Boat show decider
Industry stalwarts will tell you this weekend's Sanctuary Cove International Boat Show (SCIBS) was the best platform for selling boats. But with boat-show marketing budgets slashed and more off-site marine events, speculation has been rife that Sanctuary's days are numbered. Winson Chow, chief operating officer of organiser Mulpha Australia, is adamant "the boat show epitomises everything about Sanctuary Cove that is unique... whether for business or pleasure, visitors immediately absorb the atmosphere and the genuine appeal of living by the water". Yet the marina floor plan for the 25th silver anniversary show is a shadow of its former glory. Perhaps a broader upmarket show for all kinds of luxury conveyances and kit is the future? Either that, or the growing Gold Coast Marine Expo in November. We'll know soon enough.
Double celebrations: Australian luxury cruiser manufacturer Maritimo will celebrate its 10th anniversary at the May 25-26 25th SCIBS. Founded by boat-building doyen Bill Barry-Cotter after selling Riviera for a motser, Maritimo has sold some 500 boats, won the world offshore power boat championship in the US last year, and re-emerged from post-GFC navel-gazing with clever new cruisers. The M58 and M50/C50 make their debuts at Sanctuary Cove.
If you need reminding of the importance of wearing a lifejacket, consider warehouse assistant Fhelipe Davoodifar, 26, from Kogarah Bay. A keen kayaker, he survived more than six hours in the ocean off Port Stephens at night because he hired a lifejacket just before setting out. "I always wear a lifejacket but I forgot to bring it. I almost went out without one but there's a little hire kiosk on the beach and I picked one up — $15 for three hours — it was the best $15 I've ever spent," he said. Mr Davoodifar was offshore from Nelson Bay when he capsized. A kayaking companion raised the alarm. Roads and Maritime Services and a NSW police officer plucked Mr Davoodifar from the water.
South coast rescue
Boating safety services have been bolstered on the NSW south coast with a new offshore rescue vessel at the Marine Rescue base in Ulladulla Harbour. The new fast-response Steber 38 is suitable for deployment up to 30 nautical miles offshore. A new training centre was also opened in Ulladulla, a growing boating hub.