Béla Karsai lived in the golden age of Danube wooden shipbuilding, and it can be said that he is the king of this profession. During his lifetime, rowing became a mass sport and, in addition to keelboats, doubles, kayaks and canoes, wooden motorboats were also present in large numbers on the Danube.

Although new technologies (fibreglass, resin) became widespread during his lifetime, he did not want to switch to them. He said he did not have the time. So he worked and created in wood all his life, and it was in this genre that he stood out from his peers.

Karsai boats are still the pinnacle of his craft, the boats that come out of his hands are more than just sporting equipment, their beauty and quality are legendary and still are. The outstanding master of the Hungarian industry, the Hungarian woodworking industry, has now been given a worthy memorial thanks to the unity and financial sacrifice of a small but enthusiastic community.

The winner of the 2017 Cannes Yachting Festival Concours d’Élégance was a Hungarian motorboat built in 1954 by Béla Karsai. The Festival is Europe’s largest boat show and one of the most important yachting events in the world. Boatyards showcase their latest products.

The Hungarian boat was a double winner: it won first prize in the category for boats built before 1980 and was also the jury’s favourite.

The boat was built by Béla Karsai in 1954, from mahogany and okume wood. The structure and the ribs are made of pine and stone pine.

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