Get ready for the world’s largest in-water boat show, November 1-5. Now in its 58th year, the Fort Lauderdale International Boat Show or—FLIBS for short—takes over the “Venice of the Americas” with seven locations and more than 1,000 boats on display in the water and on land. Traditionally running Thursday through Monday, this year’s show represents a date change. It now begins on a Wednesday and finishes on Sunday.
Six on-the-water locations span from the Sails Marina just outside the 17th Street Causeway to the Las Olas Marina a few miles north on the Intracoastal Waterway. The Broward County Convention Center on land augments this with smaller boats as well as events such as the Bluewild Ocean Adventure Expo and the Kids’ Fishing Clinics, presented by Hook the Future.
The Bahia Mar Yachting Center is still the center of the action and will remain so for another 50 years, thanks to a new lease signed with the hotel and marina. Consequently, the Fort Lauderdale City Commission voted to allow the Bahia Mar operators to submit plans for redeveloping the 39-acre site into an upscale community and the permanent home of the boat show.
Those looking for an upscale boat show experience can buy VIP tickets to the Windward Club again this year. The exclusive package costs $225 per day and includes show access, water taxi transport and, most importantly, entry to the air-conditioned club room at the Hall of Fame Marina. Offering cool respite, it features gourmet food, an open bar and a concierge, who can also assist with booking yacht appointments.
Purchase show tickets, VIP packages, water taxi tickets and parking at flibs.com, where there is also a link to boatshowhotels.com for accommodations.
No matter what you are looking for—from bay boats and ski boats to sportfishers and megayachts—everything is on hand in FLIBS 2017. Begin your search with these just-launched or updated models from 40 builders.