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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
This was prompted by a discussion I recently had with someone who mentioned to me that Connecticut by state law, doesn't allow any liveaboards, and some threads here which mention various other restrictions on them. I started wondering that if these were not great places to liveaboard, then where are the great places to liveaboard?

So, I'm curious to see Sailnetters weigh in on which liveaboard marina/location is the best, if one were free to live aboard year round, and why. Factors should include, (year round) weather, marina amenities, local amenities, costs, and anything else you can think of.

(Saw this on Zillow which started me thinking how cool it would be to own your own slip too.. except for the property taxes..)

Bonus points awarded if you're actually living aboard there now..

(and points subtracted if you choose a marina which is closed to, or difficult for, new liveaboards..)

Jason
 

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My favorite place to live aboard is Portland, Maine. And DiMillos is the best marina in the area to live aboard full time. Only two in the area allow this and the other is not very nice.

We sail 7 months here and wrap the boat for winter. My wife and I both walk to work and frequently go home for lunch. Close to shopping and parks. A little noisy on the weekends in the summer but we are usually out sailing. DiMillos is a decent facility but has no cruiser's lounge, pool, BBQ or other things you might find in a marina further south. You can sail from the Marina; no long driveway. Cost is reasonable. About $500/month for a year round contract on a 40ft boat. Includes free water, cable tv, electricity(metered in the winter), wifi. On premises laundry and restaurant/bar.
 

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Chastened
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The marina I lived at this year, is one of the best liveaboard marinas on the Chesapeake.

Slips were very affordable. The owner lived on-site. The marina is in a beautiful, secluded, hurricane-hole that is a short hop the the "raise sails" point. The marina did not have frills like a bar, club, restaurant, pool or tennis courts and that's the way we liked it.

I like the place so much, that I refuse to give the secret away.
 

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islander bahama 24
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The. Bremerton marina next to the Puget sound naval shipyard great amenities close to the ferry to Seattle and good public transit system and accepting new liveaboards and the. Best part year round sailing.
 

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Wandering Aimlessly
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Kinda depends on what's important to ya. Here in New Bern, I average (w/electric) $300 a month, which is the main reason I haven't got off my lazy butt and gotten back out cruising (I stopped to work for 3 years).

Good shower/laundry. Hotel pool and fitness room available, and free ride to the airport. Right downtown (touristy to an extent, but it does have a great old fashioned hardware store). Library within easy walking distance. Main shopping area is an hour walk/20 min bike ride, though there is limited public transport. I get a ride once a week for groceries and other shopping for $20 (can't own a car for that price). Downside is there is city and county property tax, as well as a state income tax and sales tax.
 

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The admiral and I live in Baltimore MD at Baltimore Marine Center - Light House Point (LHP). It's a very nice facility. There are actually several Baltimore Marine marinas in the Harbor depending on where you want to dock.

The LHP location is in the Canton area of town. Everything you could possibly need is within walking distance. West Marine, groceries, liquor store, tiki bar, restaurants, Target, Ace Hardware etc...

An annual slip agreement includes 2 haul outs and power washes, pool & gym membership, garage parking (first come first served, but only a problem on holidays), water and cable tv. Electric is metered. There's a bath house and coin-op laundry.

My 55' slip runs about 550-600 per month (includes liveaboard fee, does not include electric). Very affordable but, the tough part is annual agreements are due up front each year. The most you can break it up is 3 payments over 3 months. If you can stick to a budget and save up each year it's not so bad. Electric can get expensive depending on how you heat/cool your boat. I think it's $0.22/kw right now.

Baltimore itself is a great city. There's a great music scene, lots of things to do, and generally an affordable city to live in. Having a dinghy is great. You can get to Fells Point and the Inner Harbor in about 10-15mins in the dinghy. You can also float/dock near the outdoor concert pavilion, Pier Six, and catch shows. There's lots of place to go in the Patapsco river. It's good fun.

I've lived here for 7 years and met many great people. There's a good liveaboard community here.

The only complaints I have are:
- packing up the toys for the winter is no fun
- it's a fairly long run to get out of the Patapsco river to the Chesapeake
- the water in the harbor is gross, lots of trash run off from the city streets when it rains
- the barnacles and muscles will foul your boat quickly
 

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I like my marina, Ventura West, in Ventura Harbor. I don't actually live aboard at this time, but I can change that at any time. The marina itself is well run, secure docks, reasonable rates ($369 for my 30', metered electric), nice clubhouse, RR/showers, laundry, and a workout room. There are a few other marinas in the harbor, but VWM is the largest, with 550 some slips, with a %50 cap on liveaboards (highest I've heard of in So Cal).

