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The 50 anniversary of Boot Dusseldorf, the mammoth indoor boat and watersports show, ended its first five decades with a bang. The show, held in 17 massive exhibit halls at the German city’s sprawling fairgrounds, set records in attendance and number of exhibitors. A number of events during the show were keyed on the anniversary. Monaco’s Prince Albert ll, an enthusiatic advocate of improving the marine environment, presented the Ocean Tribute award to several conservation stalwarts at a gala in the show’s superyacht hall.


This year’s show, held in January, attracted almost 2,000 exhibitors from 73 countries presented their products over 2.3 million square feet of exhibit space. About 250,000 people from 100 countries attended the show during its nine-day run.

World premieres from at least a dozen builders of power and sail yachts large and small, indicated the health of the industry in Europe and in general. Boats and yachts ranged in size from paddleboards to nearly 100 feet.


But it’s not all about the boats. In the world of boat shows, Boot Dusseldorf is unique. It features space dedicated to a broad range of watersports with a number of active hands-on displays including a standing-wave tank that allows guests to try their hand at surfing, paddle-surfing and other such activities. Sailing, diving, paddling and other watersports pursuits also had dedicated demonstration areas. It’s not likely any manner of marine activity, equipment or services was overlooked at this impressive show.


Yachts International has flagged Boot Dusseldorf as a great destination boat show. If you’re intrigued by the prospect of spending a winter vacation dreaming about the summer of 2020, look into the next edition, which will be held next January 18-26. Hint: Don’t expect to see it all in a day, or two, or…


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