CHESTER — This fall Kent Narrows Marine will begin Phase ll of the Kent Narrows Boatel, a fully heated indoor boat storage facility that will add an additional 170 boat racks and 12,000 sq. feet of commercial space. Future developments include the capacity to store a total of 360 boats, a restaurant and the opportunities for other retail and commercial space. Located at 100 Piney Narrows Way in Chester, near the Piney Narrows Yacht Haven and Kent Narrows, the Boatel storage provides boat owners with a safe and secure way to store boats, eliminating the worry of weather exposure and winterization that comes with land storage.
The existing facility has been well received by boaters locally and regionally, said co-owner Rob Marsh, “Although boatels are prevalent in the south, there are only a few boatel facilities in the upper Chesapeake Bay. The Boatel is the only facility of its type in the region.”
Kent Island is really the center of the boating universe as it is ideally situated in the Bay, said Marsh, who explained no matter which direction the wind is blowing, boaters have an option to find a route to navigate smoothly.
One feature making the Boatel ideal for boaters is the latest BoatCloud StackTrack phone app, that allows customers to schedule their launch well in advance to ensure their boat will be in the water and ready for a fun day of boating without the hassle of boat ramps and trailers. The Boatel provides a full concierge level experience including coordination of all marine services, helpful dockhands on staff to assist as well as food and beverage provisioning.
Kent Narrows Marine LLC, developer of the Kent Narrows Boatel is owned and managed by local residents and businessmen: Jody Schulz of Fisherman’s Inn and Crab Deck, Rob Marsh, Wye River Marine; and Jeff Kogok, Kogok Corporation.
The expansion is being funded by Shore United Bank, “Shore United Bank has been a great partner throughout this project. The entire team is a pleasure to do with business with,” said Marsh, “(They) provided us with a complete finance package. Excellent rate and great terms!”.
Schulz added, “Shore United Bank is a community bank, that understands the importance of supporting local businesses to help foster growth in our local economy.”
“We are grateful for the relationship we have with Rob, Jody, and Jeff, and are proud to finance, not only Phase I, but Phase II, of the Boatel. Supporting local businesses with their growth goals is our mission,” said Robin O’Brien, relationship manager at Shore United Bank.
Currently the Boatel provides racks for 190 vessels. The new commercial space is on track to be completed by spring 2021, with hopes to have a new restaurant completed and open for spring of 2022. There is a memorandum of understanding with a local restaurant group to build and lease the restaurant space, said Marsh. The dining will be casual and family oriented with docks to pull up to and good options for carry-out, he added.