After many decades of success, the company closed down in 1965, but following an interesting series of events, the great-grandson has now revived the prestigious name of this classic company and is creating a new range of yachts that are inspired by the original Wheeler Playmate line.
Wheeler yachts were always known for their impressive quality, and within a few short years of operation the company had already garnered an enviable reputation in the United States. By the 1930’s, the company was selling its boats to discerning clientele who wanted nothing but the highest quality.
Of all of the yachts created by this company, the most famous is “Pilar”. Pilar is a Wheeler Playmate boat (the Playmate design was created by Howard’s son and by Wes’ grandfather), which was built for the famous author and journalist Ernest Hemingway. Ernest Hemingway was a keen sailor and fisherman and he spent much of his time on the sea. Pilar was his prized possession, and now the boat is one of the most important relics of his life. It can now be found at the Finca Vigia Hemingway Museum in Cuba – which is a site of much significance as it was both the author’s home and a base for hunting German U-Boats in WWII.