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Cheoy Lee Shipyards

The Cheoy Lee Company has been a major builder of ships and all types of boats for over 100 years. With roots tracing back to 1870 in a building at a repair yard in Po Tung Point in Shanghai, Cheoy Lee Shipyards has had a colorful and successful history. Originally producing wooden commercial craft from a shipyard in Shanghai, Cheoy Lee moved operations to Hong Kong in 1936. Initially specializing in the production of powered cargo vessels to outrun the Japanese blockade, Cheoy Lee later diversified into the large scale production of teak sailing and motoryachts. Most of these were exported to the US. During the 50s trawlers were built for the United Nation Korean Reconstruction Agency. During the early 1960's, Cheoy Lee made steady progress in the development, testing and use of fiberglass and by the mid 1960's wood construction had been phased out. Cheoy Lee became one of the first shipyard users of fiberglass and in turn became one of the pioneers of GRP/foam sandwich technology in the marine field. According to David Toombs from Lion Yachts "over 4,500 Cheoy Lee yachts were delivered and he points out that it is interesting that usually no more than 50 or so are available at any given time on the market". He also points out that Cheoy Lee has stopped production for all designs under 50' due to worldwide demand for the larger motorsailers and motoryachts. For the record David claims to be the original Cheoy Lee Distributor dating from 1960 and made over 70 trips to Hong Kong spending over a year in the shipyard there monitoring all phases of construction. He goes on to say that in its over 110 years of family ownership Cheoy Lee has become a major factor in yacht building, fully Lloyds Approved, with a modern climate controlled facility.

Today Cheoy Lee makes everything from ferries to tugboats and several models of large motor yachts up to 446 tons and 144' in length. The only sailboats currently produced, as far as I am aware of, are the 53, 63, and the 78' Motorsailors plus a 77' Pilothouse Cutter.

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