st thomas yacht haven
Yacht Haven Grande marina in St Thomas.

The Caribbean’s Must-Visit Yacht Show Is Coming to St Thomas 

By: Dana Niland - March 17, 2024

The Virgin Islands Boating Expo will take place May 10-12, 2024 at Yacht Haven Grande St. Thomas, the USVI’s top yachting destination.

This boutique destination show, hosted by the Virgin Islands Professional Charter Association, ticks the top three boxes of what yacht buyers today want in a yacht sales experience: the ability to yacht shop, wine and dine, and stay and play — making for a unique kind of boat show-meets-food-festival event.

“We welcome our attendees, both the public and those flying into our award-winning destination, to visit with yacht dealers, manufacturers, exhibitors, and our local and global vendors,” said Joseph Boschulte, USVI Commissioner of Tourism. “Experience the best of what the U.S. Virgin Islands offers on land and sea and shop for a yacht while you’re here.”

Yacht shoppers can take advantage of duty-free tax benefits when buying in the USVI.  

It’s another major event for the Yacht Haven Grande Marina, which saw a major boom during the pandemic and continues to be a premier yachting jump-off point in the broader region.

The Government of the Virgin Islands also supports infrastructure on shore to maintain charter business interests such as an Economic Development Commission Tax Incentive Program for charter yachts. 

Charter company professionals, financial companies and Marine Expo vendors with global and local products will be on hand to talk about charter management opportunities in the USVI.

The latest models of top brands will be on site, including Bali, Lagoon, Fountaine Pajot, Leopard, McConaghy, Azimut and Boston Whaler, to name a few. 

Yacht buyers benefit from St. Thomas as a hub destination for transport ships delivering yachts from foreign manufacturing facilities. 

Attendees can walk the docks, tour the yachts, meet the professional crew and receive a fully immersive experience on board, with the opportunity to test-sail directly from the show berth through the scenic Charlotte Amalie harbor to world-class cruising grounds.

“Teaming up with Waypoints Yacht Charters, our luxury yacht charter sister company, we will bring attendees a dynamic duo that not only meets but exceeds market expectations,” said Laurent Fabre, vice president of sales and marketing for Fort Lauderdale, FL-based Atlantic Cruising Yachts, which will feature two stunning Fountaine Pajot catamarans, the Aura 51 and Alegria 67. “Discover the epitome of luxury and performance as our Yacht Consultants unveil the revolutionary Fountaine Pajot Smart Electric propulsion system, designed to enhance the experience for private owners and elevate charter fleet operations.”

Daily yacht viewings combine with live music and cultural performances, starting with the Exhibitor’s Opening Ceremony & Reception on May 9, from 5-7 p.m.

VIBE and Cutlass & Cane, Yacht Haven Grande St. Thomas’ newest restaurant, have partnered to produce a curated Food & Wine Experience, with lunch served daily from 12-3 p.m. including wine pairings. 

Yacht Haven Grande is also home to Blue 11, which has been featured in the 50 Best Restaurants in the Caribbean ranking.

All attendees can also visit a variety of pop-up bars featuring many beverages distributed by West Indies Company, including St. Croix, U.S. Virgin Islands-made Mutiny Island Vodka, the world’s first and finest Island Vodka made from breadfruit and Caribbean rainwater and St. Thomas-crafted Leatherback Brewing Company’s products, which offers craft beer made with Caribbean-grown ingredients.

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