Marina Spotlights

Cape Charles Yacht Center

Mid-Atlantic
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April 2015
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By
Anna
Barthelme

In 2013, Erye Baldwin had plans to create a development in Cape Charles, Virginia, that would help preserve, protect, and revitalize the Eastern Shore. In May 2014, that vision became a reality with the opening of Cape Charles Yacht Center, the newest destination for marine and yacht services on the East Coast. Located right off the mouth of the Chesapeake Bay, Cape Charles Yacht Center is a prime location just steps away from downtown Cape Charles, with easy access for cruisers heading north or south. There is an 18-foot-deep channel and accommodations for luxury yachts up to 240 feet.Our greatest amenity is how natural we are. The ecosystem here in Cape Charles draws boaters to the area, says Erye Baldwin, owner of Cape Charles Yacht Center. It's all about the environment and preserving what we have surrounding us. There are two ecosystems in a three-mile radius around Cape Charles. Boaters take advantage of the popular tours to explore the chain of uninhabited barrier islands that stretches from Assateague Island in the north to Fisherman's Island in the south.Chesapeake Marine Services is Cape Charles's designated service/maintenance operator, ready to help whether you need skilled carpentry, cabin outfitting, bottom painting or electrical repairs. The yacht center has a 75-ton boat lift and ample storage facilities; a 300-ton lift is being built this year.Marina guests are welcome to use the amenities at neighboring Bay Creek Resort, which has two outdoor pools, a members lounge and a state-of-the-art fitness center. And don't forget to bring your golf clubs! The two on-site golf courses were designed by Jack Nicklaus and Arnold Palmer.Cape Charles Yacht Center offers free shuttle transportation to local attractions, including Eddie Bell's Raw Bar in the historic Harvey Building in Oyster, Virginia, where you can enjoy the best local oysters imaginable, shucked by Eddie Bell himself. Guests can also tour the Cherrystone Aqua Farm, a working clam farm and nursery. Or head over to The Shanty, a waterfront seafood spot serving Caribbean-style tacos and their signature shanty fries. The yacht center is constructing a restaurant that will serve American cuisine using fresh produce and ingredients from local farmers and vendors.Cape Charles Yacht Center has exceeded all expectations with their accommodations for super yachts and their dedication to preserving the ecosystems around them. As business is booming, so are plans for future renovations. The marina plans to add more lodging for visitors and an additional 1,000 feet of dock space, and to expand the service center for long-term refits, scheduled to be completed in September of this year. So while you're heading north this spring, tie up at Cape Charles Yacht Center, and experience the best that the Chesapeake Bay has to offer.

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Tom Ryan, Marina Director

TOM RYAN
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What in your life prepared you for a job in the marina industry?

After working in the boating industry for 20+ years and staying in several marinas while owning and working on vessels, I feel like I can anticipate the needs of boat owners and I am well-equipped to accommodate them.

 

Tell us about your experience captaining the Roseway for the World Ocean School.

My experience was life changing. Being in charge of an historic schooner vessel like Roseway taught me patience. Making a positive daily impact on the kids at World Ocean School was some of the most rewarding work I’ve ever been a part of in my life. 

Where do you like to send people for an authentic dining experience when they arrive at your marina for the first time? 

I like to send people to the Lobster Pot. It’s a Provincetown institution that’s been in operation since 1943. From its iconic neon sign to the lobster rolls — it can’t be beat!

Where is your favorite place to relax on your day off?

I would definitely say Long Point Beach is a favorite. The shuttle from MacMillan Pier drops you right in the sand. You plop your chair down and relax while watching boats exit and enter the harbor.

 

Name your top three favorite boating songs on your playlist.

“Chan Chan” by Buena Vista Social Club, because it’s just a relaxing song and it reminds me of my early days in Key West. “Second Hand News by Fleetwood Mac — this song, to me, screams summer! But if you’re out boating here in Ptown, you can’t go wrong with “Old Cape Cod by Patti Page.

If you could walk in anyone’s shoes for a day, who would it be? 

Ernest Shackleton, the great Antarctic explorer of the early 1900s. Having the courage and resolve to lead his team from certain death to safety was a remarkable and inspiring story. 

 

What is your favorite part of the day at the marina?

“The Golden Hour” – when all our guests are situated and relaxing means we’ve done our job!

 

What is the one thing that everyone should do or see in Provincetown?

This artistic town is known for its nightlife, so catching one of the many shows that are offered here is a must-see! Also, if you miss them on your way in, WHALES! The best way to see them is by jumping on one of the whale watch boats that head out daily to the feeding grounds on Stellwagen Marine Sanctuary.

