I hope you made some lasting memories with family and friends throughout the boating season this year! We are very excited about acquiring Alligator II Marina, and the tremendous opportunity it brings.
We have tons of planned improvements for the property and if you have visited recently you know we have already started!
I understand there are lots of interest and lots of questions – and I’ll try to address a few in this letter.
First, we are a family. My son, Jimmy and I, are partners. He is 32 years old with a beautiful wife and two children. We own Lee’s Ford which I acquired in 2004. We also started Houseboat and Floating Cottage companies called Harbor Cottage Houseboats and SummerSun Houseboats. We will be mooring some of those at the marina in the future, which is another exciting project.
Second, James Flatt has been my friend for 14 years. He is a fantastic, dedicated manager and has been at the marina for over 36 years! We are both excited about the future and we are thrilled to be able to work together!
Some people have asked if the “family environment” would change. We are family, and understand family. While we are making nice improvements to the property, that certainly doesn’t mean we ever want to change the family atmosphere that makes the marina so great. The improvements should only enhance your experience!
Another big question clearly has been – what are the actual changes that are planned? Our initial focus will be on completing the following updates:
- Ship Store exterior is getting an entirely new face lift – concrete decking, new siding and large windows
- The Ship Store interior is being renovated, revamped and updated
- Bathrooms and Showers will undergo renovation to expand and update those spaces
- The entrance walkway will be expanded and stabilized
- 68 covered slips are being added, expected to be installed early next year
- The fuel pier will be moved, and the patio area will be expanded
- The restaurant will undergo some changes to speed up service; We plan on keeping the core menu but some changes will be necessary
- We will likely carry beer and perhaps a limited number of drink options. A work in progress
People have also asked about price increases and the boat brokerage changes. If you look at the price increases and compare it to competitors, we only moved up to be more in line with market rates. Annual slip prices have increased about 20% across the board. But this increase in rates will allow for some needed improvements and to expand the marina overall – including more slips and better common areas. Our new rate sheet is contained within the new Slip Contract, which has been made public on our new website – for easy access.
Buyaboat.net and Top Shelf Marine Sales is the oldest boat brokerage on the lake. It was originally part of, and was founded at, Lee’s Ford. We have a great online presence and internet coverage, and most importantly we have a Broker who boats at the marina who will be working on the dock. Having a person on the dock is the best way to sell your boat!
We’re also implementing a few more changes, including changes regarding parking and launch fees. On the five busiest boating holidays, we will be implementing such fees in order to better control traffic and to protect the parking and the launch ramp. Although the Corp does not allow reserved parking for specific parking spots, we will be providing all annual slip lease holders with a parking pass(es). Again, these improvements are all intended to provide a better customer experience!
Lastly, we have to address the name change – we’ve officially renamed the property to now be called Lake Cumberland Marina. We love the legacy of Alligator II, we are very proud of it and we want to build upon that long, rich history. The original name came about after the name of a fish – the Alligator Gar – and now it’s part of the DNA and the heritage of the place. However, rebranding the marina was part of our business strategy. Ultimately we want it to be the best marina on the lake and we want a fresh opportunity, with a rebranding and new name, to turn the page to the next chapter in the history of this wonderful marina and resort.
We look forward to serving you and your family’s needs. I think you will be very pleased with the improvements we are making, and our commitment to constantly improve facilities and customer service.