June 30, 2021

Monthly News - June 2021

-pic of the month- Bavaria New CEO

Bayliss Shines in Tournaments

The best boats typically have cohesive teams, and Wave Paver the Bayliss 77 always seems to be in the running.  To better their strategies and teamwork, crews tend to spend copious amounts of time practice-fishing before lines go in on Day 1 of a tournament. Wave Paver, after what we would call a pretty good day of practice; 4 blue marlin, 3 white marlin and 1 sailfish were caught out of Boat Harbor in the Bahamas.  The practice seems to be working in their favour! Wave Paver placed 3rd in the Custom Shootout, and as Saturday placed 1st in the Walker's Cay Invitational. They also weighed the first blue marlin in Walker's Cay in over 20 years at 508 pounds. Through hard work, determination and good fishing, this crew has continued to come out on top. 

Bavaria New CEO

Marc Diening is to be the new CEO of Bavaria Yachts. On August 1st, he will move from the fire protection specialist Magirus, which boasts a rich tradition, to Giebelstadt. Before Diening, 45, took his position as CEO of Magirus over five years ago, he spent over ten years in a management position at Bombardier and worked as a consultant for well-known companies such as Knorr-Bremse and Deutsche Bahn, among other positions.  “We are thrilled to welcome Marc Diening on board at Bavaria Yachts. With his proven record of success in sustainable development of companies and his personal qualities, we are certain that Marc Diening is the right person and has the consistency required to continue the course Bavaria has mapped out and to lead us into the next chapter of new products and solid growth with his own accents. Marc Diening has been an enthusiastic sailor since he was young and knows the yachting branch extremely well,” explains Kai Brandes, Managing Partner of CMP.  Michael Müller came on board at Bavaria Yachts in November 2018 with the entrance of the new investor Capital Management Partners (CMP), initially as a Marketing and Sales Director. In February 2019, Müller, now 64, was appointed CEO. At his own request, Michael Müller is now handing over the helm to Marc Diening, in order to have more time for his family in the future.  “We would like to thank Michael Müller for his extremely successful work as the CEO of Bavaria Yachts. Thanks to his experience restructuring companies, his leadership style and his personal motivation to make Bavaria Yachts one of Europe’s leading shipyards once more, Bavaria has turned a corner and is back on a good course. We are pleased that Michael Müller will continue to support Bavaria Yachts with his experience as a member of the advisory board,” emphasises Brandes.

Bering New Monaco Office

To deal with growing enquiries from Europe Bering has also opened a new office in Monaco. The operation will be headed up by Bogdan Gusarev.  “The explorer market is booming and Bering’s rugged, steel-hulled platforms are gaining traction in Europe,” says Gusarev. “European clients are particularly demanding as they are usually experienced and technically knowledgeable yachtsmen who expect high quality. We fully expect to see more European clients building with us in the near future.” In 2021 Bering opened three offices around the world, including Bering Moscow, Bering Fort Lauderdale and Bering Monaco.

Evo Yachts Valerio Rivellini One to Watch

Now in its 33rd year, the Best of the Best Award is organized by the renowned Robb Report magazine to celebrate individuals and companies which have distinguished themselves in their fields through outstanding craftsmanship, exceptional attention to detail and the relentless pursuit of perfection.  In the yachting sector, engineer and designer Valerio Rivellini was chosen to receive the ‘One to Watch’ award, recognizing him as a talent to watch closely because “although he is already active in the industry, we believe his contribution [to yacht design] will grow even further in the future. We are fascinated by his ability to create beautiful and above all innovative designs on yachts of different sizes. His design solutions represent a revolution and have inspired others to come up with a similar style. We are looking forward to his next projects.”  Valerio Rivellini, owner of the Rivellini Engineering and Yacht Design firm, has been working for many years with various shipyards, including Blu Emme Yachts, for which he designed all the models of the Evo Yachts brand, famous worldwide for their innovative and avant-garde nature, and Gozzi Mimì, for which he has presented a modern reinterpretation of the traditional Sorrento “gozzi”. His most recent project, Evo V8, a revolutionary 24-meter, will make its world premiere at the Cannes Yachting Festival in September 2021. This yacht stems from the ambition to create a model which presents only the best of the sailing and motorboating worlds. Rivellini has also recently presented a concept for a 56-meter Explorer, the result of a combination of different ideas, which has fascinated the world’s media. His range of action, however, is not limited to the nautical industry; over the years, he has also come up with a number of innovative solutions for the industrial and automotive sectors.  Commenting on the news, Rivellini said: “This award cannot but make me happy and proud, because it not only recognizes what I have done so far in the nautical field, but also reflects my desire to continue to innovate in this sector, which I feel sure has big and important surprises in store for the future”.

