Originally Posted by Leanbh Cailin
My wife and I are looking for a good liveaboard friendly marina in the New Bern/Oriental areas. We are currently at NWCM but because of the design of our boat getting on and off is like doing gymnastics. My dog fell off the boat this morning while trying to get on the dock and I thought I had lost him.......I worry about my father coming down to visit (he is almost 80) and I worry about my wife. Don't want to be at the old Sheraton because of the noise so if anyone has any ideas please let me know.
Hi Cailin -
OK, we've been at nearly every marina except NWCM. We didn't pick there because during one check out visit one of the dock-masters was quite militant about our dog walking around, even though he was close. We still like that place but, it sort of falls to about 4th choice for us.
1. New Bern Grand was my first recommendation. I think it is quieter after 9pm, but your call. I'd still try it for a month, see if you feel differently. Generally good staff but some instability as it is for sale and the staff is not so certain of long term employment. I'd ask some questions, but I'd give it a month before ruling it out.
2. Matthews Point Marina. We spent a year there. It's a little like a small town. A close-knit community and for us felt clique-ish because we're not quite empty-nesters, (we pull out generally every weekend and do stuff with our kids) and the populace there generally is (your call - for us, just a different speed). Jett the owner is a good guy, but it felt a little like the cult-of-Jett between the long term liveaboards and him. He's a good guy in spite of his worshipers
. However, AC power has been a problem way out on the docks where you would be. We had trouble, others had trouble with it. It's worth a try if you like quiet - it is - but it's also 18 miles from the nearest real store. Your call on the peace-and-quiet value - it definitely is.
3. Oriental is good. We're at Pecan Grove which discourages live-aboards. We were at Whittaker Pointe for a summer, which has some live-aboards and excellent facilities. The "however" is that Whittaker Pointe gets direct blow from the prevailing south-westerlies. So you may want to try a summer before a long term commitment. Ashley is a top-notch dock-master with 8 years of live-aboard experience. Totally one of the finest human beings you will meet. Excellent facilities if strange wireless consistency. Very, very welcoming. Very good folks. Other marinas I'm not sure about Whittaker Creek is a little run down looking, but I hear a nice place. Oriental Harbor Marina used to be all slip owners, but I think with the economy that is changing. I think ownership may have changed hands.
4. River Dunes is outrageously
nice, but not sure about live-aboards. They certainly could use the income as the place was constructed like the Taj-Mahal pre-2008 and can't seem to sell houses there. The marina is uber-protected from hurricanes. Weird add-on fees like you have to spend $25 a month in food and stuff like that. Just seemed like they want to nickle and dime you if you let them. Again, probably an economy thing.
5. Sea Gate - Avoid. Boneyard boat neighbors and questionable management. We were there a month. During a high tide, our power cord pulled off the boat and lay in the water for at least a week from the powered dock! We arrived to find a hot cord in the water. Of course it tripped the breaker, but that killed it for us.
6. Morehead City Yacht Basin - Some friends of ours live aboard there now. They really like it. The road is a little close, but you're at the coast in earnest.
7. McCotters (Pamlico River). Burned up in 2011 and on rebuild they doubled their rates from what I hear. Seem to be in disarray organizationally and financially. Hear that contractors in that area have been caught in some bad ethical practices. Word-of-mouth - not sure how bonafide, but heard of a $5000 quote being invoiced at $30K until lawyers were called in.
Whatever you do - good luck!