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MORNINGSTAR MARINAS AT LITTLE CREEK, VA, a great cruising destination, has reached a new level of excellence with major renovations that every boater along the Atlantic Seaboard will want to stop by and see.

Morningstar Marinas at Little Creek - marina spotlight - marinalife
Courtesy of Morningstar Marinas at Little Creek

After acquiring the marina, Morningstar received permits to not only replace all the wet slips with new Bellingham docks but also adjusted the configuration to better suit coastal boaters. The upgrades included widening the slips, installing full-length fingers, and achieving 100% clear main walks using tri-frames for dock box placement and cantilevered mid-basin power pedestal bump outs. When you consider they also replaced the fuel and electrical systems, Morningstar Marinas Little Creek will become a premiere marina on the East Coast.Morningstar will exceed all boaters' expectations by offering 350 dry storage spaces in its fully enclosed building, 180 wet slips ranging from 25' to 75' and 400' of side tie. Amenities include a bath house, laundry room, and showers. Other upgrades include a new Toyota forklift, Wi-Fi, pump out, and new fueling stations with ValvTect gasoline and diesel.

As a backdrop to all these improvements, the location is a dream for recreational boaters and anglers. "Being nestled in the back of Little Creek gives boaters a protected basin from weather, but they're only minutes to the Chesapeake Bay, Atlantic Ocean, James River and the entrance to the ICW," says Michael Quinn, General Manager.

Stony's Dockside Waterfront Bar & Grill allows our boaters to enjoy a wonderful meal within minutes of stepping off their vessel. Within walking distance are COVA Brewing Company, Longboards East Beach, and other local favorites. The warm waters at the mouth of the Chesapeake Bay create a fishing paradise for anglers, and miles of easily accessible beaches entice visitors to dive in for a swim or just soak up the sun.

Morningstar Marinas at Little Creek - marina spotlight - marinalife
Courtesy of Morningstar Marinas at Little Creek

"The proximity to Norfolk and Virginia Beach's restaurants, shops and entertainment gives marina guests the conveniences of a big city backed up to an abundance of open water," notes Quinn. Regardless of whether you plan to stay annually or for a couple nights, a visit to Morningstar Marinas, next to Norfolk International Airport in the up-and-coming East Ocean View Section of Norfolk, presents endless opportunities and your gateway to all the Chesapeake Bay has to offer.

Make sure you schedule your trip around one of the many festivals in the area including Harborfest, Town Point Virginia Fall Wine Festival, and Neptune Festival. If you plan a spring visit, don't miss the Patriotic Festival Norfolk for family friendly activities, concerts with national performing artists, and celebrations for all branches of the U.S. armed forces.

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MILES OF LUSH FOLIAGE, hiking trails and stunning Cape Cod views make up the tranquil scene at Kingman Yacht Center.

Kingman Yacht Center - spotlight - marinalife
Courtesy of Kingman Yacht Center

This New England gem is an historic property and community along the northeast corner of Buzzards Bay. The spacious, full-service marina boasts 235 slips in renovated floating docks, as well as 130 moorings. That's room for 365 boats one for every day of the year!With easy access through the seven-mile canal, this destination is ideal for boaters looking for a calm, rural escape. Established in 1932, the site was originally a boat-building center for the U.S. Army, Navy and aircraft rescue boats during military conflicts such as the Korean War.The Kingman family ran this location until they sold it to current owner Scott Zeien in 2000. It became a recreational marina in the ‘50s. I grew up sailing here, and it really hasn't changed much in terms of the personality and the harbor, says Zeien. Our premier boatyard is a community of boaters enjoying one of the most beautiful natural harbors in New England.This retreat is centrally focused around two brands that make KYC: Kingman Yacht Center and Kingman Yacht Club, a thriving marina, service and sales facility, as well as social club where transients and members can enjoy exclusive benefits. Poised on a hilltop overlooking the marina, Red Brook Harbor Club townhomes span a luxury community alongside aquaculture farming and a water treatment plant that filters pollution out of local waterways.

Kingman Yacht Center - spotlight - marinalife
Courtesy of Kingman Yacht Center

KYC's on-site service center offers anything a boater could imagine such as repair, repower, electrical and more. Marina amenities include gas and diesel, laundry, yacht valet services, plus dock and dine. Check out Buzzards Bay Yacht Sales boat dealer and yacht brokerage for convenient, top-of-the-line vessels.The marina's famous Chart Room Restaurant serves fresh seafood garnished with beautiful sunsets from spring to fall. Try everything from fresh steamed mussels and seasonal fish to the creamy Chart Room Chowder.From May to October, KYC hosts weekly on-site activities, cruising rendezvous and events such as seminars, live music on the barge, fishing tournaments, lobster boil dinners and much more.

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