Pictured below from left to right: (Grandma Kugelman, Linda Bair, Gandpa Kugelman,Ted Bair (holding Dan Bair), Diana Bair and in front is David Bair)
Ted Bair, founder and patriarch of Quality Boats, was a sales executive with Weyerhauser Paper Company in Chicago when he saw an ad in the Chicago Sun Tribune in 1973 for a marina located in Clearwater, FL. Tired of traveling and concerned he might miss out on the growth of his young family, Ted and his wife Linda moved to Clearwater with $40,000 and a dream and bought the marina now known as Quality Boats. The Bair's moved to Florida with newly born Dan, 3 year old David, and 10 year old Diana. Ted operated Quality Boats as a one-man show and quickly earned the reputation locally as a hard working, loyal, and passionately ethical business man. He headed up many local civic and charitable organizations and events. Although Ted worked 364 days a year (off for Christmas), he still made his #1 priority his family. From a very young age, Dan, Dave and Ted would go out on the boat fishing each and every Sunday morning. Rarely catching anything more than their Dad's wit, jokes and appreciative views of nature, Dan and Dave learned at a very young age the importance and true meaning of family and the impact boating can have on a family. These experiences were a major thrust in the creation of Quality Boats' customer cruise club, Quality Cruisers.
From humble beginnings, Quality Boats is now among the leaders in the Marine Industry and is Tampa Bay's Premiere Boat Dealership. The Bair's expanded the original marina location to double its original size in 1991. Truly a visionary, Ted bought a lot on U.S. Highway 19 and built our first showroom in 1985, long before U.S. Hwy 19 was what it is today; the major thoroughfare in Pinellas County with approximately 125,000 vehicles passing by each day. In the late 1990's, the Bair's bought the north adjacent lot to its original showroom on U.S Hwy 19 and built Ted's ultimate dream, a state-of-the-art showroom that opened in 2001 that is positioned today at the intersection of U.S Hwy 19 and on Haines Bayshore Road. Recognized by Florida Architecture Magazine as "Steel Building of the Year" for 2002 , Ted's pride and sense of accomplishment are shown throughout the dealership with his own special custom touches and décor.
Quality Boats is the oldest family owned and operated boat dealership in the Tampa Bay area. In addition to the state-of-the-art showroom on U.S Hwy 19, Quality Boats still maintains and operates their original waterfront full service marina on Island Estates near Clearwater Beach, the last Gulf side waterfront marine service facility in Clearwater.
Quality Boats only represents the best product that the industry has to offer and feels blessed to be partnered with Grady-White, Pursuit, Scout and Regal. These great boat builders are all independently owned and operated with their focus on building the best, not the most, boats in the marketplace and have a relentless focus on customer satisfaction and exceeding the customer's expectations. It is by no mistake that Quality Boats and our boat suppliers mirror each other in products, history of family and principles. Quality Boats is among the top dealers in the world for each boat manufacturer in regards to sales volume and dealer CSI. In addition, Quality Boats has been recognized in its past as a top 10 dealer for boat lines such as Boston Whaler, Chris Craft, Formula, Shamrock and Tiara/S2 Yachts.
Linda and Ted Bair passed away in 2003 and 2004, respectively. While they both are sorely missed, their "4th child" Quality Boats, continues to expand and experiences the annual growth it has experienced each year for the past 15 years. Their sons Dan and David, active in the business since they were cleaning boats and scraping barnacles in the 1970's, have continued the legacy their parents started with Quality Boats and are gratefully staffed today by the best and most highly regarded team members in the marine industry.