In just a few weeks, the global superyacht industry will know if Gibraltar is to become a genuine contender for long-term berthing.
Having submitted plans for new berths and short-stay apartments, Marina Bay at Ocean Village could soon rival the best purpose-built marinas in the world.
According to Wealth-X, 22 billion US dollars was spent by the world’s wealthy on superyachts last year and, with almost 5,000 examples over 24 metres in existence, there is great demand for hi-tech facility-rich berths.
While Gibraltar has the location, the tax incentives and the climate, it has so far lacked the infrastructure to support this new breed of superyacht and the crew that operate them.
The Ocean Village masterplan will change this.
Currently with Gibraltar’s Development & Planning Commission, a proposal for ten new superyacht berths and short-stay apartments is hoped to encourage the world’s best to view the Rock as more than a ‘fuel station’ and Mediterranean-Atlantic gateway.
The plans improve everything from shore power to waste management with the added convenience of 101 waterside apartments suitable for housing crew and their families on a short-stay basis. Comforts such as modern data networks, Spa and leisure facilities, CCTV security and tree-lined promenades also feature in the proposal.
The team behind the sophisticated superyacht scheme is well aware of Gibraltar’s obvious advantages when it comes to financials such as a lack of VAT, fuel and import duties, and believes a green light from the DPC will be as beneficial to the burgeoning global superyacht industry as it is to the Rock.