Fairline New Dealer in South West of England

Luxury British boatbuilder, Fairline Yachts, announces the appointment of Seawood Yachts as its newest addition to the dealer network, covering the South West of England region including Devon, Cornwall and Somerset. Seawood Yachts will be known as Fairline Southwest. Seawood Yachts is owned and managed by John Wood and Gary Ruffell, who were directors of Fairline Andalucia between 2003 and 2009. Operating from Exmouth and Torquay Marinas, Seawood Yachts offers a range of marine services including new boat sales and brokerage, yacht management and maintenance, and a chandlery. John comments, “Having been a Fairline dealer previously, we know that owners of Fairlines are very discerning. They appreciate high quality customer service and tailored aftersales support, something which we are proud to offer. In most marinas across the South West there is a high percentage of Fairline boats, so we’re confident it is the right brand for us and will be a highly successful partnership. We’re particularly excited to get clients onboard the Targa 65 GTO, its style, design and sense of light really makes you feel like you are on a much larger boat and we’re sure it will be a popular choice amongst our client base.” James Powell, Fairline’s Sales Director, adds, “Both Fairline and Seawood Yachts value customer service incredibly highly, which is something that is crucial to us as a brand when working with our authorised dealer partners. The partnership enables us to move forward with our aim of increasing visibility of the Fairline brand across the key yachting regions of the UK.” Seawood Yachts will work in collaboration with the main Fairline UK dealer, Bates Wharf, as a sub-dealer covering the South West of England.

Ferretti Group New Benelux Dealer

Ferretti Group expands its presence in Europe and announces a new dealership agreement with Boothuis, which will handle marketing in the Benelux countries on an exclusive basis for the Riva, Pershing, Ferretti Yachts and Itama brands. The partnership, effective from May 1, 2021, will further consolidate the Group’s assistance network in the Netherlands, Belgium and Luxemburg, providing a comprehensive service to owners in this region, from ordering to after-sales assistance.  Boothuis is a collaboration between De Valk Yachtbrokers and Leonardo van den Berg, with offices in one of De Valk’s main sales centres in Loosdrecht. Open seven days a week, this 600 m² covered sales marina features a wide range of facilities, including a 30-tonne boat lift.  “This agreement is another important step in our ambitious programme to strengthen and expand our business. By deciding to work with a joint venture of highly experienced yacht brokers able to manage every aspect, thanks to the wide range of services offered, we continue to pursue our development plan and further strengthen our distribution channel, while maintaining the standards of quality and excellence that have always been a distinctive feature of Ferretti Group worldwide” commented Stefano de Vivo, CCO of Ferretti Group.  "For us, the future starts now. The dealership agreement with Ferretti Group means we are ready to enter a new chapter after many years of boat sales. With Ferretti Yachts, Riva, Pershing and Itama, we will be able to offer owners the experience of the true yachting dream,” said Leonardo van de Berg, CEO of Boothuis. "It is an extraordinary goal achieved thanks to the support of all our employees. We are a family in which everyone takes care of each other: this is the key to our success”.

Heesen New Marketing Director

Heesen is delighted to share and announce the appointment of Mark van Heffen as Marketing Director, effective from 1 September. Leveraging his expertise in strategic management consultancy and international marketing communications, Mark will oversee the global marketing strategy and operations for our shipyard.  A skilled marketing professional with over 15 years of experience in global marketing management, Mark brings a wealth of knowledge to the role. He has won multiple international marketing accolades throughout the duration of his career and has held senior roles in lifestyle products and automotive industries, including AkzoNobel, PON, and Volkswagen A.G.  Mark has carried out significant consultancy projects for Heesen prior to his appointment and is well-placed to support Heesen's growth. In his Marketing Director ad interim capacity, Mark has already initiated several successful projects. Amongst them, the world’s first-ever yachting chat show – YachtTalk by Heesen and the all-new brand movie recently launched on Heesen’s TV platform and social media channels.  "We are excited to have someone of Mark’s calibre join our team," said Friso Visser, our CCO. "His in-depth marketing knowledge and unconventional approach coupled with excellent team management skills will help to accelerate our plans for a robust and successful future."

Invictus New Store in Santa Margherita Ligure

Invictus Yacht style lands in Santa Margherita Ligure, one of the gems of the Tigullio Gulf and a must-see destination for Mediterranean yachting.  The new Invictus Capoforte store by Nautica Bertelli was inaugurated on 25 June. During the evening, participants were able to admire some of the shipyard's models moored at a dedicated jetty: the flagship TT460, the successful GT320 and three hulls from the Capoforte collection, the CX280, FX270 and FX190.

Nimbus Official Partner to Scandinavian Mixed Golf Tournament

Sweden is a country at the forefront of innovation and equality where golf has become a sport for everyone. Nimbus, being a Swedish boating company, shares these values and will now host an event that will break new ground. Sweden’s best players of all time Annika Sörenstam and Henrik Stenson will be the hosts when 78 men and 78 women compete against each other, on the same golf course in the same competition for the first time. Ever.  Scandinavian Mixed wants to inspire the future of golf, just like our Scandinavian-designed boats have inspired boaters for over fifty years. At Nimbus, we’re all about creating great experiences and memories for our clients. Sponsoring the Scandinavian Mixed Tournament, Nimbus gives four promising young golfers the chance to create their own unique memories and experiences on the golf course. We invite them to play the ProAm challenge which is a great opportunity to play the game and acquire knowledge from professionals. Nimbus will for sure create great experiences and memories for these youths.  

