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New Jersey marina bounces back from one-two punch

When Hurricane Sandy hit the New Jersey coast last fall, Cape May-based South Jersey Marina was already dealing with a fire that had ripped through its main building two months earlier.

Not only were the marina’s restaurant, bathroom facilities, showers and office spaces destroyed, Sandy flooded the first floor of the building.

After months of rebuilding, South Jersey Marina is “back from the ashes,” said marketing director Mark Allen.

The fire had come the day before the annual marlin tournament hosted by Canyon Club Resort Marina, South Jersey Marina’s sister facility that combines to make up South Jersey Yacht Sales.

“There was no damage on the outside, but it cleaned out our offices and the restaurant we had there. It was a mess,” Allen told Trade Only Today. “Then we had Sandy, which put about a foot of water downstairs in the in the first floor, where we had the ship store and restaurant. So the decision was made to literally rebuild from the floor up.”

The marina has new environmentally friendly bathrooms, new shower rooms and a new credit-card operated laundromat that will send customers a text when their wash is done, Allen said. A new store, Fathoms, will offer apparel, and the new Ships Store will have a delicatessen. “We’re very proud of it.”

A new restaurant, Saltwater Cafe, is being run by two local restaurateurs and serves breakfast and lunch.

“There’s a shortage of good breakfast restaurants on Cape May, so we’re getting the traffic right away,” Allen said. “This is big news because this is a really transient location. Basically people have to pass us when they come into Cape May.”

— Reagan Haynes