After a dreamy day on a self-drive llaut, thanks to our friends at Bohemian Boats, we were seriously blissed out. Leaving from the coast of Benirras and with the decision of where to go in our own hands, it was perfect way to catch a glimpse of the stunning White Isle from the ocean. Comfortably anchored on a little bay on the north of the island and enjoying the sun on our faces, we grabbed a quick chat with one of the owners behind the company that is enjoying a stellar first season. Zander, a partner in Bohemian Boats, couldn’t speak more highly of the product he has to offer, and to be honest after a day out on them, there are no arguements from us.
How’s the debut season been?
The season’s been pretty good, actually. We had a slow start because obviously it’s our first year, but by the end of July and August it’s been pretty full on! Surprisingly so, actually. We were expecting to be a little quieter as it’s our first year but no, no, it’s been so good.
And when are you running until this season?
I think we’re running until the end of September. And we have a lot of bookings for September already, which is great.
What’s your usual clientele?
80%, maybe a little more, of our customers are women, and probably between the ages of 35 and 55 – I guess the girls are bored of the macho, speedboat boys thing and are looking for a quiet day out without them! We also get a lot of couples, and a lot of families with kids as well.
So tell us a little about the extras – the picnics and so forth.
So what’s included in the day rate is all the fuel and the boat. Not included is food and drink, but for an extra 30 euros a head, we have a very good chef who makes picnics, so there’s a whole menu that we send out to people and they can choose what they want, and also included is all your water, a bottle of cava and some other drinks.
Do you get a choice of picnic?
There are a few, for example it’s a vegetarian picnic that is cooked by a chef, so it’s quiche, quinoa salad, other salads, some foccacia which is homemade… We have also had some people ask for some meat added, which we can do.
And generally speaking, how long do people take the boat out for?
The most popular booking is 10.00-18.00, a full day. We have had a lot of bookings – maybe 30% – for a half day, as well – either 10.30-14.00 or 14.30-18.00. And then we also do the sunset trips, which is two hours 19.00-21.00, it’s 40 euros a head and we take you out with a glass of bubbly to watch the sunset.
Oh that sounds nice! Where do you do that from?
From Benirras, same as the other rentals.
Ok, so say a couple or a family come and take out a boat for the day. What’s the perfect itinerary – what do they do, where do they go?
The perfect day that we think is to head out of Benirras and turn right, then come up to Xucla and Xarraca, have your picnic in one of the coves in Xaracca. Go snorkling out here, then maybe go around the next corner up to Portinax. We’ve had a lot of repeat business already, so people do that side then they come back and go left. There’s not so many beaches out that way but there’s one beautiful beach that can only be reached by boat, and the rock formations are amazing. So those are the best trips. I think next year, we’re looking at doing something with Formentera. I think we’re looking at a plan to have some boats to go down there as well.
How long would it take to get out to Formentera on one of these?
From Benirras it isn’t possible. But it’s a two hour trip from Talamanca, which is a nice little trip. There’s a lot of things in the pipeline long term, but I think the idea would be to have a lot of boats on the island in different locations.
And it’s not just for holidaymakers is it? Residents too?
Yeah absolutely – we’ve got one customer who’s come four times. He has his own boat, but he can’t be bothered to put it in the water! So he just keeps on renting ours. It’s cheaper for him to rent our boats than it is for him to fuel his, rise it and put it in the water.
How much do these cost?
This is a four person boat [that we’re in right now], it’s €370 for the day including fuel.
So it’s €100 a head or less, then.
€100 with a picnic! I think it’s a very fair price and everyone can afford it, not just the super rich who want to go out on boats, which is great.
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