Sailing with a Child

Even for the most seasoned of sailors, choosing the right yacht that meets your family’s needs on holiday is essential, whether in Greece, the Amalfi Coast or the Caribbean. We are often asked whether it is safe to take a young child sailing. This does, of course, depend on the yacht and location, but here are our top tips for sailing with children.

The Boat

It’s important to select a boat that is going to work for the kids. You don’t want them to get scared with the boat heeling over too much or them feeling unsafe. Therefore, I’d recommend a catamaran for first-timers, particularly as these are considerably more stable than a monohull. With a catamaran, the salon is spacious, providing the kids with a good amount of space in case of bad weather. In a monohull, the salon is downstairs with little outside visibility, which may result in seasickness.

Safety Net

If you have very young children on board, it may be a good idea to install a safety net before you start sailing. If you need this, it is best to add this option well in advance to avoid the yacht manager running out. The safety net offers good protection for children playing or sunbathing on the deck, and it stops any sliding overboard. A harness is an extra safety measure you might consider for protecting your kids when sailing.

Air conditioning

It is becoming more and more common for modern sailing yachts to have a generator, allowing them to have air conditioners and ceiling fans. This is of huge importance when with children as it allows you to quickly regulate their temperature in particularly hot weather and during the warmest part of the day.

Life jackets

It is essential to advise your broker about the age of your children to ensure the owner has life jackets in your child’s size. It is always a good idea to consider buying your own life jackets, particularly as children will wear these more than adults. A more comfortable life jacket that fits well will encourage children to wear life jackets at all times outside.

Itinerary Planning

Depending on your location, there may be long distances between certain destinations. Therefore, it’s always good to consider your itinerary to allow often breaks. In case of bad weather, it is always good to have a back-up itinerary. In situations where cruising does not permit stops, consider playing games with your children or giving them colouring.

Contact a Boatbookings Broker Today to book your family yacht charter.

4 Ways to Go Greener While Sailing

Often, a yacht charter vacation is an opportunity to be out on the water and getting back to nature. Therefore, many look for ways to be more environmentally friendly while enjoying a blissful getaway in locations such as the French Riviera, Amalfi Coast, Greece or the Caribbean. Whether you are chartering for the first time or are a seasoned charterer, it’s never too late to make changes to be more environmentally friendly on board

Waste Management

Responsible waste disposal and recycling are incredibly important onboard your yacht charter, especially when trash and garbage can quickly end up in the ocean, either by accident or as a result of careless behavior onboard. Keep all garbage and items to be recycled secured somewhere on the boat until you can permanently and properly dispose of them onshore. This way, you can enjoy your charter by swimming with nature, not with garbage.

Check out our green chartering page here!

Reduced Plastics

Many catamarans in the BVI and elsewhere in the world are now employing the use of reusable water bottles. Try to stock your boat with a few plastic products as possible. If you are chartering without a crew, purchase water in larger containers and then refill reusable bottles or glasses as needed. Having less plastic bottles and cups on board will not only benefit the environment, but it will also minimise unwanted clutter.

Eco-Friendly Products

Many are not aware that all on board fluids flow directly into the ocean. Therefore, opting for EPA-approved household products has a significant impact on the environment. There are many eco-friendly product options available, so all you have to do is read the labels and look for soaps, shampoos, conditioners, shower gels, and other common cleaning solutions made with natural ingredients. If you want to contribute to ocean conservation positively, only apply marine-safe sunscreen.

Carbon offsetting calculator

Leave Nature as You Found It

In locations from Tahiti to Sardinia, the beauty you’ll find is not possible in any other method. Observe and enjoy the natural surroundings, without disturbing anything along the way. When snorkelling or diving coral reefs, be particularly mindful not to touch anything with your body or equipment. Rather than taking home shells or dead coral as a souvenir, take a photograph instead. As travelers and sailors, most of the cruising and charter community has an interest in preserving the integrity of our premier vacation destinations and maintaining a respectful relationship with the environment. By sharing responsibility with small, thoughtful contributions, we can make a positive global impact, and leave a positive legacy behind for generations to come.

