Shining the spotlight on the Bahamas-based charter fleet and the region’s rallying cruising grounds, the inaugural Bahamas Charter Show has proved that the Bahamas is bouncing back in the wake of Hurricane Dorian.
Running between 27 Feb - 1 March, the Bahamas Charter Show welcomed a fleet of 23 yachts to Bay Street Marina and Nassau Yacht Haven for two days of yacht tours, tasting menus and meetings with the Captains and crew.
A social programme extended over four days, with marina tours and informative seminars for attendees to take part in.
Over the course of the event, the YachtCharterFleet team was on the ground in Nassau to view the yachts on display and bring you live reporting from the show via our Instagram.
Designed to highlight the selection of luxury charter yachts which call the Bahamas their home, the show was key for charter brokers, media partners and industry executives to gain a better understanding of the Bahamas- particularly after Hurricane Dorian swept through the northern part of the region last year.
The archipelago has since launched a campaign called 'Still Rockin', which aims to promote the Bahamas and remind visitors that the island chain is still very much open for business after the hurricane.
The campaign also highlights that only two of the sixteen big islands of the Bahamas were hit by the hurricane.
The 'Still Rockin' campaign aims to promote the Bahamas and remind visitors that the island chain is still very much open for business after Hurricane Dorian hit the northern region last year.
The Bahamas Charter Show has played its own role in the campaign, reminding the yachting community that the Bahamas is a year-round tropical paradise.
Hundreds of islands and cays create diverse itineraries that can surprise even seasoned charter clients, while luxury facilities and well-equipped marinas ensure comfort and convenience every step of the way. Across Nassau, modern expansions and all-new developments prove that the Bahamas is on an upward swing.
The Minister of Tourism and Aviation the Honorable Dioniso D'Aguilar made a statement at the show; "This week, the unique appeal of our destination as a yachting paradise is being showcased for all enthusiasts of yachting to witness and experience- yacht brokers, captains and crew.
"The dynamic programme designed for this inaugural show will feature presentations by local industry experts, marina tours, an invite-only yacht viewing show and many other exciting social events."
He continued; "The takeaway from this event will be tremendous. Show participants will leave with a wealth of knowledge about yachting in our destination; leads on business opportunities and strong local social network.
"This four-day showcase will put on full display the marina infrastructure and gamut of operations and services throughout our islands that contribute to making yachting a top-notch experience in the Bahamas."
A welcome event kicked off proceedings on 27 February. Seminars provided valuable insight into the Bahamas, with useful information about Bahamas charter itineraries, secret destinations and private transport links across the island chain.
February 28 marked the first day of yacht viewings. In a fun twist, the participating yachts were decked out in individually themed decor. The yachts competed against each other for the winning theme.
The contest was designed to put the crews' creativity and the chefs' versatility to the test and the victors were crowned at the end of the show based on votes by the attendees.
The participating yachts were decked out in themed decor to put the crews' creativity and the chef's versatility to the test.
Scooping up first place was the 44m/145ft superyacht RELENTLESS, with her elaborate Alice in Wonderland decorations that felt more like falling down the rabbit hole than stepping on board a superyacht.
Menu tasting lunches were popular as well, with the 44m/145ft motor yacht ‘At Last’ and the 37m/120ft luxury yacht ‘Lady Victoria’ giving attendees a taste of what charter guests can expect on board with seven-course lunches.
The 44m/143ft superyacht STARSHIP impressed with her huge variety of tasting options as well, including potato latkes with caramelized onion and black caviar, sweet tomatoes and fresh burrata and blackened wahoo with tropical fruit salsa.
Tasting options on board STARSHIP included potato latkes with black caviar and blackened wahoo with tropical fruit salsa.
Over at Bay Street Marina, the 50m/164ft motor yacht ‘Amarula Sun’ turned heads with distinctive grey and burgundy profile and classic Trinity exteriors. On board, her opulent themes could be admired in more detail, with the rich frescoes on the ceiling and her vibrant gold and scarlet colour palette creating plenty of buzz on the docks.
The crew informed attendees that she would be chartering in Alaska during the summer months, giving charter guests the chance to discover the untapped potential of this cruising region.
When we asked our Instagram followers which yachts you’d like us to see on your behalf, by far the most popular response was 56m/184ft motor yacht BABA’S. As the newest and largest yacht in attendance, show-goers were keen to take a look at her interior layout, on-board features and sophisticated styling from Unique Yacht Design. For the show, she was decked out in a tasteful green and purple Mardi Gras theme.
Show-goers were keen to take a closer look at BABA'S and her interior layout, on-board features and sophisticated styling.
In a video tour published on our IGTV, we gave our followers a quick look at her well-appointed guest accommodation, enormous galley and marble-clad Owner’s en-suite. She also boasts an elevator that serves all floors including the sundeck, making her an accessible addition to the yacht charter fleet.
The show was rounded off with a ‘Celebrate the Bahamas’ event which hosted traditional Junkanoo festivities that celebrated the Bahamian culture and way of life.
Organizer Sanaa Vohra gave a concluding speech and shared initial feedback from attendees. “ We've been told the inaugural Bahamas Charter Show has been exhilarating, creative, exciting, refreshing, innovative, fun, fun and more fun.”
The Bahamas Charter Show has partnered with Nassau-based charity Ranfurly Homes for Children, an organization that provides transitional housing and childcare services for young adults in the Bahamas. The show has been raising funds for Ranfurly's future expansion, The Step, which offers support to young people making the transition from foster care to independent living. Donations took place across the event and you can also make a contribution below.
It's evident that the Bahamas is bouncing back after Hurricane Dorian made landfall in the northern area of the island chain last year.
The figures speak for themselves; 2019 enjoyed a record-breaking year, with a 9.8% increase in air and sea arrivals to the yachting destination. 2020 is off to a strong start as well, with a 7.9% increase in forward bookings for January.
The Still Rockin' campaign is also keen to highlight that only certain areas of the Bahamas were affected by Hurricane Dorian. Only two of the sixteen islands were hit by the cyclone, and the impacted islands have reported that they are all well on the road to recovery.
2019 enjoyed a record-breaking year, with a 9.8% increase in air and sea arrivals to the Bahamas.
Nassau is also taking steps to welcome more superyachts to the Bahamas, with the Pointe opening up a brand new marina for visiting yachts called One Particular Harbour.
It will be able to accommodate yachts measuring up to 150 foot (or 46m), with on-shore facilities including restaurants, pools, a hotel, luxury apartment rentals and an entertainment complex with a bowling alley and cinema suite.
Gorgeous beaches, pristine landscapes, and year-round sunshine make these islands an ideal playground for yachting.
Rounding down the show, the Minister of Tourism and Aviation the Honourable Dioniso D'Aguilar stated; "Nature has played a key role in the making of our islands as a yachting paradise. Located just fifty miles southeast of the Florida peninsula, the Islands of the Bahamas extend over 100,000 square miles of seas, encompassing 700 islands and 16 unique island destinations."
He said: "Gorgeous beaches, pristine landscapes, and year-round sunshine make these islands an ideal playground for yachting."
To find out more about any of the yachts which attended the Bahamas Charter Show 2020, please reach out to your preferred yacht charter broker.
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