Traditional vs. Explorer Yacht

Traditional vs. Explorer Yacht

The differences between a traditional yacht and an explorer yacht

Photo credit: @sheltondupreez @legendexplorer


Nowadays there is a growing interest in explorers, everyone is talking about them, and many yacht owners claim they want an explorer yacht, but what does “explorer” really mean?

After discussing this in detail with Patrick Coote, co-founder of the Explorer Yachts Summit and also  Head of Northrop and Johnson, Europe, I’m happy to share with you the top features of explorer yachts and to summarize what differentiates them from traditional superyachts.

Captain Jim Aladin from Cloudbreak 75m yacht and Sandra from @theyachtpurser agreed to share with us their experiences from an operational point of view.

What is an “explorer”?

On a technical level, there is no standard definition of an explorer yacht, however for the purposes of this discussion it is defined as any private or commercial vessel built or converted specifically for expedition or adventure for long distance cruising to remote areas of the world .

The main differentiating factor is the fact that an explorer needs to be autonomous. It needs to be able to spend long periods at sea without having facilities nearby to re-fuel, provision, or even to discharge waste. It must be highly seaworthy and safe in the roughest of sea conditions.

Charter clients are getting younger and there is an increase demand to charter the unknown.

The mission profile

The purpose (mission profile) or how the yacht will be used can vary.

Explorer yachts can be used for family exploration vacations, or for worldwide exotic fishing and remote diving expeditions, heli-skiing, nature-watching or adventure sports.

In some cases, explorer yachts are even used for scientific research, we have seen some yachts who have studied and found new species of whales for example, or other more philanthropic cases like deep sea ocean research and historic diving.

Photo credit: @sheltondupreez @legendexplorer

Weather factors

Traditional yachts tend to be built exclusively for warmer climates, usually to cruise around the Mediterranean or the Caribbean sea.

Conversely, explorer yachts are built for extreme weather conditions (both hot and cold) therefore they not only need AC onboard, but also needs heaters and systems for defrosting sea ice to prevent build up and to avoid malfunction of systems.

A selection of notable explorer yachts:

  • Ragnar, 68m ice breaker explorer, converted by ICON Yachts in The Netherlands.
  • Olivia O, 88m built by Ulstein in Norway
  • Legend, converted by ICON Yachts in the The Netherlands
  • Octopus 127m yacht built by Lurssen in Germany
  • Cloudbreak, 73m (now extended to 75m) by Abeking & Rasmussen in Germany
  • Sherakhan, 69m yacht, last refitted at ICON Yachts.
  • Seawolf, 58m built in 1957 by JK SMIT,  refit in 2020 at ICON Yachts.
  • Galileo G, 55m built by Perini Navi in Italy
  • Planet Nine, 73m ice class explorer built by Admiral yachts.
  • Latitude, 53m explorer built in Germany.
  • Polar Star, 65m Luerssen
  • Savannah, 84m Feadship
  • S/Y Aquijo, 84m Oceanco
  • Plan B, 50m HMA Naval Dockyard
  • M/V Alucia, 56m built in France
  • M/Y REV, 183m VARD (in build expected 2021)
  • Dragonfly, Firefly fleet
  • La Datcha (in build expected 2020)
  • M/Y Senses
  • M/Y SuRi

Yacht charter rates typically range from €200,000- 500,000 per week on board one of these yachts. However on bigger boats like Cloudbreak charter rates are around  €750,000.

For further details about yacht charter, please contact

To build or to convert?

If you want to know whether it’s better to build from scratch or undertake a yacht conversion, check this blog post here.

The ‘real’ explorer

There are some yachts that call themselves explorers but in reality they are not. It is like the Evoque Range rover claiming to be an ‘all terrain’ off-road vehicle. It is aimed for the city people who want that outdoor styling but do not really need to have 4-wheel drive on an everyday basis.

Explorer Yachts are regular yacht looking like explorers with a few extra features, like and ‘ice band’ which is just a little bit thicker steel around the water line.

Some people want to have the yacht explorer look but don’t really need to have all the features as mentioned below. Explorer yacht styling and explorer yacht capability are two very distinct things.


Design & Engineering

The design of ice capable ships includes reaching an adequate performance, adequate hull and machinery strength and proper functioning of the ship in ice and in cold weather.

Range is crucial – fuel capacity and economy are essential

Since explorer yachts are intended to cruise for long periods of time in remote destinations, it is important that they have enough fuel to cruise, without having the need to re-fuel regularly.

A typical yacht has about 3,000 miles range, an explorer yachts has minimum of 5,000 miles range. Usually on explorer yachts, speed is not essential hence the cruising speed is usually is around 10-12 knots.

 ‘We take fuel designed specifically for cold water and there is also an additive we put into the fuel’- Jim Aladin

To cross from Europe to America you need aprox 3,000 nautical miles.

For example the Damen SeaXplorer,  will keep everyone on board luxuriously comfortable for 40 days without the need to refuel or take on stores.

The Hull

The hull needs to be a displacement hull made out of steel, ideally an efficient design that is able to consume less fuel.  Ideally a high efficiency hull should be paired with a good fuel volume in order to obtain at least 5000nm range at 10 knots.

The hull of an explorer needs to have more watertight bulkheads, and heating arrangements for fuel tanks, ballast tanks, and other systems vital to the yachts operation may also be required depending on the class. You certainly don’t want your pipes to freeze in Antarctica!

Heaters in sea water inlets can be an advantage. Explorers tend to go to arctic and Antarctic waters when it is summer and not winter, therefore there is no need of serious preparations as other ships. – Jim Aladin

ICE class vs Ice breaker

Building a ship to an ice class means that the hull must be thicker, and more scantlings must be in place. Sea chests may need to be arranged differently depending on the class.

Ice class can simply mean that the yacht can cruise in sea that has small fragments of floating ice.

In the mission profile of the yacht, it can be stated that the yacht needs to be ice-class certified, or it must have ice-breaking capabilities.

Let’s break that down. Not all ice-classed vessels are ice-breakers (!)

Canadian Arctic Class

The Canadian Arctic class ranges from 1-10 (1 being the lowest and 10 being the highest) for example an Arctic Class 3 means that it can maintain a speed of 3 knots and break up to 3 feet of thick ice.

Photo credit: @sheltondupreez @legendexplorer

Ice-breaking capabilities

In order to break ice, a yacht needs a strengthened hull, and ice-clearing shape, and the power to push hard through sea ice.

Ice-breakers clear paths by pushing straight into frozen-over water or pack ice. The bending strength of sea ice is low enough that the ice breaks usually without noticeable change in the vessel’s trim. In cases of very thick ice, an icebreaker can drive its bow onto the ice to break it under the weight of the ship. A build-up of broken ice in front of a ship can slow it down much more than the breaking of the ice itself, so ice-breakers have a specially designed hull to direct the broken ice around or under the vessel.

Good ice performance requires a hull shape that has a low ice resistance as well as allows different maneuvers required (you need a very good captain with ice cruising experience!)

Good ice performance includes also a good propulsion thrust which can be achieved with propeller design and also designing the hull lines so that propeller-ice interaction is minimized.

Polar class

Polar Classes (PC) ranging from PC 1 for year-round operation in all polar waters to PC 7 for summer and autumn operation in thin first-year ice.

