By Dorie Cox
The first of about 35 new large yacht dock spaces are installed in the west dock area at Lauderdale Marine Center (LMC). The Fort Lauderdale shipyard and marina on the New River expects to complete the floating docks for yachts between 90 and 150 feet by the end of October.
The Bellingham-built docks are being installed in phases, said Doug West, president of LMC. The first three slips were complete the last day of August and the next four opened the first week of September.
“We’re moving to hold bigger yachts,” said Staci Love, marketing manager at LMC. During a tour of the construction in early September, Love walked an area that formerly housed 60- to 80-foot yachts. The nearly complete Dock C will now hold 12 yachts up to 140 feet.
“Last year we had to turn yachts away,” Love said. “We don’t want to turn anyone away. After working with such demand, we decided to go with larger yachts.”
The far west dock will be “tender row” and hold about 15 small vessels. The linear docks can hold two 100-foot yachts or one larger yacht, she said.
“The basin has been dredged to 12 feet,” Love said. “Boats can get through the bridges and many get towed up the river. We have had a 210-foot in here, but that was pushing it.”
A restaurant and floating bar are under construction in an existing building on the waterfront. Chef Philip Darmon is leading a small partnership that is taking the lease. The former yacht chef has not announced an opening date, but the restaurant is expected to open in early November. Darmon is owner of Hardy Park Bistro in Fort Lauderdale, which will continue business as normal, he wrote in an email to The Triton.
“We aim to open boat show,” Darmon wrote. “Full bar, music, and food in the south Florida tradition but done by me.”
A crew gym has been completed in the same building. To the east of the east yard at the former Riverbend Marina, all of the 32 in-water slips for smaller vessels are occupied, Love said.
To the east of the east yard at the former Riverbend Marina, all of the 32 in-water slips for smaller vessels are occupied, Love said.