Fort Lauderdale And Bermuda Collaborate

March 24, 2021

[Updated] The Bermuda Tourism Authority and Visit Lauderdale will “pair their nautical strengths in a new partnership designed to elevate both destinations’ desirable yachting lifestyle.”

A spokesperson said, “Through marketing, public relations and events, Bermuda and Greater Fort Lauderdale will be highlighted as harbors for sun-seeking visitors of all sorts—those permanently part of the jet set crowd and travelers who enjoy a vacation setting dotted with yachts and superyachts.

“The two-year partnership, jointly signed today in Bermuda and in Fort Lauderdale, is a pre-cursor to a new “Go Where the Yachts Go” marketing campaign which will leverage key events like the Fort Lauderdale International Boat Show [FLIBS] in October and Bermuda Grand Prix presented by Hamilton Princess, a sailing race that marks the start of SailGP’s one-million dollar winner-take-all professional sailing league.

“As Bermuda and Greater Fort Lauderdale engineer tourism recoveries, this kind of collaboration is particularly meaningful,” said Premier David Burt. “It’s a fantastic example of two destinations finding greater success collaborating with one another rather than competing. I look forward to two years of exciting innovation as the Bermuda Tourism Authority and Visit Lauderdale bring this partnership to life.”

The announcement said, “The two ideally located maritime destinations with non-competitive peak seasons [November through April for Greater Fort Lauderdale and May through October for Bermuda] will use the “Go Where the Yachts Go” theme to entice vessels leaving one destination to head to the other. Similarly, non-nautical visitors to each place will be acquainted with the allure and beauty of the other; both seaside, luxury lifestyle places, but with distinctly different aesthetics.”

“Combining the resources and reputations of both destinations makes financial and promotional sense during this time of tourism destination recovery,” says Steve Geller, Mayor of Broward County and Tourist Development Council chair. “A primary shared goal is to raise the profile of both destinations and attract a wide range of consumers who aspire to vacation in the same place as the yachting and sailing set.”

“Plans are underway to jointly host events for media, yacht owners, brokers and crews at FLIBS and other shows, while partnering on public relations and marketing initiatives. Combining efforts in this way gives both destination marketing organizations amplified reach and exposure, while spending less than they would have otherwise,” the announcement said.

“Bermuda is synonymous with yachting, sailing and the luxury lifestyle and Greater Fort Lauderdale is known as the Yachting Capital of the World so the cooperation of our two destinations serves to elevate both,” says Stacy Ritter, President and CEO of Visit Lauderdale. “With Bermuda firmly established with leisure travelers in the luxury lifestyle consumer segment this affiliation helps in our branding as Greater Fort Lauderdale continues to build new luxury hotels, restaurants and retail. It’s a win-win for both destinations.”

“Leaders from both destinations agree there is a great deal of synergy since they appeal to similar audiences at different times of the year and travelers who have only been to one of the destinations would find the other appealing. For seafarers departing from or headed to Fort Lauderdale by yacht, Bermuda is an important port-o-call for vessels in transition to and from the Mediterranean.”

“Attracting superyachts to Bermuda as well as the kind of visitor who enjoys a chartered yacht vacation are important National Tourism Plan objectives for our organization over the next few years,” says Glenn Jones, Interim CEO of the Bermuda Tourism Authority. “I’m optimistic this partnership with Visit Lauderdale helps us to reach our goals sooner and speed up the tourism recovery.  Simultaneously, the publicity we generate will make Bermuda relevant to countless more travelers attracted to our island lifestyle at a variety of price points.”

“Yachts shape the look, feel and personality of both Greater Fort Lauderdale and Bermuda,” says Bob Denison, President & Founder of Denison Yachting, based in Fort Lauderdale. “Partnering to promote the economic importance of the yachting industry and the picturesque setting it provides for visitors to both destinations makes total sense and we are onboard to support the initiative.”

