Historic sailing cruiser Sea Cloud to grace Thessaloniki, Piraeus ports

One of the world’s most historic sailing cruisers, the Sea Cloud is set to enter the port of Thessaloniki on Monday morning, the northern city’s port authority said on Friday.

The elegant four-masted, 316-foot (96-meter) vessel is carrying some 60 American passengers as part of a Mediterranean and Adriatic cruise. It will stay in port for around 12 hours before setting sail for Piraeus, where it will arrive the following day.

Sea Cloud was launched in 1931 and has served as a private yacht, diplomatic headquarters, weather station and luxury cruiser, earning commendations for her World War II service in the US.

She was launched as the Hussar II in Kiel, Germany, where she was built for Marjorie Merriweather Post and her second husband Edward F. Hutton, of Wall Street fame, becoming the biggest private yacht in the world at the time.

Since her launch, the Sea Cloud has hosted numerous high-profile guests including Queen Elisabeth of Belgium and Soviet and US diplomatic officials.

She was entered into naval service as a weather station in the US in World War II and in 1944 became the first weather patrol with a fully integrated crew on the initiative of Lieutenant Carlton Skinner, who ended racial segregation aboard the vessel.

Sea Cloud was also owned from 1955 to 1961 by the Dominican dictator Rafael Trujillo who used it for government purposes.

She was purchased and refitted for private leisure service over a decade later by Germany’s Hartmut Paschberg and associates, and has undergone numerous renovations and upgrades since then.

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