Keynote and Awards Ceremony Are Highlights of Marinas19 Conference

Marinas19 International Conference and Trade Exhibition, held from May 27 to 29 on the Gold Coast in Australia, attracted 300 participants and kicked off with an address by Marina Industries Association (MIA) President Andrew Chapman. He highlighted the need for the marine industry to be on the front foot with environmental challenges.

Chapman discussed the major problem of degradation of the marine environment, and he launched MIA’s policy on the elimination of single plastics.

“MIA is committed to providing industry leadership to eliminate single use plastics by 2025 at MIA member marinas through education and information leading to changed business practices and recycling, Chapman said. He strongly encouraged marinas to sign up and pledge their support for this policy at the conference or via the MIA website.

Delegates were also given a preview of the just released online Club Marina Extreme Weather Preparedness course: a 90-minute online training course responding to the increase in extreme weather events around the world. Based on recent case studies the course outlines best practices in preparing for extreme weather for both marinas and for the owners of boats within marinas.

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MIA CEO Colin Bransgrove said demand for booth space, which topped out at 32, was particularly strong from international companies this year. “There is growing recognition from North America and Europe that MIA provides an effective conduit into the marina industry across the Asia, Australia and New Zealand regions.”

Thirty-one plenary and break-out sessions were held over the two-day conference, and on day three, 100 delegates stayed to participate in a detailed study tour of waterways management and the two largest boatyards on the Gold Coast.

At the gala dinner, held May 28, awards were handed out for the Club Marine Marina of the Year. This year’s winners include:

  • Best Community Engagement by a Marina: Abell Point Marina, QLD
  • Best Environmental Initiative by a Marina: South of Perth Yacht Club, WA
  • Best Marina Restaurant: Southport Yacht Club, QLD
  • Best International Marina: Bays of Islands Marina, NZ; finalists: Sanya Serenity Marina, China and Westhaven Marina, NZ
  • Best Innovation by a Marina: Australian Superyacht Rendezvous at Gold Coast City Marina
  • Club of The Year: South of Perth Yacht Club, WA; finalists: Royal Motor Yacht Club, Broken Bay, NSW and Southport Yacht Club, QLD
  • Best Commercial Marina – Under 140 Boats: Crystalbrook Superyacht Marina, QLD; finalist: Rivergate Marina & Shipyard, QLD
  • Best Commercial Marina over 140 Boats: Abell Point Marina, QLD
  • Best Boat Yard – Up To 20 Boats: Fenwicks Marina, NSW
  • Best Boat Yard Over 20 Boats: Rivergate Marina & Shipyard, QLD; finalist: The Yard, QLD.

Port Denarau Marina in Fiji was also awarded entry into the Hall of Fame in the category of Best International Marina.