The announcement said, “For its portion of the joint campaign, Greater Fort Lauderdale will work with NBC Sports Network anchor Townsend Bell, who covers the annual FLIBS event for the network, to produce new video content featuring the area’s on-the-water lifestyle and laid-back luxury to enhance its existing destination content. Bermuda brings strong contacts to the partnership in the area of marine industry and luxury lifestyle marketing.

“The two destinations will work with Marine Industries Association of South Florida and Informa Markets, the respective owner and operator of FLIBS, to build added presence for Greater Fort Lauderdale and Bermuda during the 2021 show, which takes place October 27-31, 2021 in Fort Lauderdale, as well as future boat show and other event opportunities.”

Update March 25, 9.15am: Interim CEO of the Bermuda Tourism Authority Glenn Jones remarks:

As the Premier mentioned, he and his team in Bermuda have done a masterful job managing the pandemic. There have been rough patches to be sure – we’re dealing with one right now, in fact – but overwhelmingly our community is healthy and doing its part to protect the safety of each other and our visitors. With that being the case, the Bermuda Tourism Authority can really focus its attention on planning for the future.

The future we’re building includes elevating the island’s relevance in the yacht and superyacht space. We have all the assets: good geography [set apart in the Atlantic], spectacular anchorages and the finest marinas, like the one at Hamilton Princess. Not only those amenities, but attitude too. Like a triangle we are equal parts British charm, Caribbean soul and Instagram-worthy adventure. Even with all of this, our destination must continuously find ways to lure this clientele.

Over the past year, Bermuda learned a few things about herself. Among travellers with the resources to vacation absolutely anywhere in the world, a notable number of them chose Bermuda. During this reduced travel period, the household income of our visitors went up – sharply. Simultaneously, construction has neared completion on a new St. Regis Hotel and plans were drawn for a new superyacht marina in historic St. George. During the life of this partnership, we see superyachts arriving in our UNESCO World Heritage site for a superyacht regatta—and guests availing themselves of the five-star amenities at the nearby St. Regis.

That’s why this creative partnership with Fort Lauderdale comes at exactly the right time. Our marketing voices unified in this way will cut through the noise expected to crowd the travel space over the next couple of years. We’re going to target the jet set while also capturing the imaginations of consumers who like to go where the yachts go.

In Bermuda, we’re ready for that. Officials recently introduced policies allowing superyacht owners to charter their vessel to guests. On our beautiful turquoise water, you don’t need to be a superyacht owner to grab that superyacht lifestyle.

It’s not uncommon for a mariner leaving Fort Lauderdale to stop in Bermuda on the way to the Med. We oftentimes get yachts leaving Bermuda to come directly here. Without a doubt, on nautical tourism, Bermuda and Fort Lauderdale can unify its marketing because it has similar ambitions—we’re talking to the same audience. My team is excited to work alongside our new partners to elevate our relevance and drive tourism for our communities… starting with this press announcement today and continuing tomorrow at the Palm Beach International Boat Show. It should be an exciting couple of years.

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Comments (5)

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  1. wahoo says:

    This makes no sense…we were told that yachts and people in them were bad.

    • mixitup says:

      Yachts and people in the were bad? Point me to where this was stated, I’m curious.

  2. LadyReef says:

    Isn’t Palm Beach where the real yachts are? Just get a flight to PBI.

  3. sandgrownan says:

    This is great, but, as with all things PLP, four years too late. The momentum was there in 2017, and there were numerous stakeholder meetings to get this ball rolling. It needed buy in from the then new government.

    Was there government support? I think you know the answer to that question. Anything, absolutely anything that showed AC35 in a good light was shut down.

    This is why the PLP are idiots and cannot be trusted to run anything more than a lemonade stand. Wankers.

  4. Franklin Jr says:

    Sports tourism can bring a lot of money to the island. We should aim for the elite and really up our image!

    We’ve always been at war with Eastasia.