Miami’s Yachting Reputation Continues to Skyrocket

The iconic sunshine state city is quickly establishing itself as the superyacht capital of the world
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Even as Miami continues to grow into a large multicultural metropolis (population 463,347), its coastal neighbor city to the north, Fort Lauderdale (population 180,072) .

Nestled squarely in South Florida, one of the prime boating locations in the world, Miami is no yachting slouch itself. The city of Miami has aggressively forged ahead in its quest to be a global power in the yachting industry. Recent efforts are focused on making the endlessly sunny city the Monaco of the U.S. and the yacht capital of the world.

With a plethora of five-star restaurants, luxurious five-star hotels, high-end art galleries, festivals, a vibrant nightlife, and loads of superb yachting facilities, many yacht owners and charter clients are attracted to the city’s beloved boating lifestyle, seeing it as an obvious choice for a holiday or a launching off spot for trips to The Bahamas, Keys, Caribbean, or South America.

City officials and yachting organizations continue to push Miami forward, building on its rich cultural and maritime heritage to build a brighter, more prosperous future.

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A History of Boating Culture

Like all of Florida, one of the most appealing aspects of Miami for boating is its year-round boating season and the vast array of boating-related activities that can be enjoyed on board all types of vessels in its beautiful waters.

Sportfishing, kite fishing, diving, exploring miles of canals, relaxing in turquoise waters and on tropical island beaches, spotting manatees and dolphins, and enjoying a world-class night life, the Miami area has it all – and it is unquestionably best experienced by boat.

Fittingly, Miami hosts one of the biggest and greatest boat shows in the world, making it a hub of American and international boat buying. The Miami International Boat Show marked its 78th – and biggest – year this past February, while the Miami Yacht Show, technically a separate show but held at the same time, continues growing larger and stronger after more than three decades. And they’re only getting more powerful and influential.

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For the first time at the 2019 iteration, the producers of both shows—the National Marine Manufacturers Association (owners of the Progressive Insurance Miami International Boat Show) and Informa (co-owners of the Miami Yacht Show with International Yacht Brokers Association)—joined forces to fully showcase Miami’s clout as an international yachting hub, creating the world’s largest display of boats for sale and bringing a combined $1.3 billion in economic impact to South Florida.

As the shows have expanded, outgrowing their long-time homes, organizers have responded accordingly to create an even more world-class affair. The Miami International Boat Show is now fully settled in at its new home at Miami Marine Stadium Park & Basin on Virginia Key (sayonara convention center), and in 2019 the Miami Yacht Show shifted from its traditional location on Collins Avenue to downtown Miami between the Venetian and MacArthur causeways, across Biscayne Bay from MIBS, and in closer proximity to Miami Yacht Show’s Super Yacht Miami at the opulent Island Gardens on Watson Island.

Combined, the shows bring nearly two thousand of the hottest, most sought-after boats, yachts, and superyachts to Miami.

MIBS features more than 1,400 new boats ranging in size from 10 feet to 100 feet—including center console powerboats boasting multiple outboards capable of producing more than 2,000 horsepower, to a myriad of drool-inducing 20- and 30-foot fishing machines—while the Miami Yacht Show and Super Yacht Miami feature more than 500 new and brokerage yachts and super yachts ranging from 40 feet to over 320 feet.

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As the shows’ and Miami’s international yachting reputation have grown, the focus turned to being more welcoming to super yachts and their elite owners.

In early 2016, Island Gardens Deep Harbor marina opened as North America’s first all-superyacht facility, coming at a price tag of approximately $25 million and allowing more mega yachts easy access to the metropolis. Island Gardens features fifty superyacht-specific berths, drafts of 18-21 feet (5.5-6.4 meters), and can host vessels measuring over 400 feet (122 meters).

Already a popular superyacht charter destination, expectations are high that the new marina will cement Miami’s status as the premier destination for the yachting elite cruising in north America.

In addition to Island Gardens, Miami’s other stunning marinas host some of the finest superyachts who berth up to enjoy the high-end dining, golf, art, beaches, and nightlife.

As Miami continues to grow and attract thousands of ultra-high net-worth individuals from all around the world who are looking for a unique yachting experience and luxury lifestyle, Island Gardens’ exclusivity and high-capacity are guaranteed to boast high-occupancy rates among these international owners and charterers.

Once here, residents and guests alike want activities and entertainment that suit their lifestyle and disposable income. Miami’s cultural and economic growth ensures that won’t be a problem.

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A Booming Yachting Lifestyle

In addition to miles of marinas and seemingly endless boating and water activities, Miami boasts a vibrant dining and entertainment scene and robust international community where the world’s wealthy and elite come for sophisticated socializing, to see and be seen, and to show off their magnificent yachts.

The makeover of downtown Miami has been accompanied by a wonderful evolution in the restaurant scene. World-class dining is everywhere, with culinary delights featuring a lovely fusion of seafood, Latin flavors, and contemporary American style.

The arts and entertainment scenes are equally as prolific, featuring fabulous events that are part of the global agenda for the affluent, such as Art Basel, the Miami Open, and the plush hotels and spas of Miami Beach.

No mention of Miami culture is complete without South Beach and its non-stop nightlife, as well as the five-senses stimulation in the Art Deco district, the cultural appeal of Little Havana, the sultry Carnaval Miami, and the up and coming Wynwood arts district.

And don’t forget, Miami hosts the Super Bowl in 2020, which will surely bring the yachting elite out in force.


Whether your interests stretch to deep-sea fishing, yacht shows, motor racing, playing golf or tennis, watching Major League sports, sunbathing, shopping, fine dining, or art curation, Miami is the destination, and the ideal launch pad for your next vacation or dream charter.

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With an office in the heart of Miami Beach, HMY Yacht Sales is perfectly poised to help you get on the water in Miami with a new or pre-owned yacht. If you aren’t ready to buy just yet, HMY Charter Vacations can help you test the waters before making your decision. 

Contact us today!

HMY Miami Beach – 305-856-8486

HMY Charter Vacations – 561-870-4142

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