Nimbus Summer Memories and Song

Summer has arrived to Sweden and Nimbus would like to send a warm greeting, releasing a brand new Nimbus video about what Nimbus is really about; shared experiences with friends, family and the life at sea. This comes together with a very own Nimbus version of the song “I denna ljuva sommartid” or in English “In This Delightful Summer Time” and is a reminder of the wonderful times shared on the water. Nimbus make this tune the soundtrack of this season for Nimbus boat owners. 

Nordhavn Distant Pennant Reaches 500 Owners

The Nordhavn Distance Pennant Program reached a milestone earlier this week with the 500th Nordhavn owner registering their miles traveled. Created in 2008 as a way for Nordhavn owners to show off their stripes, the program has racked up an impressive 7,143,000 nm. Certainly, Nordhavns have many, many more total miles under their keels with more than 600 boats having been built and cruising the globe, but this total – incomplete though it may be – is nonetheless impressive. Owners earn pennants by registering their miles in the Distance Pennant Program (DPP) data base. Pennants are awarded after reaching 2,500 miles and 5,000 miles and then in increments of 5,000 from there. Additionally, owners who have circumnavigated or reached extreme cruising grounds (above 30 degrees N or below 30 degrees S) receive special pennants. Nordhavn 62 Bill Baker is one of six boat owners who earned a new pennant the past month. “Each day I record my ending miles in the logbook and there is a sense of accomplishment,” said Baker. He and wife, Emmy, received their 10,000 nm pennant a few weeks ago – and just in the nick of time. The 5,000 nm burgee that flew proudly on their bow as they logged miles traveling around Australia, Canada, and the U.S. west coast, was falling apart at the seams. “I leave my pennant up as I cruise so it earns the miles also,” he said.  It’s almost as though having an old shredded Distance pennant to retire is itself as significant as reaching the next milestone pennant. Nordhavn 43 owner John Cavanagh calls it an important part of the DPP. “Flying that pennant gives an authenticity to what you’ve done,” he said. “It lets people know that you have experience.” Cavanagh and wife Lynn’s experiences have come from cruising the west coast U.S., going through the Panama Canal and venturing the likes of Panama, Columbia, and the San Blas islands. Their 5,000 nm pennant was lost in a squall off Costa Rica so they replaced it with a standard Nordhavn burgee, which Cavanagh describes as having since become “embarrassingly battle hardened”.  For cruisers like Baker and Cavanaugh, the meaning behind the pennant is obvious, but for others who do not own a Nordhavn, it’s almost as though it represents a secret society which they are not a part of. When Baker explained its significance to a friend who has a 70-foot cruiser, the friend in return said: “It means you are a boater and I own a boat.”  The simple flag with such a big message says as much about the boat as it does about the owners who fly it. It’s a reminder of the places that are accessible to Nordhavn owners and few others, the rough seas confidently handled, and the motivation for adventures to be had. ”It is a symbol of durability and safety but it is also a symbol of the adventurous spirit shared by all Nordhavn owners whether they travel the world or stay in one region,” said Baker. The latter part of his sentiment is an important one, and could be part of the reason the DPP has only captured its 500th owner instead of every owner. The program is about the people who use their Nordhavn in any manner, not just those who travel to the furthest corners of the world, but both Baker and Cavanagh fear owners whose mileage or destinations don’t seem as ambitious are less inclined to post to the data base. Even Cavanagh admits to not participating in the program until he and wife, Lynn, began making more serious passages. Baker, however, is an advocate for owners to post any and all miles, regardless of the grounds. “In reality, most people cruise predominantly in their home waters,” Baker said. “This makes them experts in a local area and world cruisers will benefit from their knowledge.”  Besides that, sometimes an owner’s most aggressive cruising comes in their backyard waters. “Owning a Nordhavn gives you the confidence to go anywhere,” Baker said. “Just because you don’t cross oceans doesn’t mean you aren’t a capable or confident boater. Some of my most ambitious boating has been done in local waters. Every mile, no matter where it came from, is well earned.”  Which is the beauty of the Distance Pennant. Behind every amount, from 2,500 to 100,000, there is a story that exists, begging to be told. Cavanagh sees it as the ultimate ice breaker. Without saying a single word, the pennant gives other Nordhavn owners a glimpse into one’s cruising history. Cavanagh flies his recently earned 25,000 nm burgee and invites people to ask him about the experiences behind the miles. Additionally, he hopes new boaters see it as an opportunity to use him as a resource or a source of inspiration. “It’s what I do when I see other people’s pennants,” he said. “I look at someone who has logged in one hundred thousand miles, I want to talk to them.”  Even with about 610 Nordhavns floating around the world, the Nordhavn owner is a rare breed. Perhaps that’s why they are such kindred spirits, connected simply by the track record of their yacht brand and by their own potential. The Distance Pennant takes that connection to the next level. “You know when you see someone else’s miles, they have also been in rough water, seen beautiful sea life and stayed in some amazing places. I feel pride in knowing that I have done that also,” says Baker, then adds, “I’m already working on my next pennant!”

