In my line of work, you quickly learn that there are boat shows, and then there are Boat Shows. So far, I’ve found none that can quite compare to Boot Düsseldorf, which each winter fills 17 exhibition halls in a sprawling complex along the Rhine River in western Germany.
As soon as you arrive in town, signs for the show are everywhere. Got a ticket? You can even ride the city’s extensive public transportation system to and from for free. Try that, why don’t you, in Miami, where the U.S. hosts its biggest annual event.
The 2016 version of Boot, billed as world’s biggest watersports show, attracted 247,000 visitors from 52 countries. And every one of them came to check out the 1,800 boats that were towed, sailed and trucked in for the occasion. Leave it to the efficient Germans to figure out how to pull that off.
In the opening three days of the week-long show, we managed to catch a number of new boat debuts, providing a sneak preview of what’s soon to arrive on this side of the pond. Anyone in the market for something new won’t be disappointed at what’s coming down the ways.
In no particular order, here’s a rundown of what we found.