October 31, 2017

Monthly News - October 2017

-pic of the month- Sirena Expands in the USA

Austin Parker New Mid-Atlantic Dealer

Austin Parker has announced the appointment of Chesapeake Yacht Center as its dealer for the Mid-Atlantic region of the United States. Chesapeake Yacht Center was established in 2012, and quickly ascended to one of the top dealer names in its region. Headquartered in Baltimore, MD Chesapeake Yacht Center is a white-glove concierge dealership that serves customers throughout the Mid-Atlantic region for all their yachting needs and has additional offices and service points in Hampton and Woodridge, VA and Hilton Head Island, SC. "We’re excited to be joining forces with Austin Parker", said Josh White, co-Principal at Chesapeake Yacht Center. "The Austin Parker product is revered throughout Europe, and we can’t wait for our customers to see and experience first-hand the exceptional quality, workmanship and on-water performance of these fine yachts". "Austin Parker is launching a number of exciting new models this year", added Ryan Dobb, co-Principal at Chesapeake Yacht Center. "The new AP48 Sundeck was just launched, while the AP44 Sedan will celebrate its US launch at FLIBS in November. Styled by Fulvio De Simoni, both yachts are Category A vessels and carry features usually found on yachts of much larger size” Gianni Gravagno the Managing Director of Austin Parker USA , stated: "The appointment of Chesapeake Yacht Center is a key milestone in our newly-launched strategy to recruit and appoint quality dealers throughout North America. We’ve been preparing for the implementation of this strategy by designing and developing a whole new range of yachts, ranging from 35ft to 74ft. Operationally, we’ve established a base in Ft. Lauderdale staffed by experience industry professionals. Chesapeake Yacht Center enjoy an excellent reputation in the Mid-Atlantic and beyond. We’re genuinely excited about this partnership". Austin Parker located in Pisa, Italy builds yachts in the style of the traditional lobster boats used by the fishermen of Maine in the tough conditions of the Atlantic Ocean. The yard’s range currently comprises nine models from 35ft-74ft.


Azimut-Benetti Group Takes Full Control of Fraser

Azimut|Benetti Group has acquired the remaining share capital from V.Ships, a minority shareholder of Fraser for many years, thus leading the Group's stake in Fraser from 83% to 100% of the share capital.This acquisition is a key step in the Azimut|Benetti Group's development and expansion strategy. Fraser Group is the world’s largest provider of consulting services for yacht and superyacht ranging from Sales, Charter Retail, Charter Management, Yacht Management to Crew Placement. Fraser buys and sells over 50 super yachts a year, for a counter value of more than half a billion euro, and holds about 15% worldwide market share, which makes it the market leader. The Group manages directly 120 superyachts, some of them considerably large, with dozens of crew members. It operates around the world with direct offices in Munich, Fort Lauderdale, San Diego, Seattle, London, Palma, Bodrum, Doha, Dubai, Kuwait, Singapore and Sydney. In this context, Azimut|Benetti's operation will allow Fraser to continue the growth trend that has been going on for years and has led the company to a leading position in the industry. To this end, new offices have already been set up in New York and Hong Kong.  Mr. Paolo Vitelli, Azimut|Benetti Group President, has commented: "This recent acquisition is part of the strategic plan of our Group – which has been leading the luxury yacht industry for 17 years – to offer the owners not only the most beautiful yachts, but also the utmost service. We are the only player in the yachting industry that takes care of the owner along the entire process, from yacht purchasing to management, refit and repair service, crew recruitment and chartering to resale.”  With regards to Benetti, the Group’s brand specialising in mega and superyacht construction, the strategy will focus on the following: strengthening its leadership in South Europe; fostering the business of megayachts over 90 meters – the so called Gigayachts (3 are currently under construction, one has already been delivered) as well as the launch of the Oasis collection, a new lifestyle product complementing the more traditional shuttles. Technology is key: the new frontier are the innovative propulsion systems developed by Rolls Royce exclusively for Benetti.  Azimut Yachts’ expansion plan, on the other hand, focuses on an intense launch program of new products from the five collections (Grande, Flybridge, S, Magellano e Atlantis), thanks to significant investments in research and development, the progressive use of carbon fiber and the involvement of the world’s most renowned interior designers.  In this overall framework, Fraser will be another asset to offer owners all around the world the utmost service for yacht managing, chartering or reselling their yachts.

