Organizers of one of Europe’s largest in-water shows, the Cannes Yachting Festival, announced that they are moving forward with the event slated for Sept. 8-13.
It was confirmed after the French government said that major events can be held again after Sept. 1.
“After many weeks of uncertainty in light of the context, [and] intensive discussions with our clients, the City of Cannes, our partners and suppliers, and a great deal of work with local authorities, we are pleased to have reached the final stretch before the opening of the Festival,” said show manager Sylvie Ernoult in a statement.
There will be significant safety and social distance measures in place — following the General Health and Safety Plan recommended by France’s federation of the events industry — that was presented to the French government to ensure full compliance of steps taken to restrict the spread of covid-19.
Organizers said that “several different scenarios are in place for adapting the configuration of the event,” depending on what social distancing measures will be in place at the time of the event. They are working with Cannes officials to provide additional space, if needed.
“This year’s watchword is adaptation,” Ernoult said. “We have adapted the festival format and its offer to best cater to our exhibitors’ needs in terms of space and budget constraints, and the new health standards. Faced with the challenges, thanks to their great flexibility and constant adaptation to the problems that have arisen, the departments at the City of Cannes, the Nice Côte d’Azur CCI and our suppliers — stands, pontoons, general installation, shuttles, etc. — have supported us, thereby enabling us to plan and prepare the Festival in record time.”
The bulk of the vessels with be at Cannes’ Vieux Port, with Port Canto hosting sailboats. To get between the two shows, organizers plan to increase ferries between the two locations.
Ernoult and her team are confident that the Festival can help relaunch the marine business after the massive negative impact of covid-19 pandemic on the industry.
“Given the shutdown of many production sites and the ban on water-based pursuits, the nautical industry both in France and internationally has suffered a great deal and continues to suffer,” she said. “This is why we have put all our efforts and expertise into ensuring that the 2020 edition takes place, thereby giving yachting industry figures the opportunity to come together, exhibit their products and new developments and be reunited with their clients face to face.”