Exploring the southern end of the Great Barrier Reef with R Marine Jones – Please click the play button above to view video.
It’s always very satisfying to see new families being introduced to the Riviera luxury boating life.
It’s inspiring to seem them developing their sea legs, gaining new skills and confidence, making new memories and, of course, forging lasting friendships.
And so it was for two families on the R Marine Jones Great Sandy Straits Experience this year.
Now in its 10th year, this popular Experience cruising event again attracted a strong line-up of participants – in fact a total of 18 yachts – for a week-long adventure exploring the southern anchorages of Australia’s Great Barrier Reef.
R Marine Jones dealer principal Randall Jones and his team organised a fun-filled adventure from Queensland’s Gold Coast to Peel Island, on to Garry’s Anchorage, Bundaberg and picturesque Lady Musgrave Island.
Simply The Best
Ben and his family took delivery of their Riviera 4700 Sport Yacht Seashaw, just four weeks prior to the Experience trip.
“It was really comforting to do something as amazing as this as part of a group – there’s always strength in numbers – and the experienced team from R Marine Jones gave us great confidence,” said Ben.
“This was definitely the farthest we have ever cruised – we had only really done bay cruising previously so Steve (McPherson) was onboard with us as we left Peel Island for the five-hour run to Lady Musgrave.
“I really can’t speak highly enough of Steve and, in fact, Randall and the entire R Marine Jones team: the level of service was terrific, everything was so well organised … and they really made us feel like part of a family.”
Ben said the adventure had also reaffirmed the family’s decision to purchase their 4700 Sport Yacht, which handled the longer distances with ease.
“She is a very capable yacht and travelled really well – no issues at all at the optimal cruising speed of 24-25 knots which is the speed I like to travel,” he said.
“We also love the inside/outside feel of the Sport Yacht design and the way it flows freely from the back deck – it is very well thought-out, very practical.
“We love the way we can tuck the tender away in the garage and use the swim platform for fishing – she just ticks all the boxes for us.
“And then there’s the way we were able to bond together as a family … we have all definitely got the cruising bug now!”
Learning the ropes
These comments were echoed by Emma Weel – who had twice been a guest of Randall and Melinda Jones on previous Experience events – and had taken delivery of her ‘dream boat’ just two weeks before this year’s Great Sandy Straits Experience.
In fact Emma, husband Paul and children Mila (4) and Abby (6), purchased their Riviera 4700 Sport Yacht Satisfaction specifically for the cruise.
“We always knew that one day we would own a Riviera and as a family we had an absolute ball,” said Emma.
“The kids loved snorkelling, jumping off the bow of the boat and that they had their own space in the portside cabin. They especially loved mingling with the other kids of the same age – they were always off socialising.”
Emma said that the cruise provided her first opportunity to drive Satisfaction, and she enjoyed the learning experience just as much as learning how to prepare a fresh meal of crab.
“I’ve only ever eaten crab served on a plate so it was fun learning where to crack them, when to squeeze them to ensure you get the best bits of flesh,” she said.
“I can’t wait to learn more about boating – channels and markers and tying up the ropes – it’s all new and it’s great fun!”
Emma says her favourite aspect of the 4700 Sport Yacht is the layout – the galley being ideally positioned to ensure the host is an integral part of the entertainment, inside and out.
“I can’t wait to go back to Lady Musgrave, and I know Paul would love to venture even further north to the Whitsundays.
“Now we’ve done this first trip, we have greater confidence to go even further afield.”
R Marine Jones at Coomera conducts regular cruising and social events. For further information, please email firstname.lastname@example.org or call +61 7 5502 9544.