The team at Sailor's Wharf exceeded our expectations! From our initial meeting with Robert to our discussions with Erik, they went above and beyond in answering all of our questions, providing detailed quotes, adjusting our haul-out date, and communicating with us during the time we were in the yard. The guys in the yard did a great job and were always a pleasure to work with; we're very pleased with our bottom job and all of the other work that was done. I highly recommend them! Thank you very much!
Laura L. - Viking 43
I have used Sailors Wharf in the past, and will continue to do so. I needed some repair work done on my Com-Pac 27 after haul out and before transporting it north to Lake Michigan. The yard was extremely busy, full of boats many times the size of mine, and customers spending many times the amount of money than I ever will. All the yards along Salt Creek were busy, and several independent fiberglass repair people had schedules 2-3 weeks out to do the repair work.
Despite that, the service manager Robert Valdes got me in and out quickly by deciding to do the work himself. He ran the travellift, hauled the boat out and set it on the trailer, suited up and did the fiberglass repairs himself, and got me on the road in short order. The price was fair and the service excellent. I'll be back anytime I need future work on the boat.
Richard L. - Com-Pac 27
I have been using Sailor's Wharf for, well, since they opened close to 40 years ago. It is reassuring to have owner Jopie take the time to look at all my "issues", and tell me which ones are real concerns and need to be addressed and which ones not to worry about. Which ones can be repaired and which ones require a replacement. And repairs are always as close to perfect as one can get on an older boat. There are less expensive yards, but the initial price is of less concern than having to do a repair over. That's when it gets expensive.
Linwood G. - Wellcraft 39
Top notch service and knowledgeable technicians. My go to people for any boat mechanical needs and bottom paint.
Antony D. - Beneteau 39
Been going to Sailor's Wharf since 1996 and would not consider any other yard. Simply the best service in the industry. Thank you All!
Judy S. - Catalina 350
Always on the ball for me. I bring a lot of boats there. Highly recommend!
Jeff G. - Hunter 40.5
We took our 33' sailboat here to get it loaded on a trailer for transport. The prices are fair and there was no gouging or unexpected charges. The whole process was smooth and drama free. I would recommend this yard above the others on Salt Creek. I've had dealings of some sort with All of them over the years.
Derek K. - Morgan Out Island 33
During hurricane season Sailor's Wharf was busy removing and storing boats with their remote controlled deep water travel lift. The lift capacity is 165,000 pounds, 82 foot length, 20 foot beam and 10 foot draft. The owner Jopie Helsen is an expert sailor and former boat builder. Sailor's wharf provides exceptional service and high quality repairs and maintenance to all types of boats. The U.S. Coast Guard often uses the services of Sailors Wharf Yacht Yard.
After sailing for more than 30 years, my wife and I were considering switching to a powerboat as part of our retirement plans. Instead, we decided to upgrade our Sabre 42 sailboat with equipment that made the boat easier to handle, requiring only the two of us to manage the boat in most any condition.
We consulted with Sailor's Wharf on their recommendations for the equipment that would help us do this. The Leisure Furl mainsail system was recommended and it has turned out to be an excellent choice. We have sailed with this system for three years and it has served our cruising plans quite well.
The folks at Sailor's Wharf performed an outstanding job on the installation and providing the all important new user training on the use of the Leisure Furl system. We highly recommend this system and the service personnel at Sailor's Wharf.
Additionally, Sailor's Wharf installed a bow thruster on our boat with the same professional competence. With these two equipment upgrades my wife and I both feel much more comfortable and confident with just the two of us on board handling the boat.
Don F. - Sabre 42
In customizing our new boat, the work they did was always of the highest quality. And they were creative in developing solutions to problems. We will keep using them and will continue to recommend them to our friends. Everyone was great - and Robert is a gifted craftsman.
Leon W. - Beneteau Swift Trawler 50
Hand's down, the best yacht yard I've ever encountered in 60 years of sailing. That includes Europe, Hawaii, and the West and East coasts of the US. None only is their work professional and extremely well-done, but their costs are very reasonable and they go "above and beyond" to help you however they can. They have done major installs, regular maintenance tasks, and appearance upgrades/maintenance on my Shannon 53 HPS. This is a hidden gem in Florida.
