Visitors and residents to Dubai love nothing more than seeing the exclusive and select on show, and one of the many things Dubai does better than anyone is hosting some of the most memorable events on the international social calendar - be it gala openings, global sporting events, live concerts or film festivals.
The Dubai International Boat Show’s exponential growth over almost two decades, has ensured the yachting fraternity and marine enthusiasts also have a prime spot on the spectacular Dubai stage. Middle Eastern yacht owners account for some of the largest yachts in the world, and the region’s historic maritime ties to trade and commerce have grown into the leisure sector in dramatic style.
Held at the Dubai International Marine Club, Mina Seyahi, one of the most popular watersports destinations and berthing spots for yachts of all sizes in the Middle East, the Dubai International Boat Show is preparing for its 19th edition from 1-5 March 2011.
With a reputation as ‘Established. Trusted. Chosen.’, this iconic event, the region’s largest and longest running boat show, was recently recognised as ‘Marine Event of the Year’ at Arabian Gulf Yachting Awards for the 3rd consecutive year, confirming Dubai’s position as the marine capital of the region.
Together with its supporting partner Officine Panerai, manufacturers of world class timepieces, the industry’s best-known companies will be showcasing some of the world’s most stunning yachts to enthusiasts and entrepreneurs, as well as high net worth buyers and businesses.
Acting as the definitive ‘Who’s Who’ of the yachting world, international names such as Azimut, Hatteras, Princess Yachts, Sunseeker and Westport and SYBass members Benetti, Burger, Fincantieri, Trinity Yachts, Sanlorenzo, Oceanco, Amels and Heesen will line up alongside the locally-built brands including Al Shaali Marine, Gulf Craft and Majesty. Docked in the Marina Display, the most visited area of the event, they take their place among the most prestigious power boats and sailing boats in the region.
The Dubai International Boat Show will also introduce a number of new and exciting exhibitors spanning the entire marine sector. As one of the top five boat shows in the world, and more than US$35 billion worth of waterfront projects in the pipeline across the Middle East, the event also draws plenty of interest from overseas.
Helal Saeed AlMarri, CEO, Dubai World Trade Centre, said: “The Dubai International Boat Show is great opportunity for both buyers and suppliers to expand into one of the world’s most dynamic leisure marine markets. Over nearly two decades, this event has become a great driver for local companies and a focal point for the industry’s most influential players. The quality of the exhibitors is second to none, the venue is stunning and as this sector continues to grow steadily in the Middle East, the conditions could not be better to conduct big business.”
As an event that combines all aspects of the marine community, from engines to entertainment systems, kayaks to houseboats and interior designs to luxury galley kitchens, the Dubai International Boat Show has established itself not just as a show for boats, but a ‘must attend’ event for anyone interested in the watersports lifestyle. Jet skis and wet suits line up alongside the floating palaces, as tens of thousands of visitors roam the marina displays, boulevards and pavilions.
For those more comfortable under the water than on it, the only dedicated diving exhibition in the Middle East, Dive Middle East Exhibition (DMEX) brings together international manufacturers and local suppliers of sub-aqua diving equipment and services, with live demonstrations and daily ‘try-a-dive’ sessions. There is also the unique waterjet-powered ‘flying man’ backpack from JetLev, the inaugural Supercar Promenade of luxury sports cars, a Heritage Village display by Dubai Department of Tourism and Commerce Marketing (DTCM), and a host of live music performances to make sure the leisure is more than marine.
Combining business with leisure, new launches and networking, the 19th Dubai International Boat Show is poised to be another not-to-be-missed date on the Dubai social calendar.
First published in Men's Passion issue #28 February 2011