It was a jaw dropping moment for Amanda Steer and her family when they stepped aboard the Hampton 680 luxury coastal cruiser on the first day of their four night luxury Gold Coast Cruising the Broadwater prize holiday.
The Melbourne family was ecstatic when they found out they had won the Gold Coast International Marine Expo and Channel Nine Today Show major prize, which was a luxurious four night boating holiday on the Gold Coast Broadwater including flights, four nights on board the Hampton 680, Extreme jet ski hire, sea plane flight, activities at the prestigious Palazzo Versace with all meals included, plus much more.
Amanda said winning the prize holiday was a dream come true for the family, especially her sons Bradley (9) and Aaron (8) who had never been to the Gold Coast before or even slept overnight on such a beautiful boat.
'I lived on the Gold Coast for a number of years when I was a child and I have fond memories of going fishing with my grandparents on their boat, so it was amazing to be driving past all the familiar buildings and places, and I truly felt like my grandfather’s spirit was with me,' she said.
'It was incredibly memorable, a once in a lifetime opportunity to experience living on board such a spacious and exquisite luxury craft and the meals and facilities at Palazzo Versace were six-star.
'It certainly made us appreciate the interest and passion people have for boating and cruising.'
Lewis said they truly did ‘live like millionaires’ during their Gold Coast Cruising the Broadwater prize holiday.
'Mike the skipper made us feel very comfortable aboard and explained the weather, equipment and all things nautical with enthusiasm and experience. Bradley and Aaron adored talking with Mike in the mornings when they got up shortly after the crack of dawn, and I am sure they learnt a Mike joke a day,' Lewis said.
'Everyone made us feel especially welcome, the fine dining at Palazzo Versace and playing on Seaworld Resort Sports ‘big boys’ toys’ just added to the whole experience and we feel extremely privileged to have won this fantastic prize.'
The family live in Mooroolbark, which is in the eastern suburbs of Melbourne and about a one hour drive from the beach, so Amanda said it was great for Bradley and Aaron to experience a coastal lifestyle.
'The prize was for five people so we invited Lewis’s brother, Bevin, and it was so much fun for the boys to have their uncle come along. They just adore him and it was really special to do some of the activities with him as well,' she said.
Highlights of the trip included a 10 minute Seaworld Resort Sports sea plane flight which gave the family a bird’s eye view of the Gold Coast and massive surf, an afternoon exploring the Broadwater by jet-ski, living and cruising on board the Hampton 680, and poolside activities at Palazzo Versace.
The Hampton 680 is a luxury coastal cruiser featuring three cabins plus crew quarters. The opulent full beam master stateroom has a king size bed and all the comforts expected of a five-star hotel. The Hampton 680 has a Kevlar hull, dual gensets, chilled water, air-conditioning, bow and stern thrusters, flybridge hardtop and 1015hp C-18 Caterpillar diesel engines to ensure all 68 feet glide effortlessly through the ocean.
Gold Coast International Marine Expo event and marketing co-ordinator, Emma Milne, said the Expo was all about introducing the community to the joys of family boating, and this prize package reflected this philosophy.
'The Gold Coast International Marine Expo is fast becoming one of the biggest and most entertaining marine events in Australia and it was great to see the Melbourne based Steer family enjoy the prize and the all that the Gold Coast has to offer,' Ms Milne said.
'The Expo’s partnership with the Channel Nine Network highlights the growing national profile of the Expo which is drawing more and more interstate and international boating enthusiasts to the Gold Coast each year. The Expo recorded an increase of 24 per cent in attendance in 2012 from its inaugural year – highlighting the immense popularity of the Expo and we look forward this year’s event in November.'
The 2013 Gold Coast International Marine Expo will be held on November 1-3 from 9am to 5pm with free entry and free parking. To find out more visit Gold Coast Marine Expo
by Stephen Milne
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1:20 PM Fri 12 Apr 2013GMT
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