MarineMax Opens New BVI Base On Tortola
MarineMax Opens New Charter Sailing Base In The British Virgin Islands
We'd like to extend a warm welcome to the newest Charter Company in the British Virgin Islands, MarineMax. Welcome to paradise MarineMax Crew!
During our July BVI review trip we were given a tour the new MarineMax base and fleet in Maya Cove (a.k.a Hodges Creek), Tortola by base Manager Darren and Assistant Manager Bentley. What we saw was a sparkling new base office with briefing areas, a friendly staff of seasoned sailing and chartering veterans, and a fleet unique among British Virgin Islands charter yachts.
Recently we reviewed a Dufour 405 Grand Large from Dream Yacht Charter. At the time, she was a one of a kind charter yacht. The quality of Dufour yachts looks to not have been lost on MarineMax who's based their fleet of charter sailing Monohulls exclusively on the Dufour brand. Currently their fleet is comprised of Dufour 413's and 433, running 41 feet and 43 feet in length respectively. Just the fact that they have the only fleet of Dufour's in the BVIs is impressive enough, but that's not where the story ends, rather it's where it starts.
Dufour yachts are known for comfort, space, and performance (see our review of Dufour 405 grand Large for more). For proof look no further than the Heineken Regatta where a Dufour 43 took third and BVI Spring regatta where a Dufour 405 took first overall in the charter class. Not too shabby. But charter sailing is not racing. It's not even close to racing. It's about comfort, ease of use, and fun. The speed quotient definitely helps with the latter. But a well-rounded charter yacht has much more to consider. MarineMax has addressed the needs of charter sailors and hard-core sailors alike. For the chartering set, all yachts come with flat screen TVs, dockside A/C, electric heads, and water makers. To date we've not seen the kinds of comprehensive creature comforts aboard a charter monohull of this size, let alone an entire fleet. Rather than features aboard a charter yacht, the amenities provided seem to reflect MarineMax's philosophy toward what a charter yacht should be. How does a highly outfitted monohull pay off on charter? Our intuition says it should pay off nicely, but we won't be able to report on that one until we've had a chance to properly review these new tricked out Dufours. Or how the 43-footer changes the experience over the 41. We know the personality of the 41 well. The 43 is a different animal all together. Those extra few feet change a yachts personality quite a bit. Oh, and did we mention the spinnaker? Yep, they come with those too, on a rolling furler for easy setting and dousing (no pole required). Another one of a kind standard option.
MarineMax looks to be off to a good start.
In addition to the Dufour mainstay fleet, they are in the process of adding two new power cats. A 37-foot, 2 cabin Morelli and Melvin design called the MarineMax 382 tweaked with the MarineMax eye towards ease of use and comfort. And the four cabin MarineMax 464, a totally new 45 footer. As far as we know, the 464 will be the only charter power cat in the BVIs not based on a sailing hull design. Both feature filled in forward decks (no trampolines), spacious accommodations and luxury touches throughout. The 382 is expected to be delivered by August and the 464 should be ready to charter around the Christmas season. Though we're a sailing publication, were taking a close look at these two power cats. Keep an eye out for more to come on these in particular. It's not often our crew gets their eyes trained on a power vessel. But these defiantly caught our eye, for all the right reasons.
For now, uniquely outfitted Dufour sailing yachts is the name of the game at BVI MarineMax base. They've started off on the right foot, and by the looks of it, they've got the right attitude, service, and facilities to make a name for themselves in the British Virgin Islands.
Welcome to the BVI's MarineMax. We think you'll like it here.
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