Earlier this year, Rivergate’s Director of International Business Steve Fisher spoke of the need to grow capabilities to match the shipyard’s ever-growing reputation, especially following favourable changes in the country’s charter legislation. With this new expansion, Rivergate will enhance its facilities for superyachts well over the 50m mark.
The planned expansion at Rivergate will provide a syncrolift capable of lifting superyachts of up to 3,000 tonnes for vital inspections, maintenance, repairs and refits. Other plans include a hardstand with capacity for multiple superyachts, three large refit sheds and two in-water berths. There will also be a 5-storey Trade Centre with offices, training rooms, café, crew accommodation and recreation facilities, especially beneficial for long-term projects.
The renowned refit and maintenance industry in Australia is a reason for superyachts to visit the country in and of itself. Brisbane-based Rivergate has been recognised internationally for its world class facilities and excellent service, and the shipyard’s Director Tom Hill recognises the need to develop in line with demand.
“We know there is a substantial pent-up demand among superyacht owners to visit our region, which is currently hampered by the lack of adequate lifting, repair and refit facilities,” said Hill. “The world is experiencing a superyacht building boom and the average size of these vessels is also increasing, so the expansion of Rivergate is ideally timed to accommodate this growth and make our region much more accessible for superyachts.
“Rivergate is by far the best place in Australia for a superyacht hub due to its central east coast location, proximity to an international airport, deep water access, year-round safe climate and abundant supply of skilled trades.”
It is not just Rivergate’s facilities which have earned glowing reviews from superyacht Captains, but also the wealth of expertise and attention to detail of its staff. The Captain of Ramble on Rose praised the communication and care of the shipyard when the 60m superyacht completed a project at Rivergate in the midst of the pandemic.
Since its inception in 2006, Rivergate has serviced over 300 vessels, with 85m Lurssen superyacht Amatasia among its recent clients. Rivergate’s vision is to create the largest facility in the Asia Pacific region with capabilities to lift out and service multiple superyachts.
“Australia, the South Pacific and Southeast Asia have some of the most exciting superyacht cruising grounds in the world, including the Great Barrier Reef on the Queensland coast and many spectacular tropical islands and secluded escapes on Rivergate’s doorstep,” continued Tom Hill.
“Under our plans, Rivergate will provide superyacht owners and captains with the assurance of knowing that a conveniently located, world-class shiplift, hardstand and refit centre is available during their visits to this untapped region.”
The development at Rivergate will become an integral part of the Queensland Government’s Superyacht Strategy, which aims to establish the state as a superyacht hub for the Asia Pacific region by 2023. Other developments included under the umbrella of this strategy include the building of Australia’s largest superyacht berth at the Southport Yacht Club, a project which, like Rivergate’s expansion, will benefit the community as much as visiting superyachts.
The plans for the expansion at Rivergate Marina & Shipyard are at an advanced stage, with a Development Application lodged and construction ready to commence in 2021.