Lori Becker - Palm Beach Post Columnist
May 23, 2006
CLIMATE CONTROL ... FOR BOATS?
Touted as the first of its kind in Florida, the River Forest Yachting Center in Martin County boasts a climate-controlled warehouse for long-term storage of boats.
As South Florida's snowbirds head north for the summer, Joe Charles is offering a place for boaters to leave their vessels in air-conditioned comfort.
Touted as the first of its kind in Florida, the River Forest Yachting Center boasts a 45,000-square-foot, climate-controlled warehouse for long-term storage of boats up to 65 feet long.
It's aimed at ''discriminating boat owners'' who want to protect their vessels from the summer heat, humidity and hurricanes.
''This Florida weather just kills a boat,'' said Charles, 65. ``With our climate control, when you pick up your boat, it'll be just like it was when you dropped it off.''
The nine-acre marina in western Martin County, off the St. Lucie Canal on Pennsylvania Avenue just north of State Road 76A, also bills itself as a hurricane haven.
River Forest officially opens for its first summer season this year and is nearly sold out, drawing customers from across the Treasure Coast, Palm Beach County and even Southwest Florida. It also has 100 members in its Hurricane Club who pay for a guaranteed spot at the inland marina if a storm threatens.