Investors add to their marina holdings

FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. – A joint venture of Steve Israel, a marine operator based in New York, and Strategic Capital Partners, a Chicago-based private investment fund, has purchased the New River Dry Dock in Fort Lauderdale, Fla., they reported in a recent statement.

The six acre site, also known previously as “Marina Mile Shipyard” and “Marina 84,” is comprised of a three-acre protected basin with three acres of uplands, and is located along the region’s Marina Mile. Renamed the Marina Mile Yachting Center at Marina Bay, the facility will cater to the needs of vessels from 40 to 165 feet, as well as the manufacturers, dealers, and marine contractors that service them, the joint venture stated.

Israel, a marina owner and operator, is the managing partner of the venture acquiring the site. He also owns a number of properties in New York, New Jersey, and Florida.

“We consider this a great opportunity to have a marina with such visibility from land (I-95) and yet at the gateway to Marina Mile, with all of its great marinas and shipyards,” he commented.

Israel owns one of the largest wet slip marinas in New York Harbor, Lincoln Harbor Yacht Club, with over 250 slips for boats from 35 to over 200 feet, as well as Port Tarpon Marina in Tarpon Springs, Fla., which is home to over 400 boats. Israel and partners recently acquired two marinas with a total of 165 slips in Sag Harbor, Long Island, N.Y., known as Sag Harbor Cove Yacht Club.

“Strategic Capital Partners is pleased to invest with a strong marina operator in an asset that allows for the continuation of a working marina in the heart of the U.S. yachting industry,” said Fred D. Scott, vice president of acquisitions for Strategic Capital Partners. “We look forward to a long and successful relationship with this and other similar properties.”

Marine Realty, Inc. was the transaction broker that handled the sale, which closed on June 11. President and broker Christopher W. (“Kit”) Denison said he’s encouraged that the site could remain in marine use.

“The plans for this strategic marina property include a total upgrade from the entrance bridge to the banks of New River. With additional dockage, which will total over 2,000 linear feet for boats up to 165 feet, as well as space on the uplands for over 30 boats from 35 feet in length, this site will be able to provide additional harbor and service facilities for some of the world’s most prestigious yachts, their builders, dealers, and service personnel,” Denison stated.

The Graving Dock, which caused the property to be previously named the Dry Dock, is the only such facility in Florida and can handled vessels up to 140 feet by 32 feet in beam, according to the new owners, who are currently in lease negotiations with a number of yacht builders, dealers, and contractors. They said they will be landlords, and not operators, of the marina, which is expected to re-open “in the near future.”

“It’s great news to see that this landmark Marina Mile property will finally be redeveloped to its fullest potential and offer safe and secure harbor for yachts both large and small,” said Margaret Croxton, executive director of the 70-member Marina Mile Association. “This project will provide needed additional service work and jobs for our industry. After several recent shipyard closings, new sales to investors and developers of Mr. Israel’s status have provided a rebirth of several of the properties that make Marina Mile one of the unique yachting destinations in the world.”

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