Micheal M. - Shannon 53 HPS
Summary: High quality yard with experienced staff willing to go out of their way to do a good job.
In my case, I had Sailors Wharf install a bow thruster and repair a blistered bottom on my 50 ft 2002 sail boat. The bow thruster install scored 100%. Great work! However, there was a problem with the application of a vinylester/epoxy/anti-fouling system. Simply, some sort of chemical reaction caused the new paint to bubble up. With today's chemicals and application processes, such problems are very unusual, but they still happen. Sailors Wharf promptly called in chemists from the paint manufacturer and remedied the problem. I departed a satisfied, albeit-poorer customer--I should've bought a smaller boat..
A month later, a diver reported a large section of the epoxy had peeled away near the stern. I reported the problem, expecting the worst. I was pleasantly surprised. Sailors Wharf worked closely with the paint manufacturer to identify the cause and fix the problem-essentially stripping the entire bottom and redoing the work. That in itself justifies a great review, but by that time the boat was in South Carolina, which makes Sailors Wharf truly exceptional!
Berry S. - Catalina 50
Eric was extremely helpful and flexible. He gave us all kinds of information to help us during our short stay in St. Petersburg. The work was done as promised for a reasonable price. Other staff I met were also impressive. I felt lucky to have chosen Sailor's Wharf.
Harvey G. - PDQ 34
There is a big difference in a boat yard and a Yacht Yard. They both can do certain things well like bottom jobs, and general boat repair. The real difference is with Sailors Wharf Yacht Yard you can expect excellent bottom jobs plus Yacht finishes; like Awlgrip and Imron Polyurethanes paints with flawless sprayed applications; costume refitting from cabinetry to ABYC wiring and electrical systems, engine and bow thruster installations; you can get this and more from Sailor Wharf Yacht Yard along with the friendless staff in the industry. Eric and the staff are real pros!!
Steve Ravenel - Hatteras 53
I've known of the legendary 5 star rated Jopie Helsen since the early 70's. He’s the consummate marine industry owner of Sailors Wharf, a St. Petersburg, Fla. west coast marine complex catering to all of your boating needs from the bottom up along with being active in sailing, cruising and racing in addition to his incredible marine industry leadership. It has been my honor and pleasure to not only have handed my past vessels over to him and his crew, but to get to know him personally and to watch the meticulous detail provided from 5 star service, expertise and care. Jopie and his team are compassionate professionals of immense integrity and style; I would not hesitate for one moment in recommending at any level. If your vessel is your baby, Jopie & crew should be your surrogate family when your baby needs tender loving care. Knowing and working with Jopie is like working with an artist who knows the marine industry like no other and I am proud to be a friend.
Sailors Wharf has handled the maintenance on our Hunter 420 for almost (15) years. During that time we have sailed over 30,000 miles from Maine to Guatamala, so dependability has been of the upmost importance. They have been up to the challenge.
Recently there was a rare miscue while completing our work list at St. Petersburg. Upon contacting Jopie he stated, no problem, I will have a crew at your dock within several days to correct the problem. We have found that the crew at the Yard can handle most any problem we might have, which is why we continue to travel 190 miles round trip to have our maintenance completed.
Mike & Sandy Busher on Serendipity
"The experience in your yard has been remarkably pleasant Erik and companies do a great job
HYLAS 46 "PATRIOT"
"As full time cruisers aboard our trawler for the past six years, we've had the opportunity - and usually the misfortune - to utilize a number of boat yards and individuals up and down the entire East Coast of the USA, through Canada and throughout the Caribbean, who held themselves out to be qualified repairmen. As our frustration grew and bank account dwindled by having to have many of the repairs re-done elsewhere, we became bitter and jaded, losing all faith that any qualified, professional people and boatyards existed. Over the past months since our return to the USA, we've had several boat projects successfully competed by Sailor's Wharf in St. Petersburg, FL. However, I believe the true measure of any business or professional is how one performs under adverse circumstances.
