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Gold Coast couple, Peter and Alison name their boats after significant songs and their latest, a customised Integrity 380 Sedan, Ebb Tide is named for a soulful melody from the 50s recorded by Frank Chacksfield, Vic Damone, Sinatra, The Platters, the Righteous Brothers and even Welsh crooner, Tom Jones.
Ebb Tide is the third boat they have owned since retiring some 10 years ago. Their previous boat was a three-cabin, luxury flybridge cruiser, which for two people and two dogs, the charming Westies, Harley and Lucy, was just too much space.
An ankle injury last year and a fortuitous visit to the Sanctuary Cove Festival in October brought Alison and Peter to Integrity. “We were looking for a more leisurely pace of boating,” explained Alison. “A day boat and weekender just for the two of us. Our previous boat, a flybridge, would be almost impossible for Peter to get around now, especially underway.
“Integrity just seemed more liveable, more practical and easier to handle. We have always loved the traditional Halvorsen-style. When we went onboard at the Sanctuary Cove Festival, I could see by the look on Peter’s face, he was convinced.”
For Peter, whose background includes many years in the automotive industry, the Integrity appeal lay in the design and engineering.
“The walkaround decks and higher gunwales are safer for both us and the dogs. We liked the flow from aft to saloon, including the double hopper windows which completely open up. The single engine congfiguration is well proven by commercial craft, and John Deere are renowned for making reliable engines.
"For us, the ease of walking around, the stability, safety, space and sheer practicality of everything onboard made it the obvious choice."
This model 380 Sedan features many of the new generation styling and fittings, including the modern, touch-sensitive light switches, lowered helm station for better vision and starboard door which offers the skipper easy access to the outside.
The double helm seat is already Harley’s favourite posse, with room enough for Peter and Alison to take command as they cruise the Broadwater.
Opting to buy a boat already in build, the couple were still able to have their input into their boat.
“The Integrity team and the factory were extremely cooperative,” said Peter. “They took all our feedback and ideas and made them happen.”
In the bathroom, Peter and Alison worked with the Integrity team to redesign several features, such as a concertina glass shower door, a mirror on the back of the bathroom door, additional towel rails and a left-hinged opening out door which acts as a privacy screen on the master suite, should it be required.
Eschewing the matte finish, the couple chose gloss teak for interior panelling. “We wanted to continue the traditional nautical look which we think suits this style of boat,” said Alison.
The blinds in the saloon/dining were also hand-picked, made of a white fabric with alternate transparent and opaque panels so they can choose whether to block out or let the sunshine in.
Outside, lights, communications, GPS and TV antennae were relocated from the roof to the masthead and the running light was recessed, keeping everything as neat as possible and reducing trip hazards.
On the aft deck, which is enclosed for sun and wind protection, Alison and Peter requested black gauze panels rather than clears on the breezeway sides, to prevent mozzies and flies (midgies on the Gold Coast), while maintaining the airflow, view and light.
“To reposition the gauze, the cleat had to be moved. This was not a problem for the factory, and now they are making this an option for future customers.”
The customised features continue with the oversize swim platform, which at 1.2m is large enough for two deck chairs and two dogs, with what Alison refers to as “Granny rails”, for safety and drying the odd towel over, with three teak inserts for aesthetics and splash attenuation.
A custom swim ladder replaced the standard version, and is neatly concealed, keeping deck space clear.
They wanted their Southern Stainless barbeque located portside on the transom for optimal space for their AB RIB tender and ease of cleaning.
“We also designed a grate in the anchor well so the chain would drain and dry, and not rust,” said Peter. “The factory was only too happy to accommodate this and is now offering it to other customers.”
The couple kept in touch with the progress of their boat with regular emails from the factory. “We really felt part of the process and enjoyed every stage,” said Peter. "Peter Pembroke came up with a lot of the products we were looking for, such as the blinds, and he kept us up to date all along the way, which made us very happy."
The result is a boat they are truly thrilled with. "The finish is next level quality," said Alison. "And the Integrity team have been very attentive in terms of after sales service. Jason Kowalski has worked hard showing us the ropes and easing us in to ownership."
Now safely moored at their pontoon, Ebb Tide is being readied for her first sojourn at sea. “We will just be taking her on local day trips until we get comfortable,” said Peter. “It will be on show at Sanctuary Cove boat show as well, so we have to keep it tidy!”