The storied vessel was once owned by Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis' husband Aristotle Onassis
Heidi Klum and husband Tom Kaulitz will set sail on their wedding festivities on one of the world’s most romantic luxury yachts.
The couple chartered the fabled vessel Christina O., PEOPLE has confirmed, for their wedding celebrations, following in the footsteps of Princess Grace Kelly and Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis, who both celebrated their wedding receptions to Prince Rainier III and Aristotle Onassis, respectively, on board.
In preparation, the 343-foot-long craft moored south of the Italian island of Capri, where the Making the Cut host 46, and her Tokio Hotel guitarist, 29, will celebrate their wedding.
A curious craft, incredibly intimate in contrast to today’s super and mega-yacht-size vessels, the Christina was the first of its kind and remains in a class of its own.
A pre-war conversion, she began as The Stormont, a 1943 Canadian warship which Greek shipowner Onassis remade into a 1950’s state-of-the-art sailing yacht.
Onassis remade the interior to accommodate approximately 12 guests, adding a spiraling central three-story stairwell in Greek cobalt blue-white and gold colors amidship, replaced the mess with a dining salon capable of handling 30, added a port side bar and a rear lounge outfitted with a working fireplace made of the gemstone, lapis lazuli. It’s most celebrated feature, however, was the saltwater fantail pool with a blue Minoan bull mosaic floor which could be quickly drained and raised into position as a disco dancefloor.
Princess Grace preferred the Christina to her own royal yacht, the Duo Juventus, and she wasn’t alone. The yacht has had an impressive lineup of celebrity guests on board, including Frank Sinatra, Elizabeth Taylor, Richard Burton, John Wayne, Marilyn Monroe, Marlene Dietrich and Sir Winston Churchill, who claimed permanent possession of the ship’s second cabin.
But the vessel’s most celebrated passenger was unquestionably Jacqueline Kennedy.
It was on the Christina that Onassis proposed marriage to Jackie and the couple held their wedding reception onboard in the ship’s main salon after their surprise 1968 wedding on Skorpios.
“The idea that he owned a yacht and could just literally sail her away from all of her troubles and take her to this private island, a place where she could just be reclusive, was incredibly appealing,” Jackie After O author Tina Cassidy explained in a 2017 documentary.
Originally named after Onassis’ daughter in 1954, the Christina has had three owners — including the Greek government — since Onassis’ death. New owners added the “O.” in 1998 after they retrieved the ship, which was in near-ruin, from a boatyard.
It currently charters at $634,000 per week for largely Mediterranean cruises. It has been recently refitted and re-entered the charter market with improved facilities including a massive remake of its master Onassis Suite — with a private hot tub — and other cabins.
She sleeps 30 and can host roughly 250 for a reception. The former two-hairdryer beauty salon (a pioneering feature in the ’50s, as was the ship’s two-passenger elevator) is now part of a luxury spa, gym and wellness complex. It also includes the latest in water toys including a waterslide, jetskis and a flyboard.
According to German media reports, guests will be entertained on board by at least two separate bands.
Beginning their celebration, the couple arrived last Saturday at Naples’ Capodichino Airport in company of Tom’s twin brother, Bill. Klum’s parents Erna and Gunther are expected to attend the ceremony as well as Klum’s four children Leni, 15, from her relationship with F1 boss Flavia Briatore and her three children Henry, 14, Johan, 12 and Lou, 10, from her second marriage to Seal.
Leading up to the festivities, Klum has been sharing snaps from her time in Italy on Instagram, decked out in bridal white outfits.
She shared a photo alongside Kaulitz in a white halter-style Galvan dress with glam gold earrings and coordinating clutch.
She took a break from wedding planning with a shot of Limoncello wearing a white caftan with sheer fringe accents.
And practiced for her first dance with her new husband wearing a mod-style baby doll dress with long sleeves and swinging cape.