Archive for » June 24th, 2014«

Boat sales rebounding in Palm Beach County – Sun

More people in Palm Beach County are taking to the water in new boats.

Registrations of new boats increased 14 percent in the year ending in March, after jumping 25 percent the year before, according to Info-Link Technologies Inc., a marine industry tracker based in Miami.

The reasons: an improving economy, attractive financing and people who are tired of waiting to buy, marine retailers say.

“It’s been crazy. We’re extremely busy,” said Steve Sprague, vice president of Tuppen’s Marine Tackle, one of the oldest and largest marine and tackle outfits in the county. “We’ve just been going like wild fire.”

Tuppen’s has two locations in Lake Worth and one in Hypoluxo. Just last week, Tuppen’s delivered seven boats across South Florida. And more deals are in the pipeline.

The rebound is a relief to an industry that weathered tough years after the recession. New-boat registrations in Palm Beach County totaled 1,268 in 2008, but the numbers declined for three years after that and increased only 8 percent from 2011 to 2012.

The total number of recreational boats registered still has not recovered. It fell from 37,051 in 2012 to 36,852 last year.

Boat and supply dealers say the industry seems to have bottomed out. Both big and small boats are in demand this year, they say.

“We’re seeing a lot of new people coming into boating,” Sprague said.

Taiwan yacht builder Horizon Yachts, which operates its U.S. headquarters in North Palm Beach, has seen high interest in its luxury yachts in the past six months.

Horizon recently sold four E88 luxury motoryachts — 88 feet long with price tags ranging from $6.4 million to $6.8 million, said Elise Moffitt, a Horizon Yacht USA sales and marketing agent.

“Sales are definitely up compared to this time last year,” Moffitt said. “Having four sales at [relatively] the same time is an increase for us.”

The majority of the E88 yachts are going to buyers with ties to South Florida, she said.

“There’s pent up demand, and people are tired of waiting” for the right conditions to buy, she said.

Nationwide, sales of new boats are forecast to rise 5 percent to 7 percent in 2014, according to the National Marine Manufacturers Association, a trade group based in Chicago.

An estimated 166,800 new powerboats and sailboats were sold in 2013, an increase of 2.2 percent from 2012, the group says. Florida led the nation in sales of new powerboats, motors, trailers and accessories last year, with $1.93 billion, up 14 percent from 2012.

As the economy improves over the summer — a peak selling season for boats — the NMMA expects to see continued growth, President Thom Dammrich said.

He attributes part of that to boat makers trying to make new boats more versatile and appealing to entry-level boaters.

Last year was the first time since 2009 that new-boat sales began to close the gap with used, the NMMA said.

Sellers of small boats, boating accessories and other supplies say they’re riding the wave, too.

“We’re seeing a lot more traffic in the last six weeks or so, with more and more folks over the weekend,” said Erik Rimblas, southeast U.S. regional vice president for West Marine, a specialty chain retailer of boating supplies and accessories — the largest in South Florida.

The retailer, based in Watsonville, Calif., has stores in Delray Beach, North Palm Beach and Tequesta.

Hot sellers in recent weeks have included small inflatable boats, stand-up paddleboards and fishing kayaks — “anything to do with recreation on and around the water,” Rimblas said.

asatchell@tribune.com, 954-356-4209 or Twitter@TheSatchreport.


Similar news:

Students learn how to sail at Offshore Sailing School in Fort Myers


Poor Robert Redford. If only he had gone to sailing school, the wayward yachtsman would have known not to cross the Indian Ocean solo with the wrong lifeboat. When a cargo container slashed the port side of his 39-foot yacht, he should have immediately tacked to starboard.

“And if he had the presence of mind to cover the gash with a mattress and taped plastic over the hole, he might have made it,” says skipper Mark Turner, as he comes about off Florida’s Sanibel Island and heads toward port.

For Redford’s character in the film “All Is Lost,” it’s too late. But as Turner, fleet services director for Offshore Sailing School based in Fort Myers, explains, “Learning how to sail is not difficult if you’re willing to take a good class.”

With more than 130,000 graduates behind it, Offshore promotes the green alternative to power boating. You may be surprised to know that more than 60 percent of Americans have never climbed aboard a sailboat.

As one who has sailed his entire life, I find this to be one of life’s great mysteries. After all, as my father frequently pointed out, yachting is indisputably the secret to longevity.

“It takes about a week of training to get to the point where you can charter a yacht,” says Offshore Chairman Steve Colgate, who is celebrating the 50th anniversary of the sailing school he founded in New York.