Finnish- Swedish Ice class

In the Finnish-Swedish ice class rules, merchant ships operating in first-year ice in the Baltic Sea are divided into six ice classes based on requirements for hull structural design,

The ships of the highest ice class are coded as 1A Super (like Motor Yacht Ragnar has) they are designed to operate in difficult ice conditions

Ships of lower ice classes 1A, 1B and 1C are assumed to rely on icebreaker assistance.

The engine Room

Like on any yacht accessibility is key. We have heard cases of many stunning ‘white yachts’ which have amazing features but which are a labyrinth and a nightmare for the chief engineer to have access to certain areas which need repair or service.

If designed for world cruising, the choice of equipment and availability of service centers is a factor.

The Mud Room

Onboard Ragnar there is a ski room that can store up to 16 pairs of skis and snowboards. There are also designated cabins where guests can go there and change upon arrival from a ski day, where they can remove their snowy boots and take off their ski gears and jackets and get changed into their swimsuits to hit the heated jacuzzi and spa! Penguin poo can quickly ruin a white carpet!

Onboard Cloudbreak for example, there is a ski locker close to the Helipad, and the beach club gets converted into a mud room.


Most explorer yachts will have facilities to carry a helicopter on board. Because of their nature of traveling to remote areas, some areas cannot be reached by normal plane or cars, therefore helicopter is the only mean of transportation.

It is also very fashionable amongst skiing fanatics to go heli-skiing to virgin slopes with fresh powder which has never been tracked before.

In areas such as Antarctica, in order to use the helicopter for heli-skiing you need to have a minimum of two helicopters on board, which is why the new La Datcha has space for two helicopters. This is to ensure that if the first helicopter is inoperable or has a malfunction, that there is another way to get crew and guests back to the vessel safely.

If there is a helicopter on board, it will need to be commercially registered as well to be able to carry charter guests, however. Helicopter permits also need to be arranged which can involve a blanket approval for a destination, or approval for specific trips in certain countries.

Most platforms needs to be commercially rated with lights for night landing.

Explorers need to also have the re-fueling ability hence the need for a fuel tank onboard which also implies extra security and trainings for the crew.

MY Cloudbreak


Safety is a big subject and on top of the required SOLAS items and area specific (tracker in Antarctica) explorer yachts normally carry Iridium handheld Satellite phones, Satellite trackers like Find me spot Hand held VHF radios seems like it would be common on yachts, but lately most yachts carry UHF for onboard communications. VHF radios have better range when away from the ship, and many times helicopters can communicate on the VHF frequencies but not UHF.

A fridge for your garbage

Since the yacht will be cruising for long periods of time without being in port, it is important to think about the rubbish system. Most yachts over 50 meters will have specialized cold rooms to store the garbage for long periods of time without any smells.  Some crew who have worked on explorer yachts tells us that waste-disposal is one of the most challenging things to do ‘You have new guest charters coming but the old waste from the previous charter is still on board, the only way to dispose it is by helicopter which is very expensive but needed’

Garbage compactors – some vessels have a garbage compactor in addition to a fridge to compact the non-food waste for storage. Most yachts have a garbage separation system so that only the food waste is kept in the fridge, as it can get full very quickly.

The majority of yachts (explorer or not, do not utilize negative space adequately. A good designer will allow access to behind bulkheads so that the space behind the walls or in bilges can be used to store dry stores that the boat can stock up on.

‘Garbage is a big deal. You need to plan it on departure and separate the food from paper and other items that can be stored all over the ship, then using up valuable space in the garbage cold-room. Glass crushers, garbage compactors and incinerators (larger yachts) are very useful. When delivery of supplies are organized, you need to make sure they can take some garbage with them back.”- Captain Cloudbreak, 75m explorer.


Explorer yachts must be able to hold an adequate stock of required provisions, be capable of generating fresh water, provide appropriate waste management, hold all necessary spare parts as well as tools and provide repair and workshop capabilities.

Sandra the yacht purses suggests ‘yachts storage be able to access all the void spaces and bilges between the hull and the bulkheads’

Winter garden

Exterior spaces need to be heated, pools and jacuzzis need to have integrated heaters or use the heat from the engine room to be recycled.


On board Legend there are 2 snow-scooters on board used to go explore remote towns and a 3-person submarine

On board Ragnar there is even a RIPSAW supertank that can go on ice!

The 107.4 metre Ulysses excels in this regard, with six motorbikes, two ATVs, a landing craft, and an amphibious tender in its garage, not to mention a 21-metre, 50-knot catamaran support boat that can be hoisted off the foredeck by a pair of custom-designed cranes ‘ – Boat International

Photo credit: @sheltondupreez @legendexplorer

The crew

The crew onboard an explorer yacht is very different from a traditional yacht that only cruises the Med for example. Even if it is useful to have crew with a secondary skills, not all crew are ok with being away from civilization and it can be hard to “stuck” on a yacht for a very long time. Other crew love it, being in remote areas.

Secondary skills are very useful, like paramedic deckhand”- Jim Aladin

In order to use the submarine you need a qualified submarine pilot to be able to safely operate it.

You also need specialist crew members such as local guides, helicopter pilots, ski instructors, etc.. which are often not employed full-time, but will need a place to stay on board during the trip. Depending on the cruising area, crew might also need to undertake additional polar code training as per the STCW Manila Convention.

Don’t forget to film your experience! Hence you may need also a photographer and a video-man to capture all of the most unforgettable moments! Including drone pilot.

Crew may have a certain amount of capacity to do this onboard, but it does put the crew under pressure. Remember that the crew’s main responsibility is to ensure your safety, which is not something you want to sacrifice in remote areas. There are many highly experienced yacht expedition photographers (such as Shelton Du Preez from Luxury Yacht Films) who are able to accompany the savvy owner or guests on their trip and make sure all your special moments are recorded.

Explorer yachts may need extra cabins for guides, marine pilots, helicopter pilots (and engineer) security guards, photographers, doctors, nurses, scuba diver instructors, physiotherapists..

Captain and Purser needs also to be very proactive to plan itineraries and getting permissions (to Antarctica it can takes months to plan), coordinate fuel, provisions, spare part deliveries, flying in guides, Ice-pilots etc.

Weather forecasting

‘Weather forecasting is very important. It is important to have all the correct sources of local weather, perhaps pay for professional weather routing. Being in remote areas you need to be more aware of weather as you are far from help and a port of refuge can be quite far.’- Jim Aladin

Un- chartered waters

Much of the ocean has been scanned and therefore there are charts that can be used by captains to know the safe cruising areas. However not all of the ocean, or at least not all passages have proper data. Therefore, this makes it very challenging for the captain to safely plan itineraries and cruising plans.

Everyone talks about ‘cruising on un-chartered waters ‘as if it was a cool thing, but actually It can be extremely dangerous!

‘Yacht crew are some of the most resourceful people in the world. Captain’s and crew rely on their own networks to canvas information about cruising grounds and share information that would be pertinent to a location.” – Sandra @theyachtpurser

Some areas require you to make use of experienced marine pilots to navigate through these treacherous waters, which are an additional consideration when planning your voyage as they will need to be berthed somewhere. The regulations surrounding pilots is often very stringent and they are only able to navigate for a certain number of hours per day, thus if you require continuous cruising, it might be necessary to employ the services of two pilots, each who may need to have their own cabin and not share. This can take up a considerable amount of guest space if there are no dedicated cabins for guides and pilots.

