Tiki Water Sports has a history that dates back to 1963. The same year the Beatles released their first album, Dooley Glander moved his sailboat operation from South Miami to the town of Tavernier in the Florida Keys and set up his shop under the iconic quonset tent.
Glander became known world wide as a meticulous sailboat builder, never compromising quality to increase his production. His hardy hulls were still swift on the water making his models, The Tavana and The Cay, award winning racing boats while at the same time easy as day-sailors and comfortable liveaboards. Boat enthusiasts enjoy the fact Glander boats could be purchased as kits in order to personalize the final touches themselves. Of the many Glander sailboats still on the water you may never see two alike. This is why many Glanders are 40-50 years old and in such good shape,owners have an affinity for their personal Glander.
By the 1980s Dooley Glander was ready to sell his business and father and son Alvin and Robert Chester, both navy veterans, agreed to ink a deal. The Chesters continued the commitment to quality sailboat making, yet always looking forward, added many small craft to the fleet.
After investing in original designs like the Keys Angler powered skiff and C-Fox jet ski, pay dirt was hit with The Tiki Wave Rider. Once again the eyes of the water world were focused on what was being built under the iconic quonset tent. The Tiki Waverider, originally designed to paddle into waves like a surfboard, had what became reputed to be the most comfortable seat back ever made. Legions of water enthusiasts both looking for a thrill or for a leisurely jaunt found The Waverider the perfect design. Thousands
of Waveriders sold worldwide and became so recognizable that Glander Boats had to change the name to Tiki Water Sports! Many new models ensued, The Waverider stretch, The Waverider Tandem and The Tri Sail.
As the 1990s rolled around trends in the industry were changing, kayakers were buying plastic roto-molded import designs and the sailboat market went smaller. Knowing that Tiki employed many talented fiberglass workers, understanding the vicissitude of the market and relying on his business acumen, Bob Chester reluctantly phased out production of water craft and brought in production of other fiberglass staple?products such as dock boxes and piling caps. This brilliant move kept manufacturing jobs alive in The Keys. Tiki Water Sports still had the reputation of the go to place for all things on the water and a world wide network of customers and dealers, it was logical to bring in and distribute brands of water sport products and sailboats. With the factory still churning out great products and opening dealer franchises like Hobie, Hunter and Future Beach Tiki Water Sports has more to offer than any watercraft dealer around.
Today Tiki Water Sports are exclusive dealers for Hobie Cat, Marlow-Hunter, Future Beach Kayaks SUPs and pedal boats, Catalina, Com Pac. Precision, Sup atx, Tohatsu Outboard Engines, Tavernier Skiff Company and more. Tiki is an award winning dealer for these brands including #1 sales worldwide with Marlow-Hunter trailerable sailboats.('07) The Tiki fiberglass factory is as prolific as ever constantly adding both original and proprietary items to our production. Our friendly sales people and talented staff continue to make Tiki Water Sports the go to place, for over 50 years, for all things on the water! Visit us just south of Key Largo at mile marker 94.3. We are our own landmark, look for the iconic quonset tent.