Top 12 Marina Resorts
Plan an outstanding cruising season and include a stay at these top 12 marina resorts.
While most cruisers enjoy the solitude that comes with anchoring in a remote bay, there’s nothing like securing your boat to a sturdy new dock at a world-class marina to ensure a restful night’s sleep. When the marina is part of a high-end luxury resort that offers every amenity imaginable, a basic boating weekend magically transforms into a dream vacation.
Our editors and contributors have the enviable job of traveling to dozens of marina resorts throughout the year and writing about the ones they deem worthy.
These are some of their top picks.
(Use the arrows left and right to see the Top 12 Marina Resorts)
Most everyone has heard of the legendary coral-colored Atlantis Resort. But many are unaware that the famed luxury property with attractions that rival extravagant theme parks is also an Autograph Collection Hotel. For those who prefer the privacy of their boat’s accommodations, the good news for marina guests is that they get to experience
the entire range of services offered by the Atlantis facilities. Atlantis Marina is one of the few in The Bahamas that accommodates megayachts up to 240 feet and a 37-foot beam— the channel and marina both have a minimum water depth of 12 feet.
EDITOR ADVICE: Take advantage of seasonal rate specials for a memorable family vacation your cruising budget can afford.
secluded anchorages. But even the most private of cruisers appreciate the type of top-shelf amenities an upscale marina resort provides. Abaco Beach Resort and Boat Harbour Marina offers an authentic, Out Island experience in a tropical setting that will delight honeymooners, your small crew or large family. Here, world-class anglers, yachtsmen and island explorers escape the cruise ship crowds prevalent on the more populated islands. Boat Harbour Marina is one of the largest in The Bahamas with nearly 200 slips available to boaters all year long.
EDITOR ADVICE: Make this marina your luxury base from which to island-hop the nearby islands of Man o’ War and Green Turtle Cay.
Wentworth by the Sea is a Marriott Hotel & Spa that has historic, grand Americana elegance with modern conveniences. Intimate restaurants, a full-service spa to enhance your wellbeing, indoor and outdoor pools, fitness center, and tennis courts are available to guests of the adjacent Wentworth Marina to provide the ultimate marina experience. The marina offers 150 slips for vessels up to 250 feet with complimentary, secure Wi-Fi, cable TV, power hookups up to 100-amp, triple-phase, ValvTect Marine fuel, laundry, ice, bait, showers, pump-out, courtesy cars, barbecue gas grills at the head of each dock, and is dog-friendly. Nestled on an island along Little Harbor on the Piscataqua River, Wentworth by the Sea is less than three miles from downtown Portsmouth and a variety of parks, golf courses, beaches, arts, and entertainment.
EDITOR ADVICE: Bring your racquets. Tennis is a great way to stretch your legs and increase your aerobic fitness.
The island of Bimini is only 50 miles east of Miami and tucked on the backside of the
island’s western shore lies the largest marina complex in The Bahamas and accommodates yachts up to 200 feet.
Step from the docks to Resorts World Bimini, a 750-acre luxury beachfront resort that spans approximately half the length of North Bimini, where infinity pools welcome guests at ground level and up on the roof, 10 diverse restaurants showcase world-renowned chefs and a casino tickles the roll of the dice or the flip of a card. Add the white sand beaches and turquoise waters, the Serenity Spa and Salon, and world-class fishing grounds, and you have the makings for the ultimate in relaxation and adventure. Rent a golf cart and discover the island, explore the Sapona shipwreck or head over to Honeymoon Harbor to interact with stingrays. Nature
has no bounds on a visit to Bimini.
EDITOR ADVICE: Go beyond your comfort zone and head to Honeymoon Harbour on
Gun Cay to interact with the stingrays.
On Florida’s southwest coast lie narrow strips of barrier islands, each with its own history, culture, and vibe. Some are sparsely populated with casual beach cottages, while others flaunt luxury resorts with fi ne dining and spas. Waterline Marina Resort & Beach Club is Anna Maria Island’s only full-service resort and offers the best of both worlds—small enough to feel personal and large enough to feel pampered at this Autograph Collection Hotel property. The 50-slip marina accommodates boats up to 45 feet and dining at Eliza Ann’s Coastal Kitchen, where seafood served with Southern charm, is a not-to-be-missed
EDITOR ADVICE: Make reservations for both brunch and dinner—you will not be disappointed!
Tucked up in the coves of Irvington, Virginia, off the Rappahannock River just northwest of the Chesapeake Bay lies the Tides Inn, a timeless resort on its own peninsula with lush native landscaping, sweeping water views and a full-service marina. The Tides Inn Chesapeake Bay Marina sports new floating docks in a secluded harbor with the facilities of a world-class destination resort, yet is tranquil and peaceful. Located on Carters Creek, 11 statute miles from Windmill Point, the marina accommodates 24 vessels up to 150 feet and offers full marina services as well as the resort’s exceptional amenities.
