The new operator of the Stow Lake Boathouse will unveil a new fleet of boats when it reopens the Golden Gate Park landmark on Oct. 6, according to the website of the new enterprise.
The new operator, Ortega Family Enterprises, says the new, American-made fleet includes “rowboats, electric boats, and pedal boats that seat from one to four boaters.”
Anticipating the concerns of environmentally-conscious San Franciscans, the operators add, “All motorboats, including the support boat, are electric powered and silently glide across the serene waters of Stow Lake…. We do not have any environmentally adverse gas-powered boats in our fleet.”
The operators of the site in Golden Gate Park also say that the boats are “the safest available.”
“With the safety of all Stow Lake visitors in mind, we have searched for and purchased the most non-tipping, self-bailing, unsinkable boats,” the website says.
Stow Lake was the subject of controversy over the past several years, as The City sought a contract with a new company, to replace the operator that had managed the boathouse for decades.
In February, the San Francisco Board of Supervisors approved the lease agreement with New Mexico-based Ortega, which agreed to pay at least $160,000 annual rent to The City and invest $200,000 in renovations of the boathouse. The company also will operate a cafe on the site.
Opponents of the Stow Lake deal objected to what they saw as the tarnishing of the area’s natural setting.