BAREFEET RETREAT GUESTS COMMENTS
My wife Lori and I just ended a 7 day sail/trip on the Amazing Grace with Mark Wattrus and Halle Miller along with three other couples that sailed around St. Thomas, St. John and several of the British Virgin Islands. This experience was one of our top vacations ever. Mark and Halle made us feel comfortable and "at home" immediately. What amazed me the most was how Mark and Halle could accommodate everyone's needs and desires. For example, I love to fish and while I knew this was not a fishing excursion, Mark got me on a beautiful King Mackerel on our first day of sailing. I continued to catch fish throughout the trip. Others in our party wanted to snorkel, hike, "see the sights," explore spots on land, etc. and Mark and Halle were able to do everything they wanted to do. No one was ever left out - everyone was happy engaging in their desired choices. Mark continued to tell us "If you want to do anything, just tell me and we can probably do it." I did not think it would be possible at first but Mark and Halle did it and made it look easy. Mark invited several of us to watch him free dive for lobster, which was an unbelievable sight to behold, not to mention a delicious lunch with his catch. I do not exaggerate when I say that Mark is capable of doing just about anything and doing it well. He can fix anything that is broken and solve any issue, big or small, that arises at sea. And, he does it with ease, calm and professionalism. You will not find a more professional yacht captain. Food is normally not something important to me but Halle changed all that. Every breakfast, lunch and dinner she prepared was magnificent and normally done from scratch. Her constant smiling face and friendly demeanor further electrified our experience. Not that we spent a lot of time there, but the sleeping quarters were very roomy, clean and comfortable. Lori and I will be following and joining Mark and Halle again wherever they go, whatever vessel they will be on and/or whatever outdoor experience they undertake. The Amazing Grace was a beautiful boat but it was Mark and Halle that made the experience so memorable. Please feel free to contact me anytime if you wish to learn more details or have further questions.
Mark and Halle are two young but very experienced, inspiring and driven people who created an experience of a lifetime in just one short week. I didn’t know what to expect but everything exceeded my expectations. From the moment we stepped foot onto the catamaran, Mark and Halle were welcoming, attentive, accommodating, and charming. Simply a pleasure to sail with! They created a wonderful itinerary. Being on a smaller vessel, we were able to go to areas that most tourists do not get to see. I swam through a cave! On the last night, we all went to the bow of the boat including Mark and Halle and stared up at the stars. It was a special moment to share with them. And the food! All the dishes were different and delicious. We asked for their signature dishes and they delivered. They even felt comfortable enough with our group to try a couple of new recipes. The quarters were a bit tight but the beds were comfy. Besides, you can do with less for a week of new memories. I can honestly say some new friendships were made. If you ever have the chance to go on this charter, say YES! I miss them already
Booked the New Year’s Trip with Halle and Mark and had THE best vacation ever. We traveled with our 3 adult daughters and our aunt and uncle. From the time we stepped on the Amazing Grace we felt pampered. The accommodations were fabulous, with ample sleeping space and plenty of lounging areas. We loved hangin out at the front of the boat to take it all in. The food was above and beyond!! From presentation to taste, Halle blew us away and it continued throughout the whole trip. She was so sweet and down to earth with her southern charm, and worked endlessly to serve up fantastic meals and drinks. Speaking of the drinks, her cocktails were better than any purchased in a bar, and she would serve them in hollowed our watermelons, or fancy glasses. Mark was an extraordinary captain. It was easy to tell that he grew up on the coast. His experience and know-how left us all in good hands. None of us had ever been on a trip like this before. He was an expert swimmer and diver, and took my husband on a dive with him. He took us snorkeling was so patient with our lack of knowledge of the sea. He engaged in games with us and was an all around great person to hang out with. He too was a phenomenal cook. He dove one day to a reef and grabbed a huge lobster for us to eat. It was like something out of a movie. To say the least, we would definitely book a trip with Halle and Mark again. They could not be any more accommodating and kind. And we hope that we meet up with them again in the future.
For Christmas 2018 my wife and I decided we wanted to do something different. We wanted to have an experience with the family and travel someplace we hadn’t before. We booked our trip on the Amazing Grace 11 months prior to departure. Booking so far in advance gave us a lot of time to anticipate and prepare for our vacation. I was afraid with so much time before our trip we might set our expectations too high and perhaps could be easily disappointed. I can assure anyone who is reading this that that was not the case. Captain Mark and first mate Halle were friendly, incredibly knowledgeable of both the islands and their yacht Amazing Grace, very attentive hosts, and most importantly became very good friends to our whole family by the weeks end. Mark knew all of the best spots to snorkel, lobster, and fish. He also knew all of the beautiful, quiet coves away from the crowds where we would anchor and enjoy our evenings. Halle spoiled us with her amazing cooking of breakfast, lunch, and dinner. We enjoyed taking photos of every meal as they were prepared like you would see on TV. One of the highlights was when we anchored at Cooper Island and enjoyed a wonderful Christmas Day meal on the together with a night cap at the Rum bar before heading back to Amazing Grace. We can’t recommend Mark & Halle, and enough. If you want to try something different, see some of the most beautiful places in the Caribbean, and make some new lifelong friends then this is certainly a trip you should consider.
We returned last week from an incredible week long experience with Captain Mark and First Mate Halle. We were four couples - none with previous charter experience - and we were not totally sure what to expect. We quickly learned that key to a successful trip is the crew that will be guiding your vacation. We feel so fortunate to have had Mark and Halle as our capable crew. From the moment we met Mark and Halle they were the perfect hosts and treated us like royalty. They were constantly on the move - whether preparing gourmet meals (the shrimp green curry and muscle soup were two of my favorites!), helping to organize a snorkel or beach adventure, or accompanying us on a trip to a local beach bar - they did everything possible to make ours a vacation of a lifetime. I will always have vivid memories of Mark coming up with a lobster to cook up, the gorgeous waters, the inviting white sand beaches, the quiet and beauty of sailing such a stunning vessel, the group rides (and laughs!) in the dingy, Halle’s Southern charm, and the great times we had just hanging out with our friends on our boat. By the end of the trip guests and crew became more like family and we hope that Mark and Halle take us up on our offer to visit us in Texas! I highly recommend that if you are looking for a USVI or BVI charter that you look into a charter on Amazing Grace.
NO VACATION LIKE A Mark and Halle Vacation!!!
Over a year ago I began planning a 40th Birthday trip for my husband and friends to sail the BVI's.
As fate would have it, we would reschedule for a new date this past March on a different yacht and as the saying goes.... it was meant to be!
It was the most amazing vacation experience we have ever had. Captain Mark and First Mate and Super Chef Rachel are now part of our family, whether they want to be or not.....from the planning of the trip to the bitter end when we had to leave, they made sure we drank when we were thirsty, slept when we wanted to sleep and played when we wanted to play. From fire dancing, to fresh caught lobster, getting to be a mermaid and visiting the most beautiful places, we can't give our trip enough stars! Do yourself a favor and take a trip on Amazing Grace with Mark and Halle...., we have just booked our return trip for another milestone birthday in March of 2019 on Amazing Grace and another boat with even more friends, because it was that great!
xoxo - Greg, Marty, Will, Carrie