Hinckley owner Reveals his Obsession with the Open Sea
“When you own a Hinckley and you stay in the marina, you get to play the thank you very much game,” says Randy Whitman, explaining the barrage of compliments a Hinckley boat typically receives. A well-known Florida native and chairman of Whitman Family Development, LLC, Whitman—also an athlete and self-professed gearhead—is the proud owner of Oldielox 2, a Talaria 55.
“Many years ago I was a sailor, and first became aware of Hinckley’s sailboats,” he says. “I used to lust after Hinckleys. I’ve always loved motorcycles, too, and would take bike trips to New England to escape the Florida heat. I’d stop by the factory in Maine’s Southwest Harbor, and walk through it drooling.”
That lust has turned to reality, as Whitman has owned two Talarias since eyeing the boatyard as a young man. Today, as the chairman of the company behind Miami’s famous Bal Harbour Shops, Whitman knows a thing or two about luxury, as does his wife, Gigi, whose philanthropic dinner parties have been featured in the Miami Herald. Yet while the comfort and sophistication of a Hinckley is paramount, Whitman, a former Navy vet, welcomes roughing the open ocean; he and Gigi make annual pilgrimages to Harbour Island, Bahamas, on Oldielox 2. No crew. Certainly no captain—Whitman always helms his own boat—and no complaints. “I love going to sea,” he says. “It’s exciting as hell.”
The marriage of classic design and innovative technology is what fostered his loyalty to the brand. “Hinckleys are very traditional looking,” he says. “The founder’s main focus was to create a boat that was pretty.” As for technology, Whitman most appreciates the jet drive, Jet Stick, and Shallow Draft, emphasizing Oldielox 2 only draws three feet.
A day in their life in the Bahamas? “We always stay at Valentine’s,” Whitman says.
“Because of a Hinckley’s shallow draft feature, we can go in real close to the beach. Then we walk over to Cocoa Coffeehouse to see owners and friends Ryan and Gem Austin.”
The couple cherishes cruising together (they also travel the Atlantic coast, pausing at such favorite stops as St. Simons Island, Charleston, Norfolk, and the Hamptons along the way), and Whitman upgraded from Oldielox 1, a Talaria 48, to his current Talaria 55. The impetus for a larger boat? Family. Hinckley custom-built Oldielox 2’s three-bedroom cabin, with six bunks and a master queen stateroom. “It can sleep six comfortably,” says Whitman, “and we’ve been going to the Bahamas ever since.” His son, in fact, can claim the Oldielox name—a joke made on a hike in the Maroon Bells Wilderness near Aspen. “I was dawdling behind my son, who was 14 at the time, and he told everyone to slow down, that we had to wait on ‘Oldielox,’ a spin on Goldielocks.” Plans to slow down aren’t on the horizon, however, as the Whitmans are fans of pushing boundaries. The couple is already dreaming up their 2022 escape via Oldielox 2. “The adventure of boating to the Bahamas is very special,” says Whitman. “Coastal cruising is fun, but it’s a snooze compared to being at sea.”