“There are unofficial chart systems that uses previous ships soundings which is transferred to charts and the more ships that go an area, the more sounding you receive. There are not official charts, but any additional navigational aids that stops you from running aground is of course useful.’ – Jim Aladin

Photo credit: @theyachtpurser


Planning holidays to extreme locations sometimes requires the use of specialist expedition travel companies who will arrange everything from special permits for the vessel to cruise to certain locations (required in places like Antarctica), to the equipment that is needed on board as well as arranging the shore side excursions. Whilst the captain and crew can research an enormous amount of information, there is no substitute for actual on-the-ground knowledge and experience. The internet might say an activity or restaurant is excellent, but there is a vast difference between the average tourist and a luxury yacht guest.

Sandra from @theyachtpurser shares with us her tips:

Expedition companies

Cookson adventures, EYOS Expeditions,, Pangea Adventure (founded by ex-yacht crew) are all expert travel companies that can help plan your trips and ensure your safety at the same time.

That is why companies like Cookson adventures are the ideal partner to arrange expeditions and trips. They would send someone ahead of time to those locations to see what is there, what are the conditions, what places are open

The purser together with captain uses various tools like Google earth pro to do the pre-research on the best anchorage places, but it is up to mother nature to decide on the weather, tides and currents.

Sandra from @theyachtpurser tells us that ‘Security is a very big concern, there are some islands where are very poor and have never seen a yacht for example. In some cases we even had to hire bodyguards and extra security armed guards or have navy seals accompany us’

Pirate areas

There are some areas known  (or spontaneous) for piracy attacks.

Some yachts may even charter a support vessel to carry all of the security guards, navy seals, doctors, and support staff.

Low maintenance

Explorer yachts do thousands of miles a year, and in order to keep up the quality of materials and systems it is essential to simplify upkeep.

Unlike the ‘big white yachts’ which can have very fancy materials which require high maintenance; an explorer yacht must be very easy to maintain and operate.

Every feature, system and coating on the exterior and interior of the yacht should be analyzed, not only on how it looks but what is it required to maintain it.

For example on board Ragnar, there is green-teak instead of real teak, which makes it easier to maintain and it is also suitable for extreme weather conditions.

Regardless of how low maintenance the vessel is (or isn’t), there will still be logistics involved in getting parts to the vessel, which requires a lot of forward planning as items may get held up in customs and not arrive in time. Planned maintenance needs to happen at certain periods to ensure all equipment on board is functioning correctly and safely. Mechanical breakdowns can occur too, and both might require flying specialist contractors in to conduct the repairs, which could impact the cruising schedule.


Whilst a lot of new vessels boast 40 days of autonomous cruising, there is no fridge in the world that can keep fresh food for that long. Yacht owners and guests have very specific tastes and preferences, which often require the vessel to ship food from the US or Europe to the vessel. Vessels do try and provision as much as they can locally (both to keep food and shipping costs down, it is fresher and it is good to support the local economy), however, for most trips food is flown to the vessel additionally. This requires a lot of planning and preparation as the cold-chain needs to be maintained at all times. Phytosanitation certificates need to be produced and, in some cases, a veterinary certificates for meat.

Environmental considerations

Certain cruising areas are MARPOL special areas, and thus garbage is a consideration. In some areas, you are required to have a local guide on board to ensure that crew and guests respect the local environmental restrictions. This is often a pro too, as they are well-versed in the local fauna, flora and history too!

In Antarctica you are required to carry special products on board for decontamination of your shoes when going ashore to protect local fauna and flora.

Charter licenses

You can’t charter in certain locations (US and Galapagos and until recently Australia) without flying the flag of that country.


Always check that you have the correct visa for the destinations that you intend to visit.


In some remote areas, crew and guests might need to show evidence of having a yellow fever vaccination.


‘When cruising in remote locations, security could be a concern due to the disparity of wealth between the local population and guests. More often than not, people are very friendly and welcoming to visiting yachts, but that doesn’t mean that proper precautions are not taken. It is recommended that a security assessment is conducted to ensure that crew and guests understand the risks and mitigation strategies- – – Sandra @theyachtpurser

Real life exploring experience

Here is an amazing story from the owner of Ocean Dreamwalker III, San Lorenzo Explorer on his Alaskan Adventures

Boat International 

Photo credit: @sheltondupreez @legendexplorer


If you enjoyed this article, and would like to thank me, you can buy me a coffee for $3, to motivate me to keep posting yachting insights.

Gender Inequality in the Yachting Industry

Gender Inequality in the Yachting Industry

My 13-year-old cousin Alexia, who is in 8th grade, contacted me recently because at school they ask them to write a paper on gender inequality. The instructions for the essay were that they had to interview a women in business, and I am super honored that she contacted me and asked me the following questions:

  • Do you feel like there is an equality in your industry?

The yachting industry is definitely a male-dominated industry. Most women who work in this industry have a  very ‘female’ role like secretaries, hostess, marketing or yacht charter. Unfortunately, there are only very few women with top senior positions. I am very lucky to be one of the few women in power, I think out of 100 shipyards, there are only 3 other women with a role as Commercial Director.

  • What do you think is the ratio of women to men in the yachting industry?

Probably 70:30

I work for a shipyard, 98% of the time I am the only female in the board room. In about 90% of the sales meetings I am also the only woman.

In our shipyard there are some women but I would say that 3/10 women are female.

  • Do you think it has been harder for you to get where you are compared to a man?

Being a woman you have to work harder, and do the job twice. First, you need to prove yourself, gain respect, let them know that you are worthy, be credible that you know what you are talking about, and THEN… you can do the job.  Definitely the career ladder has been a lot harder for me as a woman than it would be for a man.

  • Has anyone ever not wanted to work with you or be your client because you are a woman? If so, please explain. 

Yes, many times. It also depends on the culture, for example, Chinese businessmen do not like working with women. Even if I am the commercial director they would prefer to talk to someone below my position just for the fact that they can talk to a man.

Once in a boat show a Chinese man wanted to buy a yacht, he came up to me and asked for the commercial director, I replied ‘How can I help you? You can talk to me, what yacht are you interested” he refused to answer and kept on asking to speak to another person. Clearly he just didn’t want to speak to a girl. Also, I found that being pretty is a weakness because men can’t take you seriously, they think pretty girls are only good for being hostesses or ‘eye-candy’ but not good to talk business.

There is the stereotype that Middle Easterns dont like (nor respect women) but that is not true. At least in the Industry I work, I deal mainly with HNWI who are well educated and most of them studied in USA or in London and are pretty open minded and well educated. They support their daughters and employ women in power. I have never had any issues doing business in the Middle East.

Russians do business mainly with men. They don’t think a woman ‘is worth their attention’ of course this is a generalization, there might be Russian men who are comfortable doing business with men, but in my experience I had a Russian owner telling me ‘the problem with you is that you are woman, and you are too emotional. My suggestion for you is to do your job and keep your opinions to yourself’ he didn’t listen to my advice and now he is paying the consequences.  I met with his ‘owners rep’ who did some due diligence in the company, and he reported to him exactly what I had told him, but because it came from a man, he listened. I can’t wait to meet him again and tell him ‘I told you’ and now he will realize that it is too late, he should have listened to me.