Benetti New Worldwide Sales Director

Benetti is proud to announce that Roberto Corno has been appointed Worldwide Sales Director. Roberto Corno, 44 years old, graduated at the Politecnico Milano, began his career in Benetti early in 2005 as project manager, moving then up to more responsibility roles in the commercial area, such as South-East Europe sales area manager, until the current new role. Roberto Corno will report to Christos Ramnialis – Benetti General Manager – who commented “Roberto in his new role will coordinate our sales team and I’m sure will significantly contributes to the achievement of our ambitious goals for the coming year. He has a particularly wide range of expertise, gained over the 13 years he has been working at Benetti, where he had the chance to increase his knowledge regarding all the major aspect of the yacht building industry, from project management and shipbuilding to sales. Roberto will bring the necessary energy and enthusiasm necessary to expand Benetti’s sales and markets coverage especially towards new growing markets”.

Benetti Yachtmaster 2018

New round for the Benetti Yachtmaster 2018, the annual event organised to provide captains and crew members with a full and up-to-date overview of all the shipyard’s news about its latest products and commercial solutions, as well as to offer discussion panels and meetings about boat and crew management, legal and regulatory updates, workshops, and team building activities for all attendees.  Palma de Mallorca, regarded as one of the industry’s main international hubs, provided the backdrop for the first event in the 2018 calendar, held from October 17 to 19. For more information and updates about upcoming Benetti Yachtmaster events, visit the social media channels dedicated to the initiative: Facebook, Instagram, YouTube and LinkedIn. Each event will be attended not only by captains but also by project managers, surveyors and owners’ representatives, many of whom have already worked with the shipyard.  Besides opportunities to socialise and have fun, attendees will also be offered B2B meetings with Benetti Yachtmaster sponsors: Awlgrip, Boero, Sevenstar Yacht Transport, MTN, Jotun, Peninsula Petroleum, Viraver, Slam, ISS GMT.  Christos Ramnialis, Benetti General Manager, said: “Benetti Yachtmaster is a fundamentally important initiative because it deals with one of the main issues in the world of motor yachts: the training of professional captains and crews who need up-to-date skills to ensure ever more qualified and efficient service and total safety on board”.


Moonen New CEO

Moonen Shipyards has announced that its Managing Director Emile Bilterijst is leaving the company to pursue new activities, selling his minority shareholding in Moonen Yachts Holding to majority shareholder AHMSA. The yard’s current Sales Manager Johan Dubbelman will take over the CEO role at the yard on an interim basis, while Bilterijst continues to advise the new management team and safeguard a smooth transition until December.  In his new role as interim CEO, Johan will be able to leverage on his considerable experience at Moonen Shipyards, which he joined in 2001. A qualified naval architect, Johan worked in purchasing and project management before becoming Sales Manager in 2014.  “Having been the public face and driving force behind the Moonen brand over the past 20 years, Emile has now decided to take a different path,” comments Johan. “We are very grateful to Emile for his energy and driving force over the years and wish him all the best for the future.”

Moonen New US Office

As part of a strategy to take top-quality Dutch motor yachts to the American market, Moonen is opening a new corporate office in Florida. It will supplement its already excellent relations in the Americas and enhance the ability to offer a first-class service to Moonen owners and captains and the brokerage community.


