Occasionally there are charter boats cruising through the San Blas for a few months at a time that offer private charters while they're here, but finding out about them is only by word of mouth. (Or you can try calling a few of the professional yacht brokers listed in Cruising World; they may know of peripatetic crewed charter boats working this area.) However, we know of one luxurious crewed boat that we can enthusiastically recommend, as we've gotten to know the owners, Erwin and Kris Pino
, delightful, bright, and very interesting people who've been cruising their beautiful Morgan 60 Dutchess for three years, and who'll be in the San Blas for several more months.
Dutchess is well maintained and has all the modern conveniences: diving equipment and compressor; two large staterooms with queen-size beds; air conditioning; e-mail availability; washing machine and dryer.Kris
and Erwin take groups of two to four guests for five to 20 days and encourage active participation in the sailing of the boat, if guests so wish.Erwin, a former electrical engineer and computer software specialist (he had his
own company), is an avid spear-fisherman, and enjoys taking guests out to the reefs to fish, dive, and snorkel.There are tanks and a compressor aboard for certified divers.Kris, a former KLM flight attendant, has made the boat their comfortable home with great flair, and they've been cruising it leisurely on a clockwise circumnavigation of the Caribbean.
Both are excellent cooks and have gotten to know the San Blas area well, including making friends with many Kuna families on the outlying islands.If you'd like to spend time with wonderful, fun people who enjoy sharing what they've learned about real-life cruising boats and Caribbean destinations, and also see some special, out-of-the way places, this is the boat for you.And the price is terrific–a fraction of what you'd pay for a similar crewed boat almost anywhere else.
After the San Blas, Dutchess will cruise north to the Bay Islands of Honduras in November and December; and Belize from January through March, although these dates are tentative, depending on their plans and those of their charter guests.For information about chartering Dutchess in the San Blas, or any of the countries mentioned, contact the Pinos via their onboard email address: WCW6026@sailmail.com.