Nordhavn Childrens Book

Move over Dr. Seuss, there’s a new cat in town and his name is Gilligan. He doesn’t have tricks up his sleeve, but he does get into plenty of mischief. And, oh yes, he lives on a Nordhavn. He is the title subject of the new book Gilligan, The Fat Boat Cat written by Alexa Shanafelt, who, along with husband, Pat, owns the Nordhavn 50 Noeta. Shanafelt is the latest owner to throw her hat into the Nordhavn literary ring, but is the first to pen a Nordhavn children’s book based on her journeys – er, make that, her cat’s journeys. The book follows the adventures of Gilligan as he goes about his life as a feline liveaboard. Adopted by the Shanafelts four years ago, life on a boat is the only life Gilligan has known. He was first introduced to boating as a kitten on the family’s Nordhavn 46 (also called Noeta) and continued his position as Furry First Mate after they moved on to Noeta in 2019. When it came to finding inspiration for a story line for Gilligan, Shanafelt recalls with a laugh, “We had a lot to work with!” Before her life transitioned to full-time liveaboard, Shanafelt was a school teacher in Washington and Idaho so she had lots of experience working with kids. And thanks to her own brood of three she was immersed in the world of children’s literature. Despite this, she hadn’t ever considered writing a book, and in fact, the idea really was conceived as a senior project for daughter Hailey’s final year of schooling. Shanafelt has homeschooled her two younger kids, Hailey, 19, and Jack, 17, since they became full-time liveaboards four years ago (eldest daughter Mikayla, 25, had already graduated public school). When researching a project that would highlight Hailey’s talent for illustrating, she came up with the idea of creating a children’s book. Together, Shanafelt and Hailey brainstormed the concept of centering the story around Gilligan’s adventures as a boat cat, knowing fully well there was loads of material from which to pick. Poring through their vast database of Gilligan photos, taken in his various states of disarray, they started to flesh out a story line. The tales behind pictures taken of him sleeping in the sink, soaking wet from an unintentional jump overboard, and hiding in cupboards and drawers, along with the things he tends to do on a daily basis, combine to make up the narrative of Gilligan, The Fat Boat Cat. Hailey is now a freshman at Washington University in Bellingham, but while on the boat would spend her down time sketching, and also created commissioned art pieces for customers who lived in the towns surrounding their marina in Mexico. She took on the challenge of illustrating the book with earnest, drawing and re-drawing to make sure the images perfectly captured the tone and message of the words on the page. For her part as author and publisher, Shanafelt called on her cousin, a book editor, for guidance, and learned about layout, design, color and word choice. “It took a year of drawing, writing, revising and editing, but we pulled it off before [Hailey] went to college!” said Shanafelt. Hailey plans to apply for the Design program at her school as she hones in on a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree and hopes the book will play a role in helping to achieve that goal. Over the duration of their collaboration, the book evolved into something more than just a school project. Since Noeta has spent so much time in Mexico, Shanafelt decided to offer the book as a learning tool for local kids. She created a bi-lingual book for Spanish speakers learning English and vice-versa. A former Spanish teacher in the U.S., it felt almost instinctive to also offer the book in Spanish, she said. Despite her background, Shanafelt enlisted the help of a book editor in Mexico to ensure the translation sounded native. In La Paz and Ensenada, the book has become popular with American cruisers who want their children to know Spanish. Meanwhile, Shanafelt teaches English to a group of Mexican students and uses the book in her classroom. “They love it when I show them real pictures and videos of Gilligan,” she said. “It makes the language real for them.” Since Gilligan hit the market last August, it’s sold around 200 copies all over the world including in England, Canada and Spain. It’s been well-received, too, earning 5 stars on Amazon and goodreads.com and a glowing review by a blogger in Spain. Shanafelt says she’d like to embark on a mini book-tour with Gilligan in her old school district to give readings to the students there. “It’s exciting,” says Shanafelt, but to date hasn’t focused on marketing the book. “We were in this for the experience.” If sales continue to rise, would Hailey and her mom team on a second Gilligan title? “[Hailey] is proud of her work, but she is a little tired of drawing – and re-drawing – cats,” says Shanafelt. “I don’t think I can get a sequel out of her!”