Year round sailing, of course, and the closest of the Channel Islands are less than 20 nm away. The weather is SoCal, but without the big spikes in the summer - rarely over 90 then. Several local boat yards, mast-up storage, chandlers, etc, etc. Easy bicycle ride to the local supermarket, lots of good restaurans are a few minute walk around the harbor. Two hotels across next to the marina, so those pesky visiting folks don't have to squeeze into that spare quarter berth (you know, the one full of PFDs, canvas, etc).

The city (Ventura) is quite nice, and still commuting distance to the greater L.A. area. Also less than 30 miles from Santa Barbara, and only about 60 to the start of the Central Coast wine country. No car? Amtrak's Surfliner train can take you anywhere from San Luis Obispo to San Diego.
 

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Jason-
"that Connecticut by state law, doesn't allow any liveaboards, "
When you see a claim like that, whether it is on the internet or in a pub, the big red flag is that no one is citing a specific law. Which often means they are simply wrong about that.
If there is such a law, someone can cite you the actual statute, and you can look it up online to see what it actually says. Often folks have been misinformed, or simply haven't understood the actual statute.
Can't live on a boat, at all? I'd love to see the legal explanation for how a state could have the power to declare that.
 

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The admiral and I live in Baltimore MD at Baltimore Marine Center - Light House Point (LHP). It's a very nice facility. There are actually several Baltimore Marine marinas in the Harbor depending on where you want to dock.

The LHP location is in the Canton area of town. Everything you could possibly need is within walking distance. West Marine, groceries, liquor store, tiki bar, restaurants, Target, Ace Hardware etc...

An annual slip agreement includes 2 haul outs and power washes, pool & gym membership, garage parking (first come first served, but only a problem on holidays), water and cable tv. Electric is metered. There's a bath house and coin-op laundry.

My 55' slip runs about 550-600 per month (includes liveaboard fee, does not include electric). Very affordable but, the tough part is annual agreements are due up front each year. The most you can break it up is 3 payments over 3 months. If you can stick to a budget and save up each year it's not so bad. Electric can get expensive depending on how you heat/cool your boat. I think it's $0.22/kw right now.

Baltimore itself is a great city. There's a great music scene, lots of things to do, and generally an affordable city to live in. Having a dinghy is great. You can get to Fells Point and the Inner Harbor in about 10-15mins in the dinghy. You can also float/dock near the outdoor concert pavilion, Pier Six, and catch shows. There's lots of place to go in the Patapsco river. It's good fun.

I've lived here for 7 years and met many great people. There's a good liveaboard community here.

The only complaints I have are:
- packing up the toys for the winter is no fun
- it's a fairly long run to get out of the Patapsco river to the Chesapeake
- the water in the harbor is gross, lots of trash run off from the city streets when it rains
- the barnacles and muscles will foul your boat quickly
The slip doesn't sound too bad but the rest of living in Baltimore is pretty expensive; MD state income tax, Baltimore County income tax, Baltimore City income tax, Ridiculous auto insurance rates in Baltimore city, Maryland state sales tax to name a few.

But, if you like crabs...
 

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Coast Hotel and Marina in Victoria B.C. Small, about 40 slips. Almost all liveaboard. Facilities include indoor/outdoor year round heated pool, sauna, jacuzzi and workout room. Reasonable rates, power is not metered. Other than sales tax on moorage - 5% - no taxes or additional fees of any kind. Victoria allows living aboard at about 7 marinas in the harbour. Short walk to downtown along the water. It is the marina in the left foreground of the picture and the marina in the middle is Pier One, also a live aboard marina. The city is in the distance around the walkway.Victoria has the mildest temps in Canada and less than half the rain of Vancouver. Only snow in the harbour in the last few years was a trace that melted in a few hours. Current temp is 47F.

 

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Ventura West Marina

I do live aboard at Ventura West and have elsewhere and have to say it is fantastic. Southern California isn't an easy place to find good livaboard slips but Ventura West really works hard to make it good for us and to build what is a really great community. Ventura is my favorite place I've lived ( and there were many from the East Coast to Alaska), and to do it again on my beloved sailboat, sail up/down the coast or to the Channel Islands is heaven.
Tania Davidson
O'Day 32' "Asherah"
Ventura Harbor, CA
 

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Brewers in Barrington R.I. has liveaboards. Pricey but nice and Providence is close by. No laundry. Insist wind generators are tied off even in winter but electricity is cheap. Nice pool in the summer. Good bathrooms and showers. Excellent walking trail and farmers market next store. Good cruising grounds as well. Can get by with reverse AC for most of the winter.
 
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