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  #1  
Old 11-20-2006
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Question CYOA Yachts in St. Thomas

Anyone have experience with CYOA? Any tips/suggestions specifically related to their service and sailing the virgins in June would be greatly appreciated.
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Old 11-20-2006
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Don't know anything about CYOA we have a charter boat with VIP in St. Thomas. Chartering out of ST. Thomas saves a day and like VIP is located on the east since of the island Redhook I think. Easy jumping off point to North side of St. John and the BVI's. Don't forget to spend some time on St. John, some really great bays. We spend the last couple days of our trip on the south side before returning to St. Thomas. Lots of stuff in the archives about the virgins. If you have any questions send me private email and I will try and help. The Virgins are a great place.

John
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Old 11-20-2006
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camaraderie is a jewel in the rough camaraderie is a jewel in the rough camaraderie is a jewel in the rough
CYOA has been around a while and specializes in older boats at cheaper prices. Reputable company but don't expect a shiny new boat.
The Virgins in June are quite pleasant but it is low season and many restaurants etc. will be closed or have limited hours and the lush greenery will be turning a bit brown from the heat. Nevertheless....the temps and breezes are fine and all the beautiful places you want to see will be far less crowded! Have fun!
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Old 11-20-2006
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Giulietta is just really nice Giulietta is just really nice Giulietta is just really nice Giulietta is just really nice Giulietta is just really nice
If I can help

I have been to St. Thomas, to work sometimes up to 1 month, believe it or not, and have lunch at the restaurant right next to CYOA, every single day.

I took some photos of my son feeding the iguanas that hang around in their pier and in the background you can see their boats.

They are not old, the boats I saw were 2002 or less. Hunters and a couple Benetau, among others.

I have never charter but know the boats and the guy that runs the company.

When my boat was being built and I was there I used to go inside his boats to get ideas.

email me if you want some of the photos.
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Old 11-21-2006
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Thanks!

Hey all-

I appreciate the input very much. CYOA is now in Frenchtown off the main harbor of St. Thomas. They rent mono's, cats and motor yachts

Of course, my inquiry came AFTER I signed a contract with them; not real good planning on my part, but I've been watching the boards on several sights and hadn't heard anything bad about them, so...

I've rented a '97 Hunter 376 which may be a bit long in the tooth, but I'm hoping for the best. It'll just be my wife & I for our 25th Anniversary and 2nd honeymoon.

From my research, we may spend much of our time around St. John. Our original plans were to spend the week in the BVI, and I'm sure we'll head over there too, but I'm hearing more positive experiences with St. John than anywhere else.

I was stationed in Puerto Rico with the Navy in the late '70's, and travelled the islands quite a lot back then. I'm really looking forward to seeing the islands again. 199 days to go ;-)

Thanks again,
Gary
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Old 11-21-2006
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Hey drhoppy,

We have chartered from CYOA, just this spring in fact. Had a great experience. Their boats are slightly older than others, however we found our boat to be very serviceable. We chartered the 1997 Hunter 450CC. Of course, not everything worked perfectly. I am not sure you will find a boat where that is true. Small issue though, burned out light bulbs, etc. We did not experience any issues that would interfere with sailing or our good time. Check out with CYOA involves you completing an inventory checklist to ensure all the necessary equipment is onboard. I would take note of any missing items or things that appear broken. The checklist can be completed the evening before you leave or that morning. Then CYOA will do a walk through of the systems with you. This is the time to test things before you leave the dock. Make sure the anchor windlass is in working order. Make sure the dingy has a full tank of gas and start the motor, etc. CYOA also does a sail checkout with you. They will have you take the boat out into the bay and hoist all sails and tack, etc with them onboard. They then come and retrieve their staff person in a chase boat, so you can continue on from your position in the bay. CYOA also will dive the keel when you return the boat. They are very through about the checkout process. However we found this very welcoming. The Hunter 450CC had a furling main. We did not care for this set up and found that it was furled backwards by the last users which made reefing in 27 knot winds difficult. So much for easing into it. We just pulled out the main and shortened the jib and put the rail in the water. Had lots of fun. The people at CYOA are extremely accomodating and being a small operation, we felt like we received individual attention. Have previously chartered from Moorings and like Moorings however CYOA is definetly more personable. Any other questions, just let me know.
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camaraderie is a jewel in the rough camaraderie is a jewel in the rough camaraderie is a jewel in the rough
Giulietta...Do you want to take your words back now that several others have chimed in here indicating they rented 1997 year boats? You ought to stick to the facts or label your fantasies as such!
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Giulietta is just really nice Giulietta is just really nice Giulietta is just really nice Giulietta is just really nice Giulietta is just really nice
Camaraderie

Please read again what I wrote, but if you have problems in understanding I will repeat.

I said, "They are not old, the boats I saw were 2002 or less. Hunters and a couple Benetau, among others."

I wrote, "I SAW", that does not mean they do not have older boats, that could very well be out when "I SAW" what I saw and they were all recent.

If only your "critical spirit" was used for other things, such as reading....

Only returning back your sarcasm....
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Old 11-22-2006
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Hey! Guys!

Take a deep breath, y'all! I appreciate ALL replies and take everything as it is intended, but always with a grain of salt. I realize everyone's opinions are subjective and not written on stone tablets.

I've seen tons of reports from Moorings and Sunsail customers who have mechanical breakdowns on brand new boats. That's just the nature of the beast. I'm not going to let a burned out light bulb bother me or ruin my vacation. How the charter company RESPONDS to major breakdowns is far more important to me.

I particularly appreciate replies like that from 'Sweetsailing'. Personal experiences are the most useful to me even though mine might not be the same. It's nice to hear how people were treated by staff/owners, etc.

What contact I've had with the "BIG GUYS" has been almost completely unsatisfactory. They were happy to send me their beautiful brochures and DVD's, but when it comes to answering questions, all I got was an attitude that seemed to tell me "go away until you're ready to send us money". I will NEVER do business with such a company, even if they have the best boats on the planet. I am a business owner in a service profession and can easily recognize when a company has the 'almighty dollar' as their primary focal point. It always hurts their service, always.

Anyway, didn't mean to sermonize. Just trying to pass on, as politely as possible, what this one customer (who is brand new to sailing & chartering, BTW) is looking for, for the benefit of anyone who peruses this board.

I hope everyone has a great day of thanksgiving and can find something to thank God for.

Gary
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Old 11-22-2006
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camaraderie is a jewel in the rough camaraderie is a jewel in the rough camaraderie is a jewel in the rough
Guiletta...you responded to my post saying they were older boats with your own saying that you had seen them and they are not old.
Go to their website...they have 6 monohulls to rent and only 2 are less than 3 years old. Three date from 95-97.
They rent older boats that moorings or sunsail would have long retired from their fleet!

That said Dr. Hoppy...The boats can be well kept and the folks that run the company good caring business people. The prices reflect the age of the boat and they represent an affordable choice for many who couldn' otherwise afford to go. I absolutely agree with you about the "big guys". We had one terrible charter with SS after 3 with a smaller company that were most satisfactory.
Have fun on yours...ultimately, your in the BVI's and the boat is a very small part of the enjoyment!
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