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New Belize is built to please

by Mark Rothfield on 26 Oct 2011
Hull lines were perfected in tank testing to suit the Cummins pod drives Belize Yachts
Life is full of ambiguities. Why, for instance, are finance experts called brokers? Shouldn't the word 'abbreviated' be abbreviated? How do you dispose of a garbage bin? Do pigs have hamstrings?

Here’s two more… why would two seriously wealthy boating icons come out of retirement mid-GFC to start their own boat brand? And why call that brand Belize?

Wes Moxey and Lee Dillon carved their names as the dynamic duo of Riviera Marine – Moxey as general manager and Dillon as the leading sales guru.

They retired around the same time, though true boat men never truly lose the itch – instead they recently joined forces to develop a new hardtop motoryacht called the Belize 52.

Belize has obvious connotations of the Caribbean but, according to Wikipedia, is possibly derived from the native Maya word for 'muddy water'. The Smartraveller website, meanwhile, advises a high degree of caution in Belize because of serious crime.

Name aside, it also looks to be a very, very interesting boat with an impeccable pedigree.

Saturday heralds the official launch of the first Belize 52 Hardtop to arrive in Sydney from the Taiwanese shipyard Kha Shing. The afternoon will have a Caribbean theme.

Belize Motoryachts has confirmed three private sales ahead of the launch. Two will go to private buyers on the Gold Coast and Sydney respectively, while the Boating Syndication of Australia has also placed an order.

It’s an elegant 16.1-metre cruiser that apparently draws its aesthetic inspiration from the European timber vessels of the art deco era. Resplendent with teak decks and ample timber trim, it looks all class rather than all ’glass.

There’s nothing old fashioned about the propulsion system, with the 'warped plane' running surface having been designed from the outset for twin Cummins 600 Zeus pod drives.

Ocean Yacht Designs, the naval architects, did two rounds of tank testing at the Australian Maritime College in Tasmania to perfect the trim angle, tracking and spray deflection.


Two cabin variations are available – single-level hardtop and split-level flybridge. The brochure explains, somewhat ambiguously, 'Flybridge lovers aren’t necessarily an age group. Nor a psych-socio-graphic. They simply have different needs.'

Production output is limited to nine boats in the next 12 months.

Moxey, formerly of Medowie, has been in Taiwan overseeing production. He celebrated the completion of hull number one by treating all Kha Shing staff to an Australian-style barbecue.

'Having spent a fair amount of time here in Taiwan over the last six months, and having completed sea trials, I’m absolutely confident we’ll deliver on our promise in terms of a truly unique boat that has both a world-class finish and performance,' he said.

The firm’s customisation ability extends to layout (number of cabins), timber colour and additional personal elements.

'We want every Belize owner ecstatic with their individual boat,' Dillon said. 'The warranty, maintenance, service and our valet facilities offer everything anyone would expect when they invest over a million dollars into a new boat.'

Factory workers in Taiwan were given red hats to celebrate the completion of hull No1. © Belize Yachts
Factory workers in Taiwan were given red hats to celebrate the completion of hull No1. © Belize Yachts
Belize Motoryachts website
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