“We have most definitely benefitted from the change in the rules for the Spanish matriculation tax and we’re seeing a real increase in interest from captains here in Spain,” reports Albert Morrell, general manager of Varadero Port Denia, the refit yard and marina complex in Denia, Spain.

“We have a 60m Feadship in the yard at the moment undergoing major works including electrics, engines and steelwork, as well as the 46m Sea Falcon II undergoing a similar extensive refit,” Morrell has said.

The facility, which is owned by the former Spanish minister of Foreign Affairs and current owner of the Ibiza-based Palladium Hotel Group, Abel Matutes, was bought five years ago; the marina development started in 2012.

Port Denia general manager Albert Morrell

“We are now almost fully booked for the winter season in the stern-to berths, but we’re now upgrading the 130m alongside berth in the port for our use, which can obviously fit either a very large yacht or two or three smaller vessels,” Morrell has said.

Morrell has said that the cost of berthing in Varadero Port Denia is one third of that in Barcelona: “We are most definitely competing on price,” he has said.

With its connections via its owner, who has a 43m sailing yacht, Varadero Port Denia has quietly built connections with key superyacht service and supply companies, particularly in the Netherlands, which Morrell insists offers the best quality.

“Our model is similar to that of STP in Palma: the berths in the marina and the refit yard are all focused on maintenance, repair and refit over the winter,” he said.

Varadero Port Denia, with shipyard, top and stern-to berths at bottom left and the new 130m alongside berth, centre

He reports that key Dutch companies like De Keizer Marine Engineering are building strong connections to Port Denia, and that the Spanish paint company Benymar Yacht Paint is a close collaborator.

“We want to attract more companies to open offices here, but also to truly be here full time so that we are able to offer truly local service,” Morrell says.

“Denia is situated 40 nautical miles from Ibiza and Formentera, which allows us to service yachts preparing for the season in the Mediterranean or heading for the Caribbean,” he added.

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Varadero Port Denia S.L.

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