Page 55: of Maritime Reporter Magazine (October 2019)

Marine Design Annual

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An Innovative Double-Ended

Ferry Design for Texas.

Credit: Bristol Harbor Group Inc.

Credit: Bristol Harbor Group, Inc.

to Create” and Marine Engineers (SNAME) conference in 1993, land, as its headquarters, as the original plan was to be- because no one was really building these anymore, and an event attended by a group of about a dozen U of M come renowned yacht designers, as at the time there it’s not the type of thing they teach you in school.” The students. “On the ? ight back, I was sitting next to Greg were more than a dozen ? berglass yacht builders and 10 boat, the Star of Saugatuck II, is still in operation for (BHG co-founder Greg Beers) and we were talking yacht design of? ces within 20 miles of BHG’s current Star of Saugatuck Boat Cruises.

about how cool it would be to be your own boss. I think of? ce. “Rhode Island was a hub at the time,” Wood re- The company set up permanent shop in Rhode Is- our ? rst idea was designing luxury submarines,” said members. “In hindsight, if we knew where our careers land in 1995 and incorporated. “We put up our sign, we

Wood. Originally there were four friends that started were going to take us, we probably would have picked opened our doors and we quickly realized that nobody the company, with Wood and Beers the two remaining something closer to the Gulf of Mexico, because nearly was going to beat a path to our doors to design the next today. “At that time the internet was around but nobody everything we design is built in or for that area.” beautiful sailing yacht,” said Wood. “But the tug own- was using it; email was around but few people were us- ers, the ferry owners, the barge owners, they all needed ing it. So we looked at all the sailing, commercial and Humble Beginnings, Diverse Growth a lot of engineering support, and it’s the same engineer- business magazines to build a database and we sent out The team earned its ? rst “paying gig” from a gentle- ing: it has to ? oat; it has to be strong; it has to be built about 300 mailing cards to offer our engineering sup- man in Saugatuck, Mich., that wanted a stern wheel on-time and on-budget. We quickly started to do a lot port services.” paddle wheeler – a real paddlewheeler – designed for of commercial engineering support, which was always

The company founders settled on Bristol, Rhode Is- use as a dinner/excursion boat. “That was a challenge the vision that Greg had.” 55

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