Riviera Owners Migrate North for a Cruise

The Whitsunday Islands off north Queensland are a dream destination for motor yachting enthusiasts. A group of 74 tropical islands, large and small, white sandy beaches, secluded bays and anchorages add up to the ultimate motor yachting experience.  For 12 Riviera and Belize owners and their families and friends, the annual R Marine Crawley Whitsundays Migration was a very special experience. The fleet included the R Marine Crawley lead motor yacht, a Riviera 52 Enclosed Flybridge, Double Trouble.  Eleven Riviera Flybridge motor yachts, from a classic Riviera 40, two 47's, a 48 to a pair of 52 Enclosed Flybridges, pair of 43 Open Flybridges, Two Sport Yachts and a 54 Belize Daybridge made up the impressive fleet.  To ensure the best possible voyage, the team at Runaway Bay, Gold Coast, based Riviera and Belize dealership R Marine Crawley scheduled the adventure to take advantage of weather windows throughout the Migration, staying overnight at anchor or in marinas, from Kingfisher Resort on Fraser Island to Rosslyn Bay Marina and the Percy Islands.  Voyaging north from the Gold Coast, the fleet met at Mooloolaba, a short day's voyage from the Gold Coast, for a welcome dinner.  The following day the motor yachts crossed the Wide Bay bar for a passage through the Great Sandy Straits, inside the world’s largest sand island, Fraser Island, about 135 nautical miles to the north of the Gold Coast.  “Ben Crawley briefed us about the Wide Bay Bar at the southern end of Fraser Island,” said Darren Cain who, with wife Tracey, joined the fleet aboard their new Riviera 4800, Fun Time. “It is notoriously challenging, but Ben gave us waypoints to navigate. He even organised for a Coast Guard boat to be on standby.  “In the event, the crossing was nearly mirror smooth, but Ben’s attention to detail and our safety was reassuring.”  “We live in Melbourne and all our boating experience has been in Port Phillip Bay and lakes,” he said. “This was our first time in open waters. Any trepidation was quickly quelled by the experience of all the other motor yacht owners as well as Ben and his crew.  "Our plan is to keep Fun Time in Queensland and commute from our home whenever we can make the time to escape."  For Lance and Jacqueline Dummett aboard their new Riviera 5400 Sport Yacht, Hailstorm, the best day of the entire Migration was the stopover at Lady Musgrave Island, a sand island at the western end of a gleaming coral atoll 32 nautical miles off the coast and 67 nautical miles north of Fraser Island.  “The water was glassy inside the atoll,” said Lance. “We snorkelled and watched the thousands of spectacular reef fish. There were even a few reef sharks.  “Some of the owners fished and took their catch onto the beach to cook over a fire. That’s fresh fish!”  Jacqueline used skills learned at a ladies' skipper course to berth Hailstorm in marinas as well as to help with mooring lines.  A second long-distance family was Alex and Kathy Tonks and their young children aboard their Riviera 40, Mezzaluna. Alex explained the name comes from a restaurant in which they had their first date.  "We live in Sydney and had planned to take our motor yacht to the Whitsundays at some stage. Because it is a long voyage for us we were reluctant to do it alone. We saw the notice about the Migration on the Events page of Riviera's web site and contacted R Marine Crawley. We could not have made a better decision.  "The dinner on the beach at Lady Musgrave Island was a highlight for us. Craig, Bruce, Brett and Roger from the 47 Flybridge Pearl caught several fish, including a huge red emperor and cooked them Fijian lovo style on the beach.  "We now have memories of a great group of people and have experienced boating paradise. Although we had not met any of them before, it was a fantastic group to share the journey with. This voyage has made us so happy to be part of the Riviera family."
Ben Crawley altered the schedule to ensure the flotilla took advantage of weather windows throughout the voyage.  “We arrived in the Whitsundays a little earlier than scheduled,” said Darren Cain. “So we spent a night in Cid Harbour on the western side of the large Whitsunday Island.”  “Then we went out to Bait Reef on the inner edge of the Great Barrier Reef. Tracey and I had never been out onto the reef itself so it was an exciting time for us.  “We loved the beach events and get-togethers that Ben and his team organised for us. It was a great chance to talk with other Riviera owners and learn from their experiences.”  The Cains and the Dummetts took delivery of their new Sport Yachts on the Gold Coast just two weeks before the Migration and all are highly impressed with their new yachts.  Tracey Cain appreciated the luxurious interior of Fun Time while Darren was impressed with the Volvo Penta IPS pod drives. “They are beautifully smooth and quiet,” he said. For Jacqueline and Lance Dummett, the single level lifestyle design is perfect.  “Our previous Rivieras were flybridge models,” said Jacqueline. “We had six people on board at times and the single level of Hailstorm means we can all relax together in a very comfortable environment.”  Lance Dummett said the visibility from the helm of the Sport Yacht is excellent.  “She is a phenomenally good motor yacht,” he said. "We encountered some difficult seas on our way back to the Gold Coast and she handled them with ease, even at 25 knots which seems to be her sweet spot for economy and handling."

Riviera Announces Dates for Festival of Boating 2018

Australia's world-class motor yacht builder, Riviera, has announced the dates for the 2018 Riviera and Belize Festival of Boating.  The Festival will run over four days from Thursday, May 24 to Sunday, May 27 at Riviera's facility in Coomera, south-east Queensland.  Riviera's focus on combining the rewards of the motor yachting lifestyle with learning opportunities will again be the theme of the Festival which will include a wide range of informative and hands-on educational workshops conducted by experts in their fields, designed to promote boating safety and to build confidence.  The most popular workshops will return with refreshed content, including the Ladies Skipper Program, safe towing and anchoring, understanding the weather, offshore seamanship and understanding navigation.  The popular guided tours of the Riviera facility will also return in 2018.  Riviera’s owner and chairman Rodney Longhurst said: “The Festival of Boating was created for Riviera and Belize owners to help them realise their full boating potential.  "We also welcome those who seek to join our Riviera family of owners and enjoy the best of motor yacht ownership.  “Whether you are investigating the incredible lifestyle of luxury motor yacht ownership or you have been enjoying boating all your life, everyone will discover something new and valuable at the 2018 Riviera and Belize Festival of Boating.”  In conjunction with its dealer network, Riviera has organised a range of exciting social events throughout the four days, culminating in the signature Saturday marina cocktail and gala evening.


