Thursday the ceremony of the gift of the yawl to the community
Imperia – “Agoing to sea is the happiness of great beauty. Nothing is bigger than that blue expanse, a wonder that allows you to see the world from a different point of view. It is a challenge that is won as a team. As happened for our national football team”.
Diana Bracco, president and CEO of the pharmaceutical group of the same name, leader in the diagnostic imaging sector, a reality with almost 4,000 employees and 1.5 billion in turnover, lights up when she remembers that deep bond with salt water. A family lexicon. And explain with simplicity what an act of love is, the donation of Beatrice to the City of Imperia, a splendid 15-meter sailboat built in 1963 by the Sangermani shipyard, in mahogany planking on an iroko frame and with a teak deck, Marconi yawl rig.
Yesterday morning, at the Naval Museum, the transfer of ownership was formalized and the restoration of a boat brought back to life thanks to the enthusiasm and passion of the students of the Nautical Institute of Imperia was presented. A ceremony in perfect seafaring style, with the right wind, the raising of the flag with the hymn of Mameli in honor of the family jewel – Beatrice is “a piece of heart”, a boat loved by the husband of the entrepreneur, the industrialist Roberto De Silva, who passed away in 2012 – which brought on board a crew made up of students from the Nautico Andrea Doria.
Beatrice, after the restoration carried out by the boys and teachers of the Imperia institute during a school-work experience, is ready to go back to sea. Starting with the challenges of the Vintage Sails Rally scheduled from 2 to 5 September in the Imperia gulf. “This donation is an act of love – said the mayor of Imperia, Claudio Scajola – The Bracco Group is a pride of Italian industrial history and has always been characterized by its capacity for innovation and research. Through the Foundation it contributes to a worthy work in the field of culture and society ”.
The boat, which will remain moored in the new port of the city, managed by Go Imperia, will be enhanced – through guided tours and initiatives – by the nearby complex of the Naval Museum with attached Planetarium. “When they asked me what to do with the boat, I enthusiastically welcomed the idea of donating the Beatrice to the Municipality of Imperia so that the Nautical Institute could use it as a training ship for practical exercises, after having restored it. I now learn from the mayor Scajola that Beatrice will return to sail. A second life will be a way to carry on our great passion in the name of continuity “.
On this day of celebration, the book dedicated to the history of the boat was also presented, “The important thing is to go to sea”, written by Fabio Pozzo with images by Carlo Borlenghi: inside it also copies of the original drawings. In almost 60 years of life Beatrice has had four owners, in 1999 it was sold to the industrialist Roberto De Silva, wife of Diana Bracco. From Marina degli Aregai, where he didhe goes base, he left for sailing and competitions. In 2010 Beatrice returned to the Sangermani ports for an important restoration but in 2012, after De Silva’s death, the boat remained unused. In 2016 the commander Giancarlo Gaudino, from Imperia, who studied at the Nautico Andrea Doria, contacted his friend and schoolmate Luca Bonjean, teacher of the institute. The idea was born, immediately married by Diana Bracco.
Beatrice leaves Lavagna and her rebirth begins at the Imperia Yacht Service. Everyone contributed – explains Bonjean moved – We had the help of many parents, a surgeon dad who delights on the lathe, a mother who is a ski instructor who learned to sand, a grandmother who sewed the cushions and assembled the curtains “.