Most crew will have a place in their heart for Antibes. Memories of job hunting, hanging out at Le Blue Lady or the Hop Store, or maybe it becoming your home from home in the Med.
Well this iconic location has a lot going on at the moment. First up is the Antibes Raft Race on Saturday 14th April at Port Vauban. This charity event will be one of the funniest days out you’ll have this year with over 30 yachting teams battling it out in a race around the IYCA in home made rafts of all shapes and sizes to raise money for the Antibes Lifeboat.
Beer stops mid race, prizes for the ‘Best cheat’, ‘Raft most in need of a refit’ and ‘Most entertaining behaviour’ all form part of this event and there’s a kick-ass after party at Bastion Saint Jaume in the marina with raffle prizes like a FunAir SUP and an auction for an amazing $6K Schiller Water Bike, all to raise even more cash for the charities.
Our very own production manager Costas will be taking up the mike just like he did at the 2012 race and providing live commentary of the race while he follows the rafts on the Schiller Water Bike. All this will be broadcast via loudspeakers in the marina and live on SuperYacht Radio. What could possibly go wrong…
The Raft Race all started back in 1981 and nearly finished right there when the Port Captain at the time Mr Plym planned to lodge a complaint after the first committee ‘forgot’ to obtain permission from Port Vauban. Luckily, the event was such a success and no people, sea life or yachts were harmed that Mr Plym attended the evening event and ended up presenting the prizes. Good Man!
Following a gap of a few years Gary Morton resurrected the event, sought and obtained the proper permissions and status as a non-profit-making association and the official Antibes Raft Race was on! Since then the raft race (official motto – Who Cares Who Wins) has brought together teams of crew and yachting folks from around the world every few years to dress up, make fools of themselves, raise money for local charities and generally have a great day.
To get the general side splitting vibe of the day, watch this little gem from 2012.
Meanwhile Port Vauban has been working on their development programme that includes a new Capitanerie with helipad for two helicopters, a panoramic restaurant with breath-taking views and a new event space on the IYCA.
Other plans include a crew leisure centre with fitness and library facilities, improved storage, a Yacht Club, training facilities, two shipyards, a new access route for Fort Carré and a cultural area for local and international artisans.
The team at Vauban21 who are managing this 135 million euro development have thought long and hard about how they can ensure Antibes is the centre of yachting in the Mediterranean, and are currently commissioning unlimited high-speed internet; renovated laundrettes and washing facilities; improved transport services and parking; as well as technically advanced facilities for yacht maintenance; permanent administrative services; a reservation platform for yacht owners and captains and long-distance payment systems.
We can’t wait to enjoy the all-new Port Vauban and look forward to seeing everyone on Raft Race Day!