Monday, March 7, 2016

Classic wooden boat Grace cruising the Lowcountry

The Grace at rest on the May River
Capt. Ed and Capt. Herb on the bow
This 60-foot classic wooden boat was built in 1913 by the New York Yacht, Launch and Engine Company in Morris Heights, NY. The boat had a few different names under previous owners, but she was named Grace by R.T. Wilson, and she is now moored at Wilson's Landing on the May River at Palmetto Bluff in Bluffton, SC. In December of 2014 Grace was taken to Beaufort, NC for a complete restoration that lasted just over one year. In March of 2016 she became available for charters back in Bluffton, and I was fortunate to be among the first to cruise on this classic motor yacht.

Classy cruising can be found aboard the Grace
During the restoration about 40 of the ship's wooden ribs were replaced inside the hull. And 31 planks on the bottom of the boat were replaced with new wood that was hand-cut and bent into position. Her engine and generator are completely rebuilt and much body work to restore her luster took place. Both Captain Herb Rennard and Captain Ed Johnson told me that is an honor to pilot this boat that already has 100-years of maritime history.

The Grace has two levels for guests to enjoy including a topside deck with bench seating along the sides, and this area has windows that can be closed during windy or inclement weather. Going down a tight staircase reveals a small bedroom, bathroom and sitting room with dinner table - all framed in glorious mahogany woodwork. Of course being topside offers the best viewing and we cruised past channel marker 13 in the May River and glimpsed the Episcopal Church of the Cross along the way. Our private cruise for two was splendid, but this vessel is well equipped to handle a few more folks too.

To view past blog entries about classic wood boats click on Aphrodite - Osprey - Annalee - Hinckley

Here is the scenic Bluffton Oyster Company docks
To view past blog entries about sailing click on Charleston Race Week - Rockville Regatta.

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