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Old 23-02-2009, 20:11   #1
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St Pete FL -Vinoy Basin Question

Planning to spend the night on the hook in the basin soon. Anyone know where the dingy dock is? I know I could go out & around the pier to the Municipal Marina but that seems out of the way for all the cruisers who stop at the Vinoy.
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Old 24-02-2009, 07:45   #2
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Mark--

For all intents and purposes there is no public dinghy dock, or at least there was not on any of our visits, which is one of the problems with that basin.

If you are planing on using some of the facilities at the Vinoy--e.g. your wife has an appointment at the Spa, or you have reservations for a meal in one of the restaurants--you can usually contact the Vinoy Marina harbor master on 16 (or better with a cell phone) and get permission to tie a dinghy on the floating dock that parallels the seawall on the north side of the basin, between the seawall and the dock. If you return after hours, however, you will have trouble getting onto the docks because everything is locked up tight.

Alternately, there is a very small area at the northwest corner of the basin near the main entrance to the Vinoy where you can run a dinghy in and tie up but be sure to have a sturdy cable lock. There are several locations at the southeast corner of the basin where visitor's tie-up to the seawall fronting the park on the east side of the Museum but getting into and out of the dinghy can be athletic event and going through that park at night leaves a lot to be desired.

Take a look at Google Earth for a better sense of the place.

In any case, use a cable lock, be sure you've got locks on your outboard if you use one, and leave nothing you can't afford to loose in the dinghy.

FWIW...

s/v HyLyte
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Old 24-02-2009, 08:23   #3
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I remember seeing a place with a dock on the South Bank of the basin. They did tours, rented small boats, and let dinghies tie up at the dock for $5.00. Honor system, they had a cash box you put the money into.
I was in a car at the time, Jan 2007, and never returned by boat (yet) so don't have any more details or know if it still exists.
The charted chanel into the basin seems to lead right to that spot.
Good luck,
Steve
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Old 24-02-2009, 09:40   #4
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I believe that Steve was referring to the Electric Marina - 727.898.BOAT . It would be worth giving them a call.
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Old 24-02-2009, 10:16   #5
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When I was staying at the Vinoy a couple of years ago I remember there being a little sandy spot in the corner of the sea wall closest to the Vinoy front entrance that had a dingy or two parked on it.
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Old 24-02-2009, 10:47   #6
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Thanks guys. I don't plan to leave the dink - just pick up passengers. So it sounds like the NW corner near the Vinoy front entrance will do fine.

I appreciate the replies.

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Old 24-02-2009, 11:15   #7
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This is interesting info. I actually used to live in St. Pete, but kept my boat on the Gulf side at Madeira Beach. Years ago, they used to let people keep boats on the hook in the Vinoy basin indefinitely, but you were on your own as for dinghies. A lot of people just beached them or tied them to the seawall. Then, when they started sprucing up the Vinoy, they supposedly kicked all the boats out of the basin. Apparently, they've loosened those restrictions again (which is good), but have not provided much in the way of dinghy dockage (not so good). A buddy of mine's sailboat sank in that basin several years ago (bad seacocks), and he refloated it himself using pressurized air and steel drums. I think it was right after that when they started kicking the boats out of there. Glad to see they let you anchor there again.
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Old 28-02-2009, 05:42   #8
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Update

As it turns out the Electric Boat (tours) operation on the South bank of the basin allows dinghy dockage. If you want to leave it tied up they ask for $5 / day. An honor system and a little lock box are near the entrance gate to their dock.

I spoke with the operator and since all I needed to do was load / unload passengers they said "no charge." Nice folks.

BTW the Vinoy Resort dock master said "no way - we are a private marina."

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Old 02-03-2009, 07:33   #9
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Beware--Ninja Duck

When you arrive at the Electric Marina, keep an eye out for their duck--Seawall. They've had him since he was a gossling and he always seem's about--he's got a house on the end of the gangway--but of late he's not been too fond of people wearing tennis shoes. It seems that at some point one of the street people that "live" in the adjoining park took it upon himself to try to kick the heck out of Seawall when he wandered over to the guy looking for a handout. Fortunately, the guy was wearing tennis shoes and the Electric Marina staff saved Seawall before he was badly injured but ever since Seawall's been hostile to tennis shoes--and he doesn't fool around!



FWIW...

s/v HyLyte
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