Other people (sales brokers for example) would go on my back, and think they can go straight to my boss for a ‘better’ answer. My boss would then decide with me on the answer and he will transmit the message (which was created by me)

  • Do you feel you are paid the same as a man in the same position?

Fortunately, I work for a company in the Netherlands which is very fair in gender equality.

.  I would say that I make the same as my male counterpart. However, I am sure that if I would work in a more ‘macho’ country like France, Italy, USA, or Latin America I would probably be making 30% less than my male counterpart.

  • Have you ever felt harassed by a man?

Too many times, unfortunately. When I started in the industry I was a global sales rep, I would have to meet purchase managers in a different shipyard to sell them my product. Many times they would say I have no time to meet you during the day because I am too busy, but I am happy to meet you for an after-work drink or to take you out for dinner. I was young and naive and I would accept the invitation because it was a ‘business meeting’ and I had to learn the hard way that many men tried to make unacceptable advancements, vulgar jokes, try to get touchy, comment about the way you look or even indirectly threaten ‘if you don’t go out for diner with me, I won’t buy your product’

  • What would you change about the industry to make it more equal and fair? 

For men to take women more seriously, respect them and admire them.

For men to understand that I am not just a pretty- face that I worked hard to get where I am, I invested in my education, knowledge, and professional network.

Women are not there only to serve you coffee

I would like to see more female naval architects, engineers, project managers, captains, deck hand, CEO’s, business development, Sales Directors and remove the ‘gender jobs’

My husband once told me ‘You are more intelligent than I am, you are truly capable and competent to do my job, I dont understand why would you ever doubt about making less money than me just because you are woman’ It was shocking to hear but he is right, as women we always think that our husbands should make more money or that males make more money but if we are competent, there is no reasons to be asking for less.

If you would like to add anything else, be free to write anything else. 

I would like women to be braver, don’t be afraid to ask for a pay-rise, get the confidence to gain respect from men, I want them to know that YES YOU CAN! I am glad I can be that role model of a woman achieving career goals. It is possible to be pretty and smart it is possible to be a mom and a professional.

Yachting fashion trends for 2020

Yachting fashion trends for 2020


In an interview I had with Milda Chellingsworth, from Styling for you, a renowned stylist from London, she works with top celebrities and HNWI in preparing the wardrobe and packing holiday outfits for yacht owners.

I asked her to share with us the latest fashion trends on board yachts for this summer.

Milda says ‘Resort wear has become one of the most successful collections for retailers and we are definitely are spoilt for choice!’


We always recommend to have few great cover ups, puff sleeve ones are particularly on trend this year, we love brands like Adriana Degreas and Zimmerman as you can use them off board too as your little summer dresses.

Wide leg trousers are classic look for day or evening, we love Casa Raki ones this year. Another thing to pay attention to are fabrics, choose natural and light weight linen or cotton and summer weight cashmere for your evenings.

Shorts over skirts can be a better option, as more practical, yet extremely stylish. Also pay attention to your dress length, midi is much easier to wear, as you choose flats or heels with out  a worry of damaging your hems!

We also love the idea of a swimsuit, that can be worn as tops, putting together with a pair of shorts or trousers, can look very stylish and practical, giving you an option for a spontaneous swim! We like Mary Mare brand at the moment.

Casa Raki

Mary Mare


In some ways men are easier, but that does not mean, that they don’t have to care! We always make sure that we have plenty of linen shirts and light weight blazers for our clients, as these can take them from day to night.

Also, smart and casual shorts are very important, as some still don’t know the difference! We want our clients to relax on their holidays, but at the same time to look appropriate if holding a business meeting on their yacht.

In Monaco the latest trend is the Beach blazer by 209mare.

Plenty or swimwear, we like Darek Rose for a bit shorter and fun colours or for more classic clients, can’t go wrong with Polo Ralph Lauren.

Eaton Linen shirts

209 Mare Beach Blazer


We also encourage yacht owners to get some sandals, especially for small city breaks, you don’t want to wear your trainers in the heat!

Birckenstock has had a massive come back this year, we also like Grenson as a brand as they have a good grip on soles, for more the brand conscious, Burberry always have a good selection.

Although the Hermes sandales are still one my favorite ones!



How to buy a yacht?

How to buy a yacht?

Together with Ian Sherwood, broker for over 9 years currently working at Burgess yachts, we bring you the top insight tips on HOW TO BUY A YACHT.

Burgess yachts is one of the biggest brokerage houses in the world. They sell between 30-40 vessels per year! Is not only the number of vessels per year, is also the fact that they sell the biggest and highest valued transactions which are completely unrivaled in the industry.

Whilst they may attract headlines for some high profile yacht sales, they are actually a full service yacht company (not only sales but also management and even insurance)

The initial brief

In order for the broker to really understand your needs, he almost needs to psychoanalyze you to truly understand what makes you tick and find ‘the perfect yacht FOR YOU’, it may not be the perfect yacht for someone else, or not even the perfect deal for the broker, but he will bend over backwards to find you ‘the one’.

Ian tells us that ‘Understanding the client is vital but it can be a difficult subject for some people to discuss.  The budget is probably the first topic that can be awkward, how much are they willing to spend and the broker has to understand if this is firm or whether there might be a little room to maneuver for the right opportunity.  Additionally, I want to know more about the dimensions.  If I am told a size, what is the reason for that?  Something practical like the dimensions of an existing berth or is it a personal preference or even to allow for a certain feature’.

Sometimes the background information gives you the best picture to move forward.  How does the client use their current yacht?  Where do they like to cruise and with whom?  Can you pick up on the interior style and taste from the current boat to help focus your yacht search.

There are sometimes cultural differences that may also be a factor about why a client is focused or guarded about what they are looking for.  But the key is to know what is the trigger point.  Some will be brand or region specific as a key factor, others will be driven by price or perceived value.

Buy pre-owned or build a new custom yacht?

After the broker has practically psycho-analyzed you, he will then be able to asses whether there is any yacht available in the market that matches your requests or if it is better to consider building a custom new yacht.

Production vs. full custom

Once you know what you want, it becomes a lot easier to find something that matches those goals. Another important thing you need to ask is whether you’re happy with a production yacht, or do you want to go for a custom yacht. The prices of both differ significantly, and so does their suitability for you.

Production yachts are mass-produced and assembled by factories like Sunseeker, and they start around $100,000 to $5 million. Semi-custom or fully custom yachts are considerably more expensive. A semi-custom yacht averages about $25 million, while a fully custom boat can reach $150 million.

What is more important for you? time or money? this will preclude new yachts from being part of the shortlist.

Traditionally many clients who choose to build a new custom project have previously owned yachts and with this experience they have a clearer list of requirements and can define what it is they want.  But a younger demographic of owners that have often accumulated wealth rapidly are bucking this trend and will often commence their yachting experiences by building a new yacht.

Whilst a brand new yacht is often seen as aspirational it is still a sector that is volatile to market pressures.  Lengthy waiting periods, rising costs and shipyard capacities are all factors that encourage clients to look at existing yachts in the brokerage market.


OK, you found your dream yacht, now what?!

Once we have a price agreed, we now need the legal teams to create the offer document and although it is based on a standard document, the US and Europe have slightly different templates, it will be tailored to the exact circumstances of this yacht.

