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Singlar’s Fidepaz Marina is Open and Getting Great Reviews

This photo of the rooftop pool and jacuzzi at Marina Fidepaz is the first one ever to not include a female member of his crew.

© 2007 Bill Lilly

"Having just taken a berth at the new Singlar Fidepaz Marina on the north side of La Paz," writes Bill Lilly of the Newport Beach-based Lagoon 470 Moontide, "I’d like to pass the following information on to other cruisers — especially to those looking for a slip in the La Paz area.

"The marina has the capacity for about 40 boats, plus or minus depending on how they use the end-ties. The good news for people looking for berthing in La Paz is that, as of yesterday, there were still only 18 boats in the marina.

"One downside of the marina is its location, which is a bit outside of the main part of town — in much the way that Marina Costa Baja and Marina Palmira are a little out of town on the other side of La Paz. However, a six peso or 60 cent bus ride solves that problem.

Moontide follows another boat that follows the marina’s panga guideboat into the Fidepaz Marina.

© 2007 Bill Lilly

"Getting to the marina involved a straight shot up the north shore of the bay, a leg for which there were no channel markers, followed by another straight shot down a well-marked and dredged private channel. The chart on my plotter perfectly matched with their GPS positions, and I never saw less than 12.5 feet in the main bay and 13 feet in the private channel. Nonetheless, the marina happily sends a panga out to guide in all boats.

"I found the Fidepaz staff to be very friendly and professional. In fact, I don’t want to name names, but I was surprised to find the folks at this new government operation to be a lot more professional than at one of the older and much loved marinas in town.

"The Fidepaz facilites are extensive — including a lap pool with a Jacuzzi on the upper deck of the administration building! There’s also a community room (locked while I was there) and free Wi-Fi service, although the latter curiously gets turned off when the staff goes home for the night. I meant to talk to them about it. Showers are $1 and there is a laundry on site.

"At this point, most of the boats in the marina seemed to be there for storage, as it was pretty quiet. But then the season is just starting. A 100-ft powercat is being built next door for booze cruises, which should liven things up when it gets done.

"I attended the Governor’s Cup festivities for the Ha-Ha boats and other cruisers at Marina Costa Baja in La Paz over the weekend, and can report that about 100 showed up for the fun. The beer truck got lost or broke down, so they only had water and soft drinks! But what a good spread of food — beef, chicken, shrimp and pork — and none of it overcooked, as often happens in Mexico. There were even clams on the shell.

"At end of dinner, the Costa Baja folks showed the film Ocean Oasis, which is about the Sea of Cortez and sealife. It was both interesting and educational, with lots of great underwater footage. It was originally filmed for IMAX theaters, so the production and sound were great. All in all, it was a great welcome to cruisers by La Paz officials and the Costa Baja.

"As for La Paz in general, the local ex-pats are still pretty much the same, with most being helpful with a few radio nazis and snobs making their presence known. I think it’s pretty sad when a station is trying to help another boat figure out the entrance buoys and someone starts clicking their mic because they think its inappropriate to use the 22 hailing channel for that. To my thinking, the hailing channel is appropriate for immediate safe navigation advice. The boats in question weren’t abusing the hailing channel, but I suppose some of the people with 15,000 miles experience in 100 years might disagree.
 
"Anyway, it’s been very pleasant down here with great weather."

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