Eight Bells: Nat SR Genco

Mar 6, 2024

For sailors in Toronto, there was once the luxury of choice for boat parts and supplies. Davidsons on King Street, the legendary Tom Taylor on Adelaide, a couple on Pier 4, the Dock Shoppe in a mystery building on Queen’s Quay. Holland Marine on Dundas next to the pizza place. And of course, Genco.

Genco was the go-to for years – founded by a gang of cousins with sailmaking roots in Italy (Genco is a family, not corporate name), the King Street store was a palace of parts, and a sail loft and canvas works upstairs. The Gencos ran it, and everyone knew them personally, counted them as friends.

It’s been some time since the glory days. Genco expanded to Pickering into what had been Neptune Marine’s store. Not long after, the Genco cousins went separate ways – the retail store and canvas works moved to Range Road in Port Credit (the retail store is now defunct) with Nat Jr at the helm and remains there. Nat Sr moved to Pickering full-time; communication was sparse between them.

The Sr and Jr designations didn’t indicate a paternal relationship – they were cousins and that was to differentiate the two, although they appeared to thrive on the confusion back in the “Nick, Nat and Nat” advertising campaign days. Through the years, the Gencos have run their business, sailed occasionally and were friends, advisors, and cheerleaders to the sailing community.

Now Nat Sr has passed on Feb 21 at the age of 88. You can read the complete obit here:

Nat Sr Obituary


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