Bareboat Yacht Charters Blog

British Virgin Islands Renovated Moorings Bareboat Base

British Virgin Islands Renovated Moorings Bareboat Base

Luxury awaits bareboat charter sailors planning a Caribbean yacht charter vacation.  The Moorings, managers of the largest bareboat charter fleet in the Caribbean, proudly opened the new Moorings Village on January 29, 2009. Part of a $15 million expansion by The Moorings of their flagship base in Road Town, Tortola, BVI, the Village brings a touch of luxury to the barefoot yacht charter marketplace.  The new facility also highlights the company’s efforts to protect the area’s natural resources.
Caribbean yacht charter enthusiasts, especially bareboat charter customers, will appreciate the company’s commitment to the environment and efforts to preserve the BVI cruising grounds.  A new desalination plant provides 60,000 gallons of water daily, while the revamped laundry operation recycles treated water to save 12,000 gallons on a daily basis.  There is also pump-assisted flowthrough breakwater in the new marina that can circulate over 50 million gallons of water weekly.   Local officials believe the new facility has already greatly improved water quality in Road Town Harbor.

The new Moorings Village is nothing short of a luxurious treat.  The complex was designed entirely around the needs of sailors.

The staff greets you and takes your bags directly to your barefoot yacht charter vessel while you are greeted in the reception area with a tasty island drink.  The reception area opens onto a landscaped plaza, with panoramic views of the Sir Francis Drake Channel. From here, visitors can stroll among the new retail shops or stop in the café serving locally-made island pastries, ice cream and gourmet coffee.

Before heading off to sea, sailors can enjoy dinner ashore, at Charlie’s Bar and Restaurant, built over the water and overlooking the harbor, where the coldest cocktails and a sumptuous yet informal menu are offered.

New oceanfront hotel rooms offer luxury accommodation overlooking the harbor, perfect for those sailors wishing to extend their Caribbean yacht charter vacation by a few days.  The majority of the existing rooms have also undergone a major renovation. Customers choosing an evening start or simply wishing to freshen up prior to departure will also be able to benefit from the use of a new, modern club-style shower facility with private dressing area.

A full service spa offers the latest relaxing treatments.  Sailors who need to stay in touch with the outside world can use the village business center and enjoy free WI-FI internet access.

1-800-BAREBOAT (see www.bareboat.com) is an authorized representative of The Moorings and their global fleet.  “Great Prices and the Newest Bareboats in the World’s Best Destinations” allows 1-800-BAREBOAT to present new yachts such as the Beneteau 51.5; the Robertson and Caine 4600 catamaran; and the Beneteau 43.3.

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Effective immediately, bareboat yacht charter travelers visiting the United States under the Visa Waiver Program (VWP) risk being detained at airports and sent home if they don’t comply with new U.S. immigration rules.

Thousands of Caribbean bareboat yacht charter travelers are at risk, including those planning a bareboat yacht charter in Florida or the Bahamas, as many clients pass through US airports on their way to their destination.  Even luxury yacht charter customers flying direct to St. Thomas in the Virgin Islands are affected, as St. Thomas is considered a US port of call for bareboats, as well as superyachts and mega yachts.

The introduction of the Electronic System for Travel Authorization (ESTA) means visitors from 27 Visa Waiver Program (VWP) countries — including most of Western Europe, New Zealand, Japan and Australia — must now register their details online at least three days before departure.

ESTA — which came into effect earlier this month — replaces the written green I-94 form and allows travelers under the VWP to enter the U.S. without a visa and stay for up to 90 days.  The measure is designed to tighten security and make it harder for terrorists who are citizens of the participating countries to easily obtain entry to the U.S.

ESTA logo

ESTA logo

Critics fear the new rule will be an inconvenience for business and leisure travelers, and the British Foreign Office is concerned that travelers who have not heard about the new rules may be caught off guard. A British Foreign Office report on travel trends for 2009 predicted a 13 percent increase of British travelers visiting or passing through the United States this year. “The consequences of not registering through ESTA could therefore be far reaching,” says the Foreign Office.

The U.S. Department of Homeland Security has assured travelers that the system can handle last minute and emergency requests.

ESTA has been operating on a voluntary basis since 1 August 2008 and is compulsory from 12 January 2009.

Applications can be made at any time, even if travelers have no specific travel plans. If itineraries change, information can be easily updated on the ESTA Web site. Once travelers are authorized, they can travel for up to two years or until their passport expires, whichever comes first.

Passengers must submit the same information that is currently required in the I-94 immigration form. This includes biographical data, travel information as well as questions regarding communicable diseases, arrests and convictions.
Here is a list of VWP countries:

Andorra, France, Luxembourg, Singapore, Czech Republic, Austria, Germany, Monaco, Slovenia, Estonia, Australia, Iceland, Netherlands, Spain, Hungary, Belgium, Ireland, New Zealand, Sweden, Latvia, Brunei, Italy, Norway, Switzerland, Lithuania, Denmark, Japan, Portugal, United Kingdom, Slovakia, Finland, Liechtenstein, San Marino, Republic of Malta and South Korea.

Registration is possible through the U.S. government ESTA Web site. In most cases, eligibility for travel will be approved immediately.  Applicants who receive an “Authorization Pending” response will need to check the web site for updates. Applicants whose ESTA applications are denied will be referred to Travel.State.Gov for information on how to apply for a visa.

ESTA does not change the rules for citizens from countries that require visas. That no longer includes travelers from the Czech Republic, Estonia, Hungary, Latvia, Lithuania, the Republic of Korea, and the Slovak Republic; they joined the VWP in November 2008. Malta became a member the following month.

Travelers are advised that ESTA does not guarantee entry into the United States. The final decision rests with the immigration official at the port of entry.

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