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Rockport yacht club: 'Fine dining with a casual flair'

By Johnathan Silver
Aug. 30, 2014 at 3:20 p.m.
Updated Aug. 30, 2014 at 10:38 p.m.

Key Allegro Yacht Club, 1796 Bay Shore Drive in Rockport, is connected to the Yachting Club of America, which allows members to use any yacht club around the United States.

For More Information

WHAT: Key Allegro Yacht Club

WHERE: 1796 Bay Shore Drive, Rockport

INFO: Call 361-729-4114 or visit keyallegroyachtclub.com

ROCKPORT - Brett Bohn likes to party, as do many members of the Key Allegro Yacht Club.

Established in 1983, the private restaurant in Key Allegro, a waterfront community of Rockport, provides its some 700 members with a view of Aransas Bay, aquatic wildlife, live entertainment and a menu filled with items that patrons have a hand in deciding.

Members include people in and outside of Rockport, especially retirees, who have run major companies when they worked, said Bohn, one of the owners of the restaurant.

"This restaurant isn't set up to make money," he said. "It's to cater to our members."

What do members have in common? They come with an appetite for fresh local seafood choices, including flounder, oysters, shrimp, red fish, blue crab and other food options, and to indulge in a social atmosphere, Bohn said.

"They come here to relax - to be laid-back," he said. "We're very unpretentious here. We're very comfortable people."

But make no mistake, he added, "we like to have a lot of fun here."

That means you won't see members there work. Rather, they're trading in business hours for a fully-stocked bar; deck seating; sitting area with a floor-to-ceiling view of just water and sky, which seems to go on without end, local water-themed art and popular music, current and dating back decades before subtly flowing from the ceiling.

Also, members can experience such comfort across the country, thanks to the Key Allegro location's being part of the Yachting Club of America, giving them access to yacht clubs that are part of the association.

"The best way to get a feel for it is to come and dine," Bohn said, adding that people interested in membership should contact general manager John Iding for more information.

Carl Krueger, a late Rockport developer, who developed and created many business and other services in the area beginning in the 1960s, envisioned with his wife a vacation resort-styled community, which came to fruition in Key Allegro. The two founded Key Allegro Yacht Club and owned it until Bohn and others purchased the club.

"If you knew Mr. Krueger, the acquisition was intense but a lot of fun," Bohn said. "And we feel extremely privileged that the Krueger family gave us the opportunity to carry on the Key Allegro Yacht Club tradition."

That tradition runs in Bohn's family, as his parents were original members, and his family has been in Rockport since the 1860s. Many members are generational, he added.

"Now I'm bringing my kids and grandkids up here," he said. "It's part of the tradition that lives on."

Private membership has its privileges, he said.

"It's a quaint, family group," he said. "We spend as much time socializing as we do eating."

Iding, the restaurant general manager who has been in the dining industry for 55 years, described working at Key Allegro Yacht Club as exciting.

"It's a lot of fun because you have a beautiful view, and the members are great," he said. "It's fine dining with a casual flair. You don't see suits and ties. This is Rockport."

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