Henri Amel, who was born on 16th April 1913 as Henri Tonet, was fascinated by sailing from a very young age. At the end of his teenage years, he began sailing on small yachts. He started to build boats in his bodywork business in Paris. After being called up for war, he continued his boat-building activities in Lyon. He was wounded in one eye during the war and lost his sight completely shortly afterwards for several years. But Henri Amel never gave up his dream to build yachts that would be robust, comfortable and easy to manoeuvre.
Super Mistral Sport
7.06m, produced from 1961 to 1972
9.40m, produced from 1962 to 1966
5.25m, produced from 1962 to 1968
5.74m, produced from 1963 to 1968
Les chantiers AMEL is created in La Rochelle when Henri AMEL, who until then had been entrusting the construction of his yachts to external yards, takes over the company ARPIN (Ateliers Rochelais de Polyester Industriel et Naval), based in the Ville en Bois district. At the time he had over forty employees, including his designer Jacques Carteau, the future technical director then right hand man of Mr. Amel, then CEO of Chantiers AMEL. Since 1962 AMEL has also had a base in the Mediterranean, in the new port at Hyères.
The La Rochelle workshops produced the Copain, the Pampero, the Super Mistral Sport and the Euros 39.
As a pioneer in polyester construction, AMEL manufactures its boats using its own glass fibre, assembling via stratification internal bulkheads, deck and hull in a single piece, forming a perfectly waterproof and highly resistant structure.
11.75m, AMEL's first ketch, produced from 1966 to 1972
On 5th February 1968, ARPIN's workshops were completely destroyed in a fire. Henri Amel built new yards in Périgny, a new business park in La Rochelle. These new premise were inaugurated in January 1969 and would produce every one of AMEL's yachts up to the current models.
11.02m, produced from 1971 to 1978
6m, produced from 1971 to 1972
Creation of the "Guadeloupe Yachting" rental company in Pointe-à-Pitre, replaced in 1981 by an AMEL after sales service base.
12.35m, produced from 1972 to 1978
21st - 24th September 1973: first Grand Pavois in La Rochelle, on the initiative of Henri Amel, Michel Dufour, Fernand Hervé and Roger Mallard, four La Rochelle-based manufacturers.
16m, produced from 1974 to 1977
Oct 1975 to June 1976: La Route des Cocotiers: Mr. Amel crossed the Atlantic to the West Indies then passed through the Panama Canal to Polynesia on board the Meltem "Capitoune II", which he had promised to deliver personally to his customer and friend in Tahiti. He was accompanied by 3 crew-mates. During this journey Mr. Amel designed the Maramu, working with Jacques Carteau at a distance.
13.80m, produced from 1978 to 1989
11.95m, produced from 1979 to 1989
15.82m, produced from 1979 to 1989
Creation of the Chantiers AMEL S.A. company in La Rochelle
10m, produced from 1985 to 1991
Michel Bonneteau is elected CEO and takes over from Mr. Carteau.
First yachts equipped with AMEL sail furling systems.
16m, produced from 1988 to 1998
14m, produced from 1989 to 1997
Jacques CARTEAU, technical director, is elected CEO, replacing Michel Bonneteau
Super Maramu 2000
16m, produced from 1998 to 2006
Jean-Jacques LEMONNIER, sales director, is elected CEO.
The Super Maramu 2000 is voted Best Boat of the Year by the American review Cruising World.
17.20m, produced from 2005 to 2011
12th April 2005: death of Henri AMEL.
From 2005, the boats produced by the yard are no longer named after winds or islands, but bear the name "AMEL".
The La Rochelle-Périgny production site expands and a new 4000m² building is inaugurated, in particular with a view to producing larger units, such as the AMEL 64.
19.60m, launched in 2010
17.30m, launched in 2011
Transfer of AMEL Caraïbes from Guadeloupe to Le Marin in Martinique.
AMEL 55 Cabriolet
17.30m, launched in 2014
January 2014: Jean-Jacques Lemonnier leaves his position as chief executive and is replaced by Emmanuel Poujeade, Chantiers AMEL's administrative and financial director, who joined the company in March 2000. Mr. Lemonnier remains Chairman of the Board.
January 2015 : AMEL 64 is presented for the first time in an indoor boat show at the Düsseldorf "Boot". The exhibited model features new interiors now proposed by AMEL with light wood species and a refreshing design.
September 2016 : Creation of the AMEL Club with its blog dedicated to AMEL owners.
September 2017 : Launching at the Cannes Yachting Festival of the new model, the AMEL 50, a 15.50-meter sloop.
January 2018: The AMEL 50 is voted European Yacht Of The Year in the Luxury Cruiser category.
September 2019: Launch at the Cannes Yachting Festival of a new model, AMEL 60, sloop of 18m.