Mr. Tony Difiglio began his now long history with the Chicago yacht charter business in 1973 when he began to look for unique alternatives to traditional venues to entertain his most important clients. As a business owner himself (of a manufacturing company), he understood the need to impress and treat his guests to a luxurious experience. His initial vessel was the Summer Mist, one of only a very small number of yachts that could be chartered at that time. Difiglio’s successfully organized some of the most exclusive and talked-about parties and events for five years before he hit a roadblock – the Summer Mist was to be sold. Not wanting anything to change and after finally seeing with new eyes what he had been able to achieve with the charter yacht, Tony Difiglio, with the approval of his colleagues, purchased the Summer Mist to keep up the tradition for his clients.
Tony and his wife Anita decided it would be a good idea to also rent out the Summer Mist, which was docked at Burnham Harbor, to other business owners and interested groups. They quickly realized that party goers were eager to make special occasions that much more special by being surrounded by Lake Michigan and with a view of the Chicago cityscape in the background. Tony quickly came to understand that not only was the original charter rental successful, but that more and more groups were looking to host even larger parties too.
In 1981, Tony sold the Summer Mist and replaced it with a 90 ft, 127 passenger yacht and named it the ‘Anita Dee’ after his wife, Anita Difiglio. With this new purchase, Tony began his second official business, Tee Dee Enterprises, Inc, Anita Dee Yacht Charters. They also moved the Anita Dee from its original spot in the Burnham Harbor to its new home at the Navy Pier in 1986. Since then it has been one of only two charter vessels docked at the Pier.