Archive for » August 28th, 2013«

Tim Hortons billionaire Ron Joyce looks to sell his yacht at the bargain price …

It’s cruised the shores of the Mediterranean, docked at many a Caribbean harbour and cut the surf in Nova Scotia’s Northumberland Strait. Now, Canadian coffee and doughnuts billionaire Ron Joyce wants to find a buyer for the Destination Fox Harb’r Too, the 49-metre super yacht he bought for more than $30-million in 2008. The 83-year-old former owner of Tim Hortons has had the boat on the market for two years and recently dropped the asking price to $19.9-million, via Fort Lauderdale, Fla.-based brokers Northrop Johnson — a significant but not unreasonable adjustment in today’s yacht market. Mr. Joyce and his son Steven gave the National Post‘s Sarah Boesveld the inside scoop on the pricy pleasure-craft.

1) It’s a marketing tool.
When Tim Horton and his business partner crafted plans for a coffee and doughnut restaurant, they used this marketing strategy: Put the popular Canadian hockey player’s name on the business and people will come. the Joyce family took a similar approach with the Destination — they used the boat as a bit of a floating billboard, raced it in international regattas, entertained dignitaries, business-types and celebrities on board to tell them more about Fox Harb’r, the family’s luxury oceanside golf resort in Nova Scotia, to which they have devoted a lot of resources the past few years. “It’s not necessarily a personal plaything,” Steven Joyce said of the boat. “It’s an ambassador for Nova Scotia and for Fox Harb’r in particular.”

2) It’s been a celebrity sunbathing zone.
Steven Joyce declined to reveal just which Hollywood stars and dignitaries have graced the three decks of the Destination Fox Harb’r Too, citing his desire to protect their privacy. But a quick Google search revealed this: A-list actress Salma Hayek and a few supermodels were spotted wrapped in towels and robes off the back of the yacht in New Year’s 2011 along the swishy French island of St. Barth’s. declared the boat “St. Barth’s sexiest superyacht.”

3) You don’t have to buy the yacht to ride it.
But you would have to shell out some serious cash for a charter tour. Some of these celebrity visits have happened this way, with renters throwing down at least $230,000 (US) for a week-long stay, benefiting from the yacht’s 10 full-time staff and gourmet chef. The Joyces also throw in some scuba and snorkeling gear for that price. Ms. Hayek’s billionaire husband, French luxury goods firm owner François-Henri Pinault, reportedly paid US$250,000 for that week-long New Year’s stay in St. Barth’s.

4) It’s called ‘Too’ because …
It’s the second vessel in the Joyce family’s oceanic Fox Harb’r marketing venture. “The first one was a sailboat and it was used very successfully at marketing Fox Harb’r and a lot of people came there for that very reason — to see the golf course,” Ron Joyce said. “Right from the beginning, we bought the yacht and it was meant to be the same as the sailing yacht was. Did I use it as a personal thing? Of course I did.”

5) Desination Fox Harb’r Too is all decked-out.
As the sales literature puts it, the boat has a “stunning interior [with] warm tones, natural stonework and wood grains [and] attention to detail throughout.” There are five bedrooms — all with flat-screen TVs — a massive dining area (indoor and outdoor on the deck), big kitchen and five-stool bar. There are two Jacuzzis — one on the sundeck (complete with sun pads and wet bar),the other in the master bedroom. The back deck — where guests can dine al fresco and watch the boat’s wake — is Ron Joyce’s favourite spot. That, and the sundeck at the very top of the yacht. “It’s a good place for guests who sunbathe,” he said. “It’s a beautifully designed boat.”

6) One kind of coffee is available.
You guessed it — Tim Hortons. Ron Joyce wasn’t sure if the yacht was still serving the same coffee sipped by millions of Canadians daily, but he imagines so. There’s no other coffee at Fox Harb’r the resort either.

7) The boat has run its course — for the Joyce family at least.
As any marketer knows, the cachet of a slogan or an ad campaign fades with time. This is why the Destination Fox Harb’r Too is up for sale, Steven Joyce said. “After three or four years of being out there in the circuit, it does sort of serve its purpose, and there are diminishing returns on that. It’s out there doing its thing, but maybe sometimes the hype isn’t the same if they’ve seen it half a dozen times.” This, and the fact his dad — the family patriarch — is getting older. “At what point in time at 83 do you start thinking about buying a better boat or bigger boat?” said the senior Mr. Joyce. “I’ve had such a marvelous journey in my life. And you know what? It was a lot of luck. But boy, I’ve gotta tell you something — it was one heck of a lot of hard work.”

