Island Gardens add new punch to Yachts Miami Beach Show

By Martin Lenkowsky

Yachts Miami Beach leaders are excited about the addition of Island Gardens’ mega-yacht marina on Watson Island as a venue for this year’s show.

“It will accommodate the big stuff,” says Brett Keating, vice president of consumer marketing for Show Management, which co-owns the show with the Florida Yacht Brokers Association. “The Watson Island site can hold yachts ranging from 80 feet to more than 500 feet.”

Keating says there will be at least 15 mega-yachts at the show’s Watson Island location.

Now in its 28th year, Yachts Miami Beach spans more than a mile on Collins Avenue between 41st and 54th streets along Indian Creek.

Keating calls Miami Beach the perfect location for this show. “This is a huge destination for yachting,” she says. “It’s such a beautiful location to highlight yachts. There are these beautiful hotels and restaurants right there.” Something unique about Yachts Miami Beach is that some boats will be available for charter. “So you can test out that lifestyle,” Keating says.

Yachts Miami Beach, formerly called the Yacht & Brokerage Show, will be held Presidents Day weekend, Thursday, Feb. 11, through Monday, Feb. 15. The show will feature more than 500 new as well as pre-owned boats. In order to accommodate the show, temporary floating docks are placed in Indian Creek. In addition, huge floating tents will have marine supplies and accessories for sale.

Keating is excited by all the experiences the show is putting together this year. “We want the show to live up to its glamorous location,” she says. “Miami Beach is glamorous and looking at the yachts is glamorous. It is such a great destination – and then you add such beautiful boats.”

This year, Yachts Miami Beach 2016 is offering a new VIP Experience for $400 a person, per day (Feb. 11-13 only), which includes valet parking and a private water shuttle from the show site to the Ritz-Carlton, South Beach for food and beverages. “On the water shuttle, you get to see all the boats and go past multimillion-dollar homes,” Keating says. “There’ll be gourmet food, cocktails and a concierge to help plan things in advance.” The concierge will arrange for people with VIP tickets to get on to the yachts; arrangements must be made in advance.

Yachts Miami Beach 2016

The main part of the show will take place on the Indian Creek Waterway along Collins Avenue between 41st and 54th streets.

The mega-yachts will be on display at Island Gardens Marina, which is located behind the Miami Children’s Museum on Watson Island. A free shuttle will run to and from the main show site.

Show hours: Thursday, Feb. 11 – Sunday, Feb. 14: 10 a.m. to
7 p.m.; Monday, Feb. 15: 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Admission is free

For more information, visit yachtsmiamibeach.com

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