Macatawa Bay Boat Works Company History

   Macatawa Bay Boat Works was founded in 1967 as a premier restorer of Wooden boats.  Using the experience of retired Chris Craft craftsmen in the Holland area, Macatawa Bay Boat Works restored boats using the same techniques that were used at the factory but incorporating modern materials and technology to improve on the original design. 

The above photo is of Macatawa Bay Boat Works early project boats, a 1927 Chris Craft Cadet.

  Note the date on right of the photo: October '70

    In the late 1970's, after the closing of the Chris-Craft plant in Holland, Macatawa Bay Boat Works started building new wooden boats under the name "Grand-Craft by Macatawa Bay Boat Works."  With the help of  Chris Smith and many retired Chris-Craft personnel, "Grand-Craft" replica's of the old 1930's Chris-Craft's and new utility and sport boat models begin coming off the line.  The boats received a great deal of notoriety, gracing the covers of many boat magazines and finding new homes in boat houses across the country and throughout the world.  The new wooden boats sparked a great deal of interest in restoring the real classics as well.  In 1982, the "Grand-Craft" name was sold to Richard Sligh and there was a shift of MBBW primary focus to restoring the original boats by Chris Craft, Hackercraft, Garwood, Century and Riva, to name a few.
  After many years of restoring boats in Holland, MI, the reputation of the company had spread across the country and MBBW needed a larger facility to keep up with all of the jobs so the company moved to its present location in Saugatuck in the spring of 1994.  Aside from the 10-14 boats in production at any given time, MBBW also cares provides storage and maintenance for over 40 antique and classic boats annually.

   MBBW's high standards of workmanship, quality, attention to detail and utilization of modern techniques while maintaining authenticity has been proven at boat shows across the country and is also evident in the number of repeat customers.  One of the few "Full-Service" restoration shops in the country, MBBW offers everything necessary for a vintage boat restoration from start to finish, and continually maintains their reputation as the "Best in the Business."

Unsurpassed Quality,
Unparalleled Service.

When Only the Very Best Will Do...

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 View of the MBBW shop in the
Holland, Michigan location.  (ca. 1988)

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Chris Smith looks on as hardware is installed on a 1931 Chris-Craft 20' Triple cockpit that Chris re-designed into a Double Upswept Speedster (1998)

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Van Andel Museum (1997)

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MBBW's finest on display at the Van Andel Museum, Grand Rapids, MI. (1997)

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Chris Smith with one of MBBW's finest Barrelback's: BlackJack.   (1997)



Macatawa Bay Boat Works, Inc.
297 S. Maple Street  Saugatuck, MI 49453
Phone:  (269) 857-4556  Fax: (269) 857-4218

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