St. Maarten News – The St. Maarten Marine Trades Association (SMMTA) has officially announced that they are looking into the opportunity to once again host a St. Maarten Boat Show. The announcement was part of a presentation given by the board of the SMMTA to the Council of Ministers on February 4, 2016.
The SMMTA explained that while a successful boat show would help attract business to the island there are a lot of variables that need to be considered in order to make a show on St. Maarten a success. The SMMTA learned a lot about what it takes to host a successful boat show during the island’s first attempt some 10 years ago. Even though St. Maarten’s show was well organized and professionally executed it was cancelled after a few years because it lacked the necessary industry support from yacht brokers and other leaders in the marine industry. According to the SMMTA, this is an important fact to remember because without the proper input from different stakeholders on St. Maarten, the United States, and in Europe we are doomed to the same fate as our first attempt regardless of how great a job St. Maarten does in setting up the event.
The SMMTA emphasized that the organizers and supporters of the original boat show did an exemplary job with hosting the actual event here on St. Maarten but we now know that we will need to spend more time with key industry players in the US and Europe to insure their support and participation in the show before it is launched. The SMMTA’s renewed interest is due to several fruitful meetings held this season with multinational companies in the industry.
At this time the concept of a new boat show for St. Maarten is simply being explored but it is one of the main goals for the SMMTA. The specific time of year for the show is still being debated and researched but the concept is to host it during the shoulder season so that it helps increase occupancy and drive additional business to St. Maarten.
The show is not expected to be launched prior to 2017 or 2018 as the SMMTA feels that the concept needs to be thoroughly vetted before St. Maarten rushes into anything. The main focus is to set up an event that will be successful and continue to run for many decades into the future.