Enjoy a breathtaking classic motor yacht tour of Newport Harbor and relive the speed and thrill of the chase of the smuggler boats from the days of Prohibition. Rum Runner II was built in 1929 during the height of Prohibition. Originally she was built for two New Jersey mobsters to elude the Coast Guard while smuggling cases of rum and other contraband alcohol. Today she now offers the luxury of a classic motor yacht and intrigue you would imagine of a high-speed bandit with a history all her own.
Aboard Rum Runner II, you will cruise by Newport mansions and former speakeasies, lighthouses, islands and many other points of interest along the waterfront. This restored Elco motor yacht carries you swiftly and safely through local waters of Newport on an adventurous sightseeing cruise. Originally powered with three Liberty aircraft engines, she has been re-powered with twin turbo-charged 350HP Caterpillar Marine Diesels, to ensure your Newport Harbor experience is both thrilling and comfortable.
A little bit of history on who owned an Elco:
On Rum Runner II and her builder – Elco: John Jacob Astor owned four of them. Grand Duke Alexander of Russia, attending a naval review in New York in 1893, saw one of Astor’s launches and wanted one so badly he insisted on buying the one already ordered by the captain of the newly launched cruiser USS New York, who then had to wait for a new one. When the Grand Duke’s cousin, Czar Nicholas II, saw Alexander’s launch, he liked it so much he bought one too. Admiral Dewey owned one, and so did Baron Nathaniel de Rothschild. Charles Lindbergh had one customized for his honeymoon. Actors Wallace Beery and Reginald Denny each had one, as did comedian Ed Wynn. Henry Ford and Thomas Edison kept theirs at their adjoining Florida estates. John F. Kennedy got his “used” and it nearly cost him his life. Lt. John Bulkeley saved the hide of General Douglas MacArthur in one, and later won the Congressional Medal of Honor with it.