Plans move forward for Miami show despite opposition - Trade Only Today

Plans move forward for Miami show despite opposition

The Miami International Boat Show is moving ahead on time and on budget.
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The Miami International Boat Show is moving ahead on time and on budget, and attendees and exhibitors are expressing confidence that the show will move forward as planned in its new location at Miami Marine Stadium.

The boat show might be facing some opposition from a neighboring village about its move to the new venue, but the National Marine Manufacturers Association, the show’s organizers, say there’s a 203 percent increase in the number of hotel rooms blocked for the 2016 show, and 25 percent of those are already booked.

To date, the number of room nights available in the boat show’s room block has surpassed 10,000 — triple the 3,300 room nights made available for the 2015 show. With eight months until show time, 25 percent of the room nights within the block have been booked.

Miami Mayor Tomas Regalado told Trade Only last week that construction of the flex park for the show was on time and on budget.

“The boat show, it’s a multimillion-dollar venture. There is no dispute on that,” Regalado told Trade Only. “No one can dispute that this is an economic engine. The NMMA has blocked hundreds of room nights in hotels in Brickell and downtown. That in itself is a big deal for the city of Miami.”

NMMA vice president and Miami show manager Cathy Rick-Joule said the NMMA has contracted with 29 hotels and has blocked 2,043 rooms on the peak night, versus 646 for 2015.

As of last week, 90 percent of the nearly 900 exhibitors had committed to reserving space at the new venue, which will offer both in-water and land space, assistant show manager and director of sales Larry Berryman told Trade Only.

“We’re ahead of where we were this time last year in the number of exhibitors that have committed,” Rick-Joule told Trade Only last week. “Probably about 15 to 20 percent.”

To complement boat show lodging and parking — more than 10,000 spaces secured in downtown Miami — show organizers say they’ve constructed a comprehensive transportation plan in conjunction with the city.

The plan includes free water taxi and shuttle bus rides for attendees — each will be able to transport roughly 25,000 visitors a day, Rick-Joule said.

There will be several drop-off points throughout Miami and 15- to 20-minute rides, depending on the departure locations.

Water taxi pickup and drop-off points include:

American Airlines Arena

Dinner Key Marina, Coconut Grove (no vehicle parking available)

Hyatt/Epic Hotel, downtown

InterContinental Hotel, downtown

Miami Beach Marina, Miami Beach (no vehicle parking available)

Port of Miami

Sea Isle Marina, Biscayne Bay

Viceroy Hotel, Brickell

Shuttle bus pickup and drop-off points:

American Airlines Arena

Bayside Marketplace

Biscayne Bay Marriott at Sea Isle Marina

Four Seasons Hotel, Brickell

Hyatt Regency, downtown

InterContinental Hotel, downtown

James L. Knight Center (Saturday, Sunday and Monday only)

Marlins Park

Miami Dade College, downtown (Saturday, Sunday and Monday only)

Port of Miami

Sonesta Beach Hotel, Coconut Grove

Viceroy, Brickell

Vizcaya Station

“This year we increased the number of rooms in the boat show’s official room block to ensure boat show attendees have a seamless experience at the new location, and we are thrilled with the boost in hotel activity and tourism we’re already seeing,” Rick-Joule said in a statement. “We are grateful for the support from the city of Miami and our hotel partners, whose commitment will help us deliver the best boat show in the world that our exhibitors and attendees have come to expect.”

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