Contact one of our Charter Brokers today to book your Yacht Charter!

Romance Isn’t Dead

With the most romantic day of the year fast approaching, many begin to think of how to show their significant other how much they love them, whether it’s a candlelit dinner or a long weekend away. However, there are many spectacular cruising grounds to choose from at any given time of the year, offering alternative ways to search for a winter vacation. Here are the Boatbookings Team’s favourite romantic destinations.

Amalfi Coast

The Amalfi Coast is well known as being one of the most romantic destinations, with pastel-hued buildings continuing to attract loved-up couples year in and year out for honeymoons, proposals or vacations. For a true level of Romance, head to Ischia, well known for its spas and a short distance from Capri. In Ischia, enjoy an unforgettable, romantic dinner in Ristorante Emanuela, where you can choose from steamed fresh seafood or blue lobster, ending your meal with homemade limoncello under the moonlight.

Seychelles

The Seychelles offers impressive granite boulders, white beaches, and coral coloured sunsets, epitomising true paradise. However, nestled within the luscious greenery of its gardens and beaches, you’ll find Eden, a hub of creole gastronomy. This beach-side sanctuary offers the ultimate romantic atmosphere, overlooking the beautiful sands of Beau Vallon Beach. Make sure you try the delicious Tajima Wagyu beef carpaccio and yellowfin tuna with asparagus. Head back to your yacht and enjoy a romantic nightcap under the stars.

Martinique

Martinique itself is completely dynamic; it combines rugged mountains with wild forests, rivers and waterfalls as well as the important coves and bays for your charter, there is plenty for you to explore during your vacation! Martinique offers natural hot springs, exotic black sand beaches and scenic hiking trails. As Martinique is a French Territory, it offers an exciting mix of both classic Caribbean and French culture which is demonstrated in their spoken language of creole. Enjoy a dip in the cascading waterfall near Falaise River before going to a Rum Distillery and enjoying the local products. Some of the best restaurants in Martinique include Le Rendez Vous, which has a beautiful view of the Caribbean Sea, and Le Touloulou, where you can taste some of Martinique’s best seafood!

Contact one of our Brokers today to help organise your next charter!

Where to Eat in St Barths

It is no wonder that the powdery white beaches of St Barthelemy (often spelled St Barth’s, St Barts or St Barth) continues to attract the rich and famous yearly as they congregate for their Winter Caribbean holidays. This small, free-spirited island is more rugged and less lush than some of the other Caribbean islands, but it has culture, shopping, and all the amenities that cater to the jet set. Expect to find secluded beaches, fine restaurants and fashionable shopping hotspots on this mountainous island.

St Barths is an overseas territory of France and offers excellent cuisine generally derived from its French roots. There is a wide range of choice from hip brasseries in the Port of Gustavia, to local beach restaurants serving Creole food, and sophisticated French gourmet restaurants overlooking the sea. In the wake of 2017’s devastating Hurricane Irma, St. Barths rebuilt at an astonishing rate and high cost to get the island back close to what it was.

The Sand, The Eden Rock

A table at Eden Rock’s restaurant and bars is a priority reservation for epicureans.  The Sand Restaurant and Rémy Bar and the Bar on the Beach nearby, gleam in the reflected blue of the Caribbean. Cuisine is masterminded by world-famous Master Chef Jean-Georges Vongerichten who exemplifies a career made stellar with the successful development of Michelin-starred kitchens and restaurants from NYC to Chicago to Tokyo and São Paulo and by writing seminal cookery books plus presenting TV cooking shows.The Sand is the culinary heart of the hotel and its unique setting represents St Barths’ character and its laid-back beach style. Signature Sand classics include truffle pizza, crispy salmon and new vegan matcha crème brûlée. In the evening, enjoy caramelised foie-gras with black-olive seasoning.

