Porto Habacoa, the $1 billion super yacht project coming in 2024
Written by Kayla Dowling
17 September 2021
Porto Habacoa will be the first dedicated superyacht marina in the Caribbean when she opens in mid-2024. Strategically located at the southwest point of the Great Abaco island in the Bahamas, Porto Habacoa will serve as a natural stopping point for superyachts travelling from the United States and through the Caribbean, as the island of Great Abaco lies just 160 nautical miles east of Fort Lauderdale, Florida and 50 nautical miles north of Nassau.
The marina lies at the intersection of the Northwest and Northeast Providence Channel, which serves as the main marine navigation route from the East Coast of the United States to the Bahamas, Caribbean and South Atlantic. Additionally the port is advantageously situated closest to one of the top sports fishing areas in the Atlantic Ocean, including locations such as the Great Bahama Canyon and the Abaco Marls.
While conveniently located for the natural superyacht traffic flowing in and out of the Caribbean from the United States, the island will host an airport which will service private air traffic. Located less than 40 kilometres from Porto Habacoa, the airport makes travel to and from the island very simple. The ability to hop on a plane in New York after work and arrive in the jewel-toned waters of the Bahamas is exactly what fueled real estate developer Ra’anan Ben-Zur, the mastermind behind the project, to seek out this project. Ra’anan explained, “Having worked in real estate for 30 years, we always say that location, location, location is everything.” Porto Habacoa’s location only serves to further enhance the marina’s prestige.
With the superyacht industry currently booming, with sales and new-build projects at an all time high, the port will also come as a bit of relief for the shortage of much needed berthing spaces in North America. With the capacity to host 136 superyachts ranging from 46 to 213-metres, Porto Habacoa is prepared to welcome some of the most impressive members of the global fleet. Depending on the sizes of vessels moored in the marina, even more yachts will be able to be accommodated. With a channel entry depth of 8-metres and a basin of 5.5-metres, the marina can accommodate superyachts which often struggle to moor in the typically shallow waters of the Bahamas.
In addition to the marina, Porto Habacoa will see the addition of many other amenities. The marina will not be merely a fleeting point, where yachts come and go, but it will become a destination in itself. With a yacht club which features high-end shopping, a spa, an 18-hole golf course, a 50-room hotel, luxury real estate and much more, Porto Habacoa will transform into another destination for Caribbean-goers to explore. The marina will also feature extensive crew facilities, which can be accessed by yacht crew for free, a point of comprehensive provisioning with everything from basic supplies to high-end food items, as well as utilities and other services.
The project, which has been a massive undertaking, has been in the works already for several years due to the difficulty of overcoming the highly-restrictive environmental regulations. Situated adjacent to Abaco National Park with 20,000 acres of untouched forest, Porto Habacoa’s development has taken careful consideration into local regulations to ensure that the land in which it occupies remains in pristine condition. Maintaining the serenity and biodiversity of the island is not only for the sake of guests’ enjoyment, but also as a clear statement to mitigate the environmental effects that a project like this could have. Porto Habacoa has worked closely with the local government and community to ensure that the area remains unspoilt.
Hurricane-proofing has been in-built into the plans for this project, as the Bahamas is often affected by extreme storms. Due to natural elevation on the island, infrastructure is protected along with other precautionary measures such as installing utilities underground and building everything to the strictest construction standards. As the Bahamas experiences 340 days of sunshine per year, the marina will utilise solar energy to supply up to 30% of its energy needs.
Having prepared extensively for breaking ground on one of the most unique marina projects currently underway, the Porto Habacoa team is looking forward to welcoming superyachts to the island of Great Abaco as soon as mid-2024.
See this article on superyachttimes.com