The world’s top refit yards are fielding more inquiries for projects than they can address. This, combined with new-yacht builders increasingly taking on refits, partly explains why last year’s inaugural Refit International Exhibition & Conference had strong buzz. It also points to why those of you planning major works for the coming year should attend the conference, nicknamed the Refit Show, this year.
Although it’s a trade show, the Refit Show, attracts all parties with a vested interest in a refit going right. This includes not just shipyards but also captains, owners, brokers, and management team members. From January 26 to 27 at the Broward County Convention Center in Fort Lauderdale, you can source the right products and people. You can walk the exhibit hall for free to meet refit yard reps, designers and/or engineers, and product representatives. A number of seminars and live demonstrations are going on, too, though admission costs vary. (The Refit Show registration page has the full breakdown.)
Three seminars in particular are worthwhile for owners to attend. One is a captains’ roundtable, where the speakers plan to field questions from the floor. The other is an overview of an ongoing complex refit in Florida, of a 110-footer named Anodyne. And, finally, if you’ve ever had a contract issue or question, the “Ask a Lawyer: Legal Q&A” should be right up your alley.
Yet another aspect of the Refit Show worthy of your attention is the Refit Excellence Awards. Held on the opening day, it recognizes significant power and sailing refits over the past year. The power projects are in the 50- to 100-foot-range as well as 100-foot-and-up range. Last year, for example, the conversion of Enigma XK into an explorer yacht won an award. So, too, did the refit of Axia, a sailing yacht whose owner wanted her redesigned for winning the St. Barths Bucket. (He succeeded.)