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There’s a new tour boat in Kaanapali, Maui, and it’s turning heads. The sleek, 65-foot Teralani 4 catamaran boasts sexy touches such as teak decking, Corian counters and bathrooms that look and feel like something from an upscale hotel room. It’s an appealing option for clients in the market for Maui’s trendiest spree at sea.
Teralani 4 represents the most recent addition to Teralani Sailing Adventures, which has been offering daytime and sunset cruises for nearly 25 years. Like other vessels in the company’s fleet, Teralani 4 pulls right up to the beach, so clients staying in Kaanapali can simply stroll along the sand to the loading zone, take a few steps into the ocean, and climb onboard.
Compared to Teralani 2 and 3, the new vessel is distinctly different in appearance and amenities, according to Mike Kelley, president of Teralani Sailing Adventures.
“Teralani 4 has seating and individual tables for all 49 passengers, and it has a custom, built-in barbecue grill,” Kelley said. “It also features exclusive helm seating, which allows guests to sit comfortably on either side of the captain’s helm station, plus seating in the far rear, facing backward.”
With more than two years of planning, construction and delivery, Teralani 4 touts another claim to fame: It’s the only catamaran on Maui fashioned by world-famous yacht designer Morrelli & Melvin, based in Newport Beach, Calif.
Snorkels, Whales and CocktailsNo matter which Teralani yacht visitors experience, they’ll enjoy relatively smooth sailing in the protected waters of the Auau Channel, which hugs Maui’s northwest coastline.
Active travelers and families are partial to Teralani’s snorkeling tours, which take guests to top spots for underwater sightseeing. In addition to equipment, flotation devices and instruction, each trip comes includes a buffet lunch and an open bar for clients 21 and over.
For couples, a late-afternoon Teralani cruise is a romantic way to savor food, libations and views of the sun melting into the horizon. In the distance, the islands of Lanai and Molokai preside over the proceedings, creating a picturesque backdrop for photos.
Since the area is a marine sanctuary, it’s an outstanding destination for whale-watching excursions, which are offered from mid-December to mid-April. During a two-hour Teralani trip that I took in March, a number of humpbacks swam around — and at times, under — our vessel, thrilling all of us onboard. Farther away, several pods put on a breathtaking show as they breached, spouted and slapped their tails.
Stable Rides, Future PlansFor clients who are first-time sailors or those prone to motion sickness, Kelley recommends booking tours on catamarans rather than traditional monohulls or power boats.
“In their design alone, catamarans create a much more stable ride over the water, which makes for a pleasant boating experience,” Kelley said.
Along with Teralani 4’s current schedule of snorkel, whale-watching and sunset outings, Kelley says the company plans to launch a unique sailing adventure from Kaanapali to Lanai this fall that will run two to three times per week.
Kelley is already looking forward to the arrival of Teralani 5 next spring; the vessel will feature the same design and extras as Teralani 4. He’s also proud of his company’s fifth straight TripAdvisor Hall of Fame recognition, which he considers a direct reflection of his staff’s efforts.
“There is no better way to experience Maui than on the water,” Kelley said. “We take the idea of creating lifelong memories for our guests very seriously.”
The DetailsTeralani Sailing Adventureswww.teralani.net