Representing the event’s patron H.E. the President of the Lebanese Republic, General Michel Sleiman, the Prime Minister and the Speaker of the House, the Minister of Tourism, Mr. Michel Pharaon, inaugurated the 9th Edition of the International Boat and Super Yacht Show, Beirut Boat 2014, at the Port of Beirut’s Pier 1. Running from May 14 to May 18, 2014, the event is organized by IFP (International Fairs & Promotions) in partnership with the internationally renowned exhibition organizer Messe Düsseldorf.
Pharaon cut the opening ribbon in the presence of several diplomats, high-ranking officials, the representative of the Lebanese Army Commander, businessmen, prominent local and international figures, members of the Board of Administration of the Arab Maritime Industries Association (AMIA), directors of Messe Düsseldorf, in addition to numerous local and international reporters, and media representatives.
After visiting the various aisles, Pharaon addressed the media saying: “this event we are witnessing today reaffirms Beirut’s significance on the international scene and represents a testimony of trust in the resources and potentials of our capital.”
He added, “We all know that Beirut enjoys a heritage of naval tradition, modern infrastructure, and an exceptional geographical location in relatively close proximity to other international maritime ports. All these factors combine in making the city an excellent venue to host such an exceptional event as the Beirut Boat Show. A multitude of development projects for the marina and associated waterfront facilities in Lebanon are currently being constructed with the aim of attracting luxury boats and yachts. New harbors are, moreover, being developed in order to endorse Lebanon’s position on the map of luxury boat harbors in the region.”
Beirut Boat gathers the different sub sectors of the maritime industries from around the world, and contributes in shedding light on the development of the tourism sector in Lebanon, which seeks to endorse its position on the international scene of maritime sports. The ninth edition of the show is expected to achieve notable success, in line with its prestigious stature as one of the best yacht and boat shows in the region.
This year’s edition includes world-renowned companies in various industries such as motor and sailing boat construction companies; anchors and maritime fronts developers; providers of maritime equipment, navigational equipment suppliers, engineering consultancy services, yachts registration companies and agents, yacht designers, technical services and support, maritime systems providers, private yacht operators, and providers of maritime services, equipment, solutions, and designs, in addition to a large range of water sports accessories and equipment such as those used in diving, fishing, water skiing, windsurfing, plus other requirements of marine life. Participating in the exhibition are about 200 prestigious brands in the world of maritime industries representing more than 10 countries which are: Spain, Germany, United Arab Emirates, Italy, Brazil, Turkey, Switzerland, Cyprus, Lebanon, Egypt, and Greece.
Mr. Albert Aoun, Chairman of IFP, pointed out the event’s role in promoting the maritime tourism sector and marina leisure in Lebanon. He said, “The world and the region are witnessing a big development in the yachting and boating industries, which are considered smart and lucrative investments given that boats and yachts retain value in the long term”, assuring "the confidence in the success of this exhibition in supporting this industry at the local and regional levels given the extensive shoreline Lebanon enjoys, including the numerous services and facilities it offers.”
Concerning moving the show to the port of Beirut, Aoun stressed that “Over the past few years, Beirut has endorsed its leading position as a prime destination for maritime leisure. Everyone agrees on the key role that the Beirut Boat Show plays toward advancing this position. With the resounding success of the 2012 edition, we found ourselves facing the challenge of creating the best possible conditions in terms of space, facilities and services that can contribute to the growth of the show in light of the growing loyalty and dedication of our exhibitors. The decision to transfer the show to the Port of Beirut is a measured step that combines the professional aspect of the harbor and the touristic vibe of the event; thus benefiting from the location and its facilities to enhance its position on the region’s aquatic map. Moving the show to downtown Beirut, which is recognized as the undeniable epicenter of business, entertainment and lavish lifestyles, will raise the event’s ability to attract visitors. These are all elements that will benefit Beirut Boat to evolve on both organizational and commercial levels.”
This year’s edition showcases hundreds of millions of dollars’ worth of yachts of various sizes, anchoring for the first time in Beirut, to enrich the show’s diversity and meet all tastes. Rayane Imad, Project Manager of Beirut Boat said, “The Beirut Boat Show meets the requirements of yacht and boat owners in a way that suits their particular lifestyle. We look forward to welcoming the show’s guests and visitors who will find the best platform to interact with all those concerned and those interested in yachts.”
For his part, Mr. Jungmichel Goetz-Ulf of Messe Düsseldorf praised the level of participation in the exhibition, hoping that it will continue to grow and expand in future editions, saying “International exhibitors compete to partake in this show, because of the lucrative business opportunities it offers across the region. Beirut has the right to be proud of this event, which attracts leisure marine amateurs and serious buyers for around the world.”
Away from the world of business and figures, the show buzzes with entertainment and leisure activities for visitors of all categories. In addition, a VIP hall was especially designed to provide additional privacy and luxury. In parallel, Beirut Boat 2014 also offers a series of diverse shows which will be held through the duration of the exhibition to provide a sense of fun throughout the event, offering visitors a memorable experience.
Commenting on this topic Imad says: “We are keen to provide our visitors with an entertaining atmosphere to cater for all individuals. Visitors will discover that we have presented everything associated with a luxurious sea lifestyle, from fashion and accessories, jewelry and watches, to luxury cars, and more.”
The sponsors of Beirut Boat 2014, which is open daily from 5-10 pm, include Bank Audi, Maserati Cars who will showcase their latest luxury sports cars in the exhibition, Ulyssee Nardin watches and the Riviera Hotel.