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The Big Top

 Overload your senses with $3 billion worth of boats, gear and accessories at six venues

The numbers for the Fort Lauderdale International Boat Show are staggering: $3 billion worth of boats and products on display for five days at a show that encompasses 3 million square feet of space at six venues.

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Huckins Linwood 58

Among the pioneering powerboat designers of the 20th century, Frank Pembroke Huckins stands out as a fascinating personality. He’s been called an “irascible genius,” self-confident with what we might say today is a my-way-or-the-highway style.

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Our short list of new boats to see at Fort Lauderdale

Fort Lauderdale is home to the biggest in-water boat show in the world, with 3 million square feet of exhibit space at six venues. There’s no way to see all of the new boats on display, so I’ve worked up a short list of those that will be at this year’s show that caught my eye during the past year or so.

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Arrive in style

Express boats combine a contemporary look and a good turn of speed, with a layout that creates a social space from the helm to the cockpit.

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The express boat’s traditional side

Hinckley T34If you’re not into the contemporary look of today’s typical express cruiser, consider the 30-knot Down East express from about 34 to 55 feet.

The Down East express holds on to a traditional, classic look. “Certainly there’s a conservative aesthetic preference on the East Coast,” says Michael Arieta, executive vice president of The Hinckley Co. (www.hinckleyyachts.com), which builds several models within this subset of the express cruiser.

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