- Operations - Orams Marine expansion explained

By Jack Hogan

Orams Marine expansion explained

With the addition of two 60m painting sheds, New Zealand’s largest refit facility is growing to rival some of Europe’s refit elite…

Orams Marine holds a significant place in Auckland's maritime scene. For those familiar with Auckland, especially those who have crossed the harbour bridge northward, the sight of countless boats overflowing from Westhaven Marina against the skyline is an iconic image.

New Zealand boasts one of the highest rates of boat ownership per capita globally, with over a million boats in the country and roughly 40% of the population directly or indirectly involved in boating. Standing out amidst this maritime landscape are the increasing numbers of superyachts. Westhaven Marina, situated in downtown Auckland, has undergone substantial development in recent years, establishing itself as the largest recreational marina in the Southern Hemisphere. Adjacent to it, Silo Park marina & Orams Marine now regularly showcases an array of impressive large yachts.

The likes of Artefact, Dragonfly, Samaya, and Sea Eagle, with their imposing presence, adorn the cityscape, with New Zealand now a sought-after refit hub and destination for cruising between the Pacific Seasons. Orams Marine has been instrumental in this evolution. SuperyachtNews recently caught up with Operations Manager Richard Low onsite as Orams Marine nears completion of its latest expansion phase, solidifying its position as a comprehensive full-service refit facility.

Low remarks, "Our substantial number of repeat clients  probably reflects New Zealand’s reputation. Despite being slightly off the traditional yachting routes, the clients appreciate the quality of our work, the relationships that are forged,  and they continue to return."

With its expanded capacity, Orams Marine has nearly tripled its capacity for large yacht haul-outs and workspace, from four to 11 yachts and ten 90m in water work berths Offering a comprehensive refit service, the addition of two 60m by 24m painting sheds, along with a custom-built 85m 820T travel lift, represents a significant milestone for the New Zealand refit sector.

Yacht painting is a particularly demanding aspect of the business.  The paint job remains a highly emotive feature. Maintaining the standards one might expect for  high end luxury car and extending them over the surface area of a custom 50-meter yacht poses a daunting challenge, but Orams Marine has always risen to the occasion.

“Having seen and done so many paint jobs around the globe myself, I would put the Orams  applicators and processes up there as equal with some of the best in Europe, and that’s the feedback we are seeing from the clients.” says Low.

Jack Hogan and Orams Marine Operations Manager Richard Low

Orams Marine operates a “one stop shop” model for refit works. They have their own in-house painters and boatbuilders  along with a tried and trusted network of sub contractors, engineers, electrical and other specialist trades adjoining the yard and in the downtown area.  The range of work that can be undertaken is wide and reflected by the diverse range of large yachts both in the water and on the hard. Despite the closure of iconic new build Yards like Alloy Yachts in New Zealand, Low reminds me, the skills and knowledge within the Kiwi boat building market have been retained.

Setting aside personal biases, Auckland offers a unique proposition for refits. Yachts that spend the Southern Hemisphere winter cruising the Pacific can then head south for more warm weather during the summer refit season in New Zealand. The initial cruises and sea trials take place amidst the numerous islands of the Hauraki Gulf, with the New Zealand cruising season extending through March and into April, allowing for continued charters.

This South Pacific refit program provides a perfect counterbalance to the lengthy Mediterranean winter and traditional refit schedule. Orams Marine has established a world-class facility in downtown Auckland, contributing to the growth and maturity of the region's superyacht infrastructure.

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