National Post

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Oakcliff Partners With Olympic Team

Oakcliff Partners With Olympic Team

Written by Patricia Aitken,

Wednesday, 28 August 2013 11:00

There was tremendous excitement in Oyster Bay as the US Sailing Team Sperry Top-Sider announced a partnership with Oakcliff Sailing. Oakcliff has been named an official training center of the team.

Through the generous support of Oakcliff founder Hunt and Betsy Lawrence, Oakcliff will acquire 24 Olympic class boats – eight each of the Nacra 17, 49er and 49er FX skiffs – that the US Sailing Team Sperry Top-Sider will have full access to for team-level training and youth development throughout the year.

“We are thrilled to have Oakcliff as a partner and grateful for the support of Hunt and Betsy Lawrence in the U.S. effort to create winning national teams at all levels of Olympic class sailing,” said Josh Adams, managing director of U.S. Olympic Sailing. “Oakcliff’s fleet-building effort in the Nacra 17, 49er and 49er FX is a tremendous asset for the U.S. Olympic Sailing Program, providing a training platform for US Sailing Team Sperry Top-Sider that is designed to help generate a performance edge in these classes.”

In addition to US Sailing Team Sperry Top-Sider training, the center will host US Sailing Development Team training camps, and focus on regional and national youth development in multihulls and skiffs through Oakcliff’s sailing programs.

“Oakcliff is excited to be working with US Sailing Team Sperry Top-Sider,” said Dawn Riley, executive director at Oakcliff. “We welcome the opportunity to help train the best in the world and in conjunction with our Acorn and Sapling programs led by Jay Kehoe, identify and coach the next generation of Olympic champions.”

By owning and operating fleets of multihulls and skiffs, the center will focus on four primary goals: provide a training ground for US Sailing Team Sperry Top-Sider; power development of three Olympic classes in which the U.S. lacks fleet size; create an avenue of training and development for young sailors on the rise; and expand Oakcliff’s sailing programs to feature Olympic class boats.

The very special and unique quality of this program is the support Oakcliff will be providing to sailors who hope to compete at the Olympic level. Josh Adams of US Olympic Sailing said that a program of suppling training vessels had never been done before in this country. Trevor Moore, a member of the United States Sailing team, said that the service Oakcliff will be providing is massive. Usually, sailing teams have to provide their own boats and equipment. For aspiring Olympic competitors, to have to bear the financial burden of supporting a boat, and train at the competitive level, is a very stressful situation. Oakcliff will provide boats for sailors, so they can devote all their time and energy to training.

Moore is excited to think of the broader reach that the Olympic program will now have, and the depth of sailors that will be able to compete at the Olympic level. American athletes had been going to Europe to train, and now, he believes they will be coming to Oyster Bay and Oakcliff.  

Oakcliff is very well known in the international sailing community for its match sailing and America’s Cup competition. In speaking to visiting sailors at the event, all spoke of what a wonderful town Oyster Bay is, its history, beautiful natural setting and the sailing community that is being built around Oakcliff, the WaterFront Center, and the yacht clubs here.  The future for sailing looks extremely bright.  

As Betsy Lawrence said at the conference, “We are making history here.”

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CBMM’s annual Charity Boat Auction is Saturday

If You Go

What: Charity Boat Auction

When: Early admission, 8 a.m.; live auction, 1 p.m.

Where: Chesapeake Bay Maritime Museum, St. Michaels

Tickets: 8 a.m. to 1:30 p.m., $5; after 1:30 p.m., $13 adults, $10 seniors, $6 children 6 to 17; free for children under 6 and museum members

Posted: Wednesday, August 28, 2013 6:00 am

CBMM’s annual Charity Boat Auction is Saturday

ST. MICHAELS — Buy an affordable boat and support a good cause at the annual Charity Boat Auction Saturday, Aug. 31, at the Chesapeake Bay Maritime Museum. The live auction will start at 1 p.m. along the museum’s waterfront campus, with all the proceeds benefiting the children and adults the museum serves.