Le Tamarin

Le Tamarin has been newly renovated and is set within a shadowy garden near Saline Beach. Scenery is lush and relaxing – water features, low lighting and breezy palms and grasses. The restaurant is cosy with intimate tables tucked away along the walkway. Dishes include yellow fin tuna, wild shrimp ravioli with octopus in in lobster broth and taste aux pommes. This fabulous menu is accompanied by a fantastic wine list, including a 2006 Pétrus and a cocktail list with modern and classics cocktails. Be sure to visit during your Yacht Charter!

Shellona

Overlooking Shell Beach, Shellona is a Greek lunch Restaurant & Beach Club. Enjoy an exceptional setting facing the Caribbean Sea. With its unique location, have lunch while listening to the DJ or live music bands, relax on one of our sun beds or a cocktails admiring the most beautiful sunset on the island. Chef Yiannis Kioroglou and his team offer an authentic Mediterranean cuisine, acclaimed for their flavoured grilled food seasoned with the best aromatic herbs and marinades. Chef Yiannis bridges cultures and styles with cuisine that injects creativity into classic recipes featuring coconut milk-infused mahi-mahi fish or raspberry and watermelon lemonade.

Contact one of our Brokers today to book your St Barths Yacht Charter.

What to See in the British Virgin Islands

The British Virgin Islands, more commonly known as the BVI, is yacht charter paradise. The BVI have all of the ingredients for a perfect Caribbean sailing holiday: consistent winds, gorgeous islands, a mixture of deserted beaches, luxury hotels, shipwrecks, beach party towns and a charm that perfectly fits the tranquillity of sailing. The BVI is one of the most prestigious yacht charter destinations in the world. Here are 3 of our favourite places to visit during your BVI Yacht Charter.

Jost Van Dyke

Jost Van Dyke (colloquially referred to as JVD or Jost) is the smallest of the four main islands of the British Virgin Islands, measuring roughly 8 square kilometres and is situated in the northern portion of the Virgin Islands. Jost Van Dyke lies about 8 km to the northwest of Tortola and like many of the neighbouring islands, it is volcanic in origin and mountainous.

Great Harbour and White Bay at Jost Van Dyke are perfect stops if you enjoy a cocktail or two. Have a few rounds of Pain Killers at The Soggy Dollar, home of the infamous cocktail and one of the top bars in the Caribbean. Head on to White Bay’s beach bar scene, one of the liveliest anchorages in the BVI. Hop from Coco Loco, to Seddy’s One Love, and Gertrude’s, which are just a few steps away from Ivan’s Stress-Free. An evening spent in Great Harbour wouldn’t be complete without a visit to Foxy’s. Incredibly fun, it is overflowing with island character, great food, dancing and Foxy’s Fire Water Rum.

The Baths

The Baths are BVI National Park located on the southwest tip of Virgin Gorda and are known as one of the most incredible experiences of the BVI. The Baths are large clear pools of water in a cave-like atmosphere that were naturally formed by the sea washing over large granite boulders. The boulders form natural tidal pools, tunnels, arches, and scenic grottoes that are open to the sea. The largest boulders are about 40 feet long. Light plays on the water in secret rock pools, which are bordered by cool white sand pathways.

Norman Island

Norman Island is an island at the southern tip of the British Virgin Islands. Norman Island is also known as Treasure Island with stories of pirate treasure being found in the Caves. A large harbour known as the Bight offers one of the most protected anchorages in the area. The Caves are just a short trip away in the tender and the snorkelling is fantastic. Norman Island is a well-known destination for cruisers and other tourists because of three water-level caves at the base of cliffs just outside the western edge of the Bight. With no permanent inhabitants other than wild goats, there are two restaurants on the island, Pirates Bight and The Club. Just outside of Norman Island is The Indians, an outstanding day stop for some of the best snorkelling in the BVI. The reefs showcase the most vibrant underwater life.

Contact one of our brokers today to help organise your BVI Yacht Charter!

Where to Eat in the BVIs

The British Virgin Islands, more commonly known as the BVI, is a yacht charter paradise. The BVI have all of the ingredients for a perfect Caribbean sailing holiday: consistent winds, gorgeous islands, a mixture of deserted beaches, luxury hotels, shipwrecks, beach party towns and, of course, fantastic restaurants. 

