Westrec Marinas is pleased to announce that, following an extensive response to the City’s Request for Proposals, the Fernandina Beach City Commission has unanimously approved Westrec to manage and operate the Fernandina Harbor Marina. Westrec’s role—which includes overarching operational effectiveness from facility management to accounting, IT efficiency, employee hiring and retention and retail management—begins on 15 January 2010.
Officially designated as an historic “Preserve America” community in October 2009, Fernandina Beach is a community of beauty, culture and diversity. From City Commissioners to the Mayor, the unanimous approval to bring Westrec aboard to oversee all aspects of this historic marina signals a steadfast commitment to have the facility and community provide seafaring visitors a welcoming port while those touring the restored seaport community will marvel at the vessels the marina and town attract.
“After a number of years renovating and adding new features to the marina, in a ribbon-cutting ceremony on 6 November 2009, we officially opened the Marina Welcome Center,” says Fernandina Beach Mayor Susan Steger. “Having completed major enhancements to one of our city’s greatest assets, we look forward to working with an experienced marina management team, and benefiting from the sophisticated thinking that Westrec brings to our city marina. We are excited to have a company of their caliber working with us to ensure the enjoyment of mariners who visit Fernandina Beach,” she continues.
Located at mile 716, Fernandina Harbor Marina was the first marina built on the Intracoastal Waterway (ICW) in Florida. It is located in Fernandina Beach’s Downtown Historic District (which is on the National Register of Historic Places) where wide brick streets are lined with lanterns and boast many fine shops and restaurants.
In juxtaposition, the Marina has undergone a complete modernization over the past few years, part of the community’s Waterfront Master Plan. The 6.2 million dollar renovation includes 65,000 cubic yards of dredging (in 2006 and 2009) providing ample draft for large vessels, new docks, bathhouse with laundry and showers, electrical and potable water amenities, fire suppression services and complete landscaping.
The Fernandina Harbor Marina is located directly on the ICW via a well marked, charted and easy-to-navigate Federal Shipping Channel six miles from the Atlantic. With 5,875 linear feet of dockage which provides 60 lineal side-tie “slips” and 20 moorings, a 25’ depth at mean low water beyond the attenuator and 6’ at inside slips allows yachts (up to 200’) and boats of all sizes to take advantage of the most modern of marinas while enjoying the amenities the community offers. A major airport is 35 minutes away and golf, tennis and the beach are adjacent to the property.
The marina welcomes local boaters and transient yachtsmen as well as fishing, sailing and sightseeing charters, and ferries. High season is includes spring (March-June) and autumn (September-December) during which approximately 95% of the marina is occupied. Low season offers great rates and includes the months of August, January and February. Annual occupancy for transients is 60-70% of the marina’s capacity. The marina also includes space for 30 boats with trailers and 10 live-aboards. Total land mass is 8-10 acres with five acres dedicated to the marina basin.
The marina is open from sunrise to sunset seven days a week. A full-time marina director, dockmaster, maintenance engineer and four assistant dockmasters ensure smooth operations for all marina guests and slip holders. Westrec’s commitment to exceeding the expectations of all boaters and their companions ensures the great experience they enjoy at the Fernandina Harbor Marina.
Gil Langley, President and CEO of the Amelia Island Convention & Visitor’s Bureau, comments, “Over the years, Amelia Island and Fernandina Beach have become a destination of choice for many visitors, particularly boaters, as they look at the many wonderful characteristics of our barrier island community. In fact, Amelia Island and its beautiful little city, Fernandina Beach, have ranked in the top 10 destinations in Conde Nast’s Traveler’s Readers’ Choice Awards for three years running. While most of our visitors come from the mainland, with the newly renovated marina now being newly managed by Westrec Marinas, we fully expect that seafaring voyagers will find all they need portside and an exquisite stay in one of our crown jewels, the Fernandina Harbor Marina.”