Miami shows open Thursday

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The Miami International Boat Show returns to the Miami Marine Stadium on Virginia Key for 2019.

The Miami International Boat Show returns to the Miami Marine Stadium on Virginia Key for 2019.

Thousands of boating enthusiasts are expected to descend upon Miami starting Thursday for the Progressive Insurance Miami International Boat Show and the Miami Yacht Show.

Dubbed the five biggest days in boating, the Miami boat show is expected to have more than 1,400 boats displayed on land and in the water, with more than 1,100 exhibitors. More than 200 boats will be available for sea trials, and the show spans in excess of 90 acres at Miami Marine Stadium Park and Basin.

Among the highlights at the show are Cigarette Racing Team unveiling its latest collaboration with Mercedes AMG, a boat that features six Mercury Racing outboards. Sea-Doo is introducing a hybrid PWC/fishing boat, and show attendees can check out assisted docking technology on boats from Boston Whaler and Prestige.

MIBS is expected to have a $53 million economic impact in terms of tourism, and visitors are expected from Canada, Puerto Rico, the Caribbean, Mexico, Brazil, England, South Africa, Argentina, Sweden, Japan and France.

The show will focus on green initiatives with the Costa Conservation Village, which features more than a dozen of the industry’s conservation leaders. There are filtered water stations around the show, and Costa Sunglasses is offering reusable plastic water bottles as part of its Kick Plastics campaign. Plastic straws have been eliminated at the show, and there will be no styrofoam on the premises for the third year in a row.

The Miami Yacht Show will be at its new location in downtown Miami for the first time.

The Miami Yacht Show will be at its new location in downtown Miami for the first time.

The Miami Yacht Show kicks off its first year at a new location in downtown Miami at One Herald Plaza, between the MacArthur and Venetian causeways. The show previously was held at Collins Avenue on Miami’s South Beach.

The Yacht Show is expecting 500 yachts in the water at Sea Isle Marina, One Herald Plaza and a SuperYacht Miami section on Watson Island. A new 67,000-square-foot, climate-controlled exhibition pavilion houses more than 200 exhibitors.

The Miami Yacht Show can be accessed from West Palm Beach and Fort Lauderdale using public transportation, including the Brightline high-speed train and Miami Metro Mover. There will also be water taxis running between the Yacht Show and NMMA’s show.

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