Where whispering sea breezes replace the fast-paced hustle of normal existence

Cat Cay Bahamas

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Thursday, July 29, 2010 Woodcliff Lake, New Jersey   To the President of Syria, Mr. and Mrs. Bashar al-Assad Mr. and Mrs. President Bashar al-Assad: At the tender age of 17 months my severely ill daughter Sofia, an American citizen, was abducted by her mother on Monday, July 26, in Istanbul, Turkey, and taken to Syria. Fox News: ▸ video ▸ story I was informed yesterday by Sofia's mother that she will not be coming back to the United States nor will she allow Sofia to return home. Sofia has been diagnosed with a severe medical condition that requires immediate treatment in the United States. It was scheduled to start on July 27, 2010, in New Jersey, the day after her abduction and was supposed to last until she reaches the age of 3. Any delay in the urgently needed treatment will result in a life-long disability for Sofia and make her dependent for the whole of her a... (more)

Hollywood's A-List Celebs Choose Yacht Charters for Total Escape

YV&C International Yacht Vacations & Charters Magazine reports: Vacations are all about rest, relaxation, and, of course, indulgence. And when it comes to Hollywood's biggest stars, you can count on them to take it up a notch by spending time in exotic locales, on some of the world's most luxurious yachts. Christina O Since the '50s, Christina O has attracted a primarily European clientele, but has also hosted many Hollywood celebrities. Recent charters have been enjoyed by Madonna, Johnny Depp, Tommy Hilfiger, and Oliver Stone. The famed megayacht charters for $600,000 a week. As morning's light broke over the horizon, Russell Crowe stood at the bow of the ship, gazing out to sea. Another day of mystery and adventure lay ahead for Crowe and the crew... . If this sounds like a scene from Crowe's latest film, "Master and Commander: The Far Side of the World," it's not.... (more)

Mia Elise - The Elegant Pride of American Megayachts in Charter Yacht Fleets

YV&C International Yacht Vacations & Charters Magazine reports: The Mia Elise. She is 180 feet of sheerest ocean-going poetry. Imagining that your charter aboard her is an Elizabethan sonnet; the first quatrain is her classic opulence, the second her state-of-the-art outfitting and the third the impeccable professionalism of her crew. The closing couplet is comprised of the perfect, indelible memories you will savor of an absolutely unsurpassable yachting experience, rhyming beauteously into your future. Built by Trinity Yachts, Mia Elise launched in February of 2005 at the New Orleans shipyard. Seventy years had passed since a yacht of such dimensions and capacities launched in the United States. Trinity Chairman Felix S. Sabates, Jr. has said: “It was an exciting and proud moment for the Trinity personnel, ushering in a new era of American yacht building. Yacht... (more)

A Yacht Charter Experience Abord M/Y Positive Carry

The story of M/Y Positive Carry’s Captain Whitney Reiter reads a little like a novel. But while serendipity has certainly played a role in his becoming one of the youngest captains of a 142ft Trinity, it’s his skill, hard work, upbeat nature, and love of the water that provide drama and adventure for charter guests. It’s the stuff dreams are made of: local Miami boy grows up with an affinity for fishing and cruising the surrounding waters. He attends an area high school and the University of Miami, commercially fishing and lobstering with his dad during school breaks. After crewing on snorkeling boats in The Keys, he gets his captain’s license in order to take guests fishing. He runs several boats—then runs into an old friend from high school. The friend’s husband just happens to be a self-made multimillionaire — with a passi... (more)

Obsession with the Sea

Once a favorite haunt of pirates, and the setting for Treasure Island, the riches in this area of the West Indies now lie in abundant coral reefs and unpopulated islands accessible only by boat. The crisp, crackling underwater sound I heard was unfamiliar to me. I tried to pinpoint it while caught up in the mesmerizing world of slowly waving purple sea fans, magenta-colored coral, and schools of fish ranging from electric blue to vibrant yellow. When I was able to tear myself away long enough to return to the tender of the 85ft Hatteras, Obsession, I removed my snorkel and asked Captain Gene Costa about the source of the noise. He told me it was the sound of the vividly colored, multistriped parrotfish chewing on the coral. In fact, he said, their teeth are designed for just that purpose. I resumed my drifting, facedown in the 86-degree turquoise sea, this time focuse... (more)

Fly to Your Yacht Vacation on a Private Jet!