For 16 years, Labor Day weekend has meant great deals on boats for boating aficionados and first-time boat buyers alike. This year, more than 90 boats — ranging in size and performance from sailing dinghies to cabin cruisers and everything in between — will be auctioned off to the highest bidders until all boats are sold. Beer and barbecue also will be on sale throughout this lively event.

CBMM’s Boat Donations Program Manager Lad Mills takes donations and resells boats throughout the year, holding aside some of his inventory for the annual auction. Mills travels up and down the East Coast, working with boat owners and potential buyers wishing to support the museum through boat donations and sales.

“The revenue generated by the auction goes directly to help the museum do work like maintaining its fleet of historic vessels,” Mills said. “Let us take an unused or unwanted boat off your hands, and you can receive a nice tax deduction. Each donated boat helps the museum do great things for the people we serve.”

Returning to the auction this year is a flea market-style tag sale, to be held on the Fogg’s Cove side of the CBMM campus from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Visitors will be able to purchase a variety of boating gear, including ground tackle, electrical equipment, hardware, rope or chain, ladders, fishing tackle and motors.

A selection of the boats to be auctioned by the museum can be viewed by following the “Donate or Buy a Boat” link at Boat sales are ongoing throughout the year, with all auction boats subject to sale prior to the auction. The vessels also will be available for inspection at the museum several days prior to the auction.

Advance bids can be called in to 410-745-4941 until noon Friday. On Saturday, the campus gates will open at 8 a.m., with early admission at $5 per person until 1:30 p.m. After 1:30, admission returns to the regular daily rates of $13 for adults, $10 for seniors and $6 for children between the ages of 6 and 17. Children under 6 and museum members will be admitted free.

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More about Lad Mills

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Reference Links


Wednesday, August 28, 2013 6:00 am.

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Sailing in Marin: Sausalito's 86-year-old still going strong in Knarr competition

Click photo to enlarge

Knud Wibroe has sailed his same wooden Knarr — Snapps III — on the bay for 50 years, earning himself the reputation of “Grand Admiral” in this highly respected fleet. The quietly spoken Danish born-sailor has won the International Knarr Championship (IKC) twice: in Denmark in 1966 and on the bay in 1971. He’s also won the IKC Robert York Trophy awarded to the best American sailor in the fleet eight times.

Starting Sunday, the 86-year old Wibroe, who lives in Sausalito, will race in the 45th IKC, being hosted by the San Francisco Yacht Club for the eighth time since the regatta was first sailed on the bay in 1969.

The Knarr is a unique boat — and fleet — for many reasons, all of which have kept the intrigue for Wibroe as fresh as the day he first sailed one. Full-keeled and very heavy, the boats are 30-feet long and sailed with a main and jib, no spinnaker. There’s nothing high performance about them — they’re a 70-year-old classic design, all built in Scandinavia. As old and slow as they are, the local fleet numbers some 42 boats, the largest on the bay after the J/105s, with up to 24 frequently on the start line. Wibroe tends to think they’re also the most fair fleet racing.

“The boats are strictly one design and identical,” Wibroe said, “but like twins there’s always a little difference which we try to equalize by sailing a different boat each day of the regatta. We

don’t sail our own boat in the IKC but instead sail in six different boats over six different races.”

This also means owners aren’t spending a lot of money on equipment for a competitive advantage. It’s a tradition unique to the Knarr fleet and not seen in other fleets racing anywhere.

Wibroe sails more than 50 races a year with his regular crew — Mike Ratiani (Mill Valley), Bill Fredericks, Bernard O’Driscoll and Bradford Whitaker. Keeping his old wood boat maintained is “a matter of being very kind to her”, he laughs, adding, “We have a couple of Danish boat builders here who know how to take care of our boats.”

Wibroe’s commitment to local racing goes beyond the Knarr fleet. He was the impetus behind the first night races along the city front that started in 1962 out of the Golden Gate Yacht Club. Back in the early 60s when he approached the GGYC to host evening races, the club thought he was crazy.

“They said we could use the club but that there could be trouble if we upset the Ladies Bridge evening,” Wibroe said. “Nonetheless, last year we had our 50th anniversary of that first evening race.”

