The rapidly expanding financial centre of Gibraltar is now set to host its first International Boat Show on Easter weekend, 9 – 12 April 2009. The super-chic venue of Ocean Village, Gibraltar’s biggest residential and leisure complex, is the ideal location for a prestigious addition to the yachting calendar – and not before time. With established Boat Shows in Madrid, Barcelona and Palma, it’s time for this gateway to Morocco and southernmost tip of the Iberian Peninsula to take centre stage…
John Wood, part of the Boat Show team, comments, “A Boat Show is more a necessity than a luxury for Gibraltar due to its proximity to some of the finest cruising waters and marinas in southern Europe. Already with the support of leading yacht manufacturers from Pershing to Sunseeker, this year’s Gibraltar International Boat Show will provide the perfect opportunity for visitors to start the season afloat on the latest ready-to-buy models being delivered to the Mediterranean.”
As an inaugural year, the scene has been set accordingly. Entrance is free for the general public to ensure maximum footfall and exhibitors will find Gibraltar International Boat Show’s pricing to be highly favourable in comparison to more established nautical events. Advisers will be on-hand to explain the benefits of registering a boat in Gibraltar which is enticing not only for Gibraltarians but for residents of Spain and beyond.
John continues, “Easter weekend should bring bright sunshine and plenty of free time to explore both the Boat Show and Gibraltar’s other well-documented historic attractions from the great siege tunnels to the iconic Barbary Apes occupying the Upper Rock. Thanks to the unwavering backing of Gibraltar’s Government and Tourist Board we have every faith that this year’s event will be a springboard for many successful Gibraltar International Boat Shows to come.”
Gibraltar’s 200-berth Marina Bay opened back in 1980 but since Ocean Village’s buy-out in 2006 it has been transformed into a modern facility flanked by waterfront al-fresco eateries, swanky shops and a super-sized casino and nightclub set on a reclaimed island. Able to accommodate even the largest super yachts, this harbour is the starting point for many events including the Blue Water Round the World Rally and Rally Antigua. As a territory Gibraltar also receives almost 250 calls from cruise ships throughout the year.