“Less, if you want to sail a smaller boat,” says his wife, and company president and CEO, Doris Colgate.

With locations in New York, New Jersey, Florida and the Virgin Islands, Offshore Sailing School’s mission is to make yachting safe and enjoyable. And, as many of the school’s students will tell you, a class could also change your life.

Learning how to run with the wind, come about, jibe and handle “man overboard” incidents on Colgate 26 training sailboats designed by Steve Colgate and Jim Taylor are all part of the curriculum.

The Colgates and their team of instructors are missionaries, talking business people, families, kids and even powerboat owners into giving sailing a try. Although you can certainly learn a lot from their books, online and classroom instruction, there’s nothing quite like being out in the Gulf of Mexico, Long Island Sound or the Caribbean.

At its headquarters in Fort Myers and other locations, the school partners with local resorts to offer a program that turns a vacation into a learning experience. Although there are short three-day courses perfect for beginners, many students focus on weeklong sessions. Upon graduation, they are fully qualified to charter bare boat yachts.

While students come from all walks of life, the current trend is toward empty nesters who have both the time and the money to take up sailing. Fuel costs have also helped persuade powerboat owners to switch to sailing. The school also attracts many students who own sailboats and want to brush up on their skills.

“Sailors tend to be very highly educated,” says Doris Colgate. “They are very inquisitive and many of them come from teaching professions.”

One of them is St. Louis-based Bill Broderick, a retired brokerage firm partner who has owned powerboats for years on the Lake of the Ozarks.

“My wife and I wanted to get a sailboat but didn’t feel we were prepared,” he said. “I had sailed as a kid, but taking this class made me realize how little I knew.”

By the end of the fifth day of instruction he and his wife were qualified to solo, and by the end of the weeklong program the couple was certified to skipper chartered boats. Now they are in the market for a sailboat in the 35-foot range that will allow them to overnight in Florida and New England.

“Powerboats are very simple,” says Broderick. “You go from Point A to Point B. Sailing is much more about the ride. It’s a much more engaging and challenging experience than power boating. You enjoy the ride more when you are responsible.”

Like other graduates of the Colgate school, they have signed on for a flotilla club cruise. The August adventure will take them to Lake Superior’s Apostle Islands.

“For us,” says Doris Colgate, “one of the secrets of our success is letting students know at the beginning of class that soon they are going to be sailing with fellow students without our instructor.

“A sink-or-swim approach keeps them motivated. In just three days, they say to themselves, you’re going to trust me to sail a yacht. That really focuses their attention.”


Similar news:

Who Is The World's Best Young Chef?

S. Pellegrino Cooking Cup

Anyone sailing the Venetian lagoon last weekend would have noticed an unusual occurrence on Saturday afternoon. Forty one boats were engaged in a sailing race—that much isn’t unusual—but at the end , each would sail over to a moored blue sailboat (belonging to the Missoni family with a Missoni—Giacomo Missoni– on board) and hand over a dish they’d prepared during the race to be judged. This was the centerpiece of the S. Pellegrino Cooking Cup, a 14 year old event sponsored by the Nestle-owned mineral water company and an anchor of its approach to tie in with chefs around the world. Ten of the on board chefs were notable restaurant chefs under 30 representing countries ranging from the U.S. and Australia to South Korea and the UAE, selected by either national competitions or local food experts. Since this part of the competition was open to the public,  though, the others were just sailors up for a cooking/sailing adventure. (My favorite was the team wearing plastic colanders on their heads.)

The idea of combining these two elements  derives from the feeling that cooking and sailing are both sharing, convivial activities, according to Antonella Stefanelli, Intl. Business Unit PR Communication Manager of SANPELLEGRINO S.p.A, as well as a company head’s fondness for sailing and connection to the yacht club in Venice.  The reality of doing it, though,  obviously has its challenges. “I lost everything 30 minutes in when they slid off the table. So I had to start again,” said Tim Maslow  of Brookline, Massachusetts’ ribelle,  the U.S. competitor,  who nonetheless pulled together his chilled  hot and sour broth with shellfish and spring vegetables, ingredients acquired during a 7:30 AM run to the city’s Rialto Market. Christopher Graham, the executive sous chef of Atlantis The Palm in Dubai, the UAE’s entry, had a decided advantage. “I used to be a yacht chef,” he says, “so I knew several of the tricks, such as putting a wet towel down and the dishes on that so that nothing slides.”

