Californian Yachts’ History

Californian Yachts’ History

Californian Yachts

Californian Yachts, an American company well regarded by yachting enthusiasts who appreciate luxurious, moderately priced vessels, was founded by a designing duo that revolutionized the trawler yachts industry with their innovative creations. Californian Yachts’ history begins in the 1970s, when partners Jule Marshall and Myrna Elliott came together with a single goal: to create fast, luxurious, top quality trawler yachts at a moderate price. Californian Yachts has undergone several ownership changes since, but Marshall’s unwavering dedication to creating semi-custom pilothouse yachts that are fast, maneuverable, and affordable has remained the cornerstone of Californian Yachts to this very day. Now joined with Navigator Yachts, Californian Yachts remains a true American treasure.

At the time of Californian Yachts inception, trawler yachts had an uneven reputation: they were comfortable and fuel efficient, but also expensive, frustratingly slow, and unable to keep up with the faster sport fishers and powerboats on the market. Marshall redesigned the hull and superstructures, using a semi-displacement hull and ramping up the horsepower. Elliott designed the interiors, creating luxurious, comfortable surroundings with a roomy feel. In 1976, one of the company’s first commercially successfully models, the 42 LRC trawler, was launched, introducing the trawlers to a wider audience who appreciated the yacht’s exceptional handling, impressive fuel economy, and affordable pricing.

Through the years, Californian Yachts has undergone a number of ownership changes. Marshall sold the company to Wellcraft Marine in 1980, but continued to build some vessels for Wellcraft before reacquiring the brand in 1984. Marshall sold the company again in 1986, this time to the Carver Corporation, and concentrated his energies on starting a new company, Navigator Yachts, with his two sons. In 1991, Marshall once again purchased Californian Yachts. He now designs for both lines, continuing to create vessels that offer maximum speed and maneuverability, superior fuel economy, and a lavish feel at an affordable price.

Preowned 45’ Californian Yacht Are you craving the exceptional American excellence of a Californian Yacht? Atlantic Yacht and Ship has a number of Californian Yachts for sale, including “Kharisma,” an immaculate preowned 45’ Californian Yacht for sale. Launched in 1987, Kharisma is the nicest 42/45 Californian on the market. Originally built as a 42’, this 45’ model’s two-stateroom interior is arranged with the galley and dinette down, resulting in a spacious and open salon. New engines in 2000, a new Fisher Panda generator with only 256 hours, and a speed 5 knots faster than her predecessor make this preowned 45’ Californian Yacht a speedy delight. Asking $185,000 USD, Kharisma is easy to see in sunny Ft. Lauderdale, Florida. Call Mack Carroll at 954-648-8989 or email him at for more information.

1990 Californian 48' Flybridge Motor YachtSantana, a fetching 1990 Californian 48′ Flybridge Motor Yacht, is one of only three 2-stateroom 48’ motoryachts ever built by California Yachts. She features an especially spacious aft stateroom with an en-suite head and a layout that gives a remarkably roomy and comfortable feel. This low hour, exceptionally clean, well-maintained and continually updated vessel has been in fresh water 98% of her life. Santana is asking at $219,000 USD, with sellers who are moving up and ready to make a deal! Bring your offers to Ed Biggie at 954-868-0526 or email him at


Atlantic Yacht and Ship’s knowledgeable South Florida yacht brokers have been making marine dreams come true. Whether you are seeking yachts for sale, or are a boat or yacht owner looking to sell or trade, Atlantic Yacht & Ship has the experience and connections to help you realize your goals. Browse our extensive listings of new and preowned motor yachts, call us directly at 1-888-230-0439 or click here.