Chef Tommy Hofstetter finds a new home in the Florida Keys


Tommy Hofstetter is set to make another splash in the powerboat industry in a surprisingly great way. Well, surprisingly for this editor who never knew the talented engine builder, multi-world racing champion, highly regarded rigger and boating enthusiast behind Chief Performance and Chief Engines in Fort Lauderdale, Fla. aim to open a full-scale marina in the Florida Keys.

Tommy Hofstetter of Chief Marine Group is excited about the next chapter in his career. Photo by Victor Nappe

Yet that’s exactly what it did in the form of the Chief Marine Group, which is located in the former Smugglers Cove Resort and Marina in Islamorada, where US Highway 1 crosses Snake Creek.

“I’ve always wanted to do something like this – a destination in its own right – and I feel lucky that we were able to find such a good location,” said Hofstetter, who grew up in South Florida and often has visited Smugglers Cove. , which has been vacant since Hurricane Irma devastated the region in 2017. “I am very happy to let everyone know that we are operational. We have big plans for the company and this property.

Because Hofstetter has broadened its knowledge of the boating industry over the past five years by focusing on the luxury outboard motor performance center console market with brands such as HCB Yachts, Cigarette Racing Team and more, he is poised to make Chief Marine Group a full-fledged boating business with an enthusiastic, forward-thinking investment team and a strong family support system.

Hofstetter said Chief Marine Group plans to have an exhibit at the Fort Lauderdale International Boat Show later this month (October 27-31) and that it will be one of the lunch stops for the Florida Powerboat Club Key West. Poker Run next month Wednesday. and Thursday (November 10-11).

With a full-service marina and a dedicated sales team focused on a multitude of brands, Chief Marine Group is able to provide re-engine, service, repair and servicing of boats of all types, sizes and packages. engines. In fact, some notable projects underway at Chief Marine Group include a 46ft Skater Powerboats catamaran rigged with a pair of Mercury Racing 1550/1350 engines and a 53ft HCB re-powered with four new Mercury Marine 600 engines.

“I can’t wait to share what comes next,” said Hofstetter, who added that his son, Blye, and daughter, Atlantis, are working with him. “I am delighted that my children are getting involved in the business.

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