The impeccable white sandy beaches beckon you to sit back, soak up the rays and chill out, or by the ideal sailing conditions from island to island, the culinary landscape of the BVI naturally reflects Caribbean influences that will dazzle your appetite with all you’re looking to enjoy. 

Cooper Island Beach Club

This breathtaking sunset stop is surrounded by a sandy white beach dotted with palm trees, connected by a lushly landscaped boardwalk. Happy hour, lunch and dinner menus are infused with delicious specialty options that can include Seared tuna salad and Josper grilled mahi mahi to Aberdeen Angus Steak and Vegan curry. Lunch is served between 12-3pm and dinner between 5:30 and 8:30 pm and is open between October 25th and August 11.

The connected Rum Bar has a collection of over 280 rums, meaning they have the largest selection in the Virgin Islands. Featured are a range of house-infusions, rare aged rums and classic cocktails made with rums from all over the world. Try a rum sampler board and their knowledgeable staff will explain the origins and history while you take in the atmosphere. Be sure to ask about their homemade rum infused chocolates.

Kick back on their comfy outdoor sofas and enjoy the sunshine with a cocktail. The beach bar and decked lounge faces west – perfect for watching a beautiful Caribbean sunset.

Saba Rock

Getting to Saba Rock near Virgin Gorda is just the beginning, as this tiny island resort is only accessible via yacht. Once you arrive, you’ll see why this has been a longtime favourite of both locals and tourists. The happy hour here is an especially lively scene. The food, however, is straightforward and comforting. A house specialty is Lobster Escargot, which features locally-caught Anegada lobster baked with lemon, garlic, and butter. Ben sure to take a look at one of the chef’s specialties, like the tropical beef stir fry or Caribbean spiced chicken. Wash it all down with a refreshing cocktail. Be warned that The Painkillers here are especially strong.

Note – Saba Rock has been closed since Hurricane Irma and is in the process of extensive renovations. It is slated for a reopening in the 2020 charter season!

CocoMaya

This beachfront restaurant in Virgin Gorda has a chic design – think basket pendant lighting, customised stone bar, and bamboo accents everywhere – and flavourful Asian-inspired menu of shared plates. Sip their signature cocktails in the open-air bar, or drink them right on the sand! Enjoy an exotic blend of Asian and Latin cuisines with creative twists. Try the Spicy Calamari Salad and Tempura Shrimp Lettuce Wraps or try our Sushi, including their famous CocoMaya roll.  The wine list is extensive, and the cocktail program is fun, too, with the best seller being the Cojito, a playful twist on the classic mojito that features coconut water and a coconut rim.

Contact one of our Brokers today to organise your Virgin Islands Yacht Charter.

Vegan Yacht Chefs

A rise of veganism worldwide has meant that there is more demand than ever for chefs that can cater to a vegan diet. A vegan diet involves cutting out animal products like meat, fish, dairy and eggs and in Great Britain in 2016, there are estimated to be around 540,000 vegans. Therefore, we have found our favourite yachts with chefs that can cater to vegan clients in the Bahamas, the Amalfi Coast, the French Riviera and Greece.

NITSA

NITSA is based in Fort Lauderdale and available to charter in the Bahamas. Chef Katie grew up baking long before she learned to cook. Over the years she’s been able to study a wide variety of cuisines, including time in Florence, Italy and has developed an appreciation for myriad styles and flavour palates. At the same time, she’s seen the effects (good and bad) of how food & nutrition relate to the quality of life—personally, professionally, and medically. It encouraged her to leave New York City after a decade in the book publishing industry to study with renowned vegan chef, Alexx Guevara, at his culinary center at The Ranch at Live Oak in Malibu, California.

From there, she worked with Chef Alexx at Sanctuary Treatment Center, where she co-directed the nutritional and culinary program at this boutique women’s residential rehabilitation, including teaching classes, where the focus was on restoring clients’ dietary and nutritional health alongside their own recovery. Currently, Katie directs the culinary program for GroundSea Fitness, a yoga & wellness retreat held several times each year in the Berkshire Mountains, where she creates and executes this ovo-vegetarian program, including the addition of tonics, house-made teas and elixirs, and locally-sourced bone broths.

