About me
I am Brazilian, piscean and traveller. Working as a yacht stewardess gives me the oportunitty to be close to the ocean, which is where I always wanted to be. This blog is the result of a desire to share my life with people who are seeking for a new adventure and also to help those who cross my path. Welcome to my world!
How to become a Yacht Chef
The chef Dean Harrison tells us a bit about the pleasures and challenges of working onboard a yacht.
02/08/2017 - Updated on 03/08/2017 00h35


It’s funny how often I get messages from guys asking me if there’s such a thing as steward. And my answer is, yes! Of course there is! Certainly is not as common as stewardess, but there's definitely yachts out there with male chief steward.
 
With that in mind, I decided to do series of articles talking about other professions on board for those who are willing to jump into a new adventure, but not necessarily as a Steward.
 
However, the article this time will have a different structure. After thinking a lot, I came with the conclusion that I would never write better than the professional itself. In saying that, today we will start a series of Q&R with other professionals onboard a yacht. The idea is to open a range of options, for women and men, of jobs onboard.
 
We will start with the yacht chef – a bit obvious – but since he’s right next to me, I thought it would be the easiest way to start. Ready?

 
 
What made you choose yacht as your work place?
My love for the ocean and everything in it! While combining my passion for cooking and using some of the best, freshest produce at my finger tips, usually without a budget.
 
How did you get into yachting?
I was travelling Europe thinking of ways I could earn money as a chef. One day walking in Antibes I saw all these big fancy yachts and thought one day I want to work on one of those! The next three years were spent getting experience on dive boats on the great barrier reef and working my way towards the super yacht industry.

 
 
What courses does a person needs to start a career as a chef on a yacht?
The minimum requirements are stcw10, ENG1 medical and a certified apprenticeship or training course as a chef.
 
What are the basic rules of being a yachtie?
Be prepared for anything and please don’t bring the general attitude chefs have in a land role. You must be open minded and have a great attitude if you are going to survive this industry.

 
 
I understand that your routine with and without guests on board would be different. Could you describe the basic day of a yacht chef from the moment you wake up to when you go to sleep.
Basically you will rise before everyone and go to bed after everyone. Breakfast, lunch and dinner could be served at anytime the guests require, so be flexible. When you aren’t in the galley cooking you may be required to do other duties, depending on the size of the vessel.
 
What has been the most exciting place you have visited while on board a yacht? Why?
This is a very hard question to answer as this industry has already taken me to so many! But I think it will have to be Fiji. The reason being it has such beautiful waters to cruise with a great combination of islands, marine life and the people are some of the friendliest in the world! With provisioning being better than most of the South Pacific, its great for a chef.

 
 

What is the most common question you get about yachting from friends/family back home?
“Are the owners famous?” haha

Right now, that you’re not working on a yacht, what would you say that you miss the most?
The freedom and the unknown of where you will end up next.
 
What is the worst part of yachting (or parts)?
Is there a bad part? Well yes and no if you really step back and take a look at all the positives!
I think it can be hard always living at your work and it all starts to get on your nervous if you don’t have much time off to escape the crazy 12-16hr days.
 
Have you ever wanted to throw a guest overboard (kidding, but..)?
Generally the guests are pretty kind to the chefs as there’s a saying that goes around. Don’t piss the person off that’s preparing you’re food. Not that I would ever do anything.

 
 
If you don’t mind telling us, how much did you earn as a yacht chef?
Anywhere between 6k-8k/m
 
Not bad for a days work! Would you say you do the job for love or money or both?
I do it for both! Its definitely hard work and not for everyone. The pictures may tell the story of luxury but they don’t show the scrubbing, cleaning, detailing, upkeep that goes on behind the scences.
 
Your advice to readers considering life working on a yacht is…
If you are peoples person, able to sleep in rooms the size of a toilet with 2 or more people, do more than “just cook”, enjoy being around the ocean, have the best and freshest produce at your finger tips. Than this could be for you.

 
Thank you so much Dean Harrison for your time and honesty answering the questions.

If you would like to follow him and see a bit more of chef’s life, follow him on Instagram (@TheYachtChef), YouTube and on Facebook.
 
 And if you have any more questions, please leave your comment below!

 
 

 
 
 




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