Each month, Coast Monthly visits with some of the most charming people on the Texas Coast to see their style.
Mark Amelang was born in Houston and raised there until age 11. He loved family trips to Galveston. So, a move to Mobile, Ala., wasn’t so bad. He still had the Gulf of Mexico.
An eight-year stint in the U.S. Navy took him to many ports of call, and his subsequent 28-year career in the oil and gas industry provided him with the opportunity to travel even more. He met his wife, Karina, in St. Petersburg, Russia, and they got married in England.
Today, they have two children and divide their time between their Houston residence and their home-away-from-home — an Azimut Atlantis 40 moored at Lakewood Yacht Club in Seabrook.
Last year, Amelang opened EuroSport Marine in Kemah. The business imports Italian-made rigid inflatable boats and yachting accessories.
“I remember when I couldn’t afford a $100 blowup boat at Kmart,” he said. “And now I’m living my dream.”
Amelang describes his fashion style as European with a laid-back Gulf Coast look.
Here are a few of his favorite things:
1. Gold coins: These very rare 1899 gold coins are from the Czar Nicholas period before the Russian Revolution. My wife grew up on the Gulf of Finland, and these belonged to her great-grandfather.
2. Lakewood Yacht Club burgee: I’ve been a member here since 1993. My uncle was commodore years ago, and I have fond memories of coming here as a kid. The burgee represents my love of the water and the fact that I could eventually afford to join.
3. Scuba fins: These are Plana Avanti Quattro fins that I’ve had for years. They’re comfortable, fit well and people can see me because they are bright yellow in the water.
4. “The Old Man and the Sea”: I grew up reading Hemingway and love everything he’s written. The book really resonated with me and I’ve read it several times.
5. Bimini Big Game Club decal: From a hotel and bar in the Bahamas and the first place I ever took our boat. It has a very bohemian vibe, is secluded and was a favorite hangout of Ernest Hemingway, who was also one of the founders.
6. Belt: I bought this at the Bitter End Yacht Club, a remote place in Virgin Gorda. To get there involves a flight to San Juan, a chartered prop plane to Virgin Gorda, a taxi over the mountain to a dock and finally, the Bitter End picks you up by boat.
7. Costa Romantica: We took this Italian cruise for our second wedding anniversary. We fell in love with the style of the ship, the crew and the food. We’ll take another cruise on this ship soon.
8. HIHO shorts: These are sea friendly and dry quickly. You can swim or scuba dive and then go to a restaurant with dry shorts on.