SOLO

Based in Genoa in summer and Antigua in winter, SOLO Chef Gionata was born in Italy and has been a Chef for 25 years, working for many VIPs in some of the best restaurants in the world. He received a Michelin star and have been reviewed in the best gourmet guides. As a superyacht Chef, he believes that the cuisine served is not only a showpiece but nutrition as well.

His passion for food varies from creating the perfect roast dinner to a 7-courses degustation menu to show a whole range of different cooking techniques and products. He also specialises in vegan, vegetarian and low-calorie diets. He is also up to date with all the latest cooking techniques, methods & equipment so that he can keep up with the best and latest restaurants. Cooking demonstrations with the guests either at the table or in the kitchen are also a special touch he likes to offer the charter guests.

MINOU

Marco is a native of Sardinia and after graduating from the Italian Chef Academy, he began working on the Costa Smeralda. His passion and curiosity led him to enrol in masterclasses of vegan and vegetarian cooking, bakery and pastry-making and gather a growing following. Marco has also taught classes of Italian and Sardinian cooking. To this day he is often invited to cook private dinners abroad.

Sailing Watches that look good on Land or Sea

In general, sailing watches share the sporty, hefty, water-resistant traits with diver watch, but are further stacked with features useful to the yachtsman. Whether on the French Riviera or Amalfi Coast, in Greece or St Barths, here are Boatbookings’ favourites.

Panerai Luminor Regatta Chrono Flyback

At 47mm, the Panerai Luminor Regatta is certainly one of the largest classic diving watches around. With a retro shape and design borrowed from its mid-century ancestors, the Panerai Luminor Regatta is only water resistant to 100 meters. However, it certainly makes up for this in style. The large dial means room for oversized numerals with impressive luminosity as well as small seconds and chronograph hour counter sub dials. A tachymeter scale enables sailors to measure average speed in knots by the chronograph minute hand. Try this out on LITTLE ONE‘s 48 knot top speed!

Rolex Oyster Perpetual Yacht-Master II

In 2007, when Rolex created the original Yacht-Master II, the rotating Ring Command bezel proved to be its most compelling function. Designed specifically for professional sailors, the Rolex Oyster Perpetual Yacht-Master II is an icon of regatta racing. Using it, the skipper can access the countdown programming and synchronise it with the official race countdown on the fly; the mechanism memories the programming and, at reset, returns to its previous setting. Moreover, a marine-themed Ring Command bezel which works in conjunction with the internal mechanism makes this is the quintessential nautical timepiece.

Garmin Quantix 3

The original Quatix was Garmin’s first GPS watch designed specifically for mariners and the new model is packed with features! In addition to all the basic watch functions, it features tidal information, Course Over Ground, Speed Over Ground and useful alerts for anchor drag. The altimeter, barometer and compass provide real-time navigation and MET data and it also has an integrated MOB function, which triggers an alarm on your boat’s Garmin chartplotter if you fall in. If your boat is appropriately equipped, you can even use your watch to wirelessly steer your boat via autopilot control. With sail racing data, a fish catch counter and a competition timer, plus much more than we can list here, the new Quatix is the keen sailor’s most helpful watch on their Greece Sailing Charter.

Contact one of our Brokers today to organise your Global Yacht Charter.

Boatbookings hit Monaco Yacht Show

The Boatbookings Team are looking forward to seeing the latest Riva, Ferretti, Sunreefs and more at the Monaco Yacht Show.

Monaco Monte Carlo sea view with yachts

Where?

Based on the iconic Port Hercules in the principality of Monaco, the Monaco Yacht Show represents the height of exclusivity. Each year, the Monaco Yacht Show curates a display of more than 125 extraordinary one-off superyachts built by the world’s most respected and well-known shipyards and welcomes leaders from the yachting industry. 