Start your day ashore with a little tennis, a morning bike ride or complimentary golf (clubs included) on a par-3 course (or tee it up at nearby Golden Eagle Golf course). Spend the afternoon at the beachside pool or pamper yourself at the Journey Spa, and
choose from five great restaurants that emphasize the tide to table concept. Then take a few nights off the boat and stay in the resort’s spacious suites.
It’s all good at the Tides Inn.
EDITOR ADVICE: If you’re a golfer, the complimentary golf on a par-3 course is a no-brainer.
The Faro Blanco lighthouse has been a beacon to boaters and visitors to Marathon in the Florida Keys since the 1950s. Awarded Valvtect’s 2016 Marina of the Year, the Gulf-side facility has 74 slips and full services, including 24-hour security, Wi-Fi and amenities at the adjacent Hyatt Place. First-class accommodations welcome those wanting to spend
a night on shore, and two outdoor swimming pools, a fitness club, and waterfront restaurant make relaxing easy. The restaurant’s veranda bar is the perfect spot to view the marina and the Gulf waters beyond and whether enjoying lunch or dinner, the unique
atmosphere keeps you in sync with the Keys’ lifestyle.
EDITOR ADVICE: Take advantage of the resort’s activities from paddleboard yoga to Hobie Cat and from Jet Ski rentals to croquet.
If a large resort with easy access to lots of activities and events is more your style, look no further than the Longboat Key Club on the Florida Gulf. The deep-water and protected marina basin offers dockage to transient cruisers on vessels up to 150 feet with
complimentary Wi-Fi and shuttle service to The Resort at Longboat Key Club. A marina
concierge ensures cruisers have everything hopping and hipster town of Sarasota is only
six miles away—an easy bicycle ride or even easier Uber.
EDITOR ADVICE: Take full advantage of the pool and tennis courts at the Marina Village.
If you spot the Montauk Lighthouse on Montauk Point as you sail west on Block
Island Sound from Block Island, keep to starboard and follow the northern coast
of Long Island to the Lake Montauk channel. Once inside, keep to port with Star
Island starboard until you see the Montauk Yacht Club lighthouse. There you can tie
up at Gurney’s Montauk Yacht Club & Resort.
A premier destination for summer getaways, the 15-acre property boasts 107 luxury waterfront hotel rooms, suites, and villas, outdoor amenities and an array of restaurants and bars. The full-service marina accommodates yachts up to 220 feet with a maximum 12-foot draft and offers guests full access to the resort’s amenities and activities, including indoor and outdoor swimming pools, Har-Tru tennis courts, private beach, complete wellness treatments in the spa, and casual and upscale dining.
EDITOR ADVICE: For a different take, head out to Rita’s Stables or Deep Hollow Ranch for a scenic trail ride or a trot along the beach on horseback.
Just two blocks from Key West’s famous Duval Street lies the Galleon Marina and
Resort. The marina offers power, freshwater, cable TV hookups, and the usual services.
The docks are well protected on the Gulf side and can accommodate boats up to 150 feet. Water depth is nine feet, and wet slips are available for both seasonal and transient vessels. But don’t hang out on the boat too long as there are exclusive marina and resort amenities.
Enjoy the pool, private beach, sauna, fitness center, Tiki Bar lounge, and bike and moped rentals are on site to help you explore all that the town of Key West has to offer. The waterfront resort has a wide range of accommodations including condo-style units and penthouses with fully equipped kitchens and that tropical, Key West décor.
EDITOR ADVICE: Never miss a sunset, and take a float plane or ferry to Fort Jeerson at Dry Tortugas National Park.
On the Atlantic Coast, snowbirds heading north in the spring or south in
the fall appreciate an extended mid-way stopover where the dockage is first-rate,
the pool is warm and the dining is delectable. Just north of Oriental, North Carolina, on the ICW, River Dunes Marina on Grace Harbor offers world-class amenities to transient cruisers.
So, after days of cruising, if you or the first mate need eggs benedict and hashbrowns, coffee by one of the nine fireplaces, a soothing massage or an exfoliating facial, everything is on premises. Need provisions or boat supplies? Use the marina car for a 10-minute ride to Oriental, stock up at the Piggly Wiggly and West Marine, and take some extra time to explore the sailing capital of North Carolina.
EDITOR ADVICE: Rent a bike to cruise the resort’s 1,300 waterfront acres.
1Scrub Island Resort, Spa & MarinaThe British Virgin Islands
A charter in the British Virgin Islands should be a top item on every boater’s cruising bucket list. The many anchorages and moorings are well-marked and protected, but after several days on the hook, treat yourself to a high-end resort on a private island before you fly back home.
Scrub Island is just off Tortola and is close to your charter base, making it a convenient location for the last night of your charter. The Autograph Collection property maintains the highest standard of excellence in service and services, and the view from every spot on the island is sublime.
If family or friends are flying in for part of the charter, the idyllic location offers two- to six-bedroom villas. The resort and marina were fully renovated in the summer of 2018.
EDITOR ADVICE: Release your inner child and take a ride on the pool slide. Then, reclaim your adulthood and enjoy an alcoholic beverage at the swim-up bar.