We are anchored off Key Biscayne, Florida, just south of the yacht club and just north of what was once the "winter White House," a private residence owned by Richard M. Nixon when he was President (map). That unassuming house has long since been razed, replaced, like so many of its neighbors, with an 11,000 square foot mansion. However, the enormous helicopter pad that the Department of Defense built out into Biscayne Bay to land Army One and Marine One on Nixon's 50-some visits to the property remains, now the private dock of another mansion. Tied up to the dock is the 125' Dorothy Ann, whose tender alone has more than three times the horsepower of Vector.
Once again, we have the same view across the bay as do these $20M+ homes. They do, however, have better access to services, which, ironically, is why we opted to drop the hook here just four nautical miles from our last spot at Marine Stadium. We were hoping to go ashore for some essentials and then dinner at the nearby Yacht Club.
Notwithstanding that we are members of a reciprocal club, and several comments on this anchorage and the marina itself said the club allows reciprocal members to use their dinghy dock, we were unable to land there. Somewhere between 2013 and 2014 the Key Biscayne Yacht Club dropped off our list of reciprocal clubs, and I called the dockmaster to check. He sounded like he would be more than happy to sell us a slip, but when I asked to used the dinghy dock he literally said "no, we want to make some money."
We were hoping to have dinner at the club, but we wanted to go ashore first, and find out what the dress code and billing procedure would entail. I'm sure dinner at the club would have been a nice bit of revenue for them, but after the static about the dinghy dock, I hung up the phone and did not even ask to speak to the dining room. At some point I will update the anchorage and marina listings to warn folks that use of the dinghy dock is not a reciprocal benefit that this club offers.
The thing we really needed to pick up in town was some salad -- our fridge managed to freeze one of our bags and we had to throw it out. We'll just make do with no fresh veggies for the next few days, so it will be just like cruising the Bahamas.
In a short while we will weigh anchor and head south, with no particular destination in mind. I'd like to see Elliott Key, but the holiday weekend may make that a bad choice. It's a really big bay, though, and I'm sure we'll find a beautiful spot for tonight.