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2016 May June Marina World

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The magazine for the marina industry


SUPERYACHT FACILITIES Launching Anguilla on the superyacht circuit A new luxury marina on the island of Anguilla in the Lesser Antilles will offer new mooring opportunities for superyacht charters and other visitors. Development responds to a chronic need for new berths in the region and will put Anguilla on the cruising circuit for the first time. Jeffrey Boyd reports Neither the global recession nor the stock market slides nor the disappearance of personal wealth has put a serious dent in Caribbean charter and yacht traffic. The yachting industry, which has been exhibiting consistent growth over the past few years, is being fuelled by an increasing desire for more active leisure holidays by the affluent. In addition, there is a growing interest in short-break and multi-centre trips (i.e. trips that combine yachting and/or sailing with some other land and sea-based activity). The demand for active leisure vacations calls for a fleet of charter yachts - large private or ‘super luxury’ yachts in the size range of 79 to 230ft (24 to 70m) - that is growing in number and size. The 2015 Global Yacht Order Book indicates there are currently approximately 757 such yachts under construction worldwide. These are primarily over 100ft (30m) in length and will be added to the fleet of approximately 2,200 that are already in service worldwide. Expansion of the large luxury yacht fleet comes at a time when the berth count, support facilities and resorts located in the most popular destinations are unable to accommodate them. Facilities have not even come close to keeping pace. When cruising in the Leeward Islands region, the average megayacht charter will only be able to tie up and dock in either St Maarten or St Barts if a prior reservation has been A new marina at Altamer Resort will deliver much needed berths and prestigious waterfront property. made as during the peak season most, if not all, marinas are fully booked. Enter Anguilla The newest and most welcome response to the influx of large charter yachts is soon to be found in Anguilla. Anguilla is situated just to the north of St Martin and approximately 250 miles east of Puerto Rico and, although an island paradise, cannot currently offer dockage for any yachts. There are simply no marinas. As a result, yachts bypass the island completely or are forced to anchor off the beaches in an unsheltered cove for very short periods of a day or so. Visitors use dinghies to reach limited landing areas. The lack of facilities is a major inconvenience and has prevented the island from becoming a stopping point for charters and the luxury tourism they deliver. Dramatic change will arrive in the not too distant future when a new luxury five-star marina opens at Altamer Resort at Shoal Bay West. With capacity to host yachts up to 300ft (91m), Altamer will serve as the official port of entry to Anguilla and solve the island’s berthing problem by providing the highest calibre slips, support services and resort amenities. The resort will also be expanded and upland residential properties built. Jeffrey D Boyd As a yacht charter destination, Altamer will be able to service and provision yachts while offering marina guests the use of all the resort facilities including concierge services. Opening up the market While the marina is not envisaged as becoming the home port for a significant number of megayachts, the proximity of the site to the Caribbean cruising grounds and the general allure of Anguilla and the Altamer resort itself dictate that mooring space for megayachts be integrated into marina plans. These will command premium prices and create significant demand for resort services. Aside from this, large numbers of mid size cruising and fishing vessels typically of 30 to 60ft (9 to 18m) depart Puerto Rico for various destinations in the region (especially the Virgin Islands) during the summer months. Some of these could well find their way to Altamer, providing critical off-season revenue to the marina facility. There could be additional benefits when the residential aspect of the plan comes on line as, although the Caribbean has a healthy winter sailing trade and there are a number of highly rated superyacht marinas on islands that include Barbados, St Lucia and Antigua, few offer an integrated residential aspect. Focus on property Marina resorts also attract large numbers of people who don’t own boats but who want to live in a waterfront location. At Altamer Marina, residences overlooking the marina will have sought after views and the convenience of a central location adjacent to the restaurants, retail and nightlife. The views from seaside villas/ homes situated on the south facing peninsula with the marina basin to the rear and the open ocean to the front are literally ‘million dollar vistas’, which cannot be re-created. The Altamer Resort complex will include 740,000ft² (68,748m²) of upland space, which is currently earmarked for a 164-unit resort type community and a duty-free shopping and restaurant promenade. The project will be the first of its kind for the island. Jeffrey D Boyd is chairman and CEO of Marine Management & Consulting and Anaconda Holdings Ltd. 30 - May/June 2016

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