92 charter yachts in 6 days in Antigua!
By invitation only for accredited charter industry professionals, the Antigua Charter Yacht Show heralds the start of the Caribbean yacht charter season and is the perfect backdrop to meeting the captains, crews and manager and viewing the luxury charter yachts and their current offerings
Antigua is the largest private charter show in the world, followed by Genoa which showcases the charter yachts in the Mediterranean. "It's a must-do event for charter professionals," explains Jeni Tidmarsh, founder of the Luxury Charter Group.
The Luxury Charter Group team attends 10 yacht shows each year, including Genoa, Cannes, Monaco, Greece, Turkey, Fort Lauderdale, Miami, Tortola in the British Virgin Islands and of course Antigua. We have the world covered!"
With 92 boats to inspect in Antigua in just six days, the Luxury Charter Group team, Jeni, Sharon and Radek visited a select group of charter yachts and spent enough time onboard each to thoroughly understand their points of difference.. "We can't see them all – we have to be selective and inspect boats that suit our clients," says Jeni. "That's our role: matching our clients with charter yachts that suit their preferences."
"As every yacht is different, keeping up to date with what they offer, new features and facilities, itineraries, specialities and skills of their crews is vital," says Jeni. "Our professional edge relies on being able to match our clients with their ideal charter, so this insight and personal experience are essential.
"We speak with the captains, crews and managers and update our knowledge of their yachts' specialties. For instance, the captain may be a proficient diver or keen photographer and know all the charter locations suited to these pastimes."
"A charter yacht may include a wellness deck, theatre room, impressive gym, the latest gadgets and watertoys. It's imperative that we gain this knowledge so we're best informed to advise our clients."
Another significant part of the charter experience is the cuisine onboard. "Enjoying a yacht's hospitality and savouring the chef's specialties is an important, and very enjoyable, part of our inspections. The chefs go overboard to display their skills."
Among the impressive crop of new builds in charter, the 73m (239.5ft) custom-built expedition yacht from Vitruvius Yachts and Perini Navi, GRACE E was a stand-out.
"GRACE E was among the new launches at the 2014 Monaco Yacht Show in September," says Jeni. "The Luxury Charter Group was hosted onboard in Antigua to see for ourselves her entire level dedicated to health and well-being and experience the cuisine and hospitality of this unique charter yacht."
The more seasoned yachts are regularly upgraded, their owners aware that their investment needs to keep pace with new yachts in charter. "Charter yacht owners invest in refits frequently to stay competitive and appeal to our discerning clients. To keep up with the times, there are now certain 'must haves' such as beach clubs, gyms, spas and movie theatres."
Onboard CAVALLO, the elegant 42.9m (140'9") sloop, the Luxury Charter Group was thrilled to experience the cuisine by award-winning chef, Janey Ross.
"Janey's culinary skills are one of CAVALLO'S major drawcards," says Jeni. "She tailors every meal to suit guests' wishes and applies her considerable talents to wowing them with inventive twists on traditional fare, all sourced from the freshest local ingredients."
For her guests in Antigua, Janey created a delectable eight-course lunch, each dish drawn from the regional specialties and ingredients of CAVALLO'S upcoming world tour. "To say it was sensational would be an understatement!" says Jeni.
The 73m (241'6") charter yacht NAIA, showing off her recent refurbishment, was another highlight. Built as a luxury research and expedition vessel, NAIA boasts an incredible array of leisure and entertainment facilities, such as a large cinema, top deck gym with jacuzzi, dive centre, 5-person submarine, a host of watertoys and much more.
VERTIGO, the multi award-winning Alloy Yachts-built performance sailing yacht is the ultimate in luxury charter sailing boats. Designed by Philippe Briand, the 67.2m (220' 6") VERTIGO combines cutting-edge style with traditional elements. Along with impeccable interiors, her key features are the 10-person jacuzzi, gym with direct access to the sea and cinema screen on deck.
The gracious 41.15m (135') motor yacht POLLY, also from Alloy Yachts, is another superbly refitted yacht that was notable in Antigua. With her sleek navy blue hull and silver super structure, she stands out in any company.
POLLY'S two-level teak decks provide her charter guests ample space for al fresco dining and entertaining. Her extended swim platform is the ideal place to take advantage of her numerous watertoys, while on the large sundeck, wet bar, lounge seating and dining setting mean guests can enjoy the views from the top from sunrise to sunset.
The crew onboard BROADWATER, the 49.80m (163' 4") Feadship, made Radek Gendek exceptionally welcome. Over lunch, Radek experienced the convivial spirit of BROADWATER her charter guests unanimously mention after a week onboard. Ideal for soaking up the Caribbean on any number of itineraries tailored to guests by its experienced crew, BROADWATER is decked out with all the entertainment and leisure equipment you could wish for on charter.
BROADWATER recently underwent a complete rebuild from bow to stern. Among her many brilliant features is the upper aft deck with space for al fresco dining for 10 guests plus a spacious lounge area. Her sundeck boasts large comfortable sun pads and lounge chairs, Jacuzzi and wet bar.
The skylounge is the perfect entertainment hub with a game table, large plasma TV with surround sound and multi region SAT/TV with Kaleidascape A/V, movies, music, book libraries, board games and iPod docking.
Onshore, a veritable Antigua institution and recently revamped, is Catherine's Cafe Plage on Pigeon Point Beach, English Harbour.
"People flock to Catherine's restaurant for the setting, the superb French bistro style cuisine and the warm welcome from owners, Claudine and Guillaume," reports Sharon. "It's one of the icons of the Caribbean and something we recommend to yacht charter guests for a genuine, 5-star dining experience."
To arrange your next luxury yacht charter vacation, contact the professionals at the Luxury Charter Group now.
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