The winner of this competition and of the overall Young Chef of the Year Award, Russia’s Sergey Berezutskiy of the restaurant As Eat Is in Moscow, had no such knowledge but he did have a dish—langoustines with artichokes smoked in birch bark with zucchini and tomatoes served under a circular cover of elaborately decorated Russian birch—that impressed the judges. The rest of us were impressed that the ten judges including Peru’s celebrated chef Gaston Acurio, Davide Scabin of Combal.Zero near Turin and Paul Qui, of Austin’s qui, and the winner of last year’s event managed to make it through 40 dishes while spending several hours floating on the Missoni boat.

The night before, the ten chefs competed in a more stationery setting  composing dishes to be judged on presentation and taste. The winner of this, according to the judges and the assembled media: Ahmad Salameh of La Regence at the King David Hotel in Jerusalem for his black garlic cannelloni stuffed with duck rillette and roasted pumpkin. (The people’s choice among the dozens of retailers, restauranteurs and other professional guests flown in by the company, however, was the egg yolk at  63 degrees with brown butter, mushrooms and sherry cream by Thomas Troupin of La Menuiserie in Belgium.)

Part of the judging was compatibility with the water, an aspect, according to Stefanelli, that has always been important. “Our customers say that the taste has always been the draw; the water goes so well with food. Fine dining is our environment,” she says. At a time when there is significant competition from other mineral waters and more restaurants choose to offer their own water through filtration systems, having a good relationship with chefs who serve that water or might is key, the reason the company spends lavishly to hold this event and sponsors the widely publicized World’s 50 Best Restaurants list. 

For their part, the chefs participate because it introduces them to others in the fine dining world whom they might not otherwise meet and helps them get international exposure. “Sergey is already famous in Russia but this will introduce him to people around the world,” said one of his associates after a long night celebrating his victory. Many of the chefs also explained that they picked up new ideas from their international peers.

Next Next year, though, this event will be changing. Linking to Milan’s Expo in 2015, the competition will expand, most likely encompassing more days of competition between young international chefs with more of it open to the public to view and to taste. And this time all of it will be on land, bad news for Venetian sailors but a big relief for the chefs.

Follow me on Twitter Twitter


Similar news:

Sailing – FEATURE

After a text book start to the annual “Round the Island Race” off Cowes, Ainslie and his crew aboard the sleek green racing yacht “Rebel” are locked in a tacking duel with another 45-footer called “Toe in the Water”.

It is 6.45 a.m. and under clear blue skies what promises to be a slow 50 nautical mile race has only just begun.

But with precious little wind, areas of “pressure” evident as darker patches on the calm waters, every turn of the boat – known as a “tack” – slows it down against a fast-running tide.

“We’re coming after you,” Ainslie says, half jokingly, half menacingly, after one of several close encounters with the maroon yacht. Its skipper has clearly decided to engage Britain’s America’s Cup hopeful by matching him tack for tack.

The 37-year-old Briton, who warned fellow competitors “you don’t want to make me angry” at the 2012 Olympics before going on to clinch gold in the single-handed Finn dinghy, gradually draws away as his boat makes its way up the Solent.

With an Olympic medal tally of four golds and one silver in consecutive games, Ainslie’s success continued last year when he helped bring Oracle Team USA back from the brink of defeat in the America’s Cup in San Francisco.

That remarkable victory helped him to launch his own campaign this month, signing up private sponsors, a design team and a crew including three-times America’s Cup winner Jono Macbeth, another New Zealand veteran Andy McLean and Britons David Carr, Matt Cornwell and Nick Hutton.

With this team, Ainslie is aiming to bring the “Auld Mug” to Britain for the first time since the trophy was won in an historic race around the Isle of Wight by the U.S. schooner “America” in August 1851.

[VIDEO LINK: http://uk.reuters.com/video/2014/06/23/reuters-goes-sailing-with-ben-ainslie?videoId=316510398videoChannel=1 ]

PLAIN SAILING

The 2014 circumnavigation was meant to be an easy outing for Ainslie and his newly formed America’s Cup challenge team. But a last minute rigging glitch foiled hopes of a record attempt on board the 100-foot state-of-the art yacht “Leopard”.

So with only 45 minutes of practice on board “Rebel”, this is the first time Ainslie, Macbeth, McLean, Cornwell and Carr have raced together as a team.

By Ainslie’s standards, it is a recreational sail. A year ago, the stakes were much higher as he went for a record.

On a gusty day, Ainslie and his Ben Ainslie Racing (BAR) team broke the multi hull record for the race, rounding the island in just three hours and 44 minutes on a smaller version of the AC72 catamaran on which he later won the America’s Cup.

