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Old 25-02-2010, 22:27   #1
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Where to Live Aboard in Miami ?

I'm hoping to buy a 40-45 catamaran this fall and liveaboard in Miami. What are some recommended Marinas? Which have the quickest access to open water outside of the ICW?
What can I expect to pay?

Some concerns are:
I will have a dog with me part time
I like to go road cycling often
I play a lot of tennis
I want to be fairly close to some good nightlife (southbeach etc)

Thanks!
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Old 26-02-2010, 08:09   #2
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Miami Beach marina is closest to the inlet and closest to south beach and thus most expensive. Believe they have rates on their website. Tie up well if you stay there. The surge is out of this world as you are just off the main ship channel. Cruise ships, huge container ships, mega yachts, fishing boats, etc all pass within 100 yards of the closest docks.
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Old 26-02-2010, 08:21   #3
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Look at Dinner Key marina. Crandon Park also has end ties and Moorings. WG
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Old 26-02-2010, 08:35   #4
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My wife and I lived in Miami for many years, through the '80's and '90's, and I second Dinner Key and/or Crandon Park. Definitely stay off the river. Also, be sure to check with the marina for state residency requirements. Back in '03 we were toying with the idea of being full time LB's in Dinner Key and things were alot different from when we had been there in the '90's.
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Old 26-02-2010, 12:07   #5
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svjobeth- why do say stay off the river?
I don't think residency will be an issue for me- I'm an airline pilot and fly internationally- I live in about 5 different places in a given year, but keep Telluride, CO as my "official" residence.
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Old 26-02-2010, 14:13   #6
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Dinner Key & Crandon Park, though both nice marinas, will certainly NOT be near the S. Beach nightlife.
An inner dock at Miami Beach marina couyld be just the ticket, for you.
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Old 26-02-2010, 14:22   #7
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That's what I'm thinking. And amazingly, it's only $100 more per month for a 42' boat in Miami beach marina compared to the others. (based on an annual contract of course)
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Old 26-02-2010, 14:29   #8
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Good point Gord. When I stayed there we were at the very top of that picture on the second southernmost dock. If you can get in the north half the surge would not be nearly as bad. Plus you are a little closer to the heart of south beach. Shortly after we left I read a freighter lost steerage or power and ended up on the breakwater just behind the dock we were on.
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Old 26-02-2010, 15:44   #9
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Actually Gord, Dinner Key is not that far from South Beach. WG
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Old 26-02-2010, 16:09   #10
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Actually Gord, Dinner Key is not that far from South Beach. WG
Dinner Key is exactly "that" far from South Beach.
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Old 26-02-2010, 17:19   #11
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OK, It is not right at South Beach but it is in Coconut Grove, which is a very nice area for shops, restaurants, etc.
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Old 27-02-2010, 05:07   #12
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I can think of several reasons to stay off the Miami River as a liveaboard, but primary among them are:

1. Lots of commercial traffic, 24/7.
2. Drawbridges. If your boat doesn't move too often, this may not be a problem. But living near them can be noisy.
3. Boatyard living. Most of the marinas on the river were associated with working boatyards. However, since South Florida boatyards are now fewer in number, the river may be a different place from what I remember it being..

Of course, these are things that would be a problem for me, but they may not be for you.

I'm sorry I wasn't clear on my 'residency' comments. When we checked at Dinner Key to liveaboard, they wanted to see proof of a City of Miami/Dade County residence; something like a Florida/Power light bill, tax records, etc., that showed we owned or rented property in the city/county. This was in 2003 and in fact, there was a form specific to this with the marina dockage contract/paperwork. I remember asking why they required local residency, but in all honesty, not the answer. When we lived there in the '80's and early '90's, I don't recall there being any requirements for liveaboards to have a local residency; this was something that seems to have changed around the time of 9/11. Again, that was our experience seven years ago. Things may well be different now.

As far as nightlife goes, I personally don't think Dinner Key's so far from South Beach, and it's right in the heart of The Grove, which I'll always remember as a fun place.
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Old 27-02-2010, 06:59   #13
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Re: the residency requirements -

I asked my wife if she remembered the residency issue for LB's at Dinner Key and what it was about. She recalls it being required to get a significantly reduced dockage rate from what non-residents would pay per the published rates.
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Old 27-02-2010, 11:26   #14
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That's good to know. I thought maybe you meant I'd be classified as a resident and have to pay FL taxes, something I'm certainly not interested in!


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Re: the residency requirements -

I asked my wife if she remembered the residency issue for LB's at Dinner Key and what it was about. She recalls it being required to get a significantly reduced dockage rate from what non-residents would pay per the published rates.
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Old 27-02-2010, 12:27   #15
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That's good to know. I thought maybe you meant I'd be classified as a resident and have to pay FL taxes, something I'm certainly not interested in!
Florida has no state income tax and no other state based taxes. You will have to pay sales tax on stuff you buy, register the boat there [cause you are there longer than 90 days, register you cars maybe, but no big dollars unless you never paid any sales tax on your boat when you bought it. When we 'moved' to FL changing the boat registration [yes we are documented] was a few hundred dollars as we could prove paid the sales tax in MD back when we bought the boat. All in all no big deal. And the benefit of being a FL resident if you decide that's the way to go is no state income tax
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