Industry Insider

Published in the March 2012 Issue March 2012 Feature

Thoroughbred Relocates

After acquiring the Fantasy Yacht building on East Hwy 90 in Monticello, Ky., Thoroughbred Houseboats moved its sales and production operation from its Albany location into the building.

Thoroughbred has done exceedingly well through the recent downturn by maintaining its costs and continuing to build boats. The current demand and backlog for new boat construction is partially the reason for the new location decision. Additionally, the company plans to hire an additional 15 to 20 new employees over the next couple of months.

 Bluewater Yachts Under New Ownership

The assets of Bluewater Yachts were recently purchased by Aries Investments, LLC, whose ownership includes a long time owner of nine Bluewater Yachts.

Aries Investments, LLC, is proceeding with the development of a new model which will feature 20 percent more living area than comparable boats, a wider beam, lighter structural materials, increased insulation, fuel efficient engines and modern styling. Bluewater's signature features, including low draft prop pockets, low profile, one-level living, wide spaced engine and keel, were left unchanged. The new model will be unveiled in the spring.

Stardust Now Building Modular Homes

The 1,000-square-foot modular home is one of two prototype structures built during the past year in a project to develop highly energy-efficient, relatively low-cost houses that may be built at southern Kentucky factories that ordinarily produce houseboats.

Those factories have been hit hard by the recession. Several have closed, and employment is down significantly from before the economic downturn. The project to create a new product for houseboat makers is a partnership of Kentucky Highlands Investment Corp., the University of Kentucky College of Design, with help from UK's Center for Applied Energy Research; and the Stardust Cruisers houseboat factory.

Workers at Stardust built two of the prototypes in 2011, piecing them together on the same lines where houseboats were being built.

Horizon Yachts Closes Doors

Since March of 1997 when the first houseboat came out of its custom-designed plant, Horizon Yachts has always been about putting pride and workmanship into each houseboat it built. Due to slower economic times, this Kentucky builder has been forced to close its doors.

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