Blount Marine Launches First Dinner/Excursion Boat Of New Ultramodern Design
The first dinner/excursion boat of a new ultramodern design developed by Luther H. Blount was recently launched at the Warren, R.I., shipyard of Blount Marine for owners Bay Queen Cruises, Inc. Mr. Blount, president of Blount Marine, is a true innovator in the shipbuilding industry. The new design, the patented Vistarama Class, was under development for over a year. His experience as a builder and an operator led him to believe that the concept of usable space is an essential aspect to a successful dinner/excursion vessel design. The new vessel, christened the Vista Jubilee, will be operated by Bay Queen Cruises on the Narragansett Bay with her sister ship, the renown M/V Bay Queen. The Vista Jubilee has an overall length of 114, beam of 39 feet 3 inches, and is USCG certified to carry passengers on the climate-controlled deck and one open observation deck. She has been configured for 400 passengers during the dining mode, and can hold up to 600 passengers in the excursion mode.
Panoramic views from all three decks enhance the Vista Jubilee's already daring, swept-back look. The unique bow/window configuration and the absence of stanchions, usually found on the first and second decks of boats of similar size, add to the feeling of spaciousness vital to the success of any dinner/ excursion enterprise.
Mr. Blount selected powerful Lugger engines for his new Vistarama Class vessel, purchased from Kelley Power, Fairhaven, Mass., because they are quiet-running and provide higher horsepower at lower rpms, thus reducing fuel consumption. The vessel features four Lugger model 6125 engines, two model L-6125As for main propulsion and two M-6125AQs for auxiliary power, and Twin Disc MG-514C 4:1 reduction gears. The two main engines produce 400 hp each at 2,200 rpm, while the auxiliary engines in combination with Northern Lights generators produce 125 kw each at 1,200 rpm.
Mrs. Patricia H. DiPrete, wife of Edward D. DiPrete, Governor of the State of Rhode Island, served as the ship's sponsor, breaking the traditional bottle of champagne. The blessing was provided by Rev. Skip Blancett, pastor of the United Methodist Church of Warren, R.I.
While exhibiting at the NAPVO (National Association of Passenger Vessel Owners) Annual National Convention in San Diego earlier this year, Blount Marine Corporation unveiled its futuristic dinner boat design.
Marcia L. Blount, executive vice president of Blount Marine, referred to the new Vistarama Class as an "operator's boat" in that it will answer all sensible alterations as suggested and experienced by actual shipboard restaurateurs and tour hosts. Available in lengths of 114 to 145 feet, the Vistarama boasts a 39- foot 3-inch beam, providing the luxury of space so vital to the nature of the restaurant and entertainment business.
The Vistarama Class is designed and certified to carry 450 to 600 passengers on lakes, bays, and sounds, and the final design for the 145-foot vessel may accommodate up to 800. The daring new design will be offered in two versions, one of which will feature Blount Marine Corporation's patented low ramp, enabling the vessel to dock at any facility as well as make shoreline landings. For free literature detailing the shipbuilding capabilities of Blount Marine,