Land Ahoy: Yacht Crews in Private Households
Here at Pembury Partners we often have CVs coming across our desks from talented individuals who have worked on yachts, and it’s always pleasing to see this. There are many parallels to be drawn between the skill set of yacht crew and those who work in private residences – in fact, for clients who also own yachts, finding household staff who are trained to a “superyacht standard” is extremely desirable. This calibre of candidate has typically gained an innate understanding of the nuances and details of how ultra-high net worth individuals live.
Elvie Dakin, Director and co-founder of Pembury Partners, says, ““Professionals who have worked in the yachting industry possess a multitude of skills and can successfully choose to work as head housekeepers, butlers/head of service as well as home organisers and personal assistants within large private estates. Whilst some may want to settle into a land-based role, others may still be interested in retaining the opportunity of travel with some of our international clients and enjoy dynamic roles”
For yacht crew, the question of “what will we do next?” is often discussed on board. Most people don’t work on yachts long term – a number of years certainly, but at some point most return to live on land when they’ve had enough of the long periods away from friends and family. Transitioning to a role in a private household is potentially an excellent choice – it retains many of the same skills, utilises the same knowledge and, importantly, retains the sense of community found amongst crewmates.
For example, a chief steward might fit well into a household management role, supervising other staff and contractors, managing a budget and overseeing the required quality of work. Similarly, a chef who has worked on yachts will be able to cater for a large dinner party as well as cook to restaurant standards for the same family on a daily basis – an ex-restaurant chef, whilst highly skilled, might not have this experience.
Elvie told us, “Opportunities are definitely on the rise for yacht professionals, especially now as we witness a steady return to household-based entertaining post Covid 19.”
Domestic couples are highly sought after for private households – this might be a married couple, but could just as easily be two people who have worked closely for many years. The synergy achieved is very desirable, there’s a level of efficiency not found elsewhere when two people live and work in such a role. Couples working side-by-side are relatively common in the yachting world, a situation which transitions easily to a land-based domestic couple role in a private household or estate.
Whilst it’s certainly a shift in career, the learned level of service and experience of working with similar employers is very much in favour of ex-yacht crew. Ultra-high-net-worth principals might well own or have chartered a yacht and be drawn to the standards exhibited thereon, so it naturally follows that they’d want the same people for their private staff.
Elvie Dakin says, “We are always happy to assist and support any former Yachtie who might wish to secure a role in private estates either in the UK or internationally.”