Superyacht Village, enhanced VIP club coming to 2019 show
The 2019 Fort Lauderdale International Boat Show
Some of the world’s most luxurious superyachts will have a new place to call home at this year’s Fort Lauderdale International Boat Show, which also is celebrating its 60th birthday. The 2019 show begins Thursday, Oct. 30, and runs through Sunday, Nov. 3.
The show will feature an ever-growing fleet of superyachts, sport-fishing vessels, go-fast boats, submersibles and many marine accessories for the boating public.
The boat show is owned by the Marine Industries Association of South Florida and is produced by Informa Markets.
The show will unveil its Superyacht Village, described as an enclave for both superyachts and enthusiasts. It will feature the most spectacular yachts in the show. The village can accommodate yachts measuring up to 400 feet and will feature exhibits by renowned shipyards and yacht toys, including helicopters, personal submarines, exotic and collectible automotive, and other luxury items showcasing the luxurious, superyacht lifestyle.
Andrew Doole, president of Informa Markets for U.S. boat shows, says the Superyacht Village is unique, and that he is not aware of any other boat shows featuring one, except for the show in Monaco which might offer something similar. So far, he says, he expects probably eight to 10 vessels will be on display at the site.
To accommodate the Superyacht Village, the show will introduce a new, dedicated marina and on-land exhibition space spanning 3½ acres. Located at the Pier Sixty-Six Hotel & Marina’s new “Pier South” property, it will be the boat show’s seventh site, and will expand the exhibition space to a total 3 million square feet. The Pier South property is adjacent to the southeast corner of the 17th Street Causeway Bridge in Fort Lauderdale.
The site is well-suited for large vessels. “It’s easy to navigate through the very deep waters,” says Doole, adding “the bigger they get, the deeper they get.”
Organizers expect some of the world’s most exciting and top-of-the-line yachts to make their debut at this year’s show. Doole says the show will feature many vessels from the world’s major shipyards. “A lot will be available for charter,” he says.
In addition to its newest site, other show locations include the Bahia Mar Yachting Center, Hall of Fame Marina, Las Olas Municipal Marina, Hilton Fort Lauderdale Marina, Pier Sixty-Six Marina, and the Greater Fort Lauderdale/Broward County Convention Center.
Superyacht Village will be open to all general-admission ticketholders with direct access by water tenders, water taxis, as well as shuttle buses from the show’s other six locations.
Making its U.S. debut will be the show’s newest superyacht, Excellence, which is available for charter. The 80-meter (262-foot) yacht was launched earlier this year by Abeking & Rasmussen and was designed by Winch Design.
The first Cubic Steel Mansion Yacht is another notable vessel at the show. Made entirely of stainless steel, it will be docked—and highly visible—behind the Windward VIP Club. It is available for charter, says Bruno Edwards, a partner with VIP Yacht and Charter Services, who is close to the yacht’s owner, who wishes to remain anonymous.
Edwards describes the Mansion as “unique in the pleasure yachting business,” he says. “It was built to be a floating mansion/beach house.”
The steel vessel is equipped with “hydraulic legs” enabling it to actually “stand” in the water. “You can take it on the beach,” Edwards says, adding with the hydraulics, Mansion can be raised 18 feet. It has more than 9,000 total square feet and is 84 feet long and 40 feet wide, “which is almost double the width of most pleasure craft,” says Edwards. “It’s comparable to a much larger vessel.”
Edwards says the stainless steel ship holds up “phenomenally well” in saltwater. The Mansion is located on Florida’s Gulf Coast, and will be making its way to Fort Lauderdale.
There’s another change on tap this year: the Windward VIP Club has been relocated to the main dock at Bahia Mar, says Doole. Its new location is in-water. “It’s also accessible by boat,” he says. The club will feature an arched tent with outdoor terraces for shore and water views as well as a premium open bar, gourmet food and a cigar lounge.
Another improvement is a new parking garage available at the entrance to Las Olas Marina. Doole says it opened this spring and has nearly 600 spots. “We try to make as many lots available as possible,” he says,
The Fort Lauderdale show has a statewide economic impact of $857 million, and attracts more than 110,000 boating and yacht enthusiasts annually. The show features more than 1,500 boats and 1,200 exhibitors. Vendors will offer a huge selection of marine accessories. “The show covers the complete spectrum of the marine industry,” Doole says, “from engines to sunglasses, from paddleboats to superyachts.”
And for those show attendees working up an appetite, Doole says organizers are still working to improve on that, too. “We’re working with local restaurants to improve the flavor. Last year, the most popular was Truluck’s lobster roll.”
Again this year, NBC Sports Group will produce a one-hour program to highlight the show.
For the anglers of tomorrow, Hook The Future will host children’s fishing clinics. Also returning is the popular Aquazone with the latest water toys, including jet packs. ♦
The 2019 Fort Lauderdale International Boat Show
Wednesday, Oct. 30 – Sunday, Nov. 3
Wednesday: 12 p.m. to 7 p.m.
Thursday – Saturday: 10 a.m. to 7 p.m.
Sunday: 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.
• Main location
Bahia Mar Yachting Center,
801 Seabreeze Blvd.
• Superyacht Village
Pier Sixty-Six Hotel & Marina’s “Pier South” property, adjacent to the southeast corner
of the 17th Street Causeway Bridge
• Pier 66 Marina
2301 SE 17th St.
• Windward VIP Club
(Main Dock at Bahia Mar)
• Hall of Fame Marina
435 Seabreeze Blvd.
• Las Olas Municipal Marina
240 Las Olas Circle
• Hilton Fort Lauderdale Marina
1881 SE 17th St.
• Greater Fort Lauderdale/Broward County Convention Center,
1950 Eisenhower Blvd.
• A one-day general admission ticket is available for $34 and is valid for any one show day from Thursday-Sunday
• A two-day general admission ticket is available for $59 and is valid for any two show days
• Prime Time Preview Tickets grant guests early access to the show and are available for $53
and valid for any one show day from
• Windward VIP Experience – Each ticket is available for $300 and includes show entry, access to the Windward VIP Club, food and premium beverages as well as a
water taxi. Each VIP package is valid for one person and is good for one show day Wednesday-Sunday.
• Tickets for children (ages 6 – 15) are
available for $15 and valid for any one show
day of the show
For all other show information, including parking and transportation options, visit FLIBS.com
The Windward VIP Experience includes premium food and drinks
An overview of the north end of the 2018 show
The 80-meter Excellence will make its U.S. debut
The interior of the Cubic Steel Mansion Yacht
The Cubic Steel Mansion Yacht has legs that can raise it out of the water
The show has a chef’s competition
The Superyacht Village will be located across 17th Street Causeway from Pier Sixty-Six