After what felt like ages, but was only 19 days, we have escape from Boatworks - Australia's Greatest Boatyard. I have to say, that though the statement is marketing blurb, it really is the best boatyard we've experienced.
Usually, when living aboard, its a fairly torrid affair, especially for us as our fridges don't work ashore. The heat is inescapable, the toilets are miles away and, for want of a better word, 'crap' - and the service isn't.
What you get at The Boatworks is utterly different. Blessed by the nicer climate, it can be stinking hot in the day, but always seems too cool down at night. For liveabords, we get access to some 'ensuite' bathrooms - each containing a shower, basin and toilet - scrupulously cleaned. Only those living aboard get the key - I never had to wait for one. Along with this, is a set of large washing machines and dryers (free to use) so its easy to do your laundry. The work area is cleaned regularly and between boats, so you will find your space very clean when you arrive. The office staff are great - how they remember everyone's names, I don’t know. They offer free use of a car (they have both cars and utes available) for up to 3hrs at a time - or for the whole weekend if you book ahead. So handy - not sure we could have survived without them!
We were also impressed with the services onsite. Very much a can attitude, always with rolling eyes for deadlines, but they always made them. There are many, but Seaspray, Seatech, Hope Island Marine Services (aluminium work) and 'Greenie' (fibreglass) really delivered for us.
The only tiny wrinkle is that the water when ashore is not potable, but we knew this and filled our tanks in the marina before hauling out - and had plenty for our time ashore.
However, its always nice to be back in the water. We left this morning, heading south. We will loiter in the Gold Coast area for a few days, and when the wind goes north, we'll head to Sydney for New Year's Eve!