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HISTORY OF SEAFARI
History

History of "Seafari"

 

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I was built in Vancouver Canada in 1972 by Barrie Farrell and christened "Annca". ( They tell us this name means money) in hindsight I have spend the rest of my life making money for others.

I had a Cruzy life on the Pender Harbour BC as a pleasure boat. I even had a bath tub and full size oven. My then owner was a man named Harrison.

I was brought on May 15th 1983 by Elgin & Sharon Tetachuk....This is their story:alt

"Chartering in Paradise"

 Both from British Columbia they lived in Squamish for 30 years. Elgin hauled logs and Sharon ran her own travel business. They owned Tete-chuk, a 27 foot Chris Craft, and served as Canadian Coast Auxiliary members in the Howe Sound District. Their fishing trips were all for pleasure.

In 1977 they were ready to try something different and headed off for a months holiday in Australia, then decided to do a quick stop over in Rarotonga, a place Elgin admits he had never heard of before. "That trip was the beginning of the end" say Elgin.  A year later the Tetachuck's came back for 3 weeks. The next year they stayed a month etc etc. Finally in 1981 they decided to try "real life" and headed down to Rarotonga for 14 months. They sold their boat to finance this trip as they were not allowed to work while they were here. Elgin & Sharon served as volunteer crew on 3 different catamarans and learnt all the good and bad habits of big game fishing.

Now convinced the went back to Canada and sold their house in Squamish to finance the purchase of a boat for their new venture. Unfortunately the bottom had just fallen out of the housing market and they lost heaps but were determined to do it ( this story will later repeat itself).  They looked at lots of boats in Australia and NZ but they seemed to be all Glitz.

Elgin & Sharon found their boat in Canada a 34ft Canadian west coast trawler. "We needed a good work boat, and that is what we got" Elgin says. "It is an excellent sea boat".

Orginally known as Annca, she was renamed "Seafari" and had four feet taken off the three quarter cabin design to provide more space aft. Seafari was powered by a single 210 Cat

and so Our story begins.... I was shipped as deck cargo on the vessel 'Colombus Virginia' on July 11th 1983 from New Westminster BC to New Zealand (no direct route to the Cook Islands) there I stayed under the guardianship of Cliff Sigley on Wahihiki Island Auckland NZ until I could get a spot on a vessel. On October 10th I made my final trip on the vessel 'Feta Moana'.to Rarotonga Cook Islands. All this cost $27000. As Elgin said "we started off broke"

Seafari Fishing Charters was then the largest boat on the island and the first Game fishing charter boat for Rarotonga.  Over the next 20 year life was good. A typical charter started at 9.00am for 5 hours with 90% of guests tourists visiting the island.

 Sharon will tell you there is no typical tourist. There have been blind people, paraplegics and the oldest person to come aboard was 87 years old. For those of you that are old enough Kenny Rogers (country & western singer) has been a guest along with an American Ambassador.

 

Sadly all good things must come to an end, as we were not getting any younger it was decided to sell the boat and business. We were approached by a couple from NZ who had come fishing with us 3 months early and were very keen to come to 'Paradise' and buy Seafari. These couple Sharon & Kevin Reichardt from NZ were however beaten to the mark by a couple from America. Greg and Heidi Gustafson.

altGreg loved Rarotonga. He was a keen sportsman from Oregon who spent a lot of time here competing in the round Raro races and fishing.

This was a golden opportunity for the Gustafson's who could have their 'cake and eat it too' so to speak. Although they never lived here permanently they had a local crew run the boat for many years. In 2009 due to commitments back in Oregon Seafari went on the market again.

 

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About this time Sharon Reichardt is still in NZ, visiting Rarotonga regularly with husband Kevin and getting very itchy feet to pursue the dream of living in Rarotonga. They both lived in Rotorua NZ and had a successful sign writing business for a number of years.

And so a new chapter starts......

As fortune would have it, Kevin had his 50th birthday and a few weeks later  said to me "If thats what you want to do then lets do it. I'm not getting any younger".  That was all it took. Tickets were booked and we came to Raro to look at business for sale and see what was available.

After spending time with the real estate agent and looking at several options we went home adamant we still wanted to move to Rarotonga but could not find anything suitable. We had mentioned to the agent that several years ago we had tried to buy Seafari. On return to NZ, a couple of weeks later the agent phoned to say there maybe a charter boat coming on the market. I told him it was SOLD let me know. After getting off the phone I told Kevin that I think Seafari is coming on the market. ' No it wont be her he said.' The next phone call confirmed that yes it sure was the old girl and we were not going to miss out this time round. The only problem here was the small fact that we still had a house and business etc to sell in order to buy. Everything went on the market and the time came to sign and commit for the boat. so I did. Poor Kevin said 'how are we going to pay for this, nothing has sold yet'? Never usually a risk taker I suggested we follow gut instinct, two hours later our house agent rung to tell us the couple who had looked at the house a month ago have gone unconditional. By March 2010 Seafari again had new owners. Believe it or not Kevin settled in to his new lifestyle easier than Sharon and 'loves his life here, his only regret is he didn't do it sooner".

The first 9 months on the boat were not easy and at the end of the year we decided to pull her out of the water for a major makeover. A costly decision, however 3 months later and lots of money Seafari went back in the water a new boat. The old Cat engine ( which had done 44 thousand hours and still running) was replaced with a newer Cat which had only done 2 thousand hours. A complete rewire, Cabin gutted and replaced and all the old paint removed and a new paint job with International 2 pot boat paint..........

 

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Since then it has being up and onwards. I average 300 plus charters a year, have survived numerous cyclones and still stand as one of the top fishing charter boats of choice to this day.

 

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