The start of the refit and maintenance season for the superyachts looks promising. According to the estimates by the companies working in STP, there are around 100 boats doing repairs and refits at the moment in the yard, and full occupancy is expected until march/april. Besides, the recent elimination of the matriculation tax on charter boats is likely to attract more boats to the Balearic Island, which will benefit the marinas and boat yards.
Joan Rosselló, the manager of STP, explains that the growth is noticeable above all in the category of boats above 30 meters of length. On top of that, "an increasing number of European top level boat builders, like Oyster, Swan and Baltic, establish a base in Mallorca, with a purpose to offer direct after sales service to their clients", he states.
There is a total of over 400 companies authorized by the Balearic Port Authority to work in STP, where the average length of boat is 27 m on hard stand and 36 m in berths. When it comes to the boat profile, Rosselló points out that "we have noticed an increase in the average length and also in the number of sailing boats. Currently the sailing boats count for between 60 and 70 percent of the total, thanks to the keel pits and the space".
Not only the nautical sector benefits from the presence of the large yachts on the island. Some vessels that don´t have their base in Palma, still come here for so called "Refit Tourism". The superyachts carry a crew of between 10-25 people who, while the yacht is in Palma, stay in hotels and apartments, go shopping, enjoy the local offer on entertainment and eat in restaurants.
As Rosselló clarifies, the competition is worldwide nowadays. For example, a boat can travel to USA for a paint job, because the saving in the actual cost of the job can compensate for the cost of the transfer. In Europe, the toughest competition is in France, Italy and Barcelona, although the last one is specialized in the very big yachts.
Read the complete article in Gaceta Náutica.