Welcome to the second issue of YV&C. With this issue, we are excited to introduce our Private Jet Charters & Travel supplement (www.JetChartersMagazine.com), which we hope you will find both interesting and informative. When we published our "Air Charter" column in our premier issue, we could not predict how popular the private air travel topic would be. We received feedback from many of our readers and requests for a wider coverage of the new "jet card" phenomenon. Having worked closely with the leaders of this emerging industry, we are now pleased to present you with our first supplement, a detailed look at private air travel, including some of the programs yacht and jet charter firms have recently started to offer. The responses we received from you on our premier issue were very encouraging as well. Since YV&C's debut three months ago, we already see that the m... (more)

Aspen Alternative

Why in the world, you might well ask, is this yacht named Aspen Alternative?  The idea is that instead of shivering in the Rockies in winter, you should be in her hot tub in the Bahamas, a frozen drink in your hand, the sun warming your soul. M/Y Aspen Alternative is a 120’ yacht, built in 2002 by Sovereign with a sleek, swept-back exterior design by Ward Setzer.  From her four cabins to her sun-kissed decks to her sound-proofed study, she is grand enough to make you feel like royalty, yet intimate enough for a highly-personalized, unforgettable vacation. First Mate and Engineer Brian Finneran makes the very good point that communicating up front your heart’s desire for a charter helps the captain and crew to give you a prime experience.  He says: “The more information you provide us through your broker and preference charts, the closer we can come... (more)

Fractional Yacht Ownership vs Yacht Charter

Sharing a yacht is an appealing investment for businessmen and experienced yachters alike. With more and more emphasis on “living the good life,” innovative concepts have emerged that allow those wanting to “have it all” to partake in a smorgasbord of luxury lifestyle options. Based on the premise of “why go it alone, when you can lower the cost of ownership and give more people the option to take part?” timeshare and fractional ownership plans have multiplied rapidly. They now run the gamut from luxury condos and upscale vacation homes, to private jets, enviable cars, and even spectacular jewelry and designer couture. Not only do these shared arrangements enable owners to indulge in a variety of business and vacation options, they release them from the burdens of ownership and provide opportunities for investment. Yacht ownership... (more)

Escaping from the Blizzard of 2010 to Cat Cay Paradise

I left SYS-CON's offices in Woodcliff Lake, New Jersey, right on time just before the snow storm closed the airports. These live pictures below show East Saddle River Road through my iPhone on my way to the airport. I'm adding more pictures daily to my "live photo blog" from Cat Cay... This driver in front of me slipped and hit the sidewalk outside Yossi's Deli, at the corner of East Saddle River Road and Lake Street in Montvale, New Jersey. As I arrived in Ft Lauderdale, I met pilot Eric who was waiting to take me to Cat Cay. We took off on a Norman Islanders (BN-2) as soon as I parked my car behind the airport control tower. The Islander is a twin engine, high wing, fixed gear, STOL (short take-off and landing) aircraft. The Islander is operated in remote areas all over the world and has an excellent reputation of being a real work horse. It is particularly sui... (more)

Escape from Cancún

Isla Mujeres is a perfect Caribbean stopover when exploring the Yucatán and Central American coast, but the real draw is its laid-back attitude.   On a recent trip to Isla Mujeres, I wasn't sure what to expect other than a very small island (only 5 miles long by about 1 mile wide) off the coast of Mexico, known for its sparsely populated palm-fringed beaches and crystal-clear aquamarine waters. What I found was a favorite destination for a small group of yachtsmen who intend to keep it quiet as long as possible. What's more, Isla (as it is fondly referred to) boasts a world-class marina and shipyard. What's the Attraction? One evening we viewed a spectacular sunset on a pier overlooking Bahía de Mujeres surrounded by small colorful rowboats, larger weathered fishing boats, a few high-end cruisers, and a 100ft motoryacht. I asked the yacht crew why they had come to ... (more)

In Safe Hands

A behind-the-scenes look at the services offered by a charter manager and  how they can be worth their weight in gold. Anyone who has ever owned a company will no doubt agree that a PA, an advertising agency and a marketing agency figure significantly in day-to-day operations. After all, every company needs to be managed, promoted and coordinated: staff need to be employed, meetings arranged, decisions made and profits accrued. It’s not so very different when you own a superyacht. You need to maximize its potential, market it to the right people in the right way, hire crew and ensure all its ‘business trips’ (i.e. charters) run like clockwork. The difference with a superyacht is that in order to achieve all these things you don’t need to hire a PR consultant, a marketing agency, an advertising agency, a human resources manager and a PA &ndash... (more)