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Royal Phuket Marina Full Moon Boat Rally

’There are literally hundreds of boats in Phuket’s Marinas that are rarely used,’ says Gulu Lalvani, chairman of Royal Phuket Marina (RPM). He explains that while this may be partly because owners are overseas a lot of the time, it’s also because pulling together a group of like-minded people when the owner finds time to take the boat out for a day or two is not always easy.

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Sunday 5 December 2021, 02:15PM

So, engaging his passion for developing leisure boating in Phuket, Mr Lalvani set his RPM team to initiate the first ‘Royal Phuket Marina Full Moon Boat Rally’ – almost two years later than originally planned due to COVID-19 restrictions.

"The idea is that we at RPM take on the challenge of organising the itinerary and the social aspects of a weekend’s boating, offering owners a hassle-free opportunity to get out on the water, explore new destinations, get together socially with old, and make new, friends – and get the most out of their valuable leisure asset," explains Mr Lalvani.

So, on November 20, following a scrumptious ‘bubbly’ breakfast/brunch at RPM Yacht Club’s ‘Isola Ristorante’, the fleet of 11 boats, ranging from a small day boat at 5.5 metres to the superyacht Demarest at 32.5 metres, and with a combined 90-plus happy boating enthusiasts on board, makes its way out of the marina for the inaugural rally and a glorious two days of island hopping.

The first stop on our itinerary is Racha Yai Island – arguably first among the many island jewels that are all just short cruise from almost anywhere on Phuket Island.

Batok Bay on Racha’s northwest coast, with its pristine white sand beach framed with coral on both sides, is our overnight anchorage. Home to the luxurious, award-winning resort The Racha, with its 85 ultra-luxe villas spread over 20 acres, this is a true tropical island utopia. After picking up our mooring, we head ashore through the crystal clear, aquamarine water. It doesn’t get better than this.

Racha Island also has two other bays – Siam Bay in the north and Ter Bay on the eastern coast. The latter serves as an alternative anchorage during the southwest monsoon season; the former does not make an ideal anchorage at any time.

Ixina Thailand

Once ashore, we check in with The Racha’s super-friendly staff taking everything in their stride. Then everyone drifts off to swim in the welcoming waters of the bay, to soak in the expansive pool with a glass of something congenial in hand, to explore the island’s cycle tracks with the resort’s free-to-use bikes – or just to chill out in the incredibly well-appointed villas designed to attract free independent travellers with a taste for the luxury lifestyle.

Come evening it’s time to get together again for sunset cocktails and a sumptuous buffet dinner, with DJ, an exotic fire show and free-flowing beverages. A wonderful opportunity for everyone to catch up with old friends and make new ones, regaling all with the requisite tall tales of yachting exploits.

Next morning means another fine bubbly breakfast followed by a late morning departure for the short hop to Banana Beach Club on Coral Island’s northeast shore. Here a late lunch to the combined sounds of DJ and walkabout saxophonist is followed by an opportunity to frolic in the inviting shallows, indulge in a beachside spa treatment, try out the club’s water toys, work out at the waterfront ‘jungle gym’ or just chill in the shade sipping a cold drink.

The last leg of the rally sees a leisurely cruise to Rang Noi Private Island for sunset cocktails and snacks and an opportunity to say our goodbyes before returning to Royal Phuket Marina.

Such was the enthusiasm for this inaugural event, that the dates for the next rally have already been announced. To make sure you don’t miss out, mark January 15-16 in your diary for the second ‘Royal Phuket Marina Full Moon Boat Rally’. More details will be announced soon. If you’d like to reserve your spot now, go to this link

Events like this don’t happen without the support of sponsors. Leading backers of the inaugural rally were Tourism Authority of Thailand (TAT) and Demarest Clinic, with support from The Racha, Siam Adventure, Asia Global Yachting, Sala Phuket, Bangkok Hospital Phuket, Coca-Cola, Andaman Passion, SACG Jewelry, Suay Restaurant and Thong Dee Restaurant.

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Sam Thompson | 06 December 2021 - 22:02:15

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