Posted on November 29th, 2011
As most who are involved in the sailing community are aware that the 34th America’s Cup San Diego just came to a close about a week ago, it is always exciting to recollect the memories and excitement of such an event; and so we want to share with you some of those great memories we had onboard the Aolani Catamaran.
On the Saturday before the America’s Cup San Diego came to an end, the Match Racing Championships took place, with the races starting at 1pm. We arrived at the start line, there mid-San Diego bay, with a front row seat to all the action. That day, a group from France was onboard with us. They spoke little English, but when they were cheering for the French team boat, Energy, you could tell. We had fun cheering on all the boats that day, but were mostly lucky to be able to capture that excitement thanks to our onboard photographer that day, Drew McGill. Drew and I went to high school together, and I knew I could rely on him to get some great shots of the action. I love that every photographer has his or her own style, and with the way Drew uses the lighting he really captures the intensity of race day.
If your pockets are full and your schedule is open, head on out to Naples, Italy for the next series of America’s Cup Racing April 7-15,2012. To find out more information, click here: America’s Cup Italy 2012
Hope you enjoy the photos, friends! Happy Sailing!Tweet
Posted on November 12th, 2011
Wow! Talk about an exciting day on the San Diego Bay! If there are a couple phrases we overuse at “work” when we’re out sailing, one of them is “no complaints here” and another one is “there is always somethin’ going on in this bay!”. Today was a perfect example of the latter, hence I’m writing a blog post about it.
So, we had two charters today, both with a sales company that sells legal paperwork to car companies..pretty unique right? Well, 200 of this companies top employees were given a trip to San Diego as well as different options once they got here. The two sails we had today were with many of those employees, and both groups sure chose a great day to go sail because there were quite a lot of photo opportunities.
By the time our second charter of the day set sail we headed straight to the middle of the bay, where the America’s Cup catamarans were out sailing, getting in their last practice before tomorrow’s San Diego America’s Cup Race begins. It’s quite an exciting time for us here in San Diego, as the long anticipated event will begin tomorrow morning, bright and early.
A little history on the America’s Cup: the prestigious trophy is awarded to the winner of the America’s Cup match races. A match race is a race between two yachts. The Cup trophy was originally awarded way back in 1851 by the schooner America. A fun fact about this race: the America’s Cup is the oldest active trophy in an international sport. True story. What’s so exciting about this race is that it is usually held in waters far from here, while this year it will be hosted in the U-S-of-A, right here in San Diego, California and we couldn’t be more excited.
As we sailed through the bay, Coast Guard came alongside us to inform us of our boundaries while the Cup boats were our practicing. We were sure to keep our distance as we watched as a group of 24, most of us with camera in hand. Now that’s a picture I should have captured. Here are a few shots from their last trial day:
After watching the practice runs, we sailed back, near the aircraft carrier #70, USS Carl Vinson, as they were setting up for this evening’s Carrier Classic. This first ever event has just ended, as I write this post, and the North Carolina Tar Heels have just won this one of a kind event- a first ever college basketball game onboard an aircraft carrier- in celebration of Veteran’s Day. With thousands of troops onboard, model and actress Brooklyn Decker, retired professional point guard for the Los Angeles Lakers Magic Johnson, and even our President of the United States, Barack Obama, it was quite a night to celebrate.
After sailing as close as we could get to the USS Carl Vinson, it was just about time for us to be heading back to our home port at the Sheraton Harbor Island Marina. As we pulled in, dockside, our guests began to gather near the stern of the boat as they were preparing for their exit, and a gentleman came up to me. After shaking my hand, he says with wide eyes and a dramatic smirk, “must be nice”, and I thought to myself..you know what..it sure is..but here’s the catch, I don’t take a single day for granted. My family has served this nation and my friends currently serve this nation, and for that I am forever grateful.
With that, Happy Veteran’s Day, folks, and I hope to see you out on the water this weekend for the 34th ever America’s Cup Sailing Races.
Posted on November 8th, 2011
Happy Fall to all! The last time we visited our Aolani Catamaran blog page was early February just after Ashley and Drew had taken their leap of faith, in marriage, on our catamaran on a cool but beautiful winter eve. Fast-forward seven months and though much has changed, much remains the same. And with that, let’s get up to date.
It is now early November in San Diego and with our first day of fall behind us, it’s hard to believe that another summer on the Aolani Catamaran has come to a close. Luckily our summer was warmer than last years, wait..did we even have a San Diego summer last year? Either way, not to worry, we’ve always got blankets on board.
This summer was filled with fun, as summer is when we host mainly families onboard the catamaran whether it’s for a snorkel charter up to La Jolla Cove, searching underwater for the bright orange Ghirabaldi, or for a 25th Wedding Anniversary on the boat where we sailed through Glorietta Bay and over by the Hotel Del Coronado, where the couple had first met just a number of years back. This summer we held meetings onboard, sunset dinner cruises, surprise birthdays and even surprise engagements. We’ve celebrated with Retired Navy Pilots who came to celebrate .. well, the fact that they are now retired. We’ve shared laughs with the kids who jump off the boat and into Glorietta Bay , tears with families who lost a loved one as we help spread ashes out in the Pacific Ocean , and even an occasional karaoke song in our main salon room. Just two weeks ago, we held a beautiful wedding onboard with an Indian family who decked out the catamaran in bright yellows, oranges, and pink. We danced with them to the sounds of their bollywood themed playlist, until our cheeks were sore from laughing. What fun we get to share with all of you, and we remember each one. No charter is the same onboard the Aolani, and we cherish that. As long as you are having a good time, then we are too. That being said, we couldn’t imagine doing anything else in the world. We feel blessed to be the only catamaran in San Diego that charters, and therefore want to share it with all of you. So, come sail with us and we will make sure you have the very best of time as San Diego is full of life, and we couldn’t imagine being anywhere else. Even now as I write this post here on my computer, dockside on the Aolani Cat, the Navy’s Blue Angels are flying overhead in acrobatic ease as they welcome citizens to the annual Coronado Speed Fest, where vintage cars from across the country come to race on a spectator friendly 1.7 mile course at Coronado’s Naval Air Station North Island (NASNI). There is always something going on in this great city of ours, and we get to experience so much of it from the very bay we sail through almost daily. Whether it be watching the military train in the San Diego Bay, cruising by the Aircraft Carriers, or making a marine life charter out of it and searching for dolphins in the bay, or blue whales a few miles offshore.. there is always something to see, and we want to show you, so again, we would love if you came and sailed with us.
In closing, keeping in mind that we began this business in late 2001, we feel blessed and fortunate as a family to have had the opportunity to share the Aolani Catamaran with so many wonderful people, and to see so many smiles as you leave the vessel with what seems to us like pure satisfaction. Your happiness is ours, as well, and we look forward to many more years to come of sailing with you.
As I recently graduated college to move home to San Diego, the great city that I grew up in, and work on and for the Aolani Catamaran Charters and with my family, I can certainly say with absolute certainty that it is truly good to be home.Tweet
I look forward to seeing you, meeting you, and having a great time with you out on the water.