Atlantic Refit Center has already welcomed some high-profile megayacht projects to its docks. Now the France-based facility will handle the lion’s share of refits in its region. It’s thanks to winning a competition conducted by the port of La Rochelle.
The port wants the city to be considered the go-to refit region on the Atlantic Ocean. It therefore initiated a promotional effort in October 2013, whereby service yards would compete to be named “Your Atlantic Yachting Shipyard.” Atlantic Refit Center and a fellow company, Eiffel Industrie, received the honor.
Atlantic Refit Center is poised for more megayacht business for several reasons. First, it can already handle yachts to 492 feet (150 meters). It has 820 feet (250 meters) of floating repair space, adjacent to two dry docks. One of those dry docks is reserved solely for megayachts. It’s 577 feet (176 meters) long. A 300-ton boat lift is also in service for yachts. Every yacht that comes to Atlantic Refit Center gets a dedicated project manager, who coordinates the craftspeople and communication with the owners’ team. As for the craftspeople, a combination of in-house talent and regular subcontractors are used. Of course, Atlantic Refit Center welcomes using subcontractors that owners and their captains may prefer.
Regardless, the work that Atlantic Refit Center can tackle is varied. It includes painting, varnishing, hull and structural work (metal or fiberglass), electrical and machinery overhauls and installations, and joinery. Furthermore, Atlantic Refit Center works with all of the classification societies as well as the MCA.
Atlantic Refit Center recently underscored its services on the two-year conversion of Enigma XK. The yacht was initially a Scottish Fisheries Protection Agency vessel in the North Atlantic. She served under sometimes punishing conditions and was chosen to become a yacht by a buyer who wanted to enjoy adventuous, long-range cruising. Still fitted with her original Ruston diesel engines, Enigma XKcan reportedly maintain 18 knots in sea states that would have many purpose-built luxury yachts pulling back on the throttles. Her captain, Iltud Orio, says Enigma XK “can safely punch through pack ice. She is a well-equipped, go-anywhere yacht that will be just as comfortable navigating the Northwest Passage as calling at coastal villages in Papua New Guinea.”
Since Atlantic Refit Center has also worked on commercial ships since its opening in 2006, it will continue to do so. Regardless of commercial boats or megayachts, it intends to bolster local marine businesses as well.