The mood was very different then. The day before he and friends including fellow Olympian Iain Percy had carried the coffin of their friend Andrew “Bart” Simpson, who died in San Francisco Bay when the catamaran he was training on capsized.

Ainslie recalls how he left Simpson’s wake at midnight and was picked up by a launch from Southampton on the mainland at 2 a.m to take him to Cowes to be ready for the start of the race.

He says that Simpson’s death will mean more rigorous structural tests for the new generation of catamarans in the next America’s Cup, where he expects seven or eight teams to compete for the right to challenge Oracle Team USA.

Getting his own team ready is a huge project, involving the construction of a base in Portsmouth and the building of practice boats, which the team will hone its skills on in the waters through which he is now sailing.

Ainslie’s crew say he is working night and day to get the money and backing he needs to make the bid a success.

Their skipper says they have raised around 40 percent of the 80 million pounds ($136.06 million) he reckons is needed to successfully become the challenger to Oracle Team USA in 2017, including the cost of building a new high-tech 62-foot catamaran.

“I would love to bring the America’s Cup back here. The America’s Cup is about designing and building the fastest boat and then going out and sailing it really well,” Ainslie told Reuters on board “Rebel” during Saturday’s race.

“We’ve been having some really good early discussions with a number of different brands and businesses. So I’m pretty confident we will be there and we will have the funding that we need,” he added.

TEAM BUILDING

Once past the jagged chalk rocks known as the Needles which protrude from the western end of the Isle of Wight, “Rebel” is clearly ahead of “Toe in the Water” and builds a healthy lead around the southern side of the island.

Ainslie is more relaxed, but still watching for every wind shift and giving instructions on tactics or trimming the boat. He never raises his voice, his directions more like wishes such as “I’m thinking about…” or “You might want to…”.

There is genuine affection for Ainslie among the newly-formed team, with Carr referring to him as “Guv” throughout the race as he seeks advice or reassurance on tactics.

And they rib their skipper when he ventures to the front of the boat, saying he’s about to produce a couple of distress flares and hold them aloft, in a recreation of the posture he adopted when he celebrated his last Olympic gold medal.

Ainslie responds with words of encouragement when the crew pull off a tricky “gybe” manouevre really well.

But any talk of line honours in the Round the Island Race is dashed when “Rebel” and the other leading boats pile up in a wind hole with just four miles still to go. “Toe in the Water” is able to spot the trouble ahead and manages to keep sailing.

Then the wind drops completely and Ainslie has no option but to “kedge”, dropping the anchor to stop the boat being swept backwards by the tide. Of the 1584 boats which entered the race, more than half retired, with only 715 finishing.

“Who says sailing isn’t fun?” Ainslie says, with a wry smile, breaking the despondent silence among the crew.

When the breeze does finally pick up again, Ainslie tries to find more wind on the opposite side of the channel.

But his gamble doesn’t pay off and by the time “Rebel” crosses the finish line after 10 hours and 18 minutes, “Toe in the Water” has comfortably beaten the America’s Cup winner.

“We had a great race… we got around in one piece, that’s the main thing,” says Ainslie with a smile as he looks forward to helming a fast catamaran in the Extreme Sailing Series in St. Petersburg later this week.

($1 = 0.5880 British Pounds)


Similar news:

Sailing-Ainslie tests waters with British America's Cup crew

By Alexander Smith

ISLE OF WIGHT, England, June 23 (Reuters) – Ben Ainslie isn’t angry, but sailing’s most successful Olympian is clearly irritated.

After a text book start to the annual “Round the Island Race” off Cowes, Ainslie and his crew aboard the sleek green racing yacht “Rebel” are locked in a tacking duel with another 45-footer called “Toe in the Water”.

It is 6.45 a.m. and under clear blue skies what promises to be a slow 50 nautical mile race has only just begun.

But with precious little wind, areas of “pressure” evident as darker patches on the calm waters, every turn of the boat – known as a “tack” – slows it down against a fast-running tide.

“We’re coming after you,” Ainslie says, half jokingly, half menacingly, after one of several close encounters with the maroon yacht. Its skipper has clearly decided to engage Britain’s America’s Cup hopeful by matching him tack for tack.

The 37-year-old Briton, who warned fellow competitors “you don’t want to make me angry” at the 2012 Olympics before going on to clinch gold in the single-handed Finn dinghy, gradually draws away as his boat makes its way up the Solent.

With an Olympic medal tally of four golds and one silver in consecutive games, Ainslie’s success continued last year when he helped bring Oracle Team USA back from the brink of defeat in the America’s Cup in San Francisco.