Riva Lounge Opens in Porto Cervo

The epitome of excellence and timeless elegance, Riva is back to set the Costa Smeralda summer on fire with the exclusive new Riva Lounge located in the unique atmosphere of the Waterfront in Porto Cervo.  After openings in internationally renowned yachting destinations, Riva Lounge now comes to Sardinia too, in keeping with the guiding philosophy of “Riva inside, inside Riva”, which extends the brand’s values beyond the yachting sector. The formula is the same as the one behind the other destinations’ success: to bring the design, attention to detail and heritage of the Riva brand to famous hotels, restaurants and clubs that are close to a landing point for yachts. The initiative is promoted by Smeralda Holding.  In the Riva Lounge officially opened on June 26 in partnership with Waterfront Costa Smeralda, the timeless Riva legend is married to the location’s design by architect Gio Pagani. All the furnishings in the Lounge, such as the Aquarama chairs and tables, have the same features typically found on the boats, giving owners a taste of the Riva legend and firsthand experience of the materials and woods used for almost 180 years to build the world’s most famous boats, chosen and loved by stars and celebrities. The 1950s Dolce Vita style and unique detailing - like the chrome, steel and lacquered mahogany or the aquamarine cushions - conjure up at first glance the iconic yachts of an unforgettable golden age.  Visitors can bask in a relaxing but sophisticated atmosphere just steps from the yachts moored in Porto Cervo Marina, one of the most glamorous in the Mediterranean. Top chefs and bartenders provide guests with an even more exclusive experience.  In this unique location, the world’s most talented mixologists show off their skills and create spectacular masterpieces of the art of the cocktail, inspired by local excellence and the history of Riva and coordinated by Edoardo Arcesi. After following his passion for mixing drinks by working in top bars in London and Rome, the cosmopolitan bar manager comes to the Costa Smeralda, where he combines outstanding creative flair with impeccable service. Riva Lounge offers an original and sophisticated drinking experience, with a choice of creative cocktails, a broad range of famous labels, and niche selections from Petit Vigneron. A tailor made sensory experience enhanced by the sophisticated, genuine flavours of cuisine created by the finest chefs on the Costa Smeralda.  Summer 2021 at the Waterfront sees the return, against the backdrop of prestigious international luxury brands and coveted yachts moored in the magnificent setting of the Porto Vecchio, of the Ferretti Group VIP Lounge, a refined space in which to relax, and the Riva temporary boutique, offering an elite shopping experience characterized by glamour and style.

Riviera Praises Team

A welcomed time-out from a busy schedule was enjoyed by Riviera’s 800-strong team as owner Rodney Longhurst hosted a special thank you lunch at the company’s state-of-the-art boatbuilding facility on the Gold Coast.  Mr Longhurst acknowledged the efforts of the entire Riviera team for the outstanding achievements by the company this year, culminating in an exceptional showcase at the Sanctuary Cove International Boat Show where Riviera welcomed more than 25 new motor yacht owners.  Riviera’s largest motor yacht display for the year was accompanied by the Riviera Festival of Boating, an exclusive event attended by 600 Riviera yacht owners and their families, and which comprised 40 boating seminars and on-water workshops designed to empower owners to enjoy their boating to the fullest.  The Riviera team’s significant preparations for the boat show this year also included the world premiere of the 645 SUV, in addition to the official announcement of a new Riviera flagship with the 78 Motor Yacht.  The sophisticated 78 MY design represents a distinguished new era for Riviera, delivering the perfect combination of family cruising, entertaining and blue-water passage-making capability. The 78 MY will have her world premiere in early 2022.  In his talk with the Riviera team, Mr Longhurst praised their dedication to excellence that has positioned the luxury blue-water boating reputation of Australia’s premier luxury motor yacht builder to be among the best in the world. “We’re building world-class motor yachts - that is indisputable, and this reputation has been 41 years in the making, with the last 10 years being exceptional,” said Mr Longhurst. “We’ve been building towards this long before the current market, and we will continue building on this well into the future.” In a reminder of what drives Riviera’s pursuit of excellence, the Riviera team was introduced to the new owners of the first Riviera 645 SUV, the Haddrell family, featured on the big screen as they and their extended family stepped aboard their new motor yacht for the first time.  “This is a wonderful reminder of why we all come to work each day, and that is to create memorable, magic moments for our owners,” Riviera’s Brand and Communications Director, Stephen Milne, told the team.  Ray and Jenny Haddrell have owned seven Riviera motor yachts on their journey to the Riviera 645, highlighting the regard that Riviera enjoys among its motor yacht owners.  Mr Longhurst expressed his great pride in the team for today’s Riviera motor yachts that are acknowledged by Riviera owners as the best the company has ever created.  “Building world-class yachts requires a world-class attitude and none of this is possible without you working together as a team, supporting our new apprentices and mature trainees and each other and, in so doing, passing your knowledge and skills on,” Mr Longhurst said.  “No matter where you work on site, everyone here plays an important part in our future. It is tremendous to be part of and I am extremely proud of you all.”  The Riviera team last month surpassed 800 people working on site after welcoming another 34 people to meet forward orders.  Riviera is on track to build more than 120 motor yachts in 2021, a growth of almost 30 per cent from the previous year. Over the past 41 years, the company has launched more than 5700 Riviera motor yachts that are now being enjoyed all around the world from the South Pacific and Asia to the Americas and Europe.

