Unique Boutique for Charter Yacht Shopping
Over the four days of June 17-20 Newport Shipyard buzzed with activity as it catered to charter yacht brokers, agents and other industry professionals attending the year’s Newport Charter Yacht Show presented by Helly Hansen Newport. Owned and operated by the Shipyard, the show exclusively showcases private luxury yachts for charter and offers attendees a chance to interact directly with yacht captains and crews and catch up on marine industry progress, changes and innovations through informational gatherings, including the American Yacht Charter Association seminars, and access to on-site vendors that are marine manufacturers, suppliers and show sponsors.
“This is the only tried-and-true charter show in the U.S.,” said Marisa Benoit of Fleet Miami, a charter and yacht management company. “I’ve been to all kinds of boat shows – Monaco, Miami, Palm Beach – and at those the charter boats are a smaller part of a bigger show; here it’s all about the charter yachts. I appreciate the attention to detail by the organizers, the camaraderie of the participants, and the manageable size of the show itself.”
Featured this year were 24 world-class yachts from homeports around the world, with the largest being the 150’ superyacht M/V Time For Us, shown by Burgess of New York and curated for cruising in inimitable style. The largest sailing vessel was the 141’ schooner Columbia, shown by Classic-Charters of the UK. She offers not only a visually arresting profile but also a distinguished provenance: built in 2014, she pays faithful homage to the great Grand Banks Fishing Schooner of 1923.
“Every yacht has something different to offer,” said Nick Duke, a charter manager with International Yacht Company (IYC). “It’s very much like match-making for the brokers; they match the client to the boat.” IYC showed the 86’ M/Y Enterprise and the 87’ M/Y Magical Days side by side, and Duke suggested both yachts might be perfect for a client who is chartering for the first time and wants a smaller boat with a smaller crew. “Magical Days is more classic, with traditional, timeless features, while Enterprise is more contemporary, so there are those types of choices to make about style, too,” he added.
Enterprise’s Chef Abby Pawlik won the Chefs Competition, which this year played off the theme “Sustainable Luxury” and drove home the importance of chefs in a broker’s search for the perfect fit.
“The Chefs are very important,” said Rana Johnson of Perini Navi USA. “You want to know their caliber and sophistication. There’s always a high level of expectation, like when you go to a resort or a five-star restaurant.”
Tablescaping, Specialty Cocktails and Designer Water competitions also focused on sustainable luxury, which, according to Chef Competition Judge and American Superyacht Association President Kitty McGowan, is a current trend in yachting. “It affects how food is sourced and presented onboard, even how fuels and fabrics are chosen,” she said. “It shows that the owners are good stewards while enjoying the fruits of their labor.”
The owners of Renaissance, Christine and Dr. Bob Emmons, came from Santa Barbara, Calif. to participate in the show alongside their crew, which won the Yacht Hop top prize with their “JAWS” props and costumes. (Also, for fun, crews participated in a series of contests to test their fender, drone, flower arrangement and fitness skills.)
“It’s our sign of support that we are all-in for the charter business,” said Christine, who played the part of the grieving widow from the movie “JAWS” at the Yacht Hop. “In fact, we designed Renaissance specifically for chartering, and we’ve gotten many charters and repeat customers as a result of this show.”
In addition to touring the yachts on their own time, brokers attended scheduled luncheons aboard various yachts, which gave them further opportunities to test the culinary fare and experience the service that would be provided to charter guests. Captain Thomas Tanner got positive feedback after his crew hosted an oyster and champagne tasting for 30 aboard the 139’ M/Y Fabulous Character. “The brokers were talking about dates and rates for chartering with us,” he said, “so that’s a good sign!”
Newport Charter Yacht Show Sponsors
Presenting sponsor for the fourth straight year was Helly Hansen Newport. Sea Hawk Paints and Alexseal Yacht Coatings sponsored the Monday evening Captain & Crew Briefing and Cocktail Party along with Bridge Liquors who was the bar sponsor. KVH Industries sponsored the Thursday evening Closing Party & Awards for the third straight year. BankRI and Southcoast Health Urgent Care sponsored the Belle’s Daily Breakfast during the show. GMT, Fore Points Marina and The Chanler at Cliff Walk were the Crew Competition sponsors along with KEEL Vodka who was the Signature Cocktail Competition supplier. Yachting magazine was the show’s official media partner for the fourth straight year, and the Newport Marriott once again partnered as the show’s preferred hotel. The Boys & Girls Club of Newport County, host of the Newport Yacht Rendezvous on August 9 at Newport Shipyard, was the show’s charitable partner.
About Newport Shipyard: Newport Shipyard, one of the most popular and recommended shipyards in the U.S., is a full-service marina and shipyard with over 3,500 linear feet of dock space that can accommodate yachts up to 300+ feet. Its amenities include a dockside café, ship store, fitness center, courtesy vehicles and crew housing. With its friendly staff, welcoming atmosphere, and event planning capabilities, Newport Shipyard is host to many prestigious yachting events including the Newport Charter Yacht Show, the Candy Store Cup superyacht regatta, Newport Yacht Rendezvous benefitting the Boys & Girls Club of Newport County, Newport Brokerage Boat Show held concurrently with the Newport International Boat Show, and more. For the full Newport Shipyard experience, visit: www.NewportShipyard.com
About Helly Hansen Newport: Helly Hansen Newport, the oldest Helly Hansen licensed store in North America, has been owned and operated by Jay Lasky since 1992. Known for Outfitting Active Lifestyles for Big Weather, Helly Hansen Newport strives to be the trusted solution for the best quality outdoor gear for active lifestyles and everyday needs. Helly Hansen Newport prides itself on delivering an exceptional customer experience and has been serving online customers since 1998. For more information, visit: www.bigweathergear.com