Having recognised the significant economic impact that each visiting yacht represents, New Zealand government bodies, together with NZ Marine, are now working hard to attract yachts to the country and promote it as a 'must do' destination. With the average 40m superyacht clocking an annual expenditure of €1.65 million (not including berthage fees or crew wages)* the impact of every visiting yacht is significant to the New Zealand economy and to local businesses, both marine and non-marine. Speaking to yachts in dock at the Silo Marina, this reporter was told that an estimated minimum of 25 percent of all crew salaries would also be injected into the local economy during a yacht's stay. With nearly 20 yachts in dock in Auckland alone, the positive impact of yachts visiting the city should not be lost on anyone.
Their aim is to double superyacht visitors by 2016, and numbers of yachts currently in town are some indication of New Zealand's growing popularity. According to managers of Auckland's Silo Marina November 2013 has proved the busiest month on record by number of visiting yachts. The marina’s manager, Luke Wigglesworth from local Council organisation Waterfront Auckland, said the city-owned facility provides an excellent option for maintenance and refits with its close proximity to a cluster of world leading marine suppliers and service people. Two new 90 metre docks were added to the marina this year, each with a one metre freeboard making them the biggest pontoons in New Zealand, plus two new 65 metre pontoons. A further enhancement is the access to a 60 metre berth adjacent to Southern Spars subsidiary Rig Pro, providing hassle free mast stepping for sailing yachts. With the new additions Silo Marina can now take 13 boats - doubling its capacity since it opened for business prior to the Rugby World Cup held in Auckland in 2011.
* Economic Analysis of the Superyacht Industry report, Superyacht Intelligence