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Derecktor Robinhood General Manager Neil Collins says the historic former Robinhood Marine Center in Georgetown, Maine is in good hands.
“We’re lucky to have a crew here that’s been through the seasons with a lot of these boats,” said Collins who was brought in by Derecktor to oversee operations of the marina and shipyard. The property boasts 17,000 square feet of storage area, 110 slips, 77 moorings, a general store, an on-site library and museum and the Osprey restaurant.
Derecktor made the announcement of the purchase on March 23 and subsequently renamed the property Derecktor Robinhood. Adding Derecktor to the name was one of the few immediate changes owners Paul Derecktor and his longtime friend and associate John Koenig, a marina owner/operator from Sandy Hook, New Jersey said.
“We respect the historic nature of the site and seek to preserve it. Changes will be incremental and will be dictated by the market – for example, a bigger lift is possible, but only if it can be integrated without harming the ambience of the place” said Paul Derecktor.
“It has all of the characteristics of an old boat building yard,” said Collins, a veteran boatyard operator from Portland, Maine. “It looks like a little seaside village.”
Collins said the previous owner had concentrated on building a houseboat rental program but he has a different plan. “I want to concentrate on service and repair,” he said.
According to Collins, Koenig has been doing a lot of the marketing, selling moorings and slips ranging from 10 feet in depth near shore going out to 40-foot depth or more at moorings. “The average is about 35 feet,” Collins said.
Since March, Collins said his crew of 12 techs, 5 office staff, and 11 seasonal dock/waterfront workers have been getting the waterfront ready for summer services and are “finishing up work and finding more.”
“In May we started launching boats and trying to keep up with customer demands,” Collins said. “The crew have been energized by the change in ownership.”
Collins was impressed by the loyalty of the customers.
“They talk about the love they have for the place, the location, and how they like the feel of the yard and always got along with the crew.”
And while the shipyard crew are utilizing the latest techniques in varnishing services and electronic installations, Collins said he noticed a few practices that he wants to update.
“It’s interesting how little procedures have changed,” he said. “They still cover boats with tarps, like an old Maine boatyard.”
On May 24, the Osprey restaurant opened back up after Collins had his crew rebuilt the porch and painted it.
Derecktor is new to owning a restaurant, museum and a general store and is looking forward to seeing them continue to serve visitors and boaters.
James Brewer, director of sales and marketing for Derecktor Shipyards agrees that major changes won’t happen in the near future.
“It’s a pretty new acquisition,” Brewer said from his office at Derecktor Florida in Ft. Lauderdale.
“So we really haven’t changed anything. The challenge is to keep the operation running as it is and see what, after a season or so, we can add to it in terms of our value.
“It’s historically done well and we have no real plans to preemptively change any of that. We want to work within the community and not disrupt the historic nature of place.”
Brewer said the Maine location complements the other Derecktor shipyards.
“We acknowledge that Florida obviously serves the superyacht market, New York is a boat builder with a service clientele both yacht and commercial, and Maine is sort of unique and we’re not going to make it something it’s not.
“It’s a seasonal, recreational, cruising destination and it makes sense as an investment.”
Derecktor’s website banner now reads “Derecktor, New York+Florida+Maine since 1947.”
Suzette Cook is editor at The Triton. Reach her at firstname.lastname@example.org