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With its dazzling display of over 630 boats, the latest electronic gadgets, decadent deck fittings and fun new toys, the 2016 Cannes Yachting Festival, which has now drawn to a close for the 39th time, more than cemented the event’s reputation as one of the leading yacht shows in the world. The record-breaking edition was the best to date, with industry professionals converging in Cannes to experience the most innovative advances in the yachting industry. Giving its film festival counterpart a run for its money, this year saw the premier of 191 new models, with visitors from the world over gathering to witness the largest European in-water show (now officially so thanks to a record-breaking number of attending boats). A highly important date in the Mediterranean yachting calendar, guests were treated to a showcase of luxury from the quality of the yachts to the overall atmosphere – the latter of which was enhanced by festival partnerships with leading premium brands, such as Porsche and Louis Roederer Champagne.


Highlights of this year’s edition included the Concours d’Elegance, a unique parade of vintage and modern-day boats that beautifully depicted the rich history of boating on the French Riviera. The Festival’s VIP programme, Carte Riviera, was also back once again by popular demand. As was the case in 2015, Carte Riviera holders lapped up the exclusive services on offer, from personal tours of the most beautiful vessels on show, to a direct helicopter transfer to the Vieux Port heliport, not to mention a high-class concierge service. Among the yachts to make their world debut was the 370 GT from Invictus Yachts. The 370 GT spans 11.40m in length and has a top speed of 43 knots. The yacht’s reverse bow gives it a distinctive, avant-garde look, while the retractable beach club enables easy access to the water. The 12.8m yacht can cruise at a staggering top speed of 64 knots.

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Also making a splash at the Cannes Yacht Show 2016, the Say42 is made from carbon fibre, giving it an extremely lightweight body. Up to 1,000hp is produced by multiple engine options and the sporty vessel can carry up to ten passengers. The sleek, minimalist design is best appreciated in the beach club, which enhances the sailing experience. With a hull of just 0.85m, seafarers can travel anywhere in style in the Say42. But the appearance of SmartYacht at the Cannes Yachting Festival proved that the yachting life doesn’t have to be reserved for the international jet set. The company offers shared yacht ownership as a cost-effective alternative to sole ownership, enabling buyers to purchase and maintain a vessel with other investors.

Renowned worldwide as the boat show for multihulls, this year didn’t disappoint. Added space, and a dedicated dock at the centre of the show, allowed 2016 to welcome 45 catamarans – the largest amount in the world – with sizes on show ranging from 42 to 77 feet. The show is also celebrated for its exhibition of sailing yachts – 120 this year, 20% the total of all vessels. Aside from boats, the Cannes Yachting Festival also exhibits the best watertoys and yachting accessories, with top of the range jet skis, stand up paddleboards and even sleds that dive underwater.


concours-d-elegance-cannes-yachting-festivalJust in case all this wasn’t enough, this year saw the Cannes Yachting Festival launch an entirely new area completely devoted to luxury: La Terrasse. Located alongside the Festival Beach, this exciting new element offered a 180-degree view of the biggest yachts on display at Vieux Port, the Bay of Cannes, the Croisette and the Lérins Islands. Everything luxury was on display, from watches to jewellery and cars.

Lizzie Lunn

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