From the 27th to the 29th of March the first Superyacht Gathering took place in Auckland, attracting owners, captains, designers, brokers, media, suppliers, shipyards and luxury providers in an opportunity to network, gain inspiration and share stories surrounding the superyacht industry.
The event commenced with a Kiwi Luxe Welcome Party at the Orams Marine dry stack, where guests took part in a pōwhiri – a traditional Māori welcome – and a ceremonial Wero (challenge) issued to the event’s representative from the superyacht industry, Jonathan Beckett.
A ‘Kiwi Beach’ style setting was recreated with barbeques serving vibrant street food, and a lawn with beach chairs and a beanbag chill zone.
The second day was dedicated to stories relating to the oceans and superyacht industry, with Master of Ceremonies Peter Montgomery leading the talks on topics including ownership, technology and innovation, altruism and travel on the waves. With an emphasis on ‘challenging the norm and stepping out of comfort zones’, guest speakers included Sir Michael Hill, Tracy and Mike Mahoney, the owners of S/Y TAWERA who talked about hands-on skippering, and Neville Crichton with Peter Montgomery on the changes and innovations to yacht builds throughout his career.
International designer Sam Sorgiovanni also gave insight into the current and projected trends and how to future-proof designs and reduce their environmental impact, citing the recently-launched M/Y WHITE RABBIT as one such example.
The third and final day of the Superyacht Gathering started with an America’s Cup breakfast at the Royal New Zealand Yacht Squadron (RNZYS) where the Auld Mug was present. Aaron Young, Vice Commodore of the RNZYS detailed the packed superyacht events calendar surrounding the regattas over 2020 and 2021, in addition to news that five J-class sailing yachts will be in Auckland throughout the America’s Cup.
To conclude the event, guests enjoyed a Long Lunch at Stonyridge Vineyard on Auckland’s Waiheke Island, with the opportunity to discover some of the key landmarks that will be included in the course.
“The Superyacht Gathering’s purpose was to bring together our superyacht community to connect and reconnect whilst sharing experiences, strengths and hope for our oceans and the communities that live on, along and under them – The inaugural Superyacht Gathering did just that,” commented Linda Berry, Managing Director and Co-Founder of The Superyacht Gathering. “By the time we were enjoying the Long Lunch on Friday, everyone knew each other and friendships had formed. Our purpose was achieved for this year.”