Wibroe was also instrumental in starting the first junior sailing program on the bay in 1960 at the Sausalito Yacht Club, another concept he brought with him from his homeland. He’s a strong advocate of sailing as a sport that you just get out and “do”, and is thrilled that the Knarrs will get an opportunity to race the America’s Cup racecourse during the IKC as part of the AC OPEN Series.

“We’ll be able to showcase just how Corinthian Knarr racing is,” Wibroe said. “We don’t want sailing to become a spectator sport like the America’s Cup,” Wibroe said. “We want it to continue as a sailor’s sport, outside and in nature, not watched from an armchair.”

For Brent Crawford, vice chair for the 2013 IKC, the allure of the Knarr is that the boats all go the same speed.

“Sailing a Knarr is like playing a game of chess,” Crawford said. “It’s about who is the better tactician. Knarr racing has been referred to over the years as the ‘game of inches’ and it’s true — in a downwind finish sometimes we’ll have eight boats on the line and you don’t know where you finished because it’s that close.

“For the IKC we’ll have 29 boats on the start line that can sail in up to 30 knots of wind without breaking or flipping over.”

The IKC is sailed at the SFYC every six years. It rotates between San Francisco, Norway and Germany with a competition held every three years. This year 13 teams from Europe and 14 teams from the U.S. will compete.

“There’s a tremendous history,” Crawford said. “Twenty-five years is about the average that a sailor has been in this fleet and many have competed in these championships for years.”

Larry Drew, from Tiburon, is regatta chairman and has competed in every U.S. IKC since 1974, winning in 1980 and taking second in ’83 and ’86. He cites the main challenge for the 2013 IKC as the caliber of the fleet.

“The skill level and knowledge of the bay has greatly improved,” Drew said. “We get many of the top racing sailors on the bay even though we don’t have a spinnaker and we’re kind of an old-fashioned fleet.”

Old-fashioned or not, the list of post-race activities is exhausting, with special events held every evening. “People with many years experience in high performance fleets gravitate to the Knarr because the social facet to our fleet just doesn’t exist in other fleets,” Crawford said, with just a touch of pride. “We have it all.”

Marin resident Michel

le Slade is a sailing journalist. Contact her about results, upcoming competitions and story ideas at Read her blog at

knarr championship

What: The 45th running of the international race
Where: Hosted by the San Francisco Yacht Club in Belvedere
When: Saturday to Sept. 7, racing starts Sunday at noon
Who: 14 U.S. teams and 13 European teams to compete
How: Races will be sailed daily from Sept. 1 to 7. Visit for schedule.

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BOATS: High tide returns for all things marine

Craig Brosenne marvels at the volume his counterparts in the automotive industry deal with every day. Whether it’s sales or service, he says, there’s a sea of difference between the amount of business conducted by the automotive and boating industries.

Craig and Angie Brosenne on a recent cruise aboard Duane Hagadone’s “Sizzler.”

Craig and Angie Brosenne on a recent cruise aboard Duane Hagadone’s “Sizzler.”

