D-Marin's superyacht marina

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Credit: D-Marin

How D-Marin is redefining the superyacht marina experience

2 October 2023 • Written by Hannah Rankine and Julia Zaltzman for D-Marin

Formed in 2003, D-Marin’s growing collection of premium full-service marinas has long flown the flag for maritime excellence. It counts D-Marin Dalmacija, the largest marina on the Croatian coast, and Greece’s Zea Marina, capable of berthing superyachts up to 150 metres, within its global portfolio. But it’s the company’s unwavering devotion to client services that truly sets it apart.

Credit: D-Marin

Customer satisfaction at the core

Under new ownership since 2020 and with a dynamic new management team in place, D-Marin is unifying its systems and services by placing the customer at its heart. And it’s doing it through expansion, innovation and digitisation.

“We believe that the customer should have an effortless experience that’s driven by digital touchpoints,” says Dean Smith, chief commercial officer at D-Marin. He cites the company’s digital booking system that allows owners to choose and renew actual designated berths in real time as an example. “We’re like the best luxury hotel where you book your favourite room, rather than simply a class of room.”

Launched as part of D-Marin’s Connected Marina initiative, the booking system is integrated into a smartphone app that gives customers access to a personalised hub full of information. Its Smart Pedestals solution enables the customer to make payments and measure utility consumption and connect to D-Marin’s autonomous Boat Sensors that give private berth holders real-time updates on a vessel’s bilge, heat, battery and location. There’s even a long-distance caring report delivered to the app, which is carried out as a courtesy measure by the marina team and underlines the premium on-site assistance.

“Innovation is a large part of our approach,” says Oliver Dörschuck, D-Marin’s chief executive officer. “We believe digital is the most transferable benefit as it works across our portfolio of international leisure ports and is an overarching unifier of the D-Marin enriched experience.”

D-Marin’s customer-facing services won recognition in June, with an iF DESIGN Service Design Award. Praised by the judges for pioneering a new standard in the marina industry, D-Marin’s offering delivers personalised experiences that are effortless and exclusive.

Credit: D-Marin

Worldwide expansion

The company is also expanding further across the Med, with seven recent acquisitions marking its entry into Italy and Spain and increasing its presence in Greece. Pylos Marina in Greece’s Messinia region, Punta Faro Marina near Venice, Italy, and three Marinas Del Mediterráneo in Andalucía, Spain, firmly bolster its pan-Mediterranean network. Additionally, a recent alliance with Azimut Benetti saw D-Marin acquire a significant stake in Malta's Marina di Valetta and Porto Mediceo in Livorno, Italy, as well as initiate commercial integration with Italy's award-winning Marina di Varazze. D-Marin comprises 23 marinas spread across eight countries – Croatia, Montenegro, Turkey, UAE, Greece, Italy, Malta and Spain – with more acquisitions in the pipeline.

“Customer satisfaction is at the core of everything we do, and we’re bringing a tangible marina network of the highest standards across the Mediterranean, and beyond,” says Dörschuck.

With full marinas, consistent demand and a relentless desire to provide an enriched experience to yacht owners and enthusiasts alike, it’s only natural that D-Marin invests in its commitment to sustainable practices, community initiatives and eco-minded efforts.


Paving the way for a greener yachting industry

In 2021, the company increased its sustainability rating with independent assessment platform EcoVadis by 22 per cent for employing sustainable practices across its business. The voluntary scheme rates companies on environment, labour and human rights, business ethics and sustainable procurement, and found D-Marin to be among the top 30 per cent of all companies in the leisure industry.

“Environmental, social and governance is a fundamental pillar of our business,” explains Smith. “We’re working towards improving our environmental position each and every day and have a clear vision to not only reduce our dependency on local infrastructure but, where possible, contribute to it.”

Efforts to become energy self-sufficient and reduce its reliance on local areas extend to D-Marin’s €1.7 million investment in solar panels across five of its marinas in Croatia and Turkey, generating 4.9GWh of energy per year (enough to power 1,345 households annually). Oversupply generated during the day will feed into the local network, effectively making the marinas energy-neutral.

“It’s our ambition that every new marina we build will include a provision for solar power generation, so that we can mitigate the amount of energy we take from the grid via alternative fuel sources,” says Smith.

Credit: D-Marin

Other sustainability efforts include desalination points that convert salt water into fresh water. In July, D-Marin Zea partnered with DEH BLUE, the biggest network of electric vehicle (EV) chargers in Greece, to open one of the largest EV charging stations in the city of Piraeus (pictured below). Visitors to the marina now benefit from reduced waiting times, thanks to 10 22kW charging stations and one 150kW fast-charging station for electric and plug-in hybrid cars.

In the same month, 14 D-Marin marinas in Greece, Turkey, Croatia, Italy and Spain were granted the Blue Flag Award in recognition of their commitment to protecting the environment and marine life. Operated by the Foundation for Environmental Education, a key set of environmental, educational, safety and accessibility criteria need to be met to receive a coveted Blue Flag. These include water-quality testing and treatment, the use of renewable energy, ethical waste management and sustainable investments.

Regular coastal clean-ups and seabed cleans involving the marina teams and local community also form part of the Blue Flag requirement. Going beyond that, D-Marin provides staff with training on sustainability practices to better equip them to share their knowledge with the community.

“Our sustainability practices form part of our ongoing commitment to improve every day,” says Dörschuck. “We’re constantly onboarding new technologies to make a tangible difference. It’s part of the value we believe the company brings, and one that is passed on as another benefit to the client.”

Credit: D-Marin

State-of-the-art superyacht facilities

D-Marin’s world-class superyacht services exceed expectations, as do its berthing capabilities for larger yachts. It fosters a mindset that brings a boutique marina experience to even its largest facilities, enabling its customers to enjoy a personalised service alongside some of the world’s best yachting amenities.

With a capacity for 576 vessels, including berthing for 90 superyachts up to 70 metres, Didim Marina in Turkey can dry-dock 600 vessels at any one time, making it a key destination for yachts during maintenance season. It also provides special provisions for catamarans by way of an 11-metre-wide lift-pool system and 400-ton lift capacity.

Just a 50-minute drive from the yachting hub of Bodrum, D-Marin Turgutreis’s 532 berths can accommodate yachts up to 75 metres, with Mediterranean mooring up to 30 metres and 150 vessels in dry dock. For superyachts looking for a home port that provides a gateway to the Adriatic, Dalmacija is unrivalled. It accommodates some of the largest yachts in the country, with berths for 1,200 yachts up to 80 metres in length.

To book a berth at one of D-Marin’s world-class marinas, or for more information, contact the team today.

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