Palma Boat and Superyacht Show – Review (9 May 2014)

Anyone visiting the Palma Boat Show and its newly established adjacent attraction, the Palma Superyacht Show, would find it hard to believe that the event was cancelled in 2012 due to a lack of confidence in the market
Anyone visiting the Palma Boat Show and its newly established adjacent attraction, the Palma Superyacht Show, would find it hard to believe that the event was cancelled in 2012 due to a lack of confidence in the market and a shortage of exhibitors.
Over 200 boats on display in the water including around 50 superyachts between 24 and 70 metres, and 158 exhibitors in all, was enough activity to completely fill the available show area, with the superyacht section overspilling into the STP shipyard premises alongside.
The presence of international exhibitors such as Azimut, Fairline, Princess and Bavaria displaying the whole range of family size sailing and motor yachts, plus a large and varied selection of RIBS, dayboats, sailing dinghys and accessories served to prove the point, that its not just about superyachts in Palma, as important as they may be to the local economy!
Official reports state that in the region of 32,000 people visited the Show across the five days. Land-based exhibitors were up 20% on last year and the number of berths up 75%. Director of the Boat Show, Chema Sans, said, “Looking beyond the figures, the important thing is that the visitor profile has been that of interested enthusiasts, of buyers, whereas last year the majority came for a stroll.” This has translated into a greater amount of business, not only yachts, but also in equipment, clothing and accessories.
An encouraging sign for the organisers and the yachting sector in Spain was that around 40 (25%) of the 158 exhibitors were at the show for the first time, proving that last years revival is being built upon successfully in terms of support from the industry.
Along the superyacht dock overlooked by the recently completed Moll Vell Marina facilities building, were 19 specialist service companies offering everything for the large yacht market, from marine insurance to charter licensing and complete refits. This doubled the amount of supporting companies that exhibited at the first Palma Superyacht Show last year, and the range of large luxury yachts on display were about as eclectic as its possible to imagine.
For something classically appealing in the sailing yacht line, the custom built 34 metre ketch SY Seljm, built by the Italian Cantieri Sangermani yard, was on offer for a bargain price of just 2.9 million euros. She has done no less than three circumnavigations with her original owner, took line honours in the Antigua Classic Regatta, and won the prestigious ‘Concours d’Elegance’ in 2013 for exceptionally presented professionally maintained yachts.
If a sleek and visually striking motoryacht was more your fancy, then the outstanding and aptly named MY Benita Blue, with her sparkling metallic blue finished hull, and classy modern interior by Sam Sorgiovanni was on display. Built by Evolution Yachts in Australia and generously refitted in 2007 she could make a great charter yacht for up to 10 guests, at a price of 3.25 million euros.
Talking of charter, there is no doubt that the recent removal of the infamous 12% matriculation tax on commercial yachts over 15 metres operating in Spanish waters, has had some effect on the market confidence in Mallorca.
On the opening morning at the show, a well attended presentation by Patricia Bullock of local charter licensing specialists Network Marine Consultants, served as a valuable update for brokers, owners and captains on the latest compliance requirements for those wishing to take advantage of this fiscal relaxation.
Speaking with exhibitors at the show it seemed that everyone was happy with the new set up, and of course with warm sunshine and gentle sea breezes greeting the opening day of an outdoor boat show, it was hard to find anyone who didn’t have a smile on their face.
Nick Stael van Holstein of Medical Support Offshore who supply medical kits and telemedical services to yachting, was there representing his company and said; “ I’ve been to Monaco and Fort Lauderdale shows with the same products, and I have had more sales success in the first two days here than in the other two shows combined.”
Jonathan Syrett, Managing Director of Camper & Nicholsons Spain, who are one of the consortium of organising yacht brokers for the Superyacht Show under the umbrella of MYBA said; “We are very happy with the progression from last year’s inaugural show. The completed Mol Vell Marina complex with its wide quayside frontage and excellent mooring facilities is a perfect location for displaying such a large number of superyachts. And, although we didn’t intentionally arrange the ratio of sail to motor yachts, we are delighted to see that around 50% of those presented this year are sail boats. This gives potential buyers of blue water sailing yachts a wide range of choice, which is unequalled at any other boat show.”

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