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Decisions, decisions...

I was sitting at my favorite local waterfront “conference center” (aka marina pub) late last summer swapping solutions to the world’s problems and spinning boating yarns, truthful and not, with some friends.

RIP: James Michael Ryan


I had the pleasure of getting to know Michael Ryan—who co-ran Maestro Yachts in the Americas, and who passed away unexpectedly on November 2nd at the too-young age of 54—on a trip to Bimini last May. It was a trip for work, but Michael’s undeniable affability made it feel very much like I was vacationing with old friends, despite not really knowing any of my travel companions.

Tradition Still Reigns

Despite rapidly evolving building techniques, boating has a lot of traditions that remain from those early days of yore (also known as the days of yesteryear).

When Italian shipbuilder Tecnomar recently laid the keel for its 40-meter Impero yacht, a good luck coin was included. A coin in the keel has long symbolized good fortune for the yacht through her construction and long after.

Riviera Teams with Bay Marine in Wisconsin

Australian boatbuilder Riviera expanded its U.S. dealership network by making Bay Marine of Sturgeon Bay, Wisconsin, its exclusive dealer in the Western Great Lakes. “Their specialized team of experts and marine-industry experience will ensure Riviera’s customers receive the highest quality service that befits our brand,” said Chris McCafferty, Riviera’s U.S. director. Riviera currently offers 20 boat models ranging from 36 to 85 feet in four basic configurations: Flybridge, Sport Yacht, Offshore Express, and Motor Yacht.

John Wayne’s Megayacht Named ‘Historic Place’

John Wayne’s 163-foot motoryacht Wild Goose was added to the National Register of Historic Places in August. The True Grit Oscar-winner bought his all-wood converted minesweeper in 1962 and used her regularly until his death in 1979. Wild Goose earned the special historical status because of its “expression of John Wayne’s personality and outsized image,” according to the agency. Fans of the Hollywood legend can even enjoy the boat for themselves. Hornblower Cruises & Events runs day trips on Wild Goose out of Newport Beach, California.

Feadship Mystery

Prior to FLIBS last week, I was reading a summary of the new Steve Jobs biography in the New York Times, when I came across an interesting little nugget among the general backstory of Jobs's life:

Sealine Sold

In September the Oxford Investment Group announced that it had acquired UK-based boatbuilder Sealine from Brunswick Corporation for an undisclosed sum. Maintaining offices in Bloomfield Hills, Michigan, and San Diego, California, as well as in Paris, Shanghai, and Sydney and Melbourne, Australia, the Oxford Investment Group is described as a private investment and corporate development group that acquires majority equity positions on behalf of its principals in various business segments, including manufacturing. “We have been looking to enter the leisure marine sector for some years, and it was important for us to find the right business,” explained Selwyn Isakow, chairman of Oxford Investment Group, in a press release. “Sealine has produced some world-beating boats in the last five years, and their success with a rejuvenated brand in a difficult market is a fantastic story.” Sealine launched its newest model, the C48, at the 2011 Southampton Boat Show in September. For more information on Sealine’s range of models, go to click here.

Like Geese in Winter

Megayachts are like migratory birds. For the summer, they head north to Cape Cod, Maine, and other northern destinations. And then as winter creeps in, the yachts begin to head south.

This year, some late-departing geese—I mean, yachts ended up roosting—sorry! docking at Chelsea Piers in Manhattan. So this morning, I headed downtown.

There was Nobiskrug's nearly 195-foot Jamaica Bay, No. 40 on our November list. Check out her rounded stern: