New Zealand’s Cup boom fades
New Zealand’s prospects of an America’s Cup bonanza are fast receding, as superyachts turn away and overseas visitors shelve their plans to come to the Cup. Some fear that, if New Zealand’s stringent entry restrictions continue into 2021, the Prada Cup and the America’s Cup finals could end up being largely a domestic event, with little international razzamatazz.
The anticipated economic boom of hosting the Cup included a forecast that superyachts would generate around NZ$180M. But many have already turned for home, put off by the uncertainty of whether owners, guests and charterers will be allowed into New Zealand, plus the requirement to upfront 50% of refit costs.
Currently, around 20 superyachts are thought to be in New Zealand. Auckland Council subsidiary Panuku says it expects to take a NZ$3.2 million hit from 22 berth cancellations, rate reductions and bond returns.
Meanwhile, berthing fees that had been ramped up to exorbitant rates are swiftly being revised. One Yachting World reader told us he had a quote from a marina situated a short ferry trip from the Cup village pushing the usual rate of NZ$69 per day to $6,900,