By Susan B. Barnes
Photo courtesy of Yacht Starship
SET SAIL FOR THE DAY FROM TAMPA BAY
ith water surrounding the Tampa Bay area, we’re fortunate that there are ample opportunities to spend time in and on the water, whatever the season. And what better way to do just that than on a boat for the day? If you don’t have a boat of your own, not to worry – charter one for the day! Tampa Bay Yacht Charter (tampabayyachtcharter.com) offers day charters aboard Smooth C’s, a 43-foot Viking motor yacht (U.S. Coast Guard Certiﬁed/Inspected for up to 20 passengers) that sails out of the Renaissance Vinoy Marina in downtown St. Petersburg. Tampa Bay Yacht Charter Co-Owner and President Laura Lothridge suggests spending a day sailing to Sarasota, leaving in the morning and returning in the evening. “Once you’re in Sarasota, you can dock at Marina Jack and head over to St. Armands Circle for the day,” she suggests. The Europeanstyle circle is ﬁlled with shopping and dining options galore, and is also within very close proximity to downtown Sarasota, with even more dining and cultural options from which to choose. The leisurely trip to Sarasota from St. Petersburg is approximately three hours each way, providing loads of time to completely unwind and relax with friends and family. When looking for the right yacht to charter, Laura and Captain Dan
READY TO SAIL The rate for the round-trip sail to Sarasota from St. Petersburg with Tampa Bay Yacht Charter is $3,000, including a two-person crew of a U.S. Coast Guard Master Captain and Mate and fuel; wait time in Sarasota is $250/hour, inclusive. For additional destinations and pricing, please visit tampabayyachtcharter.com. 70 www.duPontREGISTRYtampabay.com
Peretz with Dolphin Landings Charter Boat Center in St. Pete Beach (dolphinlandings.com) urge prospective charters to be aware of the U.S. Coast Guard’s (USCG) rules and federal laws when it comes to chartering a boat. If yours is a group of more than six, be sure that the boat is USCG-certiﬁed and inspected, as non-USCG certiﬁed vessels are limited to a maximum of six passengers. An exception to this is to “bareboat” a vessel: the charterer agrees to staff the vessel with their own captain and crew, as well as accept responsibility and liability for the yacht and all individuals aboard. When “bareboating” a yacht, the vessel is allowed up to 12 passengers. If setting sail for an entire day doesn’t ﬁt into your calendar, opt instead for a few hours—day or night—cruising around downtown Tampa. eBoats Tampa (eboatstampa.com) puts you behind the wheel of one of its electric boats, making you captain for the day. With a maximum cruising speed of 7 miles per hour, you and your fellow sailors (up to 10 or 12 in a boat!) will gain an entirely different perspective of downtown Tampa, Harbour Island, Davis Islands and the Hillsborough River. There are even a few docking opportunities at which to tie up and stretch your land legs: Harbour Island, the Tampa Bay History Center and Rick’s On the River. Make a true day of it and pack a picnic breakfast, lunch, or dinner, and be sure to toast the sunset from the water!
eBoats Tampa set sail from the Tampa Convention Center Docks. Rental rates start at $75/hour and are available from 8 a.m. to 10 p.m., seven days a week. For more information and to make reservations, please visit eboatstampa.com.