Sailor's Wharf hauled FINALLY FUN a few months ago, painting our hull and running gear. We were very pleased with the work, but after a couple of months, we experienced heavy growth on the running gear. Sailor's Wharf responded promptly to our concerns, quickly agreeing there was something 'off'. After a thorough review by the paint manufacturer and the staff - with no determination nor resolution made as to why/what was causing this problem, Sailor's Wharf stepped up to the plate. With no hesitation nor any expense on our part, Sailor's Wharf hauled Finally Fun and redid the job. No grumping, no griping, no trial negotiation to split the costs - nothing but smiles and a genuine concern to 'make it right'.
I cannot recommend Sailor's Wharf highly enough. It is so rare to find qualified individuals and businesses who perform their work in a timely manner, at a fair price AND who truly stand behind their work."
Sharon & Andy S.
Aboard FINALLY FUN
DeFever 50 CMY
"In my 40 years of sailboat ownership, ranging from the Mediterranean, Hawaii, the Great Lakes, and finally Florida; I have never experienced the fine work, services, and cheerful willingness to assist on any task, that are provided by Sailor's Wharf. I have 100% confidence in Erik, and his great crew, to tackle any job on my Shannon 53, as well as properly lay her up and prepare her for a new season. Great facility, great location, and most importantly, great people"
I am pleased to say my experience at Sailor's Wharf Yacht Yard was exactly what I hoped it would be; from the haul out to the splash; in one word - Pleasurable. The entire team at Sailor's Wharf was friendly, professional and willing to help; discussing any and all of my concerns. The lift was ready with the straps in the water; the rubber on the straps gave me piece of mind that the new paint on my 42 Bertram hull would be protected, it was.
The Travelift a remote controlled machine was operated safely and efficiently by Steve who made the entire operation seem effortless. The attention to detail was apparent as the boat was blocked, pressure washed and inspected. I was beginning to experience the difference between a boat yard and a Yacht Yard. I was impressed when Eric the manager informed me that it was part of the bottom job to remove the strainers and thoroughly clean the thru hulls; all part of the bottom job including the shaft zincs.
The sandblasting of the metal, thru hulls and trim tabs was professionally done, not missing any areas. I was pleased with the bottom job and metal prep; Jeff is truly a professional and very friendly and informative. Jeff knew exactly what to do and when to do it. There were no missteps. Attention to detail. Matt in parts e mailed me with costs and availability for items I had asked about. Very efficient.
Allen took care in removing a vent and replacing it with a new one and a backing plate plus removing and replacing the windshield wipers that were probably original and welded to the studs; I tried, Allen got it done!! Eric the yard manager was on top of it all; giving direction to his team and the team executing his directions with no interruption. The marching orders come from the top, owner Jopie Helsen. Jopie is boat builder and yacht designer with over 40 years experience serving the Tampa Bay area. The billing was done by Julie who e-mailed my bill for inspection before billing. Julie made paying this bill painless. It was really a pleasure to do business with Jopie and his crew of "Pros" at Sailors Wharf Yacht yard, the difference is in the details. I have been in the marine industry for many years and I don't take the time to write testimonial but in this case it was a pleasure!
General Manager, Largo Intercoastal Marina
"As you know, we recently brought our catamaran, Hakuna Matata, to your yard for a bottom job. We made the arrangements directly with your manager, Erik Hausch. He emailed us the service contract prior to our arrival. We also discussed the possibility of touching up some paint on the sides and requested an estimate. Upon inspecting the hull, Erik discovered that the grounding plates had been previously painted over suggesting they be sanded. We agreed.
When the work was completed and Hakuna Matata reintroduced to the water, Erik discovered a leak in the starboard side at the grounding plate. He called us, emailed pictures, and even took a movie of the damage. He supervised the removal of said grounding plate and discovered some inadequate fiberglass work that was previously done in that area. We asked that he check the other side also. Repair was completed.
We feel that because of Erik's diligence, a potential future disaster or sinking has been avoided. We are pleased with the paint, repairs and all the work done at Sailors' Wharf and will not hesitate to keep our future business with you. We are members of the Dolphin Cruising Club, as well as the active captain website and will certainly recommend Sailors' wharf for any and all boat maintenance."
Pete & Eileen C.