The 25th annual Yacht & Brokerage Show opened yesterday under rain clouds that hung around much of the day, keeping the air muggy and threatening to ruin the show.
Though they never quite delivered – raining just once for a short time during show hours – they might have managed to keep buyers away, causing what many crew and brokers called a quiet opening day.
Boats were shown and clients were on the docks, but many seemed there on appointment and were expected, according to several brokers. What made the show quiet was that there seemed to be fewer potential buyers just browsing.
Chalk that up to the menacing cloud.
“It’s always hard to gage how it is,” one captain said. “You don’t have many people come through, but it only takes one and then it’s a great show.”
The docks that seemed to have the most traffic were those targeting a niche. New yachts drew attention, including the new 76-foot Hargrave, the company’s first foray into the owner-operator market in years, and the new Westport 130, which had steady interest from passersby and brokers alike.
At the north end of the show, TrawlerPort Pavilion and surrounding docks around Ramp 7 looked like the place to be yesterday, consistently buzzing with people. Seminars start there today and over the next three days include such topics as heading to the Bahamas, places to see on the Great Loop, and how to avoid the most common systems failures onboard. (See a program in the front of the show program directory. It’s hosted by PassageMaker magazine.)
And the Sportfish Pavilion between ramps 3 and 4 drew attention with the first of four days of seminars on everything from the art and science of “luring” fish to targeting sailfish and the secrets of dolphin and wahoo. Traditionally relegated to the convention center, the seminars run for four days at the pavilion and are organized by the International Game Fish Association.
Megayacht captains and brokers agreed traffic near their vessels was light yesterday, but few complained.
“It’s early yet,” one broker said with a smile.
Lucy Chabot Reed is editor of The Triton. Comments: firstname.lastname@example.org.