Riva Yachts, founded in 1842, in Sarnico, a small northern Italian town on the banks of the Iseo Lake, Riva is one of the world's oldest most renowned shipyards. Pietro Riva, a young fisherman and boat builder carried out repairs to storm-damaged boats, which no one else could do; he built boats of exceptional quality and craftsmanship and thereby earned a reputation, which laid the foundations from generation to generation. In the 1880's Ernesto Riva, one of Pietro's sons, took over the Riva yard. While maintaining the tradition of impeccable quality and craftsmanship, Ernesto added another dimension to the Riva product: innovation. He began by fitting piston engines to his boats for the first time, and built larger boats to carry passengers and cargo.
Serafino succeeded his father and stopped the production of larger boats and had the great idea of launching Riva in a field entirely dedicated to outboard engine boats. In 1912 Serafino was able, on board of his racing boat, to achieve a speed of 24 km per hour. The development of Riva shipyard in between the first and second world wars was marked by a series of successes in national and international motor boating competitions. Alongside racing, the production of pleasure boats was developed and, from the outset, they became immensely popular not only for their quality but also for luxury and elegance. In the 1950's Carlo Riva inherited experience and prestige and took over the yard and created a range of wooden boats with such exceptionally quality, style and elegance that the Riva brand became a worldwide legend destined to triumph season after season on all the markets.
Subsequently, Riva has broadened its range of yachts. In May 2000, with the entry of Riva in the Ferretti Group, a new era started. The Ferretti Group is one of the world leaders in the engineering, manufacturing and selling of luxury motor yachts. Headed by its president Norberto Ferretti, Riva joins the following brands: Ferretti Yachts, Riva, Apreamare, Mochi Craft, Custom Line and CRN.
The Ferretti Group, with about 2500 employees and a surface area of over 488,000 square meters (indoor and outdoor), operates sixteen shipyards in Italy and one in the United States. During the last four years, since Riva became part of the Ferretti Group, its production has grown from 22 to 49 units per year. Riva’s range of models increased to include lengths from 33’ to 115’. During the past year, three new models went into production: the Riva SunRiva 33’, The Riva Rivale 52’, and the Riva Opera 85’. Three brand new models will be introduced in 2005: the Riva Ego 68’, the Riva Venere 75’ and the Riva Athena 115’.
Customers of Riva yachts through the years have included kings, sultans, emperors, actors, and entrepreneurs, making Riva a worldwide name for yacht beauty and high status.