Aboard the marina lifestyle – Jersey’s Best


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by Stan Lemond | For Jersey's Best
Sat., Jul. 10, 2021

Posted on July 10, 2021 by Hunter Hulbert - Community

The Garden State could have easily been nicknamed the “Marine State.” With 127 miles of ocean coastline, New Jersey is a popular destination for pleasure boaters who rely on the state’s marinas for food, fuel and fun. 
There are approximately 148,000 registered boats in New Jersey. According to the state’s Marine Trades Association, boating attracts tourism, generates approximately 12,000 jobs and contributes $2.2 billion annually to the state’s economy. New Jersey residents and visiting boaters alike depend on the state’s marinas for a variety of services as well as dining, entertaining and socializing. 
The Shipyard Marina in Hoboken is located on the site of the former Bethlehem Steel Shipbuilding operation. Photo courtesy of Shipyard Marina
“A marina can be the hub of a community,” said Mark Stehli, general manager of the Shipyard Marina in Hoboken. “Our marina offers 39 deep water boat slips that accommodate boats up to 60 feet in length. We provide metered electric service, fresh water, free Wi-Fi and 24-hour security, plus an outstanding location within walking distance of Hoboken’s restaurants, supermarkets, shops and nightlife.” 
The Shipyard Marina is a vital part of the Pier 13 Hoboken community. Residents and visitors can rent paddleboats, charter a 44-foot Cherubini ketch called The Sappho and take fishing excursions on either a charter or per head basis. Slip rentals are available by the hour, day, week, month and season. Stehli noted that many visitors “dock and dine,” renting a slip for a few hours and then strolling around the Hoboken waterfront, which offers options ranging from fine dining to “Food Truck Saturdays.” 
“Our marina gives people a great opportunity to enjoy this historic part of the Hudson River waterfront,” Stehli added. “The Shipyard Marina is built on the site of the former Bethlehem Steel Shipbuilding operation. More recently, the marina was destroyed by Hurricane Sandy and completely rebuilt. From here, boaters can paddle around Manhattan Island, take a jet ski trip to the Statue of Liberty and take safe boating classes.” 
The Shipyard Marina is home to Resilience Paddle Sports, where adults and youths can rent paddleboards and kayaks. Photo courtesy of Shipyard Marina
The Shipyard Marina is home to Resilience Paddle Sports, where adults and youths can rent paddleboards and kayaks. Classes are offered for those who wish to hone their paddling techniques. The marina also is the headquarters of the Hoboken Sailing Club, which conducts sailing and racing classes as well as race weeks throughout the season. 
Address: 1301 Sinatra Drive North, Hoboken, N.J. 07030
Sandy Hook Marina provides a large variety of recreational amenities in a family friendly atmosphere. Photo courtesy of Sandy Hook Marina
Set at the gateway to the Jersey Shore, the Sandy Hook Marina provides a large variety of recreational amenities in a family friendly atmosphere. The bustling marina offers deep water access and accommodates up to 130 boats.  
“We have both floating docks and full-length finger piers,” Marina Manager Gloria Van Biert said. “While our marina can host boats of 25 to 70 feet in length, most of our boats fall in the 30- to 40-foot range.” 
According to Van Biert, about 70% of the visitors to Sandy Hook Marina are seasonal renters. Others rent by the day, week or month. She noted that the resort atmosphere of the marina and the prime Jersey Shore location draw people who make boating a family activity. 
“Many of our clients are avid fisherman who appreciate our access to Sandy Hook Bay, the Atlantic Ocean and the nearby rivers,” Van Biert added. “Others are leisure boaters and families who enjoy the nearby beaches, restaurants and shops as well as our recreational amenities.” 
The Sandy Hook Marina’s veranda deck, barbecue and fire pit are popular gathering areas. Photo courtesy of Sandy Hook Marina
The Sandy Hook Marina is distinguished by its onsite swimming pool, veranda deck, barbecue and fire pit area. The deck provides breathtaking views of Sandy Hook Bay and the New York City skyline, making it a popular gathering spot.  
“Guests and visitors love our One Willow restaurant, which serves fresh New Jersey seafood daily,” she added. “Boaters can use one of 15 available slips, free of charge, to dock and dine at One Willow. Guest can also enjoy the outdoor bar, live music and the scenic surroundings.” 
Additional conveniences found at Sandy Hook Marina include full-time dock attendants, an onsite marina office, showers and a ship’s store. The marina also hosts two customer appreciation events each year with food and live music. 
Address: 1 Willow St., Highlands, N.J. 07732
Cape May’s Canyon Club Resort Marina offers a full complement of services and recreational amenities. Photo courtesy of Canyon Club Marina
At the southernmost part of the Jersey Shore, Cape May’s Canyon Club Resort Marina provides boaters and fishermen with a full complement of services and recreational amenities. The marina features a fully stocked ship’s store, service and electronics facilities, and dockside fueling.  
“Our owner is an avid fisherman who envisioned the Canyon Club Marina as a sport fishing country club,” said Mike Weber, general manager of the marina. “We offer 250 slips, composed of both concrete floating docks and finger piers, for seasonal and transient rentals.” 
According to Weber, the goal of the marina staff is to provide guests with everything that they could possibly need to have a comfortable stay. He noted that many of the dock attendants and other team members have been with the marina for years. Guests can swim in the marina swimming pool, shop at the ship’s store, join in special events and take the shuttle into Cape May for shopping and dining.  
Ring mackerel, yellowfin, longfin and bigeye tuna as well as white and blue marlin, mahi-mahi and wahoo can be culled from the waters near Canyon Club Marina. Photo courtesy of Canyon Club Marina
A popular stop for East Coast yacht club outings, the Canyon Club Marina also is home to The MidAtlantic, a renowned fishing tournament. The next tournament is scheduled for Aug. 15-20. The 2020 tournament raised over $4 million for charity.  
From the Canyon Club Marina, fishermen can challenge ring mackerel, yellowfin, longfin and bigeye tuna as well as white and blue marlin, mahi-mahi and wahoo. The spring and fall runs of 40–pound stripers also attract anglers to these active waters. 
“Cape May is ideally located for boaters traveling up and down the East Coast,” Weber said. “We see the migration of boats from northern to southern ports in the fall and then back to the north in spring. From our location, boaters can either go out into the ocean or cruise along the Intracoastal Waterway.” 
While the Canyon Club Marina is appealing to visitors, it is much a part of the Cape May community. Many residents, including those who live in the luxurious waterfront homes that surround the marina, dock their boats there.  
From the banks of the Hudson River to the tip of Cape May, the marina lifestyle offers residents and visitors alike the chance to revel in New Jersey’s vibrant waterways. 
Stan Lemond is an award-winning marketing consultant and writer who has more than 40 years of experience. His work has appeared in The Star-Ledger, Staten Island Advance, Trenton Times and South Jersey Times as well as Jersey’s Best.
This article originally appeared in the Summer 2021 issue of Jersey’s Best. Subscribe here for in-depth access to everything that makes the Garden State great.

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