The visit of the 39-metre Feadship Go to Brazil has been a great success, says the yard. “The response has been much higher than anticipated,” says the director of Feadship America, Timothy Hamilton, who has been on board Go. The yacht has been cruising between Rio and Santos (close to São Paulo), taking guests on board to experience the superyacht in its natural habitat.
“The shame of a yacht show is that you can’t get out on the water, so we have put the emphasis on taking people out. It has been great to get people out in a swell and experience the comfort levels, the lack of noise and the quality of the air. They have also, of course, been impressed with the quality,” he says.
“It was important to get some exposure for Feadship to what is the hottest market in the world right now where there is a strong boating culture. If you use the word ‘Feadship’ in the US or Europe we’re recognised as a top-quality builder but it’s not the same here,” he adds. “The benchmark for most Brazilian owners is a lot lower than a Feadship. A successful individual here will have a Gulfstream G550, the biggest helicopter, houses in Sao Paulo, Miami and the South of France, but he’ll also have a 95ft production boat. To him, that’s the best you can own. Now they are discovering there is another option.”
But will owners be keeping their yachts in local waters, given the tax situation? “The duty on an imported yacht is prohibitive – there’s a phrase here that translates as ‘you buy two, you get one’. But people are still buying yachts and importing them. It’s actually the case that Brazilians are geared to overpaying because the prices of domestically built boats that don’t incur tax are still very high. They are charging more because they are at capacity. So while I don’t think we are going to have a lot of people buying with us and importing, I don’t rule it out.”
Go has been in Brazil after wintering in the Caribbean. She will head back to Europe on her own hull at the end of April.