Antibes Yacht Show Revamps

With a decided focus on brokerage and charter, the Antibes Yacht Show benefits from being quite niche-oriented. It also benefits from being held at the start of the cruising season in the Med. This year, from April 18 to 21, more than 10,000 visitors from the United States, the UK, and more are expected to attend and book tours of yachts and megayachts from about 66 feet (20 meters) on up, plus enjoy additional new features.

While the list of yachts and megayachts being exhibited at Port Vauban is not yet available, the Antibes Yacht Show is preparing for 120 to need dockage space. Show organizers also expect to have on site nearly 200 exhibitors, representing brokerage and charter houses, crew-placement agencies, financing firms, gear and equipment companies, and more. In fact, refit and service firms will be a particular emphasis this year. It makes sense, given that buyers of brokerage yachts essentially never leave the decor unchanged and sometimes also overhaul or replace systems to their liking. Add to that the fact that far more brokerage yachts and megayachts have sold in the past year than new builds, and there’s a need for good refit and service providers.

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To put it all into perspective, last year 13,380 visitors flowed around the docks and through the exhibitor tents. This year, the Antibes Yacht Show organizers expect equally good attendance and will have special areas set aside for relaxation and meetings. There’s the VIP Lounge, overlooking the IYCA and the largest megayachts on display, accessible with a VIP badge. Here you can meet with brokers to discuss a deal in more depth, for example, or simply enjoy a complimentary glass of champagne. Your captain can enjoy free lunch and drinks in a similarly badge-only-accessible Captains’ Lounge. It’s on a terrace in the Bastion St. Jaume, and he or she can take a guest, too, perhaps to network during the day.

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Besides having the opportunity to tour yachts, visitors—and exhibitors, too—can attend free seminars. The International Superyacht Society and the Professional Yachting Association will each host panel discussions and more, on Friday and Saturday, respectively. And, for the first time—a first for a lot of yacht shows, in fact—the Antibes Yacht Show will have free WiFi. It’s courtesy of Global Marine Communications, a show partner for the past two years.

Here are scenes from last year’s show, along with exhibitors’ commentary as to why it’s viewed as such a key event.