One of the largest pleasure boat dealers in the United States who was in Australia for the Sydney International Boat Show and visited the Gold Coast on Friday says Americans are spending again on luxury items like boats.
Joe Galati, of Galati Yacht Sales, sells Maritimo vessels in the USA and he was on the Gold Coast to inspect new models under production at the company’s Coomera manufacturing centre.
“It is still a difficult market, but what has happened is that people have reached the point where it is all right to be seen to be spending on something like a luxury motor cruiser again,” he said.
“For a long time even if you had the money it was not seen to be politically correct to be out there spending on a discretionary item such as a boat – it wasn’t the done thing nor seen as socially acceptable.”
Galati Yacht Sales has eight individual sales locations through the USA including Florida, Texas, The Great Lakes and Chicago. Mr Galati said American interest in Maritimo vessels was extremely high.
“The new range of Maritimo’s tick all the right boxes for our buyers,” he said. “They love the full beam master suites, the fully enclosed flybridges with the ability to either cool or heat the space depending on the weather and they also like the performance and sea keeping qualities of the brand,” he said.
“I am very excited about the changes and the focus on product that Maritimo has taken, it fits the US market perfectly. “The M45 and the M58 are perfect boats for our market and the new 48/50- that is coming is again perfect from a price point and design. “The sport yacht versions of these boats will combine in a product mix package that could not have been designed for our market.
“Our buyers are very educated and informed when it comes to their boating choice, they know quality when they see it and they tell us exactly what they are after. “ I think that post the GFC where new boat sales slumped we are now entering a period where people are looking to buy new again because there’s not so much near new inventory on the market.
“Most of the pre-owned stock is in excess of five years old and that brings with it a range of issues such as expired warranty so new is becoming back in fashion.”
Maritimo USA President Dave Northrop who was also in Australia for the Sydney International Boat Show and on the Gold Coast last week said the new Maritimo M58 cruising motoryacht with its luxurious full beam master suite and two other sizeable cabins had been a hit in the USA.
“The style, design and luxury that this vessel provides has made it an instant success in our market and I expect we will see strong sales,” he said.
He said the M45 and M58 were also popular and Joe Galati had already sold an M58’s to a USA customer.