Biograd Boat Show - from the Days of Open Doors to the leading autumn nautical fair
In 1999, ILIRIJA d.d. together with the Yacht Club of Biograd and charter companies operating within the marina launched a nautical fair organized as Spring Days of Open Doors, mainly intended for companies operating within the marina. It was the first such event in Northern Dalmatia. We were driven by the desire for Biograd na Moru, given its status of the cradle of nautical tourism, to get an attractive nautical event at which all sectors of the nautical and charter business would be presented in a short period. The Days of Open Doors have tuned into a grandiose nautical manifestation - Biograd Boat Show. Since 2004, when Biograd Boat Show was organized as the first autumn boat show in Croatia, it has been recording an annual growth of over 50%.
The international nautical fair, the success of which initially depended on the enthusiasm of employees of ILIRIJA d.d., has proven to be a superb nautical event that profiled the city as an unavoidable nautical center in the first 11 years of its existence.
During the last 5 years the fair was held in late October, which contributed not only to the improvement of nautical offer, but also to the extension of tourist season that has been traditionally opened and closed by boaters in Biograd. As early as in 2007, only 3 years of organizing the fair as an autumn nautical event, exhibitors showed an exceptional interest in the fair. That year alone, there were over 130 exhibitors with 150 boats on the sea and on land at the fair, which also required an expansion of exhibition space to additional 120 m of waterfront and 3.000 m2 of land. This brought reputation and trust among exhibitors and visitors to the fair. Within the scope of Biograd Boat Show in 2005, a motto "Croatian product for Croatian tourism" was launched with the aim of gathering all Croatian shipbuilders.
10th Jubilee of International Biograd Boat Show 2008
Biograd Boat Show marked its 10th anniversary in 2008 and was biggest up to that time. It was expanded to the western maritime zone of marina Kornati, over a 250-meter-long pontoon bridge, to additional 12,500 square meters of land and 5,500 square meters on the sea, reaching the very waterfront of city for the first
The tenth traditional boat show was an opportunity for 170 contractual exhibitors to present themselves with over 250 vessels exhibited on the sea and on land, which signified an increase of over 60% in comparison to previous fairs. One of the characteristics of Biograd Boat Show are surely premieres of domestic and foreign shipbuilders, which in the year 2008 alone exceeded the figure of 14. Special attention has been paid to the presentation of Croatian manufacturers and their vessels, but this does not exclude the global, European and Adriatic premieres of ships and marine equipment which were seen by over 11,000 visitors in 2008.
The goal is for the Biograd Boat Show to retain the status of the leading international autumn nautical fair in Croatia and in the wider region, and for Biograd na Moru to maintain its position as the leading nautical and tourist destination in the long run. Other goals include the use of natural resources of Biograd na Moru as the leading nautical port of departure on the way to most visited nautical destinations on the Adriatic; to achieve high organizational standards with an enviable level of equipment and infrastructure; to increase the number of exhibitors, to present renowned Croatian and international companies in all segments of the nautical and charter industry, to promote the domestic nautical manufacture, and to present exclusive vessels.