A great piece of advice that was given to me early in my brokerage career is to learn where the boundaries are of my role.  There is no point in me trying to advise a client on ownership structures or VAT issues for example as there are people far better qualified to do so.  So a key aspect of yacht broking is building relationships with industry specialists that can support clients and solve potential obstacle during the sale process.

The Sea- Trial

The first major event will be the buyer’s sea trial.  The aim is for the buyer to confirm that they like the yacht and it meets their expectations before they progress any further.  It is essentially a snapshot of life onboard when they are the owner.  A recent sea trial for a client of mine spent more time at anchor and swimming/having lunch than actually moving, but that is what the client wanted and they subsequently purchased the yacht.  The most obvious gauge for me is whether the client is smiling or not during this stage.

The Survey

Assuming the “test drive” has been a successful then usually the survey will begin.  This is the most common example of where a broker can get it wrong.  It’s vital that the buyer has the chance for an independent team to assess the yacht condition and her systems and so my role at this point is to remain impartial.  I will often be asked to recommend a surveyor or even a lawyer at the beginning of the process and my answer is always to give 3 or 4 options of suitable candidates and then let the client choose, my input has to be to facilitate and not influence the process at this point.

There will be occasions when the yacht dictates who is suitable for the shortlist.  In 2019 I sold the most beautiful vintage motor yacht and then it is a very different survey to one which would be required for a modern day fast aluminium high performance yacht, so the survey team have to be fit for purpose.  For larger yachts the process may take a team of surveyors 4 or 5 days to complete the inspection and how much detail depends on the client’s instructions.  Everything from oil samples and a borescoping the engines all the way to testing the TV system is working in the guest cabins will be conducted and then a report is written for the buyer’s records.

The punching bag moment

If there is any dispute or point of interest raised in the survey, then this needs to be worked through with the owner’s team and then the way forward will be determined.  Occasionally this will involve extending the timeframe for the deal to allow for a repair to be undertaken or even amending the overall price of the sale if a significant issue has been discovered.  This is when the broker will demonstrate their worth to the client, working as an intermediary and finding a resolution.  One of my colleagues in Monaco describes us as needing to be the “punchbag” during this phase.  It requires a calm head to mediate and it can be quite a difficult period as emotions are often running high at this point.

The ‘key’ handover

Once the findings from the survey are accepted then it is just the administrative preparation ahead of the sale being concluded.  On the actual day there are likely to be two events running simultaneously, a closing meeting with the legal team for each side and then the activities on the yacht.  Onboard, documents will be checked for the final time and if the crew are being replaced then this changeover will also occur.  Whilst onshore the lawyers will have a protocol written so that we work down the list and tick off the items in sequence, culminating with the release of money from an escrow account and exchange of documents to reflect that the yacht ownership has now changed hands.


and voila!! That is how you buy a yacht! simple right? ?


If you want to buy a yacht, contact Ian Sherwood for professional advice, and I’ll guarantee you, he will not only find the best yacht for you but also you will certainly enjoy the process!

How to find the right yacht sales broker?

How to find the right yacht sales broker?

Finding the right broker is essential for your journey to assist you with your investment and experiencing yachting to the highest levels! A broker not only sells you the yacht, he is actually providing you with a bespoke experience, through the provision of products and his own network on specialist services, and all of the support that delivers it.

Over the years I have noticed that there are several factors that repeat the pattern from success-stories of happy yacht owners. Here are some of them:


Is a personal relationship choosing the horses for courses, often the broker and the clients have same age- range similar likes and hobbies like hunting or golfing, there has to be chemistry between them and they have to have things in common,. Because the client and the broker will spend a lot of time together, it is important that there is a strong compatibility factor. Neither does the broker nor the owner want to work closely for 2-5 years with someone you personally find objectionable.


Language is also an important factor. For example some Russian-speaking Owners prefer to deal mainly with Russian brokers. I think this is obvious as you naturally get along with people who share the same history and traditions. It is not about understanding what is being said, it is rather about understanding what is not being said aloud. The famous “read between the lines” is significantly simpler when you communicate in your mother-tongue.


If it is a boat that is appealing more to the American Market than the European market for example, then the owner might choose to go with a broker that has a strong presence and strong sales record in USA. If the owner lives in Monaco and likes to go cruising in the Med, he might have a yacht sales broker based in Monaco whom he can meet often at the yacht club and have nice chats and drinks and talk about fun things after work.

Track sales

For yacht owners selecting a yacht broker, it is important to also check which boats have been recently sold by the broker him/herself but also by brokerage house.  For new build, if a yacht owner wants advice on buying a 60 meter yacht, he is better informed and educated by a broker who has experience in that size range.For brokerage, If you are selling a 60meter yacht for example, you should check which brokerage house has recently sold yachts in that size range, most likely they will have the data base of potential buyers for your yacht

A  broker who has sold several similar yachts recently probably has a better idea of what your yacht is really worth in the current market. He is probably aware of similar vessels available in the market that could be the competition for prospective buyers.

Marketing Power

They have the right marketing tools to get yacht sold. A good broker will cover the costs of marketing the vessel, and will provide a marketing plan in regard to professional photography, magazine, digital marketing, advertising, brochures, boat show participation.

Yachting Knowledge

Brokers need to know every brand of yacht build there is out there, the pro’s and con’s, the shipyard management, the culture, the relationships with the yacht crew on board to have feedback on the performance of the yachts, the maintenance cost, etc.

‘Most client don’t really know what they want’ it is the expertise of the yacht broker who will be able to match client-to-yacht based on the broker’s experience.

The broker also should know the operational costs of the yachts he/she is proposing to his clients before they buy it. Usually operational costs are around 5% of the cost of the price of the yacht (depending on the brand and the age of the vessel) but for example a 58 million euros North European-built yacht of 900 GT the operational costs would be circa 2.200.000 – 2.500.000 Euros depending on a number of factors like one or two seasons operation, private or commercial use, and most importantly the number of crew. A broker should know the typical running costs for different types of vessel and of the importance of being open and transparent about these to a potential purchaser.

Yacht brokers need to constantly be visiting shipyards and speaking to key industry players to stay up to date with advancements so they can properly educate their clients ‘visiting shipyards on a regular basis is a vital part of understanding the philosophy and USPS behind every yard.

Expect professional expertise and extensive market knowledge, information from advanced databases, full specification sheets listing all of a yacht’s features and links with the global market. The more forward-thinking a company is and the more it gives you the impression of regular contact with clients, the more you can rest assured.

The Industry network

The relationship between brokers it is important. They know each other and they build reputation on previous selling cases. It is also a matter of personality and business ethics. Some brokers simply don’t want to work with others. Therefore a brokers reputation is very important.


A company’s reputation – apart from obvious tell-tale signs of untrustworthy, look out for things like how patient they are and good rapport – and process of payment are worth checking out. Having an idea of their spread in the international market can help you conclude whether a broker is the right one for you.


Ian Sherwood from Burgess Yachts tells us:

‘My relationships with clients are based purely on trust, if they do not have faith in what I say to them or if they do not want to deal with me, then they will replace me with another broker who they have formed a better connection with.  They are busy people and usually don’t have the time or inclination to fly and inspect 10 yachts, they want to see 3 that have been carefully shortlisted and fit their requirements’


Prior to joining Burgess I spent 5 years in Australia as a broker and found that over 60% of my sales were with returning clients or new faces who were directly referred to me, which I took to be a huge compliment.  My focus is just the same nowadays in the Superyacht industry and I regularly look how I am best serving the interests of my enquiries and yacht owners.

Yachting is chosen as an escape for many people, they want to own or charter a boat in order to relax and wind down away from their usual lives.  But for the industry, we have to remember that our collective professionalism is what enables the clients to enjoy their leisure time.

Brokers must maintain the highest standards in the same way that the crew will operate onboard as it will determine the overall client experience.

Professional knowledge is obviously important, but I also have to stand behind what I say and how I advise them.  The most successful brokers are those that operate with integrity as they retain the support of the client and then work together on multiple occasions.  The broker who is driven to get the deal the done at all costs, will enjoy the rewards in the short term but then often struggle to maintain the client’s trust and then find that they have missed out on the next occasion

Without knowledge or experience it is easy to find yourself led astray by the inspiring yacht concepts of boundary-pushing designers or talked into building a super-fast yacht with technical capabilities you’ll never use.

Can you buy a yacht without a broker?

It is definitely possible, but for a purchase of this magnitude there cannot be many examples in life where a client would allocate a budget of this size to a purchase without using the guidance of an industry specialist to assist them.    Typically, a sale will involve a number of people who are often spread out in several countries/time zones and the complexities of ownership and registry further complicate matters.  A professional yacht broker is a fantastic advantage for the client and will facilitate the sale so that their best interests are being looked after for what is hopefully a smooth and successful purchase.

A broker will also know much more than is in the public domain and information that you simply would not find out about as an individual client.  Off-market opportunities, the motivation of the seller, industry factors, market data and price comparisons are all common topics that I discuss with a potential buyer.  We can open doors and find situations that others can’t and in small industry like yachting, our reputation is vital, so there is no resting on our laurels, maintaining our relationship with the client is a never ending process.

There are also advantages in terms of privacy and credibility, there will be a degree of professional courtesy that is offered to me when dealing with other brokers and shipyards.  Until a direct negotiation is taking place there is no need for me to disclose the identity of the client nor their financial situation in order to maintain discretion.  As an individual you are much more likely to be challenged at every step, to demonstrate credentials and establish some background details.  With a fast moving scenario, this may preclude you from being part of the action.

Finding a yacht online

The internet has changed the process of how yacht buyers research yachts and find inspiration, the major websites have very comprehensive lists of available yachts and they are receiving a huge level of traffic every day.  The thirst for instant information and high-resolution images has led these sites to readily distribute content directly to phones and tablets.

For the industry they create increased exposure to potential clients and promote the brokerage companies to a wider audience.  They offer the yacht buyer an ability to target their interests in a tightly controlled way and filter comparable yachts for sale.

It however is a common misconception that the information displayed is a true reflection of the market conditions.  Don’t forget, all figures shown are asking prices and not the actual transacted prices, so when using the websites to benchmark against price for example, they lack real time accuracy.

You have to be careful, and don’t believe everything you read, some boats are already sold, poor images, wrong specs,

It can often be confusing about who the actual central agent is and there are occasions where the information is being misrepresented by a third party.  Errors occur because it has been taken out of context or is out of date, but the information is often left out there as a butterfly net to hopefully lure in potential clients.


They call me the Yachting Match-Maker for a reason! if you want me to help you find the perfect yacht sales broker to you, just drop me a line and I will make sure to introduce you (or provide you with a list of the top 3 brokers) suitable to either sell your existing yacht or find you ‘THE one’.

A day in the life of a yacht broker

A day in the life of a yacht broker

Quick Q&A with Ian Sherwood from Burgess Yachts

How did you started in yachting?

I first worked for a charter company in Sydney harbour organising a fleet of small self-sail yachts and running corporate racing days.

How did you become a yacht broker

Having realized that my future was going to be in yachting it then just meant finding which corner of the industry that I wanted to specialize in.  A position was being offered by a local company for a yacht broker in a 100% commission based role and although I had no sales training or experience I was drawn to the challenge.

How long have you worked for Burgess?

Four years since 2016

What does a day-in-the-life-of-a-broker look like?

Fundamentally each day has the same objectives.  Listing yachts, selling yachts and prospecting for new opportunities.  Although in reality there is a great deal of variety in how to undertake these tasks.  Travel is a huge part of the job and regardless of where I am, there is a need to be contactable for clients and the rest of the industry.  There are great days and experiences onboard some incredible yachts in beautiful places, but a huge amount of the time it is endless phone calls and dealing with inquiries/follow ups.

Travel Pre-Packing List for clothes

Travel Pre-Packing List for clothes

I really think this is THE best tip for travelling light and to avoid over packing.

Before I even start packing, I start by making a list, in a piece of paper starting by the days I will be gone. For example: Thursday, Friday, Saturday, Sunday Monday. That is 5 days, hence I need 5 pair of underwear.

If you don’t make the list, most likely you start stressing ‘Oh God I need to pack’ ‘Oh I dont know what to pack’and you go straight to your closet, take EVERYTHING OUT, start putting things inside your luggage cause ‘you might need them’ and then you find yourself sitting on top of the luggage trying to zip it and with a huge bill at the counter for over weight luggage! The truth is, you come back from your trip and you didn’t even wear half of the things you packed! plus it doesnt leave you any space for shopping at your destination!

Then I write down what is the plan for every day, so I can plan an outfit accordingly.


Travelling day, a casual plane outfit, or if it is a business trip I wear a comfortable business outfit and perhaps a night-out dinner outfit. (one casual outfit, one night outfit)


  • Sports outfit for morning routine.
  • Business day, hence one business outfit.


  • Sports outfit for morning routine.
  • Sightseeing day, casual outfit depending on the weather (one casual outfit)
  • One dinner/ party outfit


  • Sightseeing day, casual outfit
  • Pack anything needed for the weather, so for summer (bikini, dress, flip flops, etc.)


  • Travelling day, hence a casual outfit something comfortable to fly back home.


Hence in total all I need is:

  • 5 underwear
  • 3 Casual outfits
  • 2 Business outfit
  • 2 Night out outfit
  • 2 Sports Outfits

Mix and Matching

Since I need 2 business outfits, I would pack 1 dark blue suit, and two different white tops, same shoes matching the suit so I dont need to pack more shoes.

Same for casual outfits, I would pack 1 pair of jeans and 3 different tops, and one pair of shorts or skirt.

For night out dress I would pack probably 2 different ones but use the same shoes. I always pack only 1 small night handbag and one day bag/travel bag.

Sport outfits are easy to roll and place them in between empty holes inside the luggage. Sports shoes on the other hand take a lot of space.

Shoes take a lot of space! so try to make your outfits according to the shoes you will wear.

Once you have the list you know exactly what underwear to wear for each outfit so you are not stressing during the trip that you are wearing a black bra under a white shirt for example!


Color code

The easiest way to pack, is if you stick always to the same color scheme so you can always mix and match. I like to always wear dark blue, white, beige, and mix and match everything. You can always light it up with some accessories like a scarf to give it a different look.

Once the list is ready, i have a very good visual picture of what I need so then I go to my closet and start selecting.

Bed Mountain

Once I took all the clothes out of my closet, I place them on top of my bed as a mountain. I then start filtering out those things I threw in that I might not really need.

Then I have in front of me all the outfits I really need, and I put them so I can see the pants the shirt and the shoes I will be wearing that day, so I make sure I dont forget something (like the right color socks!)


Then I start folding the clothes, with my hand I make sure they are all really squared and flat.

Square mountains

Once they are all really flat, I start stalking them up in squares, up the same height as the luggage. Once I have my first square mountain, I place it inside the luggage and start placing them like tetris.

Separate the luggage

I usually like to have a mental map of the things I pack inside my luggage so that is easier to reach it. I always pack the same way so for me it is pretty easy.

Left side of the luggage, is where I put all accessories, shoes, sports shoes, handbags, make up bag, hair straightener, etc.

Mid pocket, in that middle pocket that separate both sides, I like to put inside there my underwear and bras.

Right side of the luggage, is where I stalk all my squared mountains.

Everything else, I just try to make it fit in between the holes and corners.

So there you have it, making a list will save you A LOT of time, and money on over weight luggage, and you will feel so ready for the trip! There is a saying that you actually need to make one step backwards in order to jump further, and I think it applies here since you need to take a bit of time to write the list to gain a lot of time packing and enjoying your trip!

These are tips for PACKING CLOTHES ONLY, if you want the Ultimate packing list to make sure you dont forget anything, go check out my other blog post here.

Safe travels!

Instagram: @onboardwithmarcela

Tips for visiting a boat show

Tips for visiting a boat show

Looking to buy a yacht? Want to get inspired for your new one? are you a yachting fan? or simply love to attend boat shows?! Then this blog post is for you.

Visiting a boat show can be overwhelming if you don’t do it the right way. Therefore, here are some tips to make the best of your visit!


Yacht shows can be overwhelming, and they are usually really hot!

What to wear

Wear something light and comfortable to resist the high temperatures. You will regret forgetting your hat or sunglasses at home, as you will certainly need them!

Wear shoes that you can easily put on and off, since you will have to remove your shoes before boarding the yachts. Loafers for men and ballerinas for women are perfect! If you are a girl, the number one faux-pas is to wear high heels! I would also recommend you to wear shorts over a short skirt or a dress, as you will often be going up the narrow stair on decks, and it might be embarrassing and revealing.

There is an inside joke ‘how to find the English brokers? just look for the red faces!’ Moral of the story, do not forget to apply sunscreen! I know it sounds cliché, and usually men hate wearing sunscreen, but spending 4-5 hours yacht-hoping can burn you, and you will regret it when you get home. Try using this soft-touch non sticky sunscreen.

Get Tickets

If you are an existing yacht owner, simply call the shipyard who built your yacht, or call your preferred broker. They will be happy to arrange entrance badges for you and provide you with a bespoke luxury experience.

For example, If you are looking for production yachts like Sunseeker, they will be happy to provide you with guest day passes.

Else you can pre-buy the tickets online at a discount, or get them at the entrance of the show.

The Monaco Yacht show provides the Sapphire experience which provides VIP entrances, courtesy car (great option because it is almost impossible to get a taxi during the show!) private visits to yachts, private area for lunch, tender services, conciergerie, and more..!

This is a great option for celebrities or public figures requiring security and privacy.


Monaco is a great example where there is too much to see and too many distractions, so it is important to truly understand the intentions of what you want to buy, do or see. My tip would be to understand that everything is just a little slower at a boat show, so don’t try to do too much too quickly.

Have a chat with your broker ahead of the event, so that he can prepare and have a list already pre- identified, and line up appointments in advance and have a loose schedule. That will enable you to have immediate access when you arrive to the yacht and avoid the queues for those yachts which are in most demand. For tips on ‘how to find a yacht broker check out my other blog post here.

The magic number of yacht viewings per day is: three, never more than four, as everything blurs together after that point. 

If however you insist in doing four (or more) we reccomend you to take a quick pause for a drink or a light lunch in the middle in order to reflect on what have you seen already, and then discuss with your broker in organizing ‘one last viewing’based on the feedback from the day.

Ian sherwood from Burgess, shares his experience with us:

Time pressure at boat shows is always a challenge, so when a client is on time it is an enormous help and will ensure that you are receiving the best experience when onboard.


Often I will coordinate additional external assistance if the situation dictates.  Last year for example I was showing an explorer yacht to a couple who had very specific plans for the yacht they were looking to purchase.  During the yacht inspection I had arranged for us to be joined by a polar expedition guide and later a submarine specialist was waiting in the tender garage to discuss technical suitability because they were both points of specific interest.



This is the level of personalized experience only an experienced yacht broker will provide you!

If you are new to yachting, don’t worry I got you! For now, go ahead and read my blog post on Yachting Etiquette’ on everything you need to know before boarding a yacht.

Always ask for permission before you take a photo! Some yachts do not allow pictures on board. Some yacht owners have highly valuable pieces of art (that even if you dont mean to take a picture of it, it may show on your picture) and it can cause some privacy issues. Moreover, some owners spend hours and a lot of efforts on the interior design and they don’t want anyone else coping it.

Viewing a yacht without an appointment

You can certainly view a yacht without an appointment but you may have to wait. At the show there are many yachts, and they are being exhibited at the show for different reasons:

  1. Shipyard model: The Yacht is presented by the shipyard who built it and they are looking for a client to buy it. In some cases the yacht has been already sold, but the owner allows the shipyard to present the yacht to the brokerage industry to show its building capabilities.
  2. Charter yachts: The yacht is presented by the charter company, and they are selling charter weeks onboard. In some cases, the yacht is not for sale, only for charter.
  3. Private yacht: The yacht is a used pre-owned yacht, and the owner is looking to sell it. The yacht is presented by the CA brokerage company.

Some shipyard models, have never been used before and do not have an owner. The shipyard is presenting it in order to find a buyer. those yachts are somewhat easier to view than private yachts.

You can simply register your name with the hostess and arrange a time for a viewing on board.

Private yachts are more difficult to get access onboard. Something to remember is that a yacht can be an extension of a private home of the owner. How would you feel about having thousands of strangers going through your home recklessly? – that is why some yacht owners specifically ask the brokers to pre-qualify the viewers before going onboard. The yacht is exposed there to be sold, therefore the broker needs to pre-qualify the views to make sure they are real potential clients and not there just to browse.

Don’t take it personally if they do not allow you onboard (they are just doing their job) Exhibiting a yacht in a show can cost up to $ 100,000 or more, the time is limited, every viewing can take up to an hour and they want to ensure a proper service (not rushing and bumping into a million other people onboard)! they want to make sure they show the yacht to real qualified clients, and don’t want to waste their time. Brokers spend a lot of money and efforts on boat shows, and their biggest frustration is if they spent the day showing the yacht (and having long conversations) to 10 people who cannot afford the yacht, and that one client who could buy it, did not had time to visit it because the schedule was full!

Also, the interior materials on board are very delicate, and if you have 10000 people stepping on the carpet, touching all the delicate textiles, etc it can easily damage and ruin the yacht.

This is why it is always advised to visit the show with a broker because he will make sure to get you preferred access.

