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November December 2019 Marina World

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TALKING SHOP government granted approval and the following year the finance ministry signed an agreement for the revised project. Shortly afterwards, the marina obtained its construction licences and the first yacht was launched two years later in 2012. Serving large and small Today, the marina is a world-class facility centred around a Poralu Marine floating pontoon system. It has its own fuel station, which allows it to provide diesel and petrol for all yachts including superyachts. The boat yard is equipped with a 700-tonne mobile boat hoist, manufactured by PDN Engineering and Cranes, a 75-tonne Ascom hoist and a 300-tonne boat trailer. Dry dock storage is offered for 300 yachts up to 9m (29.5ft), served by a marine forklift. Security is key, Címen explains. “At West Istanbul Marina we pay great attention to security systems. We have a 24-hour video surveillance system provided by 104 cameras placed all around the water. Security guards are on duty around the clock, as are mooring personnel, who provide safety from the water. Yacht storage security is provided by a system of access to pontoons with special cards.” While the marina does not currently have a membership scheme, available berths can usually be found year-round. From August, occupancy levels average around 70%. “Another challenge in Istanbul is the high taxes from the government,” he adds. “Because of this, we are forced to set a price that can be too high for local yacht owners.” Other facilities offered at the marina include a diving service, environmental services such as pump-out, engine oil disposal tanks, waste tanks, water and shore power supplies, water and electricity, toilets and showers – including some for disabled guests – WiFi, free satellite TV connection, a health centre located just outside the marina, a doctor and infirmary, a chandlery, supermarket, laundry services, a car park for up to 550 cars, fitness and tennis courts, spa centre, swimming pool, sailing school, cultural arts centre, café, restaurants and a heliport. From next year, a beach will also be available for all guests. A flavour of Turkey Címen is keen for marina guests to get a real flavour of Istanbul during their stay. “There are many restaurants for every taste – bars with Turkish hookahs or cozy coffee houses where you can drink Turkish coffee with sea views,” Címen says. And there’s plenty of activities available at the marina and in the wider region. “Those who follow healthy lifestyles can play sports at West Life Fitness, and guests of any age can join the classes at the Meerkat sailing school. Visitors can enjoy the Above & below: West Istanbul is the only marina in the Mediterranean with a 700- tonne mobile boat hoist and the technical ability to provide yacht refits of any complexity. spa and relax after a hard day. Because the shipyard is located within the marina, all clients and crew members have the opportunity to use the facilities of West Istanbul Marina’s developed infrastructure. And we are trying to improve the leisure time of the crew by organising various activities for them, such as excursions to the historical centre of Istanbul.” The marina is ideally located for cruising. It is a Port of Entry for Marmara and, from here, just a short journey to the historic centre of Istanbul, Buyukada, Heybeliada, Marmara, Trilye, Poyrazkoy and Yalova. Buyukada is the largest island among the Princes’ Islands in the Marmara Sea, used as an exile destination and as a monastery region during the Byzantine Christian period, while Heybeliada is the second largest island with four harbours. Çam Harbour, historically called ‘Port Saint Maria’, is the greatest harbour of the island and considered by many as a natural wonder. Marmara itself is the largest Turkish island in the Sea of Marmara, boasting mountains in the north and pine forests in the south. Tirilye is home to fascinating examples of Greek architecture, with a bustling port and monastery. And Istanbul itself is home to the famous Hagia Sofia, Blue Mosque, Topkapi Palace and Basilica Cistern. - November/December 2019 25

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