A Muskoka launch just a little too staid for you? Lycra more your style than a straw boater? Well, if you want to add some zing to your water-sporting, you just might want to check out Svfara Marine. The Calgary-based company has two performance tow boats on the market–the 609 and the 696–and is set to launch two new models. “These are high-end boats dedicated to towing waterskiiers and wakeboarders,” says president and CEO Scott Roddick. “A growing trend right now is wake surfing. These boats are great for that.”
Svfara is the first and only Canadian performance tow boat manufacturer, and since Roddick founded the company in 1999, he says it has sold several hundred of the machines. “We're not building 2,000 boats a year like some of our competitors,” says Roddick, “so we're still able to hand-craft each one of these.” Measuring nearly 20 feet in length and with a seating capacity of eight, the 609 is ideal for pulling waterskiiers, but it also can tow wakeboarders. It retails in the mid-50s. The 696, says Roddick, is “a hard-core wakeboarding boat.” Twenty-three feet long, it seats 12 and retails in the mid-70s. “The nature of wakeboarding is it's more of a spectator sport, thus the bigger boat, the bigger wake, lots of seating,” says Roddick. “It's a party out there.”
Party indeed. When fully decked out with stereos, subwoofers, disk changers, digital remotes, heaters and showers, these sporty numbers are big on luxury. The 696 even has a wet bar. Buyers have taken notice: Svfara's sales have grown 137% over the past three years. The company's name is derived from the Italian word sfera, meaning “global.” And with its expansion into the Swedish and Japanese markets three summers ago, Svfara is doing the name proud.
Think it's too far into the season to get your hands on one to pull some whirlybirds or 360 heliwraps? It's never too late, according to Roddick, himself a dedicated waterskiier. “Typically, in the Okanagan you can ski into October comfortably,” he says of B.C.'s vacation hot spot. “But I've actually skiied out there every month of the year.” Talk about real bang for your boating buck.