Riviera Attracts Record Apprenticeship

Riviera, Australia’s luxury motor yacht builder, hosted a record 330 people to an information evening and site tour of its state-of-the-art Gold Coast facility as part of the company’s apprenticeship recruitment drive for 2022.  The site tour, held annually by Riviera in collaboration with local schools and employment service providers, was attended by students, parents, teachers and industry liaison officers who were advised of the many marine industry career opportunities currently available at Riviera.  Riviera has significantly expanded its boatbuilding team over the past year by 30 per cent to more than 800 working on site.  This growth has been led by the global demand for Riviera motor yachts across the company’s 23-model range from 39 to 78 feet.  Riviera has added two new trades to its program for 2022, namely boiler making and furniture finishing (French polishing), to take the total of trades available from seven to nine. Riviera also offers apprenticeships in polymer processing, marine craft construction, diesel fitting, cabinetmaking, timber and composites machining, upholstery and electrotechnology.  “We are looking to bring on apprentices across all the trades required to create luxury Riviera motor yachts, so we’re thrilled with the response to this year’s site tour,” said Riviera’s Safety and Training Manager Adam Houlahan.  “The level of inquiry for apprenticeship positions has been the strongest ever experienced by our team, and we hope to provide as much information as they need to make such an important decision.  “Riviera offers a highly awarded and respected training program for people seeking a career in the marine industry. With the growth of our team over the past year and the new opportunities we have available, we are looking forward to welcoming another significant number of apprentices to Riviera in 2022.”  Mitchell Ney, a student at Park Ridge High School south of Brisbane, was among the many first-time visitors to Riviera’s boatbuilding facility as part of the site tour. He was accompanied by his father Mark.  “It was an incredible place; Dad and I were blown away by the size of it all,” said Mitchell. “The detail going into building a boat is what struck me. It’s amazing how it all happens.”  Mitchell began considering a career at Riviera after talking to friends at his school. A number of new Riviera apprentices have come from the company partnering with Park Ridge High School.  Mitchell plans to apply for a marine craft construction apprenticeship at Riviera.  “I’ve been very interested in working for Riviera for some time and marine craft construction really caught my eye,” he said. “I like the variety the work offers and the idea of working on so many different models.”  Riviera’s apprenticeship program includes participation in the company’s Propel program, which educates apprentices in key life skills such as money management, personal relationships, workplace communication and leadership training.  Riviera owner Rodney Longhurst and CEO Wes Moxey are active presenters in the Propel program which plays a key role in the success of the company’s award-winning apprenticeship program. Many of Riviera’s senior managers commenced as apprentices in the program and have advanced their careers with the company through the education received from Propel.  “Ensuring the personal development of our apprentices is just as important as providing the technical skills they require to create world-class motor yachts,” said Mr Longhurst.  “Over the past 30 years, we’re proud to have trained hundreds of master-craftspeople, many of whom are still working with Riviera today.  “Our apprenticeship program each year creates a new generation of boatbuilders with a dedication and passion that drives our culture of excellence, so widely respected by Riviera motor yacht owners around the world.”

Riviera Welcomes 800th Team Member

Australia’s world-class luxury motor yacht builder Riviera has welcomed a further 34 people to its Gold Coast manufacturing facility this week, taking the Australian team to more than 800 working onsite. This continued expansion is in response to demand for its yachts, the strongest in Riviera’s 41-year history and follows a successful showcase at the Sanctuary Cove International Boat Show where the company welcomed more than 25 luxury motor yacht owners to the Riviera family. Riviera’s 16.8-hectare world-class Gold Coast facility currently has 57 motor yachts under construction from across the 23-model range from 39 to 78 feet.  More than half of the more than 100 motor yachts the company builds annually are exported around the world and this year Riviera was named 2021 Exporter of the Year in the Australian Marine Industry Awards.  Joining the Riviera team this week is new trainee Kylie Scott, officially the 800th person working on the company’s Coomera site.  At 39, Kylie is looking forward to a career change, working alongside Riviera’s master craftspeople to develop her boatbuilding skills in Riviera’s composite team, responsible for creating the flybridges, hardtops and swim platforms for selected models of motor yachts. She is keen to learn a broad cross-section of boatbuilding skills in the future at Riviera as her career progresses.  Kylie, who has five children and three grandchildren, grew up on a farm in Goondiwindi in south-west Queensland. She has had a passion for beautiful boats and has been enjoying the water since she was a child.  Kylie and her husband moved the family to the Gold Coast five years ago for a lifestyle change. Before joining Riviera, she took on various part-time roles to work in with the available time of a growing family.  “Now that my family has grown up, it’s time for me to create a real career,” said Kylie.  “I have a great interest in the look and feel of luxury motor yachts, and Riviera is the dream job for me, the opportunity of a lifetime really.  “Riviera motor yachts are immaculate from a design and finish point of view. I love working with my hands and I am looking forward to learning from the best people in the industry at Riviera. It’s a place where I can start at the entry level and work my way up.”  Kylie joined Riviera to begin this new phase in her working life because of the company’s reputation for creating world-class luxury motor yachts and its award-winning training program.  Kylie is among 21 mature-aged trainees to join the Riviera team this week. The trainees will undertake a course in composites at the PARTEC institute in Brisbane as part of their specialist boatbuilding education. An additional 13 apprentices have also been welcomed on site, taking the number of apprentices at Riviera to over 100. Riviera’s Safety and Training Manager Adam Houlahan said Kylie had the qualities sought by Riviera.  “Kylie has a strong willingness to learn, a great attitude and she is eager to get started in the industry with us at Riviera,” said Mr Houlahan.  “This is the best start for someone looking to create a fulfilling career in the marine industry and Kylie will be well supported by our experienced team to ensure she receives our superior level of training.”  Riviera is seeking to grow its team of composite technicians and marine craft construction specialists even further over the next 12 months. Riviera owner Rodney Longhurst welcomed the latest trainees to the Riviera team this week.  “Over the past year we have experienced strong growth in demand for our luxury motor yachts leading us to recruit more experienced craftspeople and trainees to work together to meet that demand,” said Mr Longhurst.  “We’re fortunate to have the best people in the marine industry on site, sharing a passion for building world-class luxury motor yachts. They are exceptional mentors for our trainees, guiding them on a path to be the master craftspeople of the future.”  

