The Australian Superyacht Rendezvous (ASR) held 20th 21st April at the Gold Coast Marina and shipyard was a flag ship for things to come from the Australian industry.  Congratulations must go to Trent and Rebecca Gay who organized and hosted the ASR and of course the Gold Coast City Marina and Shipyard was the perfect location.

The industry forum held on the Friday and the showcase of 20 of Australia’s finest superyachts available for charter confirmed the Superyacht Industry in Australia has come of age.

With industry stating Australia now has the largest fleet of superyachts available for charter of any country in the Asia Pacific region the industry in Australia is poised for significant growth.

There is a spotlight on Australia, industry is investing and government departments in Australia are keen to work with industry to drive the economic benefits that are clearly seen in tourism, the creation of jobs and revenue for the country.

M Edwards spokesperson for Superyacht Australia said “It is fantastic that industry has the initiative to drive an event such as this.  Whilst organised by a private company this event and the way it was organized is invaluable for our whole Australian industry.  The feedback from members has been extremely positive and the forum discussion truly put the issues facing the industry and Superyacht Australia on the line.  It is time for change and we all acknowledge that.  A few years ago, we could not have said we had a thriving domestic charter market, things are definitely changing “down under” as they say.” We all agree there’s nothing like Australia!

A key issue raised at the forum was marketing and the issue of how best to market the industry to attract increased numbers of foreign flagged vessels to cruise Australia’s pristine, secluded, unique destination and undertake repairs and refits.  This issue is up for discussion, it is time to turn things on their head and question the traditional platforms being utilized to get the message out domestically and globally.

Barry Jenkins Chairman of Superyacht Australia who was also in attendance for the event stated “Four hours of in-depth discussion can be challenging however this was not the case at the recent Australian industry forum.  Interchange between participants and facilitators Clare Wray and Joe Akacich was brisk, relevant, focused and disclosing.

Information emanating from the ASR will certainly assist strengthening and directing Superyacht Australia’s on-going strategies on behalf of the Australian industry allowing us to liaise closer in concert with all concerned to maximise outcomes. No doubt further discussion on some issues will continue at the up-coming ASMEX Conference 21-23 May also on the Gold Coast.  Congratulations and thanks must go to the Australian Superyacht Roundtable organisers – the Event and Marketing team at Gold Coast City Marina & Shipyard.”

With every superyacht event comes a VIP Party and the ASR did not let anyone down.  The VIP networking evening was second to none with champagne flowing, great entertainment, fireworks displays, guests visiting the showcase of amazing superyachts on display and generally stating Australia is up there with the best.  

With the Queensland government about to launch a strategy for the Queensland Superyacht Industry Cameron Bray Chair of Superyacht Queensland commented, “The second Australian Superyacht Rendezvous was a huge success, intelligently evolving from its inaugural year. The introduction of the industry round table forum gave great insight into where the industry sits now and where we need to go, with collaborative input from stakeholders right across the board including Captains, shipyards, marinas and charter brokers. “

The Rendezvous allows the industry an opportunity to showcase its growth and maturity by displaying some of the finest yachts Australia has to offer, delivering charter guests the same quality experience as if they were chartering a yacht in the French Riviera.

The Minister for Tourism Steve Ciobo was also in attendance.  The Minister has been the champion for the Superyacht Industry for the past few years and stated that he is working hard to drive legislative changes that will allow international superyachts to charter in Australia.

The big question now being asked is the timing of the next Australian Superyacht Rendezvous???  Superyacht Australia whole heartedly supports this initiative as events like this are a proven marketing tool for the industry and it was encouraging to see so many industry players sponsoring the event.

Again, well done Trent and Rebecca and the team at the Gold Coast City Marina and Shipyard.