When the Monaco Yacht Show (MYS), the only exhibition devoted exclusively to superyachts over 25 metres in length, opens next week, it will take on a distinct Arabian flavour with the Abu Dhabi, the capital of United Arab Emirates, as headline sponsor.
MYS annually attracts a private clientele of the world's super rich from over 40 countries, held under the high patronage of His Serene Highness Prince Albert II of Monaco. If you're anywhere near Monaco, it's visit you won't want to miss - from September 24-27.
But don't think you'll be able to buy anything - it's sold out! If there was a boat show that could take the claim of being THE boat show that represents yachting trends of the world, it would be the Monaco Yacht Show.
Eighteen years after its inception - since the wealthy residents and the yachting fraternity of Monaco felt it would be better to have a boat show for the rest of the world to follow - the Monaco Yacht Show sets the ball rolling for boat shows across the world, even now.
Just last month we saw the Dubai International Boat Show '08 that set a record sales of $200 million worth of transactions happening over the 5 days, the Monaco Yacht Show goes one step ahead by making sure everything is sold out before they can be displayed on the stands.
So why exactly is Abu Dhabi sponsoring the Monaco show? - because Abu Dhabi wants to build its own superyacht credentials ahead of next year's debut of the Abu Dhabi Yacht Show (ADYS). So it almost seems as though Abu Dhabi is in competition with its sister city Dubai.
...and maybe it is - Abu Dhabi has 700 kilometres of coastline and 200 natural islands, and it is also undergoing substantial urban, inland and coastal development to transform it into an international tourism destination.
The ADYS - if you are a boat show junkie, will be held 12 - 14 March next year at Abu Dhabi National Exhibition Centre (ADNEC), one of the world's most modern show venues, and in its 2.4 kilometre marina.