Silent Yachts Opens Offices in Mallorca and Florida

Silent Yachts kicks off the summer season in style. The innovative Austrian shipyard opens two new offices on both sides of the Atlantic.  Balearics expansion A new European office of Silent Yachts is now open in Port Adriano - Mallorca, one of the leading yacht harbours in the West Med.  A Silent 55 and 64 are docked in front of the office, ready to take clients to the sea for a test drive. Later this summer the new Silent 60 with a kitewing will also arrive to Port Adriano.  “Our new base is like our second home”, said Michael Köhler, Founder and CEO of Silent.  “Mallorca and the Balearics in general are popular yachting destinations, sunny, warm, with clean azure seas and many amazing places that have to be visited on board a yacht. The new office helps us keeping our solar electric catamarans close to our clients and partners, we’re always open for a chat, visit or sea trial.”  Silent Yachts keeps drawing a lot of interest from clients in the US. In order to get closer to customers, the shipyard’s exclusive US distributor Edward Sacks sets up a branch in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, the yachting capital of the Western Hemisphere.  “Florida is the hot spot for the US yachting enthusiasts and we’re happy to take a seat in the region”, said Michael Köhler. “The location is close to the site of the Fort Lauderdale International Boat Show, it has a direct water access and a comfortable conference room for product demonstrations.”

Sunseeker and Meros Co-Ownership Platform

Meros is a new and exciting shared ownership platform that exclusively uses Sunseeker yachts, officially launches to offer yacht ownership to a new generation of boaters.  Conceptualised by Meros and perfected by Sunseeker, the ‘Meros Sunseeker Co-Ownership’ combines the dream of yacht ownership with the convenience of a charter, allowing up to four owners to invest in equal shares in beautiful new Sunseeker vessels, the first being the incredible ‘M/Y Blue Infinity’ 86 Yacht. This new initiative is set to revolutionise and expand the yacht ownership market, paving the way for a new generation of yacht owners to participate in and enjoy this luxurious lifestyle with one of the world’s most discerning yacht brands.  Commenting on the launch, Martin Huber, Managing Director at Meros, said: “We are so thrilled that today, together with the Sunseeker London Group, we launch Meros. Once an idea and now a reality, we believe it is the time to show people what we have been building.  “Our co-ownership/yacht sharing platform has been designed around the owners’ desires and expectations. We know that they have nothing but peace, adventure and exploration ahead of them once they join the Meros-Sunseeker family. From recruiting the first-class crew, to providing exceptional gastronomy, arranging berthing, insurance, and administrative responsibilities, we have it covered. Simply sit back and enjoy the unique luxury of life on the water that only Meros management, paired with a Sunseeker yacht, can offer.”  Ownership is managed by Meros in association with the team at the Sunseeker London Group, who bring a wealth of industry experience and knowledge to the partnership.  In just a few short years, the sharing economy has become a ubiquitous concept, with more people looking to divide resources and ownership as opposed to sole purchase. This has been seen across many industries, including the luxury travel sector, with car, plane and helicopter leasing growing in popularity. Now, with Meros, a select number of owners have the chance to own their very own Sunseeker yacht. Meros sees this as an opportunity to expand the luxury boat market with a quality driven alternative, bringing in a new generation of customers to whom the sharing economy is now part of their lifestyle.  With the easing of travel restrictions in many countries and the enthusiastic return of the tourism industry, there is certainly pent-up demand from people looking to invest in luxury leisure and recreational activities and experiences. With the global yacht charter market valued at around US$10.91 billion in 2019, Europe’s share at more than 50%, and compound annual growth forecast at 25.6% between 2020 and 2028, this further cements the need for this unique style of yacht ownership.  The first yacht available for shared ownership with Meros is the stunning ‘M/Y Blue Infinity’ 86 Yacht, a highly luxurious Sunseeker superyacht, based in the Balearics. 

