29 January 2015
Building a New Dream
The Bosarge family are passionate sailors whose knowledge and love of sailing has translated to all of their yachts, including the most recent, 54.86-metre S/Y MARIE, which launched from Vitters in 2010. With S/Y MARIE for sale with Fraser Yachts, the family are now turning their attentions to another new build, a longer lifting keel yacht by the same build and design team.
When Dr. Ed Bosarge held the trophy for the overall victory at the St. Barth’s Bucket earlier this year, it was one of his most memorable moments in decades of sailing. S/Y MARIE, beating off fierce competition from 37 yachts across four classes had fulfilled his vision for the fastest classic-style yacht on the water. “Winning the St. Barth’s Bucket was the pinnacle of four years of sailing and developing S/Y MARIE’s race programme,” says Bosarge. The win at St. Barth’s also marked the right time for The Bosarge Family to make the decision to put S/Y MARIE on the market and to hopefully build again. “We’ve accomplished our sailing objectives,” says Bosarge. “We’ve won the Bucket, we’ve crossed the Atlantic, we’ve crossed the Pacific, so we thought it would be a good time to sell S/Y MARIE while she is at her prime.” An entrepreneur and philanthropist, Bosarge has been sailing since he was a young boy. Together with military history, it is his major passion. The success of S/Y MARIE owes much to the long line of The Bosarge family’s yachts that preceded her, with the lessons and enjoyment he took from each yacht fuelling her design. “The short story,” as Bosarge dubs it, of how he got into sailing, is that he started out on very small boats, moving up in size over the years. It wasn’t until the 1980’s that they bought their first ketch, a 25 metre Camper & Nicholsons/Bannenberg design, naming her S/Y NATASHA after the heroine of War and Peace. After many years of sailing her, during which time she became a hugely popular charter yacht, S/Y NATASHA was sold in 2004 and The Bosarge Family’s next yacht purchase was a 35-metre fast sloop S/Y TENACIOUS (ex Teel). With S/Y NATASHA and later S/Y TENACIOUS and S/Y MARIE, proving to be extremely popular choices for charter guests over the years, Bosarge believes that to run a successful charter yacht, and in fact any yacht, is just as much about the crew as it is about the yacht. “You need to offer five-star crew, five-star experiences and a crafted experience on the yacht in beautiful surroundings. We think the best place for yacht charter is the Bahamas,” he says. “Also make sure your captain has got more than average experience and check his references very carefully, because the captain is such an important part of running a successful yacht.” Despite enjoying S/Y TENACIOUS, which they still own today, after so many years of sailing and ownership of a wide range of yachts it was almost inevitable for The Bosarge Family to one day undertake a new build from scratch. The idea for S/Y MARIE was first born in 2007 when Bosarge sketched the initial ideas for her before signing the contract in 2008. Working with a team of Vitters, Hoek Design, David Easton, Nigel Ingram and Fraser Yachts, S/Y MARIE was conceived to combine the classic lines of yachts from the 1920’s with the modern comforts of today’s superyachts. Bosarge’s experience brought the knowledge and design savvy to the build that has made S/Y MARIE such a triumph. Since her launch, The Bosarge Family have sailed and raced S/Y MARIE extensively throughout the world. A key destination she has spent time in is the Bahamas, where Bosarge and his wife Marie – the yacht’s namesake – have built their sustainable island resort, Over Yonder Cay. “It is the first green resort in the world, and certainly the first green resort in the Caribbean,” said Bosarge. Built after seeing first hand the effects of humans on the cruising waters of the world, such as overfishing, and due to a desire to create a sustainable destination, Over Yonder Cay is an eco-friendly luxury destination island. “S/Y TENACIOUS is already based out of the resort, and the idea is that the planned new build will have a shallow draft that will allow her to be based there too,” he says. As soon as S/Y MARIE is sold Bosarge hopes to begin work on the planned new build project. Having designed, built, cruised, chartered and raced S/Y MARIE, Bosarge is more knowledgeable about ownership than ever and the new project will be a bigger, faster evolution of the much-loved S/Y MARIE. “I am very happy with S/Y MARIE’s style, she is the ultimate classic yacht,” explains Bosarge. “I want to build a yacht with similar characteristics, but a little longer with room for a gym, and with a lifting, rather than fixed, keel to allow her access to Over Yonder Cay and other shallow anchorages.” With The Bosarge Family having enjoyed the regatta scene on S/Y TENACIOUS and S/Y MARIE so much, the new yacht will also be built as a fast ketch with strong racing prowess, using the same design and build team as for S/Y MARIE. “We will absolutely work with the same team again, especially the yard,” he says. “They have a saying in Holland that ‘if it ain’t Dutch, it ain’t much’ and I believe their craftsmanship is the best in the world.” S/Y MARIE has been maintained in impeccable condition – “today she still looks as if she has just come out of the showroom,” – another key lesson from years of ownership. “The biggest lesson I have learned as an owner is to invest in maintenance: boats cost a lot to maintain but if you don’t look after them properly they lose their value very fast.” With the ideas formed for the next yacht, all that remains now is for S/Y MARIE to find her new owner. “Hopefully we will find the right match for her,” says Bosarge. “She’s a special yacht.” This article and images originally appeared in Fraser yachting magazine.