Expat makes a 50-foot Beneteau his home in Clear Lake Shores
Arthur Tailleur is a realistic man.
While most people dream of the perfect home and weekends on a beautiful yacht, Tailleur always knew, realistically, he had only funding for one. So, why not choose the boat?
Since Tailleur first sailed into Galveston Bay with his 50-foot Beneteau, Mystera, in July 2014, the expatriate from Canada has lived aboard his dream sailboat at Portofino Harbour Marina & Yacht Club in Clear Lake Shores, he said.
“I remember I got back at about 4:30 a.m. and spent just a little bit of time packing my apartment,” Tailleur said. “Ever since then, I’ve been here.”
In the years since, Tailleur has set out to make the boat his own.
He came up with the name Mystera because he originally wanted to use the screen name, Mystery, in online chat rooms, but the name often was taken, he said.
As Tailleur shows off his pride and joy one cool January morning, he points out the ways he has maximized the limited space aboard the nearly 1,000-square-foot vessel — turning a second bedroom into a pantry and installing a magnetic rack to hold kitchen utensils, to name a few.
Tailleur works in the medical industry and has to go into an office about once a week, but the rest of the time he works aboard Mystera, he said. And a living area with several computer screens is a sign of how much time he spends aboard the boat.
Perhaps most impressively, Tailleur has begun experimenting as a handyman around Mystera. During a recent project, Tailleur carved out a side entrance to his onboard refrigerator, which originally had a top-down door.
“It made more sense to me that way rather than trying to reach down into a fridge each time,” he said.
As Tailleur experiments more around the boat, he becomes more confident at making the French yacht his own, he said.
When he recently learned it would cost about $13,500 to install air-conditioning on the boat, Tailleur decided to do it himself and saved some money, he said.
The Beneteau brand traces its name all the way back to shipwright Benjamin Beneteau, who opened a boatyard in 1884 in France, according to the company’s website. Since then, the company has opened several plants in France and one in the United States and sells a diverse array of motorboats and sailboats.
Tailleur admired the brand ever since he first saw a Beneteau in 1992, he said.
In particular, Tailleur admired the dual steering wheels aboard the yacht, he said.
Then, a few years ago, he finally found a boat available for a pretty good price that had been used as a charter boat on Saint Martin, an island in the Caribbean.
Tailleur traveled there and purchased the boat, and then steered it back to Galveston County, he said.
“It was so beautiful,” he said of the voyage. “I hated having to come back.”
Tailleur isn’t finished with his boat projects. He has plans to install solar panels on Mystera sometime in the near future, and that’s just the tip of the iceberg, he said.
One day soon, Tailleur would like to take to sailing the waters of the Caribbean again, he said.