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Mahogany boats carve out a presence

At the 28th Palm Beach International Boat Show, retro runabouts, commuters and cruisers held a strong presence on the docks. The brightwork on Ramp 9 gleamed from boats by Grand-Craft, O’Neill Craft and Vicem’s Windsor Craft.

O’Neill Craft showed two vessels — Little Queen Bee and Ironsides. The Riviera Beach, Fla., company builds its classic cruisers with fiberglass hulls (refitted Bertram 28s), but all teak or mahogany above the hull, said company owner Roger O’Neill.

The largest retro boat I saw was over at Ramp 8 — the 85-foot Trumpy Enticer. On the hard, Hacker-Craft had its 27-foot Tommy Bahama Edition Speedboat powered with a single Ilmor MV8 6.2-liter, 430-hp gas engine. There were other “woodies” that I’m sure I missed.

“It’s a little unusual for a contemporary boat show to have this many nice mahogany runabouts and motoryachts, but I think that really speaks to both the venue and the visitors who are attracted to the Palm Beach show,” Soundings Trade Only editor-in-chief Bill Sisson said. “There’s an appreciation for that lovely retro styling and everything that goes with it, from varnished teak and mahogany to bronze fittings to a sense of tradition. Maybe it’s a micro-trend.”

Click here for the full report, including a video produced by Soundings executive editor Chris Landry.