CAPTAIN | STEPHEN BURKE | Australian
Previous Yachts: Majestic, Harbour Island, Iroquois, Kanaloa, Charisma, Neninka and Kahalani
Biography: Stephen was born and raised in rural New South Wales, Australia. He is always one to be involved in various sports and outdoor activities and represented his home state in Field Hockey. Immediately after graduating from High School, he attended The University of Wollongong NSW, to study Exercise Science. Soon after he received his Bachelor of Science, he worked as a Personal Fitness Trainer, before the overwhelming urge to travel overseas grew. At 24, Stephen set forth on a traveling adventure beginning in Europe. While in the Balearic Islands of Spain, he discovered the once unknown life of yachting and completed his first trans-Atlantic crossing in 1996, before working as a junior Deckhand on 40-50m motor yachts. Along the way, Stephen has been well mentored by prolific Captains in the industry and worked his way through the ranks steadily from Deckhand and Bosun to Deck Officer and Captain. His welcoming demeanor, energy for travel and keen sense of leadership, lend itself perfectly to the role of Captain.
Waters Cruised: Atlantic Ocean, East and Western Mediterranean, Baltic and North Seas, the Caribbean, East and West coast of USA (including Alaska).
Job Description: The Captain is responsible for the safety, overall running and financial management of the vessel, crew and guests. He ensures the safe and efficient operation of the yacht at all times, including compliance with all safety procedures and regulations, as well as adherence to International Flag, Port State and local laws and regulations. The Captain has a close relationship with his crew and provides leadership, guidance and support, while encouraging both teamwork and individual accountability. He communicates clearly with the crew to ensure compliance with, and understanding of, the vessel’s policies and is responsible for the delegation of duties and oversight with respect to department heads.
Licenses & Certificates: STCW95, MCA Master 3,000gt, GMDSS, ISM & ISPS & ECDIS Certified, Bachelor of Science (Exercise Science), PADI Open Water Diving.
Hobbies: Road cycling, mountain biking, tennis & adventurous travel.
CHIEF OFFICER | LUIS CHAGAS | Portuguese
Previous Yachts: Waku, Solis, Le Grand Bleu, Triple Seven
Biography: Luis grew up in the sunny coast town of Lisbon, Portugal, conveniently the biggest shipping port of the country. At a young age, he found a love for the ocean and all it had to offer. Between school and studying Luis spent most his free time sailing where he reached national success competing at International Regattas. Luis first job at the age of 17 was as a dockmaster for the build of the Marina Expo98 with International recognition and events. But soon the desire for travelling took Luis on a journey around the ocean on a small sailing vessel where he was first introduced to super yachting. It was soon decided that a career in Super Yachts would be fitting. Luis joined his first vessel in Barcelona and had the opportunity to circumnavigate the world. He quickly moved up the ranks and has travelled the world extensively on Chartered and private Motor yachts.
Waters Cruised: East and West Mediterranean, Atlantic, Caribbean, North Pacific, East Africa and Indian Ocean
Job Description: The Chief Officer manages the Deck Department, delegating duties to ensure the highest standards in the detailing and maintenance of the exterior areas, the tenders and deck equipment. He also supports the Captain and is able to assume command should the Captain be absent or incapacitated. His other duties include being responsible for the ISPS and SMS protocol of the vessel and providing accurate chart work and passage planning. When guests are on board, he participates in all deck operations and oversees all charter activities.
Licenses & Certificates: STCW 95, Chief Mate 3,000 GT.
Hobbies: All Water Sports, Kite Surfing, Sailing.
CHIEF ENGINEER | HERVE NIACADIE | French
Previous Yachts: Motor Yachts PLATINