With Sydney now firmly out of lockdown and springing into summer it is nice to see a return to normality around the boating industry. This weekend’s Boating Rendezvous Sydney was a resoundingly successful step in the right direction, with a number of keen boaters in attendance at Cockle Bay Marina, Darling Harbour.
Jointly presented by Sydney dealers, Chapman Marine Group, Flagstaff Marine and The Multihull Group, the event was a chance to check out the amazing display of new and popular models from the dealerships.
Thankfully I was invited down to attend the exciting event along with Greta Quealy from our sister site MySailing.com.au.
The show was also home to the Australian debut of two all new boats from industry leaders Beneteau, presented at the Boating Rendezvous by Chapman Marine, something which was of particular interest to us.
The spacious and smart 2021 Beneteau Antares 11 Flybridge was one of the two new offerings from Beneteau on display this weekend, with the all-new flagship in the Antares line being the perfect illustration of what a family cruiser should be. Safety and comfort are clearly major focuses for this model, the 11 Fly being equipped with high freeboards and large walkways making it the perfect family weekender for boating enthusiasts.
Beneteau have perfectly blended the flybridge deck itself seamlessly into the 11’s stunning exterior profile, the flybridge deck not only a great space to drive from but also a great spot for relaxing, with the option for sun pads up there too.
Inside, as a result of the huge wraparound windows, the wheelhouse is full of light, making the interior an extremely pleasant space for relaxing and socialising. The expansive windows do a great job of bringing the outside in, merging the lines between spaces onboard without zones feeling too close for comfort or overlapping.
The Antares 11 really shines below deck however, creating the feeling onboard of a vessel much larger. The main cabin is spacious and comfortable, expertly crafted to maximise space and comfort without feeling cramped, and equipped to accommodate for owners looking to spend some real time onboard. The second berth is also surprisingly comfortable and roomy, with the 11 seeming to push the boundaries of what a weekender can do.
Performance wise the Antares 11 Fly can be powered with up to 2 x 300hp outboard engines meaning performance is reliable and cruising is easy.
The other major cause for excitement at the show from Chapman Marine and Beneteau was the Australian debut of the 2021 Flyer 9 SUNDECK, a multifunctional powerboat that has also been optimised to make excellent use of all the available space onboard.
With a large unobstructed deck area and high gunnels, the Flyer 9 SUNDECK is perfect for all types of nautical activities, from sunbathing to cruising to fishing. The opening side platform enlarges the cockpit space and provides easy access for swimming.
Just like the Antares 11, the Flyer 9 SUNDECK makes optimal use of all the available real estate in both interior and exterior spaces, with the two berths below deck able to accommodate 4 people for a night onboard. These spaces below deck feel truly spacious and the boat is also equipped with its own head.
It was excellent to see these two high quality vessels from industry leaders Beneteau in Darling Harbour, and the action did not stop there.
The 2021 Beneteau Antares 9 was also on display at Cockle Bay Marina, proving to be an excellent 9 metre option in the Antares range, the three-leaf sliding door, wraparound glazing, and opening roof, being a real standout feature of the vessel, giving the weekender a wonderful indoor-outdoor feel.
The fourth and final Beneteau on display from Chapman Marine was the high performance and modern Gran Turismo 32, an open boat available in inboard or outboard versions, boasting speeds of up to 35 knots. The lounging areas bow, and stern onboard the GT32 are truly impressive and expansive, with ample room for relaxation for any number of guests, the large sunbathing deck forward being an extremely comfortable spot onboard, with easy access thanks to the wide semi walkaround.
It was a joy to see the latest from world renowned boating brand Beneteau taking to Darling Harbour in conjunction with Chapman Marine, Sydney and it’s boating events industry slowly seeming to come to life again.
We would like to extend our thanks to Chapman Marine for their invitation and their hospitality, their extensive knowledge around these impressive new releases and debuts from Beneteau being particularly useful.
We look forward to bringing you the latest from Chapman Marine and Beneteau moving forwards. Stay tuned to powerboat.com.au for all the latest boating news and events coverage from Sydney and around Australia.
Tom Baker – Editor