MIAMI — Dealers are optimistic ahead of the 69th Annual Miami International Boat Show & Strictly Sail Miami, despite a number of cuts to the show’s overall size, according to an article in the Miami Herald.
According to the Herald, this year’s show will be smaller in a number of ways: exhibition space is 2 million square feet this year, 20 percent lower than last year’s 2.5 million square feet; 2,500 watercraft are on display, down 16 percent compared to more than 3,000 last year; the overall exhibitor count is 2,000, down 8 percent from 2,175; and there are about 900 smaller exhibitors selling marine accessories, down 6 percent from 960 last year.
In addition, Strictly Sail Miami has moved from its traditional base, Miamarina at Bayside, to the Sea Isle Marina & Yachting Center, where it will share space with in-water powerboats.
However, dealers the paper spoke to were excited, thanks in part to a strong showing at the New York Boat Show, Jan. 20-24.
“People were waiting in line to look at boats at the New York show,” Rick Levy, general sales manager for South Florida dealership SunDance Marine, told the paper. Levy plans to have more than 25 boats at the Miami show.
In addition, Miami organizers say they expect to draw more visitors this year due to deferred demand for boats and other equipment.
“We estimate that we’ll have more than 100,000 visitors this year,” Cathy Rick-Joule, vice president of NMMA’s southern show division, told the paper. “In 2009, we had 96,736.”
To read the complete report from the Herald, click here.