As featured on SBDIGS.com
Local architect Dawn Sherry and her husband Paul Noury, purchased Grand Times seven years ago and live on the boat year-round. They now offer charters, which include overnight trips to the Channel Islands, and shorter day trips.
In addition to being an architect for both commercial and residential projects, Dawn is often involved in designing the interiors for many local restaurants and homes; a skill that came in handy when designing the inviting interiors for Grand Times. Noury, a yacht manager, is a native of France’s Loire Valley and was a sailing instructor in the French army before moving to Santa Barbara.
The trip across the channel is usually full of a variety of marine mammal sightings, such as whales, dolphins, and the occasional shark as well as being escorted by various types of birds, sometimes stopping the engines to enjoy the show. They arrive on the island late morning and generally try to see Painted Cave on the west end of Santa Cruz Island before lunch, a three course meal which is served at anchor in a protected cove. Afternoons are spent kayaking, relaxing, snorkeling, and swimming, which is generally followed by a nap before cocktail hour and appetizers on the Flybridge or rear deck. Dinner service is four courses and is custom-designed for each charter.
Most charters last several days to the Channel Islands, with the locations changing depending on the weather. Half-day and full day charters are available.A typical multi-day overnight charter leaves the morning. A buffet breakfast is set up at the galley bar and consists of coffee, tea, pastries, yogurt bar, fresh fruit, charcuterie, bagels and fruit preserves. When they are not underway, breakfast is served on the rear deck and typically consists of eggs, potatoes, fruit, sausage, and bacon, with special requests available for all meals.
After-dinner activities vary from reading, playing games, conversation, a digestif and star-gazing on the fly bridge, late night full moon tender rides or just retiring early. Dawn and Paul recommend a schedule that allows for a whole day at anchor at the Island before departing back to Santa Barbara.
For more information on Le Grand Bleu charters, visit the website at: