How To Develop Loyalty On-board

Loyalty is defined as ‘a feeling of strong support for someone or something.’ This sentiment is imperative on a superyacht, where a strong team ethic is an essential facet for operating an organised and successful vessel. Like any team, maintaining good relationships with those you’re working and interacting with is essential, but when working in such close quarters (and living together) like that of a yacht environment, building a strong relationship with fellow crew members is absolutely crucial. Loyalty, respect, and trust are the foundation of these durable relationships. If even just one crewmember adopts the “I’ll only look out for myself” mentality, the whole crew can suffer. Remember that old adage “there’s no ‘I’ in team”? Well there’s no ‘I’ in yacht crew either.crew working-loyalty

So, how exactly can you build loyalty on-board your superyacht?

Nurturing strong relationships is crucial. It starts with respecting the yacht crew leaders (Chief Stew, Bosun and Captain) and, of course, demonstrating appreciation for reciprocated respect. Where animosity grows between workers and leaders, success cannot. We have identified 3 key components to developing respect: appreciation, fairness and communication.


build loyaltyShowing appreciation is not difficult – a simple thank you can go a long way. When crew members complete a task, or get through a particularly difficult and trying charter, acknowledging their efforts and hard work can be hugely beneficial, both to the individual and team morale.


Loyalty Thank youConcerning crew members, maintaining an impartial outlook is important. When favouritism starts to become apparent, resentment can quickly cause problems. Showing respect to each and every member of the team can prove to be a great way to build loyalty. Treating everyone fairly and as equals allows crew members to feel valued for their specific skill set. If you need to make exceptions, ensure that the team understands the reason.


Lastly, communicate – the nucleus of the three components. Communication is so important for building loyalty and maintaining healthy relationships. Effective communication skills will allow crew members to feel confident enough to speak up when necessary, and will, in turn, allow everyone to feel as though their voice is heard. Keep away from petty gossip and passive aggressive behaviour to avoid future conflicts.
loyaltyThere is no other experience quite like being a part of a yacht crew. It takes a certain kind of person to be able to handle the responsibility and demanding nature of the job. This is why developing a sense of loyalty between employers and employees is such a valuable asset in the modern yachting industry. Moreover, due to issues of confidentiality and security, the necessity of loyalty is increased. So, when looking for yacht jobs, consider whether you are the type of employee that can dedicate himself or herself to a position/employer in a loyal manner. After all, these are the most sought after employees.

Author: Maggie Peikon

Date: 02/02/2016


How polishing stainless steel in Venezuela brought boat captain Agus Vera to start saving sharks!

Classically trained chef Agus Vera spent 7 years cooking his socks off in Barcelona’s best restaurants before he made the move to boats in 1997. He started out on a 40m motor yacht before he jumped ship to join the stunning classic schooner Shenandoah where he stayed for the next 3,5 years, sailing everywhere from Scotland to South Georgia and from Singapore to the Seychelles!

A 25m long, 140 tonnes weighing, slightly disgruntled, very large shark!

A 25m long, 140 tonnes weighing, slightly disgruntled, very large shark!

Agus, already a keen diver before boats, was lucky enough to bask in the world’s most beautiful dive spots, flapping fins next to anything from tiny clown fish to 5m manta rays. He was a shark-nut as a nipper but became even more intrigued after swimming with reef sharks in French Polynesia. He then submersed himself in the subject of sharks which is how he got to know all about the problems these much-feared fish are facing.

Although illegal in many countries, shark finning kills 60 to 100 million sharks every year. Shark finning is the practice of slicing off the shark’s fins while the shark is still alive. The rest of its body is thrown back into the ocean where it can take days to die a slow and painful death. Some sharks starve, others are slowly eaten by other fish, and some drown, because sharks need to keep moving to force water through their gills for oxygen.

Shark fins are a prized ingredient, especially on the Asian market. A kilo of fins can sell for as much as 500USD and are used to prepare the despicable shark fin soup. An extravagant and perverse gastronomic custom that is devastating to our oceans. Sharks, inhabitants of the oceans for the last 450 million years, are key to the balance of the marine ecosystem and are essential in keeping the environment, hence the earth, healthy.

To raise awareness and funds for this cruel and useless practice that’s bringing these amazing animals to the brink of extinction, Agus created Kharmeg, an action packed adventure comic starring a 25m long, 140 tonnes weighing, slightly disgruntled Carcharodon Megalodon! The comic is a condemnation of the killing of these most misunderstood and imposing of sea creatures and in this tale, a vigilante pirate hunter and an antagonistic activist join forces to fight against it..

Untitled design-20

The idea for Kharmeg was born in 2007 onboard motor yacht Cheetah Moon (while polishing stainless steel anchored in Gran Roque, Venezuela) and it’s taken Agus many years to dream up all the characters and all that happens to them!

One of his concoctions in particular, the Sealogic, probably took the longest to perfect. A powerful carbon fibre catamaran, 30 meters in length with a 15 meter beam, a draught of just 60 cm and weighing only 13 gross tonnes! The Sealogic has two electric motors powered by batteries which in turn feed on solar energy collected by tens of photovoltaic panels, arranged across the deck. It also has two 60 kWh generators which can help Sealogic easily reach speeds of over 40 knots and are put into action to steer away from pirates and corrupt coastguards..

The super fast Sealogic!

The super fast Sealogic!

Curious to find out what happens in the comic Kharmeg? How, for example, the beautiful marine biologist Elise Gray, meets John Verin and Maxwell Hart, ex super yacht crew thirsty to revenge the ruthless pirates that held them hostage? And off course how the three friends get to team up with this colossal creature from the deep depths of the ocean? In this page turner you’ll see everything from Somali pirate attacks to state-of-the-art catamarans and from mafia groups to mega yachts. Plenty of blood will be shed and prepare for a good dose of violence, all artfully penned unto paper by the very talented cartoonist Mariano de la Torre and brought to life in colour by the artist Fran Vazquez.


To find out more about Agus’s shout out to sharks check out the crowd funding site Verkami where you can high-fin these extraordinary animals by pledging some money to help Agus reach his goal and, if not for our finned friends, then do it to read an ultra cool comic or even to get your hands on one of the awesome rewards. Apart from signed copies of the comic, also having the artist draw you in the comic or coming out for a sail in Agus’s 6m classic sail boat: ‘Tuna’.

Agus Vera, onboard the stunning classic S/Y Shenandoah

Agus Vera, onboard the 55m sail yacht Germania Nova

And even if all the reasons above still make you go ‘mwah’ join in because this guy is one of the most passionate people I know and had the ‘cojones’ to spend all of his spare time and saved up dough to do something he strongly believes in.

And just this is worth something now, isn’t it?

To check out the project click here.

Palma’s Superyacht Show: only the best exhibition of super sailing yachts worldwide!

Sail makers, surveyors, all the super yacht services you could possible think of and STP, one of the Med’s biggest and most renowned shipyards: They’re all situated in Palma de Mallorca. For quite some time now the European super yacht hub, as it seems as if every month a new business opens its door focussing on super yacht owners, captains and crew. From painters to polishers and from florists to fresh faced newby crew looking to find their first gig at sea, if it’s related to the wondrous world of super yachting you’ll be able to find it in abundance on the beautiful Balearic Island of Mallorca. 

The stunning Eleonora

The stunning Eleonora

So, it comes as no surprise then that like Monaco, Antibes and Ft. Lauderdale Palma has its own super yacht show and with the month of May marking the beginning of the season the Palma Superyacht Show, with its optimum timing, is the perfect opening act!

Since its debut in 2013 it has developed into a show of standing and this edition promises to be the best to date in terms of participating yachts and exhibitors. From Fairline to Furuno and from Horizon Yachts to Hoek brokerage; they’re all taking part and what separates the Palma show from the others on the boat show scene is that it is organised by the industry for the industry.

In the words of the Balearic Minister of economy Joaquín García: “There are more requests from companies who want to participate than available space” something that reflects with no doubt that, “This Boat Show has positioned itself as a national and international leader in the nautical world”.


What we find particularly interesting is that the show is characterised by a higher percentage of sailing yachts as opposed to motor yachts (in water) than any other yacht show in the world with a ratio of no less than 60% sail to 40% motor.

Where the Monaco show features mainly motor and it’s super sized yachts like the 92m Oceanco Equanimity or the 86m Aquila that steal the show, Palma comes back strong showcasing predominantly sail yachts like the beautiful, classic sail yacht Silver Spray (originally built in 1916 as one of the Dutch North Sea pilot schooners) or the sleek and stunning, super fast SY AEGIR.

With more than 70 boats of up to 65 meters this year’s event is only considered the best exhibition of super sailing yachts worldwide!

With so much sail packed away in port it’s a good thing that this will be balanced by plenty of carbon flying in the bay with the Palma Vela scheduled on exactly the same days as the show.
This means you can go for a sail in the morning and come back in the afternoon to buy one of the yachts on display whilst still leaving you with just enough time to stock up on a few cases of Sancerre and decide on where you would like to sail your new yacht to this summer season! 😉

The fact that the show takes place in the heart of the city of Palma, the capital that proudly sits up top of the list “Best Places to Live in the World” according to a recent article featured in the Sunday Times, will no doubt attract international visitors and buyers as they can spend a long weekend in sunny Palma escaping the colder climates enjoying the huge array of top notch restaurants and hotels the city has to offer, all in walking distance from the super yacht show.

Mallorca! The best place to live in the world!

Mallorca! The best place to live in the world!

But also if you crew on boats instead of planning on buying one of them the show has plenty in store for you like the crew training courses which will run from the ACREW Lounge, an area for crew to relax, enjoy some food, drink and network with other crew as well as leading business professionals. Also the Captains, Crew & Exhibitors Party, themed: Cowboys & Indians scheduled for the 2nd of May promises to be an event not to be missed!

Or indeed just drop by to gawk at the breathtakingly beautiful SY Eleonora, an exact replica of the schooner Westward, arguably one of the most famous and best known racing schooners in the world!

So! We’ll see you at the show?

The Palma Superyacht Show

30th April – 4th May 2015

Mis en bouteille en Mallorca

Normally, by 11am, I’ve walked the dog, written half an article and answered all my emails. Today, however, I’ve done nothing but slurp two glasses of vino tinto and am about to start attacking the third! 😉 I’m not, as you might suspect, slumped on a barstool having confused Saturday night with Tuesday morning, but am actually engaged in a civilised chat with Javier Jara, owner of Son Sureda Ric.

This small, family-owned boutique wine estate is located in Mallorca’s Manacor area, and produces red wines made from ecological grapes. Apart from the growing and harvesting of the grapes, also the aging in barrels, bottling, labeling and sale of wine is all carried out on the property, making the way they work and their philosophy very similar to those of the French Chateaux.

We’d heard quite a few people rave about this place and the first-rate wine, so we were eager to venture out to the island’s east and find out what the boozy buzz was all about.

Bodega de la finca Son Sureda Ric

Bodega de la finca Son Sureda Ric

We drove out of Palma’s rush hour traffic and ended up, an hour later, at the end of a grassy road where we encountered the sort of gates that require you to hop out of the car, unlatch, slide across and swing open; something which already made us feel a little less like city slickers! At the house we were greeted by crisp country side air, a few barking dogs and Javier on the terrace looking out over his three hectare vineyard.

Bodega de la finca Son Sureda

The Son Sureda vineyards

We started our tour in the grounds where we saw Jaime in a far corner busying himself with the vines. No, the others were not having a tea break; it’s just Javier and his wife Carme that run this petite wine producing estate with Jaime lending a helping hand every so often.

Javier grows Merlot, Callet, Tempranillo and Cabernet Sauvignon, all ecological, which culminate in the production of about 6000 litres of wine a year. Not a lot compared to most mainland wine producers, as the typical Rioja bodega owns anywhere from 10,000 to 40,000 oak barrels, whereas Son Sureda’s cellar shelters no more than 20. The Son Sureda set-up is small and only the very best of grapes are allowed access to the house, ‘the VIP grapes’, as Javier calls them. The selection is super strict to ensure each bottle of wine is a high quality product which means that in a good year, only 60% of the grapes are harvested but, for example, in 2013 only 30 % of grapes were tip top enough to make it into the tank.

They're full of vino!

They’re full of vino!

After touring the fields we trooped into the farmhouse, arguably one of the most architecturally unique estates on the island. The history of this building goes all the way back to the 15th century. Taking in the ancient stone work and interior arches magically takes you back to medieval times as it seems that surely every nook, corner and cranny have quite some stories to tell! Well, we reckon definitely the not-so-subtle flail nailed to the wall could tell us a tale or two.

We first paid a visit to the tanks, and the scent of the red wine that hit us as we stepped through the centuries old archway actually made me giggle. We had a sneaky glass of a 100% Cab Sav straight from the tank. (No I didn’t make any stupid jokes about wanting to lie under the tap of the tank, apart from inside my head, thankfully…)

Afterwards we had a peek around the cellar, where we see an endless collection of wine bottles along the wall. These are of a slightly lesser quality wine, that will never be sold from this boutique bodega. We brought these up a few times hoping to cut some sort of cheeky deal but to no avail, as Javier is adamant only the finest of vino tinto leave the estate! This is also where the French oak barrels are kept, patiently ageing the wine over a period of two years.

The cellar

The cellar

Last we went to the tasting area where we tried two of the four types of wine sold: the Espira and the Ric Pur. Both elegant and exquisite. I won’t try and bore you by trying to sound like a connoisseur as I’m by no means a buff, but I have imbibed enough to know what I like and can surely detect a superior wine over a bottom-shelf supermarket one. And this guys, is the good stuff. The sort of stuff that begs to be sipped and, however much you slurp, won’t leave you with a sore head in the morning.IMG_2676

Wine maker Javier Jara.

Wine maker Javier Jara.

Want to try for yourself? Keep an eye on their website as they’ll soon start ‘open days’ on a set time and date every week where you can enjoy a tasting in absolutely stunning surroundings.

Both Javier and Carme are very warm and welcoming, making it feel like a visit to friends. Friends with a monumental amount of wine that is! 😉

Alternatively you can email Javier at ssric.jara@gmail.com to book a tour.

You should, as it really is quite special. IMG_2692

Ten questions for one of Spain’s top sailing photographers: Jesús Renedo

If you’re not interested in the world of sailing, don’t follow the big regatta’s, the best teams and would call the bow the pointy end of a boat you might not have heard of world renowned sailing photographer Jesús Renedo. Anyone else however is sure to have seen his work a myriad of times adorn the front pages of high profile yachting magazines like Classic Boat, Vela and Yachting World. He travels the world taking photo’s of the best teams and the fastest boats on the regatta circuit and is well known for his striking and powerful action shots. Jesús was raised on the water in Santander but made the move to Mallorca many years ago which is where we caught him just after he got back from NY to hit him with the next ten questions..

©2014 Pedro Martínez/Sailing Energy

©2014 Pedro Martínez/Sailing Energy

1) Are you a keen sailor yourself?

Yes, I’ve been sailing ever since I was a kid, I learnt to sail on Optimists, Vauriens, and 470’s in the Bay of Biscay on the North Coast of Spain. Also my parents had a 25 ft sailing boat on which we used to spend all our family holidays so I’ve been messing around on boats for as long as I can remember.

2) Have you crewed on boats as well?

Yes, I have. I was 29 when I quit my office job to join a sailboat about to embark on a round the world race. Since then I never looked back: I got my skipper’s license and worked in the superyacht industry for quite a few years, first as a deckhand later as mate and captain running all sorts of yachts and taking part in many regattas.

3) So, have you always taken photo’s while at sea?

Yes, I always had a camera in my hands. I also used to work as a scuba diving instructor and so took (and still take) many shots underwater as well.

4) When did you start taking photo’s professionally?

I think it was back in 2006.

5) How did you learn your photography skills? I’m self taught. Lots of studying and plenty of practice.

Copyright: Jesús Renedo

Copyright: Jesús Renedo

6) How would you describe your style?

Action!! I love working during regattas and concentrating on those ‘action shots’!

7) How many regatta’s and other sailing events do you travel to per year? And which is your favourite?

I travel a lot, which is a pain!  Carrying all that heavy photography gear is becoming a big problem at airports.
It’s difficult to choose one event, I enjoy them all! But I can say I really love the olympic sailing and the big, mighty J Class racing!

Copyright: Jesús Renedo

Copyright: Jesús Renedo

8) What do you look for when you’re on a shoot?

I like to capture the essence of what is going on by taking close ups of sailors and show exactly what they’re doing, their efforts and concentration. I also like to use the landscape, the sea and the whole environment we’re in at that moment.

9) Do you know immediately if you’ve taken a spectacular photo?

Yes! Most of the time when I download the images, I can’t wait to see if one particular shot is focussed and sharp. It’s fantastic when you get the feeling you’ve just taken that extra special shot! Then you keep your fingers crossed for it to be razor sharp!

Copyright Jesús Renedo

Copyright Jesús Renedo

10) Any advice for us sailors who like to take pictures of our own?

Enjoy!! And take care not to drop your camera in the splash!! Trust me I’ve done that a few times! 😉

Thank you Jesús!

No problem!

If you want to see more of Jesús Renedo’s high-impact photo’s check out the galleries on his website here.

Copyright: Jesús Renedo

Copyright: Jesús Renedo

Top three places for posh drinking in Palma

For those in Palma quite partial to one or two cócteles, the kind that come with all sorts of stuff floating around on top and preferably served in a glass big enough to drown a small whale, we’ve done you a favour. A big, bubbly, boozy one. You see we’ve gone out and done all the swilling, sipping and slurping for you. From a ‘Florita Mediterraneo’ to a couple of ‘Violet Hours’: We’ve downed them all and have so (after a serious hangover) come up with this little list of the top three places in Palma to get a more than decent drink!

You’re very welcome. -hic-

1) We start of at Brass Club on Passeig de Mallorca. This corner cocktail club is all class. The well mannered bartenders wear perfectly pressed whites and do their cocktail thang swiftly with stealth and style. They serve classic cocktails, their own concoctions and seasonal specials. We slurped down a Mango Gin Fizz and a Florita Mediterraneo (Aperol, white vermouth, rosemary and Mediterranean essence) which were both bang on. Well, to be expected really as owner Raffa has won more cocktail making prizes than you can shake a swizzle stick at!



They play a Jazzy soundtrack and it has a 1950’s Bond-like vibe. It’s usually busy with a mixed but grown up crowd and as it’s two minutes outside ‘tourist central’ Espagnol is the only language you’ll hear which is quite nice really as some spots in the city are as British as builders tea and butter biscuits!

2) Bypass ‘the-plastic-menu-waving-guys’ outside the sangria serving tourist traps to get to cool, classy Ombu. Ombu is on Placa de la Reina, that’s right, just opposite that ancient olive tree called (you guessed it) Ombu. Nope, you won’t be surrounded by locals and will be hearing mostly English and German but the perfectly executed cocktails more than make up for this. Go for something from the ‘Blow your mind’ section of which especially the ‘Violet Hour’ (Tanqueray, violet syrup, lemon juice & Marraschino) and the ‘Nakens’ made us walk a very fine line between ‘a couple of drinks then home’ and a long, late and possibly messy one..



Ombu’s couldn’t be more central hence the relentless stream of red faced tourists which are kinda fun to watch, especially when holding a cold cocktail with a flower floating on top 😉 Aside from killer cocktails there’s a whole team of chefs in the kitchen cooking and prepping high end tapas of the more contemporary kind. If you’re planning on having food or are wanting a romantic setting the table on the balcony upstairs is not only totally private there’s the added bonus of an awesome view!

3) If you turn right on the top of the Borne you’ll get to bar Weyler and although this place stocks a staggering 25 different types of gin it’s bartender Luis’ concoctions you need to get your paws on. His list of specials is a result of 13 years of testing and tasting and the ‘Smoke Baby’ (Laphroig, grapefruit syrup, coriander, lemon juice and bitters) in particularly made us wonder where it had been our whole life.

Cocktails are made with care and exacting precision by the absurdly capable bartender girls who confirm our suspicion that suspenders and bow ties go hand-in-hand with fabulous drinks! The cocktails, a chilled soundtrack and the fact they stay open till late gives you every excuse to slowly work your way through that list of specials and clean forget you’d previously made plans for dinner.. 😉


We’d love to hear if you’ve been to any of the above bars, what your fav spots are, what you had or indeed how you felt the next day…




Bar Weyler, Plaza Weyler 1, 07001 Palma, No: 679 033 120
OMBU, Plaza de la Reina, 07012 Palma, No: 971 214 387
BrassClub, Passeig Mallorca 34, 07012 Palma, No: 871 715 677