Although it might look like a lot of fun, it is also very exhausting as an exhibitor to do the viewings. I remember we had a 70 meter yacht at the MYS once, I was doing the viewings, and I can tell you, is a workout! You go up and down the stairs, on 4-5 levels, every viewing takes about 30-45mins of non-stop walking, then you go from being super hot outside to the freezing AC inside (I always get sick after a show!) you practically never sit down, and you do this for 10 hours non-stop!

Arrange your RDV’s

After you have visited some yachts and you got inspired, make sure you arrange your Rendez-vous (RDV) with shipyards, designers, naval architects, and suppliers to come around the table and share your feedback!

Boat shows are the best place to meet people and get a sense on which company you want to work with. You can visit various stands to get ideas, get contacts but most importantly ‘feel the people’ so you know the team behind the brand, and to test if there is good chemistry between you. In personal meetings, you will a lot of information and a feeling sense, that you wouldn’t get without visiting a show.


After the show’s there are mountains of brochures, glossy magazines, flyers and marketing material which end up in the bins (is actually really sad to see!) be mindful of the environment, and ask your preferred companies to send you all the details by e-mail.

Packing List

Packing List

The Ultimate travelling Packing List

Before your travel, and even before you get your luggage, you can always go back to this list and make sure you are not forgetting anything!

Even though the list may look long, I am pro- TRAVELLING LIGHT, remember less is more! Travel smarter!

Before you start packing, I also recommend you to read my blog post on Packing Tips.


  • Clothes: make a list with number of days and check the weather.
  • Underwear/ Bras
  • Socks
  • Pajamas !! (I always forget these!)
  • Pants
  • Shirts
  • Dress
  • Sport outfits
  • Weather variables (jacket or bikini)

*The worst thing you can do is over-packing for the ‘just in case’ avoid the extra things, which honestly you wont need, think minimal.


Always try to pack shoes which will match with all your outfits so you don’t over pack.

Check the weather of your destination and pack accordingly, rainy boots or sunny flip flops?

  • Flats (leisure shoes, walking shoes, dress shoes, flip flops, sandals, loafers)
  • High heels
  • Sport sneakers

I usually just pack one pair of each and try to always pack similar colors and styles.


Check the weather of your destination and pack accordingly, snow jackets or bikinis?

  • Jacket
  • Scarf (always! they are multi functional while travelling!)
  • Sunglasses
  • Hats
  • Umbrella
  • Electric plug converters
  • Gloves
  • Belt
  • Ties
  • Purse
  • Pashmina
  • Beach wear/ Snow gear

I always forget to pack my belt (!) and the electric plug converters! they are so bloody expensive it hurts me to buy new ones each time i travel but I always forget to pack them, and now I own a collection of them at home.

Carry on Handbag

  • Cell phone!
  • Passport/Visas
  • Boarding passes/ iPhone wallet
  • Frequent Flyer card/ airline memberships / airport card
  • Phone charger
  • Extra battery
  • Laptop
  • Laptop charger
  • Business cards
  • Wallet/ local currency preferably cash
  • Anti bacterial gel
  • Scarf
  • Business documents
  • Book/magazine
  • Pen
  • Headphones
  • Car phone charger plug
  • Pain reliever pills
  • Copies of all documents (either digitally or printed) in case you get robbed in the jungle and need a proof of identity to fly back home!
  • Tissues
  • Lip balm
  • change of clothes
  • snacks
  • water bottle (fill it after security buy it in the airport to make sure you drink enough water!)
  • House/car Keys
  • Neck Pillow (long haul flights)
  • Extra phone battery charger


  • Make up bag / makeup-remover
  • Necessaire: tooth brush, tooth paste, deo, face cream, shaver , make up remover, hair brush, sunscreen, shampoo, conditioner, shaver, feminine hygiene, perfume
  • Hair brush
  • Hair gel/products

Forgetting your hair brush is one of the worst things it can happen when you travel! Specially if it is a business trip and you have important meetings early morning.

Some hotels provide most toiletries so keep that in mind to avoid over packing. Also depending on your trip it may be more convenient just to buy the toiletries at your destinations so you don’t have to carry them around and take the risk of them spilling out inside your luggage.


  • Jewelry (I suggest you make a note on your phone and write down what you packed so you don’t loose them and remember when was the last time you wore it)
  • Medication
  • camera/ memory card

Remember that you can always buy stuff when you arrive to your destination, so don’t panic if you forgot something, believe me, you will survive!

Most important are

  • Passport
  • Wallet
  • Phone

I wish you a BON VOYAGE!

If you want to make me really happy you can use the hashtag #onboardwithmarcela on your coming trips!

Follow me on instagram @onboardwithmarcela for more tips!

Restaurants with tender service to pick you up from your yacht

Restaurants with tender service to pick you up from your yacht

Are you yachting in the Cote d’azur and wondering where can you go for lunch? here are my recommendations for the top beaches with tender pick up service.


Roquebrune Cap- Martin

This is one of my favorites new beaches in the Cote d’azur. You can anchor in the bay between Roquebrune and Menton, I reccomend you to call them to make a reservation and ask them to come to pick you up by tender. They have a pontoon on the beach. This place has a lovely beach, a big area for kids with swings and playground, live music with a really cool band, great Mediterranean food and amazing service. Stefan the new manager used to work at Anjuna and he brough all of the best waiters from Anjuna to Solenzara. It is also easy access by car, so sometimes the boys go by boat and I take the car with the baby and is super easy to park (huge parking!) and easy to go there with a stroller, unlike Mala or Paloma which has a lot of stairs and is hard to get there by car. It is a very family- friendly beach (unlike Anjuna for example, which is more party)



This is a breath-taking bay, it is the best beach in my opinion. There are two main restaurants, Eden plage (red umbrellas) and Cap resort (white umbrellas), they are both as good in terms of food and service but Cap Resort during the summer has good parties and DJ’s. It is really close to arrive from Monaco and it is a beautiful bay to anchor. I do not recommend to arrive to this beach by car as there are no parking and is a long steep walk.

The seawater is consistently clean as harbors are far away. Lazing in this semicircle of Mediterranean greenery and gazing out over the rippling translucent water is the Cote d’Azur at its best.



This is a family friendly beach, great easy access from tender as there is a small pontoon nearby.


  • La Vigie


This is my FAVORITE restaurant in Monaco, however we save it for a very special ocassion as it can be quite pricey, but the views, the food and the service are worth it!

I recommend you go to to the Champagne bar to watch the sunset!


  • Anjuna


This is a local favorite for good parties! It is a lot of fun with live music, dancing on the tables, champagne showers, magic shows, costumes and all!

Best place to go for the post- Grand Prix finale and the GP-day-after Party. Make sure you make a booking to reserve before you go. In some cases when they are in high season they may ask you for a deposit for 300 euros.

Their end of season party in September is also a popular party to go!

We love to go there with friends since is a ‘day party’and you dont end up too tired or too hangover the day after.

I do not recommend this place for families as it can be too loud for babies and kids.


  • CLUB 55


An all time favorite beach club in St Tropez! Is a place to go celebrity-watching.

We love to sit by the white couches by the beach for some drinks before lunch, is a great place to people watch, sit down order their 55 rose wine and enjoy!

Is a fun place to go there with friends or family and have a nice french lunch. They usually have live music and is a lovely ambiance.