Part One: Australia
When I moved back to Australian from France several years ago, the sight of a 70-metre yacht at Rivergate Shipyard under Brisbane’s Gateway Bridge hit me with an oddly jarring jolt of recognition – what on earth was that doing there? I was aware that in the 20-odd years I’d been away, shipyard infrastructure had grown in Australia, but the degree of change still startled me.
I also realised New Zealand had an established reputation for superyacht refits stretching back to the 1980s, with multiple infrastructure booms around subsequent America’s Cup challenges.
Even so, there was no doubt that for me, at least, Australia’s extraordinary refit revolution over the past two decades had somehow flown under the radar.
I was sure I wasn’t alone in underestimating this phenomenal growth, though. The superyacht fleet is still considerably Northern-Hemisphere centric, and perceptions often take time to shift.
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