Yachts line the Harbour in Monaco – Monte Carlo

What’s at the Monaco Yacht show?

Here, around forty new launches are annually unveiled in a worldwide debut, attracting the yachting industry’s exclusive focus. 580 exhibiting companies and partners participate, with the show providing the ultimate showcase for industry influencers from the most reputable names in the yachting industry.

The MYS is the premier luxury event worldwide where visitors can discover the greatest aspects of superyachting against the glamorous backdrop of Monaco.

Here’s what we can’t wait to see!

BASH

BASH’s sophisticated black hull and cool beige superstructure exudes class. The elegant interior has a regal feel, showing traditional soft style furnishings in red and gold with ivory carpets and polished wood flooring.

The interior elevator gives access to all decks. BASH has spacious outdoor decks with shaded lounging areas and plenty of seating. The sun deck offers an outdoor cinema, Jacuzzi, sun pads and bar area with a beer tap. A teak beach club can be found at the swim platform allowing easy access to the water.

BASH presents a rare mixture of classical design with modern features both of which add to her exemplary status as one of Benetti’s finest productions.

Available for charter on the French and Italian Riviera

ELYSIUM I

ELYSIUM I is a breathtaking, brand new 2019 Riva Dolce Vita 110 crewed motor yacht.

The Riva 110 project, Riva’s new fiberglass flagship, is a promise of style, design, and performance to reach levels never seen before. The Riva 110 promises to be a magnificent and beautiful flybridge yacht, as well as larger than ever before. 

The completely renewed hull design measures almost 110 feet in overall length, with a beam larger than 11 feet. 

Characterized by a super sporty profile, the Riva 110 exhibits a large window in the hull with an integrated porthole. On deck, a long glass ceiling that stretches along the entire living room and it is formed by glass framed in stainless steel. 

The aft is equipped with the innovative Submersible bathing platform, the exclusive movement system that Ferretti Group has patented, which has already convinced experts and triumphed during the Boat Builder Awards 2016 in Amsterdam.

Available for charter in the Balearics, we can’t wait to see this stunning yacht.

INCEPTION

The impressive ultra-modern interior features ebony wood with black steel accents and luxurious grey fabrics and brown leather.

Situated on the Main deck is a well-appointed study which converts seamlessly into a massage room, with the onboard masseuse available from 4pm onwards. There is also a formal dining on the Main Deck and further dining available on the spacious sun deck as well as a tiger’s eye stone bar with seating for four. The sun deck has a huge Jacuzzi for 12 people and a vast shaded area which is retractable over the bar area.

The Master cabin has a king size bed which rotates 360 degrees with panoramic views. The Owner’s deck has a private Jacuzzi, two hammocks which can be mounted either side, 4 sunloungers, an icemaker and fridge.

The full-beam VIP situated on the Main deck has a fold down balcony which sits directly over the water and gives exterior privacy to the guests. The views can be enjoyed from the chaises longues inside the cabin or from deck chairs on the balcony.

The forward deck has a seating area with a retractable canopy and incorporated surround sound speakers for when the 50″ tv is set up to make an exterior cinema.

80 SUNREEF POWER

The 80 Sunreef Power is a versatile yacht for long cruises in ultimate comfort, blending performance, autonomy and stability. Taking luxury and seaworthiness to a new dimension this exclusive multihull craft offers infinite options for a bespoke décor and layout. The vast alfresco relaxation areas of the catamaran include a full-beam forward terrace and an impressive flybridge. The power catamaran option will give an insight into the space available on 7X, a sailing 80 Sunreef available in Croatia.

Boasting huge volumes, with more than 340 square meters of living spaces and classically-inspired lines.

An expansive main saloon forms the heart of the yacht, as a gathering place to socialise, entertain and relax. The modern, minimalist décor includes teak paneling, backlit quartz, leathers, and chic styling. The main saloon is flooded with light and boasts stunning views out across the water, while large doors connect inside and out to create one huge living area. The saloon leads smoothly to the aft deck cockpit, which features an alfresco dining space, sun pads and easy stepped access down to the water.