Since I acquired the sailing bug in my 30s, I have lost my appetite for hotel holidays. The urge to get on to the water and leave civilisation behind has been too great. Even in the most luxurious resort hotels imaginable, I get restless after a few days staring at a beckoning ocean from the shore.
Before I married my wife Francesca in 1998, I chartered yachts in the Caribbean, southern Turkey and Cape Cod year after year. I hardly need charts these days for the Grenadine Islands. Eventually, I bought a series of ever larger sailing yachts of my own, and managed to avoid hotel holidays for many years. I even sailed the Atlantic.
When our son Samuel, now 12, came along, I sold the boat and for a few years it was bucket-and-spade holidays in Cornwall for us. Then, when Samuel was three, I spotted an advert for the Sunsail Club Colonna resort in Antigua. Yes, it is a hotel, but it's built around sailing activities with yachts and dinghies of every shape and speed. It was a compromise for me but at least there was the prospect of getting afloat on a daily basis - although always landing back where you set out from. I even got Samuel into a beginner's Optimist for his first sailing experience, though it was nearly his last!
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