected to fetch up to about $680k at the auction during the Monaco Grand Prix.