For instance, Brosenne, general manager of marine operations for Hagadone Hospitality Co., had a terrific sales month in July, just like Mike White did over at the Parker Toyota dealership. But Brosenne’s month amounted to one really good day at the Toyota dealership, and keep in mind that there are a lot more car dealers than boat sellers in Kootenai County selling a heck of a lot more inventory.
“You really can’t compare the two,” he says. “On a national level, what are they selling this year — 14 million units? 15 million? The whole stern-drive [boating] industry probably won’t do 200,000.”
Then again, Brosenne notes that around here anyway, boating is all about leisure, not nautical miles. He estimates that the average North Idaho boat owner will log 40, maybe 50 hours of actual driving time a year. Some commuters do that just getting to and from work each month.
Cars are mass-produced, while boats are custom-ordered. Up to 90 percent of his company’s sales are cash transactions, he says, even for the most expensive boats and yachts. Brosenne, who has headed up the seven-pronged marine division since Hagadone acquired Yacht Club Sales Service in 2004, says because of the significantly smaller scale, a more personal relationship develops between the boat buyer and the seller and service personnel.
“Our business is entirely built on friendships and face-to-face interaction,” he says.
But there are similarities, too, perhaps the greatest being the proliferation of online shopping and research.
“Most of the boat manufacturers have configurators,” Brosenne says, citing in particular Cobalt’s “Design Your Dream.” Prospective buyers pay particular attention to blogs, he says, where they can interact with other owners to get questions answered. But he emphasizes that his is a personalized business — customers want their boat to look and perform exactly the way they have in mind — even when their mind can change quite often.
“In a three-week period, one guy bought and traded three different boats,” he says. “Couldn’t find the right fit.”
At the depth of the recession, a transaction like that would have represented much more than a curious anecdote. Heck, it might’ve set a sales record. In his decade at the helm, Brosenne has weathered some serious storms.
“I got in at the peak of the industry,” he says “and it was good.”
Like the car dealers, 2007 was remarkably good. That year, Brosenne’s crew vaulted their little dealership into one of the top five Cobalt sales forces in the entire nation, putting the Coeur d’Alene area on the same winners’ platform as dealers tapping markets with populations in the millions.
And like the car dealers, 2009 was remarkably bad. Brosenne says he watched as Cobalt reduced its workforce from 850 to 200. In 2007, Cobalt was building 57 boats a week, he says. By 2009, that had dropped to eight boats a week.
Brosenne puts the local impact into perspective: “In ‘09, we were begging for business. Now we control our own destiny. We sold 45 boats in July worth $2.4 million. We have the best products, the best service. Things are really looking up.”
While his team wasn’t hit as hard as Cobalt’s, Brosenne acknowledges that he did shed “some C and D employees. But my thing was to make it work with our key employees in ‘08-’09, and now that’s catapulted us forward.”
Where Cobalt has returned to some glory days — they’re building 55 boats a week — they’re doing what most other successful businesses have done in the post-recession world.

The Hagadone Marine Group management and sales team aboard a Carver yacht on Lake Coeur d’Alene.

The Hagadone Marine Group management and sales team aboard a Carver yacht on Lake Coeur d’Alene.

They’ve got 450 employees, which is down from 850 at the peak but it’s all efficiency,” he says. “They’ve always been good at what they do, and now they’re even better, more efficient.”
Efficiency is only part of the package for Hagadone Marine Group, which has been built to provide everything from gas at three locations on Lake Coeur d’Alene to after-hours service for boaters stranded on the water.
Outside its three marinas, HMG stores more than 1,200 boats, many of them in a 188,000 square-foot facility with a fire protection system and security. Where HMG separates itself from virtually every other transportation industry, though, is in its service to buyers.
Brosenne is proud of the fact that his company employs a full-time Cobalt captain “who’s dedicated to teaching you everything about your new Cobalt.” That includes a 150-point checklist and docking or driving lessons, if they’re wanted.
Buyers find a beautiful bouquet of flowers waiting for them at home, and lots of other personal touches throughout their relationship with HMG. While that might be standard operating procedure inspired by Hagadone Hospitality owners Duane Hagadone and Jerry Jaeger, Brosenne says high quality is evident
“I think the dealers in North Idaho are doing a great job,” he says. “That’s just not the case in Spokane. Competition breeds excellence; I don’t shy away from that, and these guys around here don’t either.”
Unlike boat sellers in bigger markets with big brand names and big quotas to meet, Brosenne says the smaller guys have some great advantages.
“I can be with a customer and hand the phone to the president of Cobalt, and he’ll personally answer the customer’s question,” he says.
Once the sale is made, his team’s after-delivery service kicks in — and it’s impressive.
In 2012, the dealership processed 5,208 work orders and received just 14 call-backs for further service.
That’s a satisfaction rating of 99.98 percent. Which, Brosenne adds with a grin, isn’t good enough.
“I think most businesses have realized that after 2007 in particular, customers’ expectations have gone up — way up,” he says. “I think it might be 10-fold what it was before ‘07, and that’s fine. For us, perfect is good enough.”

In one day in 2007, the Resort Boat Shop sold two boats — for a total of $1.5 million.
Boats hit the road

One of the most demanding rules of the boat-selling game is to never sit on your laurels. That means hitting the road.
The Hagadone Marine Group sales team takes its wares to dozens of shows and events every year, hauling at least three or four boats every time. Around the Fourth of July, they attended five separate events on the same day.
That practice pays off. Through July, HMG had sold 155 boats — five more than all of last year. By comparison, some regional dealers are lucky to sell 30 boats in a year. HMG needs all 12 months to drive sales. A third of all its sales come off-season, with special orders and trade-ins

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How to sail around the world for free

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You don’t have to be a wealthy yacht owner to sail into the sunset. CNN takes a look at five ways to travel the globe for free.

