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Marina Chief Sees 15-20% Booking Rise

By NATARIO McKENZIE

Tribune Business Reporter

nmckenzie@tribunemedia.net

THE Bahamas could witness a resurgence in the boating market in the next few years, the Marina Operators of the Bahamas (MOB) president said yesterday, adding that reservations for his property were up 15-20 per cent over 2011.

Joseph Dargavage told Tribune Business that while the industry had not seen a record breaking summer, numbers were definitely up.

“After speaking to many of the marina owners and members of the MOB, it was a good summer,” he said. “It wasn’t a record breaking summer, but numbers were definitely up over the last couple of years and we have a number of new marinas that are being built in the Bahamas right now.

“I think that over the next few years we are really going to see a resurgence in the boating market in the Bahamas. Places like Bimini had some of their best numbers in many years.I really believe that this past summer is an indication that the boating economy is starting to turnaround, and we should see over the next couple of years continued growth.”

Mr Dargavage said the boating sector was looking at a promising winter season. “The winter time is nice. The summer crowd in the Bahamas is definitely a sport fishing crowd, more of a Florida-based crowd,” he added.

“In the summer, the water is a lot calmer so you get smaller boats. The winter time tends to bring your sailboaters because the wind is perfect for them. It brings in some of your larger boats and boats from further distances.

“Our reservations here at the Great Harbour Cay Yacht Club and Marina are up 15-20 per cent over last year. We’re really looking to have a banner year, and as long as fuel prices don’t go any higher than they are and the US economy stabilises, then the entire marina industry in the Bahamas should see a nice winter season.”

Mr Dargavage said the MOB, in conjunction with the Ministry of Tourism, was also looking forward to a successful marketing push at this year’s Fort Lauderdale International Boat Show.

“From a marketing standpoint the Bahamas’ Ministry of Tourism, as well as the MOB, will have an amazing display atthe the Fort Lauderdale Boat Show, which is from October 26 - 29, and is the largest boat show in the world,” he said.

“For a number of years now the Ministry of Tourism, along with the yachting and boating community, has had a very strong presence there. This is probably the number one marketing tool we have in the fall to market the Bahamas. Upwards of one million people come to the boat show. It gives the marina owners an opportunity to market to new clients.”

Comments

JoesSound 7 years, 12 months ago

I love the Bahamas but this rise may not last due to the rising crime rate. I go to Bahamas every year and plan on retiring winters there but everyday I read about murders, robberies and stabbings.....everyday. It may not be a safe place. Of course this kind of thing happens in say Florida but they have many more people. I live in a city of 1 million and we have about 17 murders a year which is 1 in 59,000. The combined population of the islands is approximately 310,000 and they had 127 homicides in 2011 which is 1 in 2400. That is a huge statistic. With more boat traffic will come more crimes against them. I believe this crime rate can be fixed and I hope sooner than later. Love the Bahamas but...........

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Dennstar 7 years, 11 months ago

...but I would rather live in the States where the likelihood of being shoot or maimed in a car accident are greater.

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JoesSound 7 years, 12 months ago

http://www.thebahamasweekly.com/publi...">http://www.thebahamasweekly.com/publi...

SUMMARY OF 2010 and 2011 CRIME STATISTICS January 1- December 31, 2011 National Reported Crimes – All Bahamas

Crimes Against Person 2010 2011 % Change Murder 94 127 35 Attempted Murder 11 12 9 Manslaughter 3 1 -67 Rape 78 107 37 Attempted Rape 26 28 8 Armed Robbery 924 1000 8 Robbery 335 371 11 Attempted Robbery 31 43 39

Crimes Against Property 2010 2011 % Change Burglary (Night Time) 380 338 -11 Housebreaking (Day Time) 3141 3237 3 Shoplifting 1192 941 -21 Stealing 1972 1928 -2 Stealing from Vehicle 1688 2488 47 Stolen Vehicle 1242 1330 7

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Dennstar 7 years, 11 months ago

I have cruised the Bahamas during the last 5 winter seasons. I have never been the victim of a crime, nor have I ever observed criminal activities.

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leonardo85 7 years ago

This is a great news for the industry there, they should now take every step to take their service to the next level. They should now invest in high-end http://alariobros.com/">marine hardware to be able to provide better service.

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