St Maarten Charter Show 2009

The St Martin Charter Show from Allure Shadow’s Helicopter © Frances Howorth 2009

Well run, professionally organised with high quality yachts in a superb location sounds like the recipe for perfect charter yacht show but here in Sint Maarten attending Captains and Vendors are not happy with the way things are turning out.

It seems like the party-givers worst nightmare in which they turn out the perfect party but the guests do not show up.

Just twenty four yachts line the docks waiting for 65 registered brokers to turn up and book yachts for their clients but many of the brokers have not turned up, the crews are ready smartly turned out, well drilled and rehearsed but without the brokers, they have no one to impress.

Vendors who have paid hundreds of dollars for trade stands and the opportunity to canvas trade from visiting yacht Captains are disappointed with the poor turnout.

The MYBA Caribbean Charter Yacht show has been on a slippery slope for the past four years with show managers declaring that the show is in its infancy and can only improve. Fact is that when the numbers are in counting the yachts and the brokers this looks like being the least well-attended show in it short history.

Not least among the problems that behest the show is the fact that it is scheduled so close to the well establish Antigua Charter Yacht Meeting now in its 49th year. Charter yacht brokers simply do not have the time the money and in some cases the inclination to visit two shows so tightly scheduled. They fear that they are being forced to spend too much time away from their offices where their job is to look after the wishes of their clients.

The show does have its plus points. Because there are so few visitors and the marina docks are all but deserted the opportunity to visit attending yachts spending quality time looking around them talking with the crew is tremendous.

We are certainly taking advantage of that opportunity and we hope to bring you the highlights of the yacht hops, parties and the goings on in our next edition.