Sirena Yachts Expands in the USA

Sirena Marine’s successful path is still on pace and after the presentation of two new motor yachts models Sirena 64 and 56 under the Sirena Yachts brand, is proud to announce the expansion in the North America with a new headquarter office in the US and with a dedicated on-site professional team.  Since its official debut at last Yachts Miami Beach Show last February, an additional remarkable achievement for Sirena Yachts that confirms its strong position in the American market is the recent sale of 2 units of Sirena 56 and 2 units of Sirena 64 in America.  Sirena Yachts is also excited to announce that two units of Sirena 64 Sirena will be officially on display at the 58th Fort Lauderdale International Boat Show.  Based on the solid and positive flow generated by the U.S debut of two of the current model range, Sirena Yachts is now ready to significantly make more steps ahead into the American market.  In order to enhance the services to the extensive US market demand, the Turkish shipyard announces the opening of a new US headquarter with a on-site professional team in Fort Lauderdale, the capital of yachting in the United States and not only.


Viking Fishing for a Cure

One-hundred boats participated in the ninth annual Bluewater Babes Fish for a Cure female angler fishing tournament earlier this month, raising more than $100,000 for local breast and ovarian cancer patients.  "It was fantastic - we broke all records this year," says tournament co-founder Jennifer McGrath. "This is much more than a fishing tournament. We had a combined 2,200 people at our Friday and Saturday night parties."  The tournament is held out of Sailfish Marina Resort in Palm Beach Shores, Florida. This was the first year the event included a teen division, which fished 11 boats and raised just under $25,000. Viking Yacht Service Center Purchasing Manager Dawn Samuels (above, right) won Top Lady Angler in the Billfish category with three sailfish aboard the Viking 66 Enclosed Bridge Princess Lily.  Congratulations to Dawn and all those who participated in this great cause!

Viking Family Friends and Fun

A beautiful Indian summer Saturday was the backdrop for Viking's Annual Employee Appreciation Day. Miles of smiles could be seen all day long with a picture-perfect day at the New Gretna, New Jersey, facility. The crowds feasted on delectable Jersey clams, fire-roasted pork, grilled burgers, hot dogs and of course satiated the sweet tooth with cupcakes and clouds of cotton candy. The DJ kept the party going and the kids found plenty to do outdoors with rock climbing, bounce houses, mechanical shark rides, pumpkin decorating, sand art and more. Plant and boat tours allowed everyone to learn more about their family member's work. Thanks to the staff volunteers who helped pitch in and thank you to every Viking employee for making the Viking Yacht Company the #1 boat builder in the world. 

Viking Hunt of a Lifetime

Viking President and CEO Patrick Healey, along with Bob Hixson, owner of La Bandera Ranch and multiple Viking Yachts, hosted a pair of three-day hunts for Viking Yacht owners. La Bandera in Carrizo Springs, Texas, was the home to this amazing trip which included dove and deer hunting, sumptuous meals and cocktails, outstanding hospitality, entertainment and incredible company. Carmine Galati, Principal of Galati Yacht Sales, said "We've been coming to hunt at La Bandera for years. Last year Pat and Bob came up with the idea to invite our Viking customers to enjoy it with us as well, and it's been an epic experience."

Viking Masters of the Med

Fortuna Yachting customers are spending a lot of time in the Winner's Circle. The Mediterranean Offshore Sportfishing Tournament, held in late summer, saw a pair of Viking 55 Convertibles on the top of the leaderboard. Fishing the Aegean Coast, the Viking Bluefin landed a 256-pound bluefin tuna to claim the title of biggest catch. Albatros, the other Viking 55, took a 148-pound tuna to the scales good for 2nd Place. At the Tuna Masters Teos tournament in Turkey, the Viking 42 Sport TowerShamu took Overall 1st Place with a 321-pound bluefin. Tornado, a Viking 42 Open, took 2nd Place with a 282-pound fish. 

Viking at Montego Bay

Congratulations to Chris Berry and his team fishing on his Viking 62 Safe Passage III. The crew was awarded 2nd Place at the Montego Bay Yacht Club International Marlin Tournament. Anglers Patrick Sleem and Mark Berry each released a marlin to add more hardware to the trophy case.


Zeelander and Voile de Sainte Tropez

This year, during the Voiles de Saint-Tropez, the stunning Z55 in Rhodium Silver made her appearance among some of the world's finest sail yachts, including many classic yachts with racing pedigree.  The Voiles de Saint-Tropez is a series of regattas in the bay of St. Tropez at the end of the cruising season in the South of France.