Blog | New Zealand Expects Increased Superyacht Traffic for America’s Cup

December 8, 2017

New Zealand Expects Increased Superyacht Traffic for America’s Cup

As we reported earlier this year, the 35th annual America’s Cup, which began in May of 2016, and ran through June 17th, drew huge crowds, and a record number of superyachts to the Island Nation of Bermuda. Now, New Zealand, who will be hosting the 36th edition of the race for the Cup, is hoping for a similar bounce in tourism around the event.

As reported in the New Zealand Herald, with the races still years away, AsiaPacific Superyachts, an Auckland based superyacht support service, has already had inquiries from “owners of three vessels over 300 feet, for berths in Auckland during the America’s Cup, which a local tourism group says ‘could put cream on the top of summer.” Managing director Duthie Lidgard, for AsiaPacific, said the Cup in 2021 would be a big opportunity for Auckland.

Lidgard added, “Superyachts come here for maintenance, and their owners and crew spend millions of dollars on luxury tourism experiences. Adding more berths for [100 foot-plus] superyachts would help.” He concluded that, although yards providing maintenance and dockage were close to maximum capacity, “Kiwis always find a way to fit more work in and the global exposure could inject life into superyacht construction businesses. It would be a massive coup for New Zealand as a whole, and possibly the exposure required for boat-building operations to reopen.”

During the last successful defense of the Cup in 2000, superyachts averaged around 100ft to 120ft, and only a few made the voyage to New Zealand. Lidgard, and other in the marine industry in New Zealand are hoping that developing more berths and facilities to accommodate larger vessels between now and the Cup, will change that.

Defending Champions and a New America’s Cup

New Zealand, won back the Cup by routing Larry Ellison’s Oracle Team USA in Bermuda, and is looking forward to defending the Cup on their Home Turf.

In addition to news about the hopeful return of superyacht business, it has also been announced that we can expect some big changes in the races in 2021. The last three America’s Cups all involved “multi-hulled” yachts. The rules committee for New Zealand has announced that they will return to mono-hulled yachts — the boats with deep keels that were part of every America’s Cup from 1851 to 2007 and are still the main ride for the Sunday sailor. According to the New York Times, “the next Cup also will re-emphasize the idea of national teams by instituting new requirements, although not to the degree expected. Above all, the rules for 2021 will re-establish the clear distinction between the defender of the oldest major trophy in global sports and its challengers.”

“This is an important principle,” said Grant Dalton, the fiery chief executive of Team New Zealand. “Because it is, after all, the challengers’ job to gang together to try to beat the defender.”

Special America’s Cup Coverage From 26 North Yachts

As always, in support of this grand yachting event, 26 North Yachts will be covering any and all news about the America’s Cup in the run up to the races.

And for the very best in yachts and yachting news in 2018, whether you are interested in  market intel, or tips on buying or selling your yacht, or the latest info on yacht charters, you can find it all right here at 26 North Yachts!

We wish all of our readers the very best for a most joyous upcoming Holiday Season, and look forward to serving you in the year ahead.


Team Oracle is hoping to take the Cup back home!

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