Viking Making a Health Difference

Congratulations to Billeny Padula, who will soon become a registered nurse. Billeny has been a Certified Clinical Medical Assistant in the Viking Health Services Department for the past four years. Last month she earned her Associates of Applied Science in Nursing at Ocean County College. “As a nurse, I will have greater responsibility and be able to assist our Nurse Practitioner with patient care,” says Billeny. “I’ve always wanted to be in healthcare, and Viking has given me the opportunity to build a career where my education and background help facilitate healthcare accessibility for our employees. I love my job, being able to treat, educate and follow up with the boatbuillders on a daily basis.” Billeny chose Health Services Manager Steve Marks to perform her “pinning,” a ceremony celebrating the transition from student to nurse. “Steve has been my mentor and a huge positive influence.” Billeny also credits her family. “Healthcare is in my blood,” she says. “My father is a surgical technician; my mother was a social worker; and two other family members are nurses.” Billeny is pictured above with her dad, Vidal Rivera Andino, and mother, Eneida Colon Martinez, at the graduation ceremony.

Viking at Big Rock Blue Marlin Tournament

It was a wild week at the Big Rock Blue Marlin Tournament with the leaderboard seeing a flurry of activity. When the scale finally settled, Kevin Summerville’s Viking 65 Outnumbered received a six-figure check for their 3rd Place Blue Marlin. Captain James Breen helped angler Billy Thompson wind in the 512.4-pound fish. “I love being here,” said Billy. "The fishing was fantastic and James is a great captain. He put us right on the fish and all I had to do was reel it in.”  The 63rd-annual event saw the largest-ever fleet of 270 boats. The Viking 58 Following Seas got the ball rolling with the first fish of the event. Captain Charlie Vanderbeck brought the week-old boat to the scales and weighed Kirk Kellogg’s blue marlin at 448.8 pounds.

Viking at Cap Cana White Marlin Tournament

A record 41 boats and 160 anglers battled it out at the recent Cap Cana White Marlin Tournament in the Dominican Republic. Dawn Samuels, fishing on her family’s Viking 66 Enclosed Bridge Princess Lily, released six whites to claim the Top Lady Angler title as well as the 2nd Overall Angler honors. Boats came from Puerto Rico, Venezuela, Mexico and the United States to fish this prestigious event.

Viking at Mississippi Gulf Coast Blue Marlin Classic

A trio of Vikings swept the blue marlin division at the Mississippi Gulf Coast Blue Marlin Classic. It Just Takes Time took its time and was the last boat to roll up to the scales. Captain Chris Hood brought the Viking 72 and owner Nick Pratt’s fish to the weigh station and hung the winner. The 793-pound blue marlin was the only fish the team saw, but they made it count. This is Nick’s 2nd time in the Winner’s Circle as he took the title last year as well.  C-Student, a Viking 66, claimed 2nd Place Blue Marlin with a 629.7-pound fish. Captain Kenny Blackman put angler Hunter Megarity on a blue that fought for almost two hours. The Viking 80 CE was in 3rd Place with a 548.6-pound fish. Sixteen-year-old Scotty Cooper landed that blue, which also awarded him Top Junior Angler honours.  All In, a Viking 55, was the 3rd Place Release Boat. The Viking Miss Virginia claimed 3rd Place Tuna with a 179.7-pound yellowfin. Heaviest Dolphin went to the Viking 62 Blue Water with a 48.7-pound bull and Crawgator, a Viking 61, took 2nd Place.

Viking at Cajuns Canyons Billfish Classic

The Viking 72 Fleur de Lis crushed it at the Cajun Canyons Billfish Classic. The team released three blue marlin and angler Jeff Landry, fishing on Keith and Ginger Myers’ boat, landed a 547.8-pound blue as well as a tuna weighing 146.6 pounds. The bounty awarded captain Scooter Porter and crew Top Billfish Points, Heaviest Blue Marlin and 3rd Place Release Team. The weighed blue marlin also put Fleur de Lis at the top of the blue marlin division in the summer-long Mongo Offshore Challenge.  Art Favre’s Viking 92 A Work of Art took 2nd Place Release honors and 3rd Place Billfish Points with three blue marlin releases. The Viking 66 Wynsong claimed 3rd Place Tuna with a 155.8-pound fish which helped Gavin Ward claim 3rd Place Angler. Hunter Megarity, fishing on the Viking 66 C-Student, had the Top Dolphin at 44.6 pounds, and Share-e’s Buell Polk weighed the 3rd Place Dolphin off this Viking 68.

Viking at Orange Beach Billfish Classic

Tournament season in the Gulf Coast is officially in full force. The Orange Beach Billfish Classic (OBBC) is one of 10 tournaments within the prestigious Gulf Coast Triple Crown Championship. This year 38 boats competed in the OBBC, which includes tuna, wahoo and dolphin but is primarily a blue marlin tournament. The Viking 76 Reel Fire was featured multiple times on the leaderboard, including 1st Place Release, 2nd Place Tuna and 1st Place Dolphin. Angler Chris Ferrara Jr. aboard Reel Fire claimed their 2nd Place Tuna with a 184.4-pound fish, and Ivan Duke caught their 1st Place Dolphin that weighed 29.2 pounds. Joey Birbeck on the Viking 66 C-Student also weighed in a 26.8-pound dolphin for 2nd place in that division.

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