Sea Pines buys Harbour Town Yacht Basin businesses from Calvert heir

The Sea Pines Resort has acquired the business that runs Harbour Town Yacht Basin on Hilton Head Island.

Included in the deal are the company's managerial and operational responsibilities, including fishing charters, yacht services, fuel sales, water sports and sightseeing cruises, according to a resort news release.

Sea Pines president Steve Birdwell said the resort, which already owns Harbour Town's commercial docks and leased them to the yacht basin, bought the business so it could deal directly with visiting boaters and guests.

"This alliance strengthens both our resort's existing amenities and the Harbour Town Yacht Basin's identification with our established brand," Birdwell said in a news release.

The resort plans to keep the company's employees, Birdwell said.

The purchase price was not disclosed.

The business was owned by John and Elizabeth Calvert, who disappeared from the island in 2008. Law-enforcement authorities have said they believe the Calverts were murdered by Dennis Gerwing, an accountant for some of the Calverts' businesses. He committed suicide after he was named a person of interest in the case. A judge declared the couple dead in 2009.

Since their disappearance, the couple's businesses have been run by Elizabeth Calvert's brother, David White.

"It has been my honor to step in for Liz and John and experience the place and people they loved," White wrote in an e-mail.

He said he will continue to run Harbour Town Power Boats with business partner H2O Sports.

The 5,000-acre Sea Pines Resort includes three golf courses -- including Harbour Town Golf Links, home of the PGA Tour's annual Heritage tournament -- the 60-room Inn at Harbour Town, 300 villas and 100 rental homes.