Highlights from the 2017 Cannes Yachting Festival

09 Oct 2017

The Boating World team recently returned from the 2017 Cannes Yachting Festival. This year saw the event celebrate its 40th anniversary, with nearly 600 boats in the two ports of Cannes: the Vieux Port and Port Pierre Canto.

Cannes has always been the launching point for midsized yachts, and this year was no different. The show saw 84 yachts make their global debuts. Not only was this the most seen in the last decade, but it is also being said that this years launches have been some of the most exciting designs ever.

Our #1 highlight from this year’s festival was the attendance of our local clients. We were fortunate to have had the most number of clients join us for the event since our first year of attendance. This is testament to the growing recognition of the superiority of our brands among boating clients on the continent, and the demand for the new innovative models that our partners are releasing.

Our #2 highlight was the Fairline Targa 63 GTO being crowned winner at 2017 World Yachts Trophies for best exterior design, in the highly contended 50-80ft yachts category. The World Yachts Trophies are one of the world’s most prestigious award ceremonies in the luxury motor yacht industry, so this was a remarkable accolade for Fairline and the boatyards design partner, Alberto Mancini.

Our #3 highlight was equally decided by our sales team, whom all experienced the new model launches by Fountaine Pajot, Riviera and Jeanneau for the first time. The Fountaine Pajot MY44, is a truly exceptional power catamaran that eludes space and an incredible amount of light, that needs to be seen to be believed. The new Riviera 68 Sports Motor Yacht made its European debut, and gents we need to tell you…game fishing has never looked so good. The interior volume of the Jeanneau Sun Odyssey 440 was a first for us to see in a sailing boat of this size, as was the newly patented “transformer” cockpit backrest, which offers both protection within the cockpit as well as an elevated vantage point from the helm.

Our #4 highlight was to experience the Sunreef 88 Double Deck. Custom built, offering 300m² of luxurious living space, it was the largest of the yachts on display, represented by Boating World.

Last but definitely not least, our #5 highlight was the Seakeepers demo-cruise. Scheduled on what turned out to be an exceptionally windy day, we set out to sea with low expectations. After dropping anchor in very choppy waters we were stunned when the Seakeeper giro was enabled, almost immediately stabilising the yacht from bobbing around. Our team, all experienced skippers, have spent many a day at sea when weather conditions change - this was unnatural at first. We experienced how the yacht fought the physics of the sea, we saw the waves, expected the jarring motion, but nothing happened. After 5 minutes of calm our only regret was that we could not have shared the experience with more of our boating clients.

We would like to thank our partners, Fairline, Fountaine Pajot, Jeanneau, Riviera, Sunreef and Seakeeper for the exceptional treatment shown to our clients during the festival. We look forward to some exciting African deliveries in the coming months, and sharing our knowledge and insights from this year’s event with new and existing clients and friends of Boating World.