International boat show kick-starts in Mumbai

February 29th, 2008 - 1:01 am ICT by admin  

Mumbai, Feb 28 (IANS) The four-day Mumbai International Boat Show (MIBS) that kicked off Thursday evening has proved to be a treat for all those who love the romance of luxury boats and high seas. The exhibits on display include a rich spread of over 50 deluxe yachts, kayaks, jet skis and sailboats by 30 top exhibitors from around the world.

Vice Admiral J.S. Bedi of the Western Naval Command, also the chief guest on the occasion, told IANS: “This exhibition attempts to take Indians closer to the luxury lifestyle on the waters. These magnificent boats are intended for the performance-minded, stylish individual who likes speed coupled with the best of luxurious comforts.”

The naval officer enthusiastically surveyed the exhibition, halting at each of the 100-odd stalls and taking a close look at boats on display.

Bedi added the Indians were the original master boat builders and the fact that the oldest floating ship in the world today, HMS Trincomallee, was built in the Bombay dockyard in the year 1816 was a testimony to it.

“But with time India lost her maritime outlook and strategic ambitions. I hope such international events like the boat show will rekindle that old spark,” Bedi said.

The exhibition has attracted participation from international brands like Azimut, Yamaha, and YAKA and many more. Azimut has displayed its largest and most expensive yacht priced at Rs.40 million ($1 million).

YAKA has displayed around 10 multi-coloured kayaks with prices starting from Rs.30,000 onwards. One of the exhibits drawing crowds is the kayak made from a transparent material - named Clear Blue Hawaii - which gives the riders a breathtaking view of the water below and is priced at Rs.20,000.

The exhibition also has on display sub-marine aqua-scooters and inflatables, a perfect way to have fun on the waters.

There are Kawasaki jet skis that can register 45 knots on water for those who love the adrenaline rush and are priced in the range of Rs.450,000-850,000 each.

Robert Stevens, chief executive of the British Marine Federation (BMF), told IANS: “India is an emerging leisure marine market and the BMF is excited to be part of the MIBS.”

Also present at the exhibition were associations, which offer professional training in sailing skills.

MIBS director Malav Shroff said, “Instead of spending Rs.1,000 to watch a movie in a multiplex, one can spend less and attend sailing classes.”

He added that at the MIBS there is something for everyone - right from the multi-million-dollar luxury yacht to a humble dinghy. “One need not have mega bucks to walk in to the MIBS,” he said.

While the ground exhibition of the MIBS is being held at the Bandra-Kurla Complex in suburban Mumbai, the water exhibition of the yachts is being held at the Gateway of India in south Mumbai.

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