Luxury Yachts, Private Jets Took Over the Chinese Riviera
Last week, China celebrated all things luxury at Hainan Rendez-Vous 2012, which hosted the world’s finest top-end brands. Event organizers estimate that 15,000 people attended. “We have been amazed by the response, not just from China but from people coming in from all over the world,” a spokesperson for organisers China Rendez-Vous Ltd said during the event.
Hainan is perhaps best known as a port and launch-pad for cruising yacht enthusiasts, contributing to the appeal of the event, which in the past has focused almost exclusively on the promotion of yachts and super yachts. This year, more than 130 luxury vessels were featured at the event. However, experts predict that the yacht market will wane in China in favor of other luxury transports.
“For the first time we are finding that the attention is more on business aviation than on yachts,” explained Mike Simpson, founder of the Hong Kong-based Simpson Marine, which has a stand at Hainan Rendez-vous 2012. “We think the aviation market is something that will develop across China much faster than the super yacht market.”
In anticipation of this transition, Simpson’s business has expanded into the private jet market, and the Chinese government is also loosening restrictions in order to promote the trend of privately owned aircraft.
According to the Chinese Luxury Consumer White Paper 2012, released earlier this month, China now boasts 63,500 “ultra high-net worth individuals” with personal assets of 100 million yuan (RM49 million) — and 30 per cent of those individuals are in the market for private jets.