In late 2017, I wrote a commentary called, “Is Fort Lauderdale The New Miami?” That column was inspired by positive reports from high-performance powerboat builders who had exhibited at the Fort Lauderdale International Boat Show—an event traditionally focused on yachts, sportfishing boats and cruisers—in November. Exhibitors such as Brett Manire of Performance Boat Center, a Cigarette Racing Team, Sunsation Powerboats and Wright Performance Powerboats dealer based in Osage Beach, Mo., were delighted with the event and the serious-minded buyers it attracted.
Another yacht-oriented event, the Palm Beach International Boat Show delivered a solid audience for performance-oriented powerboat builders such as Nor-Tech (above).
Turns out that by most accounts from go-fast powerboat builders, last month’s Palm Beach International Boat Show—another primarily big-vessel showcase—provided much of the same experience. In fact, their sentiments pretty well mirrored those that came out of the Fort Lauderdale event.
“Palm Beach was a very different vibe from the Miami show,” said John Cosker of Mystic Powerboats in Deland, Fla., who also exhibited in Fort Lauderdale. “There was much less traffic, but more qualified buyers.”