That remarkable victory helped him to launch his own campaign this month, signing up private sponsors, a design team and a crew including three-times America’s Cup winner Jono Macbeth, another New Zealand veteran Andy McLean and Britons David Carr, Matt Cornwell and Nick Hutton.

With this team, Ainslie is aiming to bring the “Auld Mug” to Britain for the first time since the trophy was won in an historic race around the Isle of Wight by the U.S. schooner “America” in August 1851.

[VIDEO LINK: http://uk.reuters.com/video/2014/06/23/reuters-goes-sailing-with-ben-ainslie?videoId=316510398videoChannel=1 ]

PLAIN SAILING

The 2014 circumnavigation was meant to be an easy outing for Ainslie and his newly formed America’s Cup challenge team. But a last minute rigging glitch foiled hopes of a record attempt on board the 100-foot state-of-the art yacht “Leopard”.

So with only 45 minutes of practice on board “Rebel”, this is the first time Ainslie, Macbeth, McLean, Cornwell and Carr have raced together as a team.

By Ainslie’s standards, it is a recreational sail. A year ago, the stakes were much higher as he went for a record.

On a gusty day, Ainslie and his Ben Ainslie Racing (BAR) team broke the multi hull record for the race, rounding the island in just three hours and 44 minutes on a smaller version of the AC72 catamaran on which he later won the America’s Cup.

The mood was very different then. The day before he and friends including fellow Olympian Iain Percy had carried the coffin of their friend Andrew “Bart” Simpson, who died in San Francisco Bay when the catamaran he was training on capsized.

Ainslie recalls how he left Simpson’s wake at midnight and was picked up by a launch from Southampton on the mainland at 2 a.m to take him to Cowes to be ready for the start of the race.

He says that Simpson’s death will mean more rigorous structural tests for the new generation of catamarans in the next America’s Cup, where he expects seven or eight teams to compete for the right to challenge Oracle Team USA.

Getting his own team ready is a huge project, involving the construction of a base in Portsmouth and the building of practice boats, which the team will hone its skills on in the waters through which he is now sailing.

Ainslie’s crew say he is working night and day to get the money and backing he needs to make the bid a success.

Their skipper says they have raised around 40 percent of the 80 million pounds ($136.06 million) he reckons is needed to successfully become the challenger to Oracle Team USA in 2017, including the cost of building a new high-tech 62-foot catamaran.

“I would love to bring the America’s Cup back here. The America’s Cup is about designing and building the fastest boat and then going out and sailing it really well,” Ainslie told Reuters on board “Rebel” during Saturday’s race.

“We’ve been having some really good early discussions with a number of different brands and businesses. So I’m pretty confident we will be there and we will have the funding that we need,” he added.

TEAM BUILDING

Once past the jagged chalk rocks known as the Needles which protrude from the western end of the Isle of Wight, “Rebel” is clearly ahead of “Toe in the Water” and builds a healthy lead around the southern side of the island.

Ainslie is more relaxed, but still watching for every wind shift and giving instructions on tactics or trimming the boat. He never raises his voice, his directions more like wishes such as “I’m thinking about…” or “You might want to…”.

There is genuine affection for Ainslie among the newly-formed team, with Carr referring to him as “Guv” throughout the race as he seeks advice or reassurance on tactics.

And they rib their skipper when he ventures to the front of the boat, saying he’s about to produce a couple of distress flares and hold them aloft, in a recreation of the posture he adopted when he celebrated his last Olympic gold medal.

Ainslie responds with words of encouragement when the crew pull off a tricky “gybe” manouevre really well.

But any talk of line honours in the Round the Island Race is dashed when “Rebel” and the other leading boats pile up in a wind hole with just four miles still to go. “Toe in the Water” is able to spot the trouble ahead and manages to keep sailing.

Then the wind drops completely and Ainslie has no option but to “kedge”, dropping the anchor to stop the boat being swept backwards by the tide. Of the 1584 boats which entered the race, more than half retired, with only 715 finishing.

“Who says sailing isn’t fun?” Ainslie says, with a wry smile, breaking the despondent silence among the crew.

When the breeze does finally pick up again, Ainslie tries to find more wind on the opposite side of the channel.

But his gamble doesn’t pay off and by the time “Rebel” crosses the finish line after 10 hours and 18 minutes, “Toe in the Water” has comfortably beaten the America’s Cup winner.

“We had a great race… we got around in one piece, that’s the main thing,” says Ainslie with a smile as he looks forward to helming a fast catamaran in the Extreme Sailing Series in St. Petersburg later this week.

($1 = 0.5880 British Pounds) (Editing by Ossian Shine)


Similar news: