2017-03-23 / Top News

Boat show drops anchor in West Palm Beach

BY MARY THURWACHTER


SV YACHTS ALPHA at Island Gardens Launch Party. 
COURTESY PHOTO SV YACHTS ALPHA at Island Gardens Launch Party. COURTESY PHOTO More than $1.2 billion worth of yachts and accessories, including hundreds of boats ranging from small inflatables to superyachts nearly 300 feet in length will be on display during the 32nd annual Palm Beach International Boat Show March 23-26.

Organizers expect big crowds and not all will be coming just to look and dream. An increase in sales is anticipated.

“With the stock market up, people are spending and the boat market is hot,” said Andrew Doole, senior vice president and COO of Show Management, the company that manages and produces the show on Flagler Drive in Downtown West Palm Beach.

“Exhibitors are reaching a different and very sought-after buyer at the Palm Beach show,” Mr. Doole said. “Palm Beach attracts an affluent audience of boat and yacht owners who typically do not visit the shows in Fort Lauderdale or Miami Beach. Palm Beach is their show of choice.”


The Palm Beach International Boat Show will bring together more than $100 million in vessels. There also will be a floating Rolls-Royce display (below). 
COURTESY PHOTO The Palm Beach International Boat Show will bring together more than $100 million in vessels. There also will be a floating Rolls-Royce display (below). COURTESY PHOTO Potential buyers will travel from Orlando down and many will stay for the weekend, Mr. Doole said. “The Palm Beach Show is the fourth largest in the U.S. and this year’s show will be slightly larger with more boats in the water and on land.”

One of the largest exhibitors will be Worth Avenue Yachts, bringing more than $100 million in luxury yachts, a floating Rolls-Royce Motorcars display and aviation partners.

“This is our largest platform,” said marketing director Danielle Giordano. “We’ll be bringing 15 yachts, ranging in length from 60 to 216 feet. We look forward to the show every year.”

SV Yachts owner Mauricio Velez also is looking forward to the show, where he will show off his dreamboat, SV Alpha, one of the most unusual and fastest boats in the show.

Mr. Velez and business partner Nikolai Sass hatched the plan to build the Alpha after attending a boat show in Miami a year ago.

“We looked at each other and said ‘all these boats look the same,’” said Mr. Velez, a Miami engineer. So they built something different, something that breaks conventions and fuses luxury and comfort with unyielding off-shore racing performance.

The Alpha, Mr. Velez said, “is powered by twin racing stern drives and can reach speeds over 90 miles per hour.”

The lines of a 1967 Corvette, with a flared silver hull and lollipop red interior, inspired the 38-foot yacht.

“It has a James Bond factor,” Mr. Velez said. The cockpit comes with a touch screen helm area, red sun pads over the engine hatch and even a champagne cooler.

Depending on options, the Alpha’s price tag ranges from $680,000 to $813,000. “We’ve got over 15 people, mostly from Europe, interested,” Mr. Velez said.

Because the boat show, presented by the Marine Industries Association of Palm Beach County Inc., has so many superyachts this year, a satellite location will be at Rybovich. Potential buyers will have access to private water tenders to ferry them to and from Rybovich Marina at 4200 N. Flagler Drive.

The show offers free youth fishing clinics by Hook The Future, IGFA School of Sport fishing seminars, long-range cruising clinics and on-the-water boat handling classes.

Live music and refreshments at the show’s popular floating cocktail lounges are also part of the fun.

Guests may to arrive by boat and tie up to free docks south of the in-water displays.

“If you’re planning to go,” Mr. Doole said, “wear comfortable shoes and spend the day. There’s lots of good parking and good restaurants nearby. It’s a good idea to check out our website www.showmanagement.com before you come so you can chart your course.” ¦

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