Many private yacht owners offer free food and board for volunteer crew members. “It’s not necessary to have sailing qualifications, it’s more important to have the right attitude,” said Kylie Gretener of

When 84-year-old Alaskan Jo Ryman Scott (pictured) and her 86-year-old husband, Dick, joined a yacht in Greece recently, they had no previous sailing experience. But they were able to help out with some of the cooking and cleaning and had great stories to keep the crew entertained.

Queen Sofia of Spain (left) — pictured with Princess Letizia of Spain (right) and daughter Princess Leonor of Spain — surely has no trouble finding nannies to look after her grandchildren. But other families holidaying at sea are keen to find carers or teachers willing to work in exchange for a free trip.

Greenpeace is just one environmental organization advertising for volunteers on its research vessels. Jobs could range from deck hands to administration staff and scientists working in onboard laboratories.

While bigger vessels such as superyachts usually hire trained chefs, many smaller private yachts offer positions for enthusiastic cooks. But as Gretener points out: “As much as you’re sailing the world for free you’re still contributing in some way, whether it be your time or expertise.”







MainSail is CNN’s monthly sailing show, exploring the sport of sailing, luxury travel and the latest in design and technology.

(CNN) — Imagine if your commute to work was as easy as stepping onto a sun-drenched yacht. Or if your office window overlooked the open seas. How about waking up each morning in a different exotic port?

Now imagine if you could do it for free.

From 20-year-old backpackers to 80-year-old retirees, an increasing number of people are volunteering on boats for a remarkable chance to travel the world — all without spending a dollar.

Here are our top five tips for living the yachting lifestyle, without the luxury price tag.

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Volunteer as crew

You don’t need sailing experience to crew a yacht — but you do need to be flexible. From cleaning to night watch shifts and stocking supplies, crew members are the worker bees of the boating world.

Many private yacht owners will offer free board and food, in return for volunteer deck hands.

“A lot of boat owners are more than happy to have someone with no experience because it means they can teach them how to do things their way,” said Kylie Gretener, of the website.

“What’s most important is your attitude — you’ve got to be adventurous and open to learning. It’s a bit like being an exchange student in someone’s home.”

Read: Confessions of a superyacht worker

Be a friend

If crewing sounds more like work than pleasure, perhaps your charming company is enough to earn you a free ride.

“We had one man from Italy who had a two-man submarine,” explained Gretener. “He would take it out on weekends and wanted a companion to share the experience.


“Then there was the 80-year-old couple from Alaska who joined a yacht in Greece — they contributed as deck hands but also told great stories to keep the crew entertained.”

Teach the kids

It’s not just the adults that need entertaining on board — there’s also their children.

Families traveling the high seas may need a teacher or nanny to care for youngsters on long voyages.

“We had one family who were circumnavigating Australia and needed a teacher to home-school their children,” said Gretener, adding “As much as you’re sailing the world for free you’re still contributing in some way, whether it be your time or expertise.”

Read: Sail the high seas on a budget

Jump on a research ship

From submarines to superyachts, vessels looking for volunteers come in all shapes and sizes — including research ships.





Water sports instructor




Language interpreter

Many environmental groups, such as Greenpeace or the Hebridean Whale and Dolphin Trust, have research vessels that spend months at sea gathering marine samples and conducting experiments.

Volunteers range from deck hands to administration staff and scientists working in onboard laboratories.

Cook up a storm

Often preparing meals before any of the crew has even woken up, cooking is one of the most demanding jobs aboard a yacht.

While bigger vessels such as research ships or superyachts usually require a trained chef, smaller boats tend to take on versatile crew members able to lend a hand on deck as well as in the galley.

With limited access to supermarkets, on board cooks must also be creative with the local produce — even if that sometimes means fishing for dinner.

Read: Life of a superyacht chef: dream job or nautical nightmare?

It seems you don’t need to be a wealthy yacht owner to sail into the sunset. If you’re willing to roll up your sleeves, the world could be your oyster.

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