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11-05-2010 06:21 AM
JungleJim One point to keep in mind is that the limitation on live-aboards is typically local government ordinance, not marina. However the marina is responsible to enforce. If you tool around the San Diego marinas and mooring fields enough you'll see they got they're hands full - plenty of skows out there. Morale of the story is don't be one of them guys.
11-05-2010 06:02 AM
JungleJim Like anything else, if you extend your stay on board and are more than considerate of others you should be fine. Keep the boat clean with junk off the decks, berth away from the heavy traffic areas. If management pushes back, just say thanks, that your getting some work done and now heading home - then go and come back later. As long as you don't put Marina management in a tough position or tick off a neighbor to have them go complaining you will be fine. Being a good dock citizen, willing to help others makes it easy for people to want you around. I always got phone numbers from my neighbors and would call them during a storm in SD (that's right - one blew 70kts) to tell them they were fine and one a helped run extra lines to my dock cleats. And as you may guess my neighbors were always looking to reciprocate - it was beautiful thing. I never had a problem and I did need to do a lot of refit work before we finally sailed around to Boston. We loved San Diego - try to find the friendliest marina possible. I would guess the larger the better. I liked the Harbor Island Marina - great staff.
11-03-2010 10:29 AM
swadiver rgscpat,

I slip my boat at Alamitos Bay, Long Beach. You are allowed to spend 14 continuous days per month on your boat. More than that and you would be considered a 'liveaboard'. So if you spent the last two weeks of a month and the first two weeks of the next month you would not be considered a liveaboard. Slip fees at Alamitos Bay are resonable compared to Newport Beach or Dana Point. However, the docks are wooden and in bad shape. The city of Long Beach (they own the marina) is currently going through the hoops to totally repair the docks with cement gangways/fingers. The problem is they will have to dredge each basin before installation, which means environmental impact studies. The restrooms/showers are no great shakes either, but they work, are clean and warm and hot water. If you want high thread count towels, bring them yourself.
11-01-2010 11:11 PM
rgscpat I've sailed out of Marina del Rey but my wife hates the bathrooms (D basin north) so we wouldn't be likely customers unless we joined a slip-owing club there. Bare rough cold floors, steel "mirrors", harsh "prison" lighting, minimal privacy, cold.... But then there was another marina bathroom (in AZ!) we visited that spoiled her with high-thread-count towels, hair dryers, toiletries, and real hardwood partitions. Somewhere in between should do just fine.

The general impression of SoCal vs. the Bay area seems to be that the Bay is around 30% cheaper -- more so as you get further from the city and Sausalito. In San Diego, Chula Vista, Driscoll's, and Mission Bay seem less extortionate. Ventura might also be an option for us. Santa Barbara seems to combine primitive bathrooms (the ones we've seen) with the eternity wait list (unless maybe we buy a "teardown boat" in a slip?).
11-01-2010 02:38 PM
Good Hunting!

All the previous replies seem to be valid tips for remote owners to visit their boat for extended periods. Of course, if the marina has a hard-line policy against extended stays you would be wise to follow the rules there or find another, more flexible marina. When you find a marina with a relaxed policy for your exteneded visitations, please contact the marina prior to each trip to your boat to inform them of your intentions (and get de-facto approval). Doing so may mitigate the live-aboards' objections. Chat up your neighbor boaters, especially the residents, to let them know your situation. For locations, please consider any port other that Marina Del Rey.
08-17-2010 11:20 AM
zeehag what i was advised by a marina in lost angeles was liveaboard was more than 90 days per yr on board, and only 10 percent of marina slips are for living aboard residents. per state. lol
HOWEVER, what i have SEEN is that every marina and every locale considers live aboard in a different manner--each has own regs and rules and fees.
good luck. there is a loong wait in mos all marinas --if you wish immediate place to stash boat, consider mooring. is an option.or go to mexico. marina coral is just north of ensenada. ensenada is morel like a border town now than it was -- is too busy and has too many displaced sin diego-ites --the wrong kind, btw--and the yard is competitive with the priciest of sin diego yards--again being the most pricey on west coast. so isnt a big saving to go to yard there. the baja naval marina is nice--the bathrooms will spoil ye--but the yard is high for mexico. the people are nice. but the pricing is not competitive with mexico--is competitive with sin diego's ripoff pricing. just my 2 cents....
08-17-2010 10:46 AM
denverd0n Here in the Tampa Bay area it seems like the standard definition of "liveaboard" is 10 or more nights in any one month. But the bottom line is that it varies from place to place, and even from marina to marina within a few miles of each other. So, in the end, the only way you are going to know is to ask the specific policy at any marinas that you are interested in.
08-16-2010 09:24 PM
zeehag the moorings are reasonable but havent amenities. i have 2 boats on moorings at coronado. the permanent mooring is about 130/.month thereabouts. is something to consider as the moorings are safe and well watched over. san diego mooring co ruins them. my temp ballis around 260 per month . i know there is a waiting list , but there is also the availability of temporary , or sublet, balls. try it. you will need a dinghy to travel back and forth to the boat.

from what i have heard, marina coral north of ensenada is nice also..have you tried that one??
08-16-2010 07:03 PM
rgscpat Yes, those are good points and thanks for writing them. Since we wouldn't be true liveaboards, we probably wouldn't have too much trouble. I do get a bit of a vibe that the biggest corporate-owned marinas might be less flexible. Also, since we're maintaining our land home, there is a certain "what's the worst the could happen" that would work in our favor; being kicked out of a marina that's super-inflexible or gets bought out and changes policies wouldn't necessarily be a disaster.

For San Diego, it seems the most competitive places are the two Chula Vista Marinas, Driscoll's, and Mission Bay (including perhaps the Mission Bay YC for those with low enough masts and willingness to make the initial payment to join the club). We might also do something like working our way down the coast gradually.
08-16-2010 05:52 PM
rebelheart I wrote up some of the info I've gleamed as a liveaboard for the last few years in San Diego, including doing an hour audio interview with our marina manager. Boring as hell for anyone who isn't interested in hearing about marinas and managers.

Rebel Heart - Sailing, cruising, liveaboard blog and website - Eric's Blog - How the liveaboard thing really*works

In short, it really varies by marina and even the ones who are pretty lenient will never outrightly say they are because then they'll get abused by the jerk residents that the rules are there to keep out. A good marina does a good job of flexing the rules to allow the non-problem boaters to have fun but enforces them to keep the jerks out. It stinks having a double standard and "read between the lines" rules delivered with a wink, but it works.
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