Connect with us

Hi, what are you looking for?


Review of Fratelli Aprea Yatch Transformation: Italian Fishing Boat to Luxury Yacht

The concept of transformation is an active process, where conversation turns into a vision, the vision transforms into a concept, and eventually, with a unique legacy to support it, the product evolves into a blend of past and present, mission and vision. It emerges as a new idea, a new life.

One of the latest transformative endeavors in the yachting world involves a journey from the past to the present. Started with the creation of the Italian Fishing Boat known as a Gozzo, the evolution now includes crafting luxury yachts of various sizes. The transformation is led by Fratelli Aprea, a company established in 1890 by Cataldo Aprea. Since its inception, the company has been manufacturing Gozzo boats, which are traditional Italian fishing vessels, from their original shipyard in Marina Grande, Sorrento, Italy, overlooking the Bay of Naples.

For over a century, the Aprea brothers, currently in their sixth generation, namely Antonino and Francesco, continue the tradition of handcrafting these vessels alongside their father, Giovanni, and his brothers Cataldo, Gaetano, and Antonio. They work with a team of craftsmen who carry forward the seafaring genes passed down from the original Cataldo.

However, a notable transformation has taken place recently as the company shifted from producing Italian fishing boats to handcrafting luxury Italian yachts—a newer aspect that initiated a few years ago. This shift in focus was conceptualized by an acquaintance of the younger Aprea brothers, Michael Sinacola, an American who now serves as the CEO of the USA division of Fratelli Aprea. It’s interesting to note that this transformation didn’t unfold in maritime hubs like Palm Beach or Newport but rather in Boyne City, Michigan, close to the meeting point of two significant Great Lakes, Lake Michigan and Lake Huron.

Mr. Sinacola, although not bred in seafaring traditions, had a profound connection to lakes as he grew up in the vicinity of Lake Michigan. He was well-versed in the boating culture of Lake Michigan and Lake Huron and was familiar with prominent boat and yacht companies situated in Michigan such as Chris Craft, Crest Marine, and Tiara Yachts. His understanding of the desires and needs of boat and yacht collectors associated with these brands led him to believe that the Fratelli Aprea Gozzo possessed the potential to morph from a classic Italian fishing vessel into a new incarnation: a handmade Italian yacht tailored for the experientially-driven buyers of the 21st century.

In a recent conversation with The Status Life, Mr. Sinacola shed light on how the legacy of Fratelli Aprea contributes to the creation of contemporary yachts while establishing new roots in the American market.

The Status Life: What attributes did you identify in the Fratelli Aprea Gozzo that could be transformed into a handcrafted, artisanal yacht?

Mr. Sinacola: The Fratelli Aprea boats possess a distinct character both on and off the water. They stand as living entities that reflect the dedication and craftsmanship of the artisans who build them. The transformation of teak and mahogany into the essence of the vessel makes them unique. The underlying DNA, featuring Italian heritage and the essence of the Gozzo boat, formed the foundation for this metamorphosis. Utilizing this existing DNA, the process of giving new life to the vessels was relatively seamless.

The Status Life: Based on your experience, what sets apart smaller yachts built by Fratelli Aprea from larger mega yachts?

Mr. Sinacola: This distinction was prominently displayed during my visit to the Fratelli Aprea shipyard in Sorrento. A wealthy English businessman and his companions arrived on their mega yacht and expressed interest in touring the Fratelli Aprea shipyard. They were intrigued by smaller yachts, seeking a more intimate experience with the ocean, waves, and the aroma of salt air than what their mega yacht offered. Eventually, the businessman decided to purchase a smaller Fratelli Aprea yacht for personal use. This incident left a lasting impression on me, indicating that bigger doesn’t always equate to better, especially concerning a more sensory and personal yachting experience.

Advertisement. Scroll to continue reading.

The Status Life: What other aspects of Fratelli Aprea vessels, in your perspective, underscore their intrinsic value?

Mr. Sinacola: We take pride in offering a personalized experience, devoid of standardized models. Every element within and on our boats is custom-made, reflecting artisanal craftsmanship tailored to meet the specific desires of the buyer. The Aprea shipyard has a history of creating multiple vessels for clients with varied mobility and accessibility needs.

In terms of custom interior design, we ensure that our decks and woodwork, primarily teak, cherry, and oak, are meticulously matched for grain consistency. This commitment to customization not only defines the yacht’s character but also amplifies its presence and individuality. Our yacht range spans from 26′ to 50′, catering to a diverse clientele.

Furthermore, our vessels enable owners to feel a closer connection to the water, be it a lake or the sea. Due to the bespoke nature of our crafts, each yacht is considered an extension of the owner themselves, fostering a unique bond. As Jacques Cousteau aptly remarked, “The sea, once it casts its spell, holds one in its net of wonder forever.” This sentiment resonates with our philosophy as our yachts allow owners to relish a transformative and intimate sailing experience, encapsulating a profound connection with water. This rare encounter, long cherished by Italians, is now poised to captivate Americans as well.

Artisan woodwork on the Fratelli Aprea Yacht deck.

Image Source: Fratelli Aprea

You May Also Like


When it comes to men’s swimwear, the options are mainly focused on length, waist type (snap or drawstring), fabric, and print. Men often express...


At The Status Life, we usually feature classic cars like Porsche, Ferrari, and Lamborghini. However, we can’t resist the charm of vintage BMWs, especially...


Moms around the world have had a lot on their plates this past year, managing work and home life all under one roof. This...


In 1930, during the Great Depression, H. L. Geary boldly launched his brick-front general store, offering a wide range of products from cosmetics to...