New company shows success is plain sailing

Jun 12, 2008

Visitors to Northern Ireland now have a unique way of enjoying the stunning coastline and local waterways, thanks to entrepreneur Dee Neill who has set up Carrickfergus - based Sail Northern Ireland.

The new company offers charter cruises on board an Elan 434- one of the most luxurious and seaworthy yachts available. It is equipped to accommodate up to seven people and for hire from a single day to a week for cruises along 180 miles of the NI coastline. With support from Invest Northern Ireland, Mr Neill is now actively promoting the business through a website and targeted marketing activity.

Mr Neill, a Royal Yachting Association Commercial Yachtmaster, says: “I believe that we offer not just another tourist facility for visitors that are already here, but also a reason for people to visit Northern Ireland in the first place. The yacht is a top quality vessel and we offer cruises on Belfast, Strangford and Carlingford Loughs, along the Causeway Coast and even as far as Scotland. We also have a smaller vessel – ahigh speed Stormforce 8.4 RIB, supplied by Red Bay Boats of Cushendall - for shorter trips.”

Sail Northern Ireland has links with a number of local tour operators and accommodation providers, strengthening its offering and ensuring tourists can access a seamless holiday experience. Currently employing one full-time and two part-time staff, the company is anticipating strong growth over the next year.

With assistance from Invest NI, Sail Northern Ireland recently exhibited at the Holiday World Show in Dublin. The only local charter cruise business to exhibit, it secured a high level of spring and summer charter cruise bookings from the Republic of Ireland and Scandinavia.

Bill Scott, Head of Regional Economic Development at Invest NI says: “Sail Northern Ireland has identified a gap in the market for high quality cruise experiences and is actively marketing the service both within Ireland and internationally via its website.   

“We are keen to support innovative and entrepreneurial businesses, and recognise that this business can add significant value to our growing tourism sector.”

Share this Article

Sign up for News

 Enter Code

Latest Features

Innovation and offering real customer benefits key to success in Canadian market
Michael Barton, Regional Manager Canada
Jan 17, 2018
Why the Chinese market is ripe for exploration
Jennifer Liu, Regional Manager Hong Kong, Macau & South China
Jan 11, 2018
Deal done on phase one of the UK’s departure from the EU
David Roberts, Invest NI Economist
Dec 12, 2017
Why you should be investing in innovation
Dr Vicky Kell, Director of Innovation, Research & Development
Nov 22, 2017
Opportunities in South East Asia - an overview
Nick Caldwell, Regional Manager Singapore
Nov 21, 2017