LELYSTAD _ The 2018 HISWA in Water Boat Show (Sept. 5-9) was a sold-out event in a spectacular new venue, living up to its claim of being Europe’s largest, most varied show displaying boats in their natural habitat.

It attracted some 23,000 visitors and 300 boat events. The HISWA in-Water ended a 5-year run at Amsterdam Marina in 2017 and its inaugural 2018 edition at Batavia haven in Lelystad _ 40 kms east of the Dutch capital _ was a sold-out event, said HISWA Holland Marine Industry.

The show’s boat jury named the sleek, vintage design 6.7m Greek-built Hermes Speedster motor yacht of year. Inspired by the 1959 Porsche-356, it is “a clear and innovative concept with good choices and good sailing qualities,” said the jury.” The speedster has 2 bucket seats up front, a 2-seater bench behind them, and a sporty auto-style dashboard. It has a top speed of 45 mi. (73kms) per hour and is built at Greece’s Seven Seas Yachts.

The jury named the Dutch-built, Simonis-Voogd-designed 7.6m Aira-22 (right) sailboat of the year. The newcomer _ introduced at the 2018 Duesseldorf Boat Show _ comes in ClubSailer, DaySailer and MatchRacer versions. It is ideal for sailing clubs and schools. Comfortable seating, sporty sailing potential.

The HISWA in-Water event has moved closer to Germany _ an important market for Dutch yacht builders and suppliers. The 2018 event was blessed with spacious docks, a daily parking fee of only €3, live music, clinics and 80 premiere boat showings.

At the show, HISWA Holland Marine Industry reported a 2.5% first-half growth rate. The group represents some 900 members across a dozen sectors, including yards, marinas, charterers, naval architects, sailing schools and repair and refit services. The 2019 HISWA In-Water Boat Show will be held in Lelystad Sept. 4-8, 2019.