Captain Cleve Mahabir is a true native son of St. John, US Virgin Islands. His family connection to St. John’s remote Hansen Bay can be traced back hundreds of years! To a time on the East End rich in traditions of boat building and fishing. Growing up, he was blessed to live along one of St John’s most beautiful beaches and bays. The sound of a gentle surf and white sand beach at his doorstep. And the abundance of the local waters to hone his fishing and diving skills. So it’s no surprise that, even as a young child, his passion and love for the sea, flourished. Cleve frequently jokes that …” [he] learned to swim before he could walk.”. Whether that’s true or just legend … one thing’s for sure … he was catching big Caribbean lobsters at an age when most of us were still learning to tie our shoes!
At the age of 13, Capt. Cleve built ( some might say “overbuilt LOL”) his first fishing boat. The sturdy 12′ craft was made of wood and fiberglass with a 25 HP engine. Construction was an after school project that would launch the beginning of a career in fishing and other marine activities. Once his boat was completed; he worked with an expert sword fisherman, Jason Dalmida, who taught Capt. Cleve professional fishing, boat handling and complex navigational skills. As a teenager, Cleve spent every Christmas and summer with his mentor. Later Cleve would spend 5 to 6 days out to sea, for almost 8 ½ years, fishing with his mentor.
Having perfected his marine and fishing skills, Cleve decided to pursue his dream of acquiring a captain’s license. Captain’s license in hand, Capt. Cleve was hired by a powerboat rental company on St John, USVI. Daily charters allowed him the connection to countless visitors who rented the powerboats. Many were interested in having a native / local captain. This was a frequent demand from customers; and Capt. Cleve was one of a few employees that was qualified to fulfill these requests. His passion for the Caribbean Sea; his professional experience of 7 years at the powerboat rental company; and his eagerness to satisfy visitors to the US Virgin Islands motivated Capt. Cleve to launch his own business.
“2008 Entrepreneur of the Year”
In 2007, Capt. Cleve purchased a 26’ Angler Limited Edition vessel, equipped with twin 200 HP Evinrude E-Tec Engines and named it Local Flavor. His vessel was custom-made to accommodate clients interested in fishing and enough space and comfort to allow for day-trip charters to neighboring islands. The first year was a huge success! And in 2008, that success was recognized by the St. Thomas, USVI Small Business Association’s with their “2008 Entrepreneur of the Year” award.
These days, you’ll find Capt Cleve splitting his time on the water between day charters and fishing and lobstering. He’s become a popular charter for both inshore fishing, snorkeling tours and BVI day charters.
LOCAL FLAVOR CHARTERS TOURS: Choose between Full Day ( 8:30am – 5pm), Half Day (8am – 12pm or 1pm – 5pm) or Sunset Charters ( 5:30pm – 6:30pm). 9 passenger maximum. InShore Fishing Charters ( bait, tackle, ice included – Max 6 passengers ): Half Day Fishing (7:30am – 11:30am or 1pm – 5pm) or Combination Day – 1/2 Day fishing and 1/2 Day island hopping ( 8:30am – 5pm). Looking for private water taxi service? Red Hook STT to St John, West End Tortola, Jost Van Dyke and Spanish Town, Virgin Gorda. Check with Capt Cleve for availability and pricing.
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