LAKE WYLIE — Nathan Chick and Chip Traub are selling four carefree hours.
That’s what the pair say is in demand on Lake Wylie, prompting their latest business venture with Sniki Tiki Pontoon Party Boat.
“I’ll bet I get like 20 calls a month,” said co-owner Traub, who also operates Lake Wylie Boat Rentals. “They want something fun, and they also don’t want the responsibility of driving.”
The co-owners, friends since their days working at Wher-Rena Boatland near Buster Boyd Access Area, created a floating tiki bar from the pontoons up.
“We built it all up from there,” said Chick, who also owns Wylie Watercraft. “It’s been my winter project.”
The boat seats 12, and eight of those are at the bar, plus a driver. Sniki Tiki provides the captain and enough ice for whatever refreshments guests want to bring. It picks guests up at T-Bones on the Lake and cruises for four hours.
“It’s the only thing like it on the lake,” Traub said.
Among unique features is a gas powered margarita mixer.
“It’s basically a weed whacker motor with a blender on top of it,” Chick said.
The boat launched in April. Clients are mostly local, often with large groups from out of town. Traub sees the boat fitting birthday parties, anniversaries and graduation get-togethers. The boat operates seven days a week, minus July 4 due to the boat traffic expected that day.
At $500 for four hours, rates are a little higher than what Traub charges for pontoon rentals, but Sniki Tiki also provides the driver and ability for everyone in the party to kick back and relax, he said. The owners also have a variety of boats and personal watercraft through their established businesses.
For more information, visit snikitikipontoon.com.
John Marks • 803-831-8166