By David Robinson
New Zealand’s leisure marine strategy to attract more and ever larger superyachts to its shores is proving successful. Silo Marina in Auckland, which fully epitomises the strategy, has recorded its busiest month to date and is seeing ongoing signs of unprecedented demand.
The marina, which has been progressively developed over the past few years, is now able to berth 13 superyachts up to 120m (394ft). The strategy, which was heavily promoted at the Monaco Yacht Show, combines the diverse and beautiful cruising opportunities along with excellent infrastructure, conducive charter rules and excellent refit and repair facilities.
In a press statement, Waterfront Auckland says: “The marina is increasingly becoming the go-to place for superyacht refits and long-term stays in the South Pacific and is currently home to the 119m (390ft) superyacht A, believed to be the biggest to berth in New Zealand, with interior space almost 15 times the size of an average house. Two new 90m docks were added to the marina this year, each with a 1m freeboard, making them the biggest pontoons in New Zealand, plus two new 65 metre pontoons. A further enhancement is the access to a 60m berth adjacent to Southern Spas’ subsidiary Rig Pro, providing hassle-free mast stepping by one of the world’s best mast manufacturers.”
The marina’s manager, Luke Wigglesworth from Waterfront Auckland, says: “The city-owned facility provides an excellent option for maintenance and refits with its close proximity to a cluster of world-leading marine suppliers and service people. Forward planning is encouraged as Silo Marina is currently full, having just had its biggest month on record in terms of revenue and boat tonnage and demand is expected to be high for the entire Southern Hemisphere summer.”
Waterfront Auckland is further looking to enhance the city’s superyacht facilities with Site 18, an area close to the Silo Marina where a proposed haul-out facility for yachts up to 100m (328ft) or more is envisaged, subject to raising the necessary finance.
A plan for the site has already been devised by local superyacht repair and refit company Orams.