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How this Brisbane marina plans to attract world's superyachts during Games


A Brisbane marina is making a pitch to become the premier superyacht destination for international visitors drawn by the 2032 Olympics.

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Rivergate Marina and Shipyard at Murarrie is hoping to lure superyacht owners and operators by expanding its facility to include infrastructure capable of lifting 3000 tonne vessels up to 90 metres in length for repairs and maintenance.

Owners typically need to spend about 10 per cent of the vessel’s value on running costs, providing a ready market for companies who can get supply chains and maintenance right.

Already, the market contributes an estimated $300 million to the Queensland economy, with about 200 superyachts operating in Australian waters before the COVID-19 pandemic.

Rivergate also has plans for extra berthing options for superyachts visiting for the Olympics, extensive hardstand space, new refit sheds, a five-storey Trade Centre and resort-style accommodation for owners and captains.

Rivergate has received some government money to develop the concept under the Queensland Superyacht Strategy, which aims to lift the state’s share of the superyacht market to 10 per cent by 2023.

The government hopes on developing an industry seen as a potential creator of hundreds of tourism jobs. The strategy involves a mix of promotion of the state’s qualities as a tourism destination and encouraging industry growth through supporting infrastructure.

Rivergate director Tom Hill said the expanded facility could also cater to defence and commercial shipping.

“As the largest facility in the Asia Pacific capable of lifting out and servicing multiple superyachts, the Rivergate expansion would enable more vessels to visit for the Olympics and stay on to cruise the Great Barrier Reef and other spectacular destinations on our doorstep,” he said.

Places such as the Southport Yacht Club and the Cairns marina are investing in new technology and infrastructure in anticipation of a superyacht-driven boom in business in the lead up to the Olympics.

Superyachts are typically luxury vessels with a master and crew with accommodation for up to 12 guests and a minimum length of 30 metres. The market primarily caters to those with net wealth of at least $40 million.


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