Over the past few decades, we have seen royal families and extended networks of well-connected sheikhs invest in yachting and enjoy the typical Mediterranean lifestyle. Everywhere you go within the sunshine hotspots of Ibiza, Mykonos or St Tropez, large entourages migrate from the Gulf to escape the desert heat and set up camp on board palatial yachts and villas for their annual fix of fun.
 
However, we have also witnessed a considerable investment in marinas and lifestyle infrastructure along its own coastline, with Oman, Dubai, Abu Dhabi and the other Emirates, as well as near-neighbour Qatar, all able to house significant yachts. However, the big question is, what do they do with them, and how do they service them?
 
At the end of this month, on Feb 27th, and at the same time as the Dubai International Boat Show, The Superyacht Group is partnering with the Dubai International Superyacht Summit for a two-day discussion on the current state of the Gulf, from a marine perspective, and to explore the true potential for superyacht traffic growing in the region.
 
Following a variety of trips to the Gulf over the past decade, mainly to Dubai and Abu Dhabi, and having encountered the development of luxury real estate resorts and new experiential marinas, coupled with the proximity to the Indian Ocean and the transit hubs of the Seychelles and Maldives, the question we have is, what would make more superyachts divert from their route to Asia and include a stop-off in the Gulf as part of their itinerary?
 
The appetite to attract superyachts is evident, and the various maritime departments and governments want to create a superyacht-friendly destination. But as usual, there are sometimes misconceptions and misunderstandings that affect people’s decision to migrate. So, in order to make sure the industry contributes to the development of the Gulf region, to share its views on what would make the Gulf a serious proposition, we are asking anyone who has any experience or first-hand knowledge of cruising, servicing or managing yachts in the Gulf to spend five minutes taking a brief survey.
 
Over the two days of the Dubai International Superyacht Summit (27th & 28th February) we want to make sure the meetings, discussions and knowledge transfer assists the maritime authorities, the government departments, and investors in the Gulf region, to develop a coherent strategy that makes it easy to attract superyachts, be it for cruising, wintering or servicing.
 
It should be a very interesting discussion and your input to the survey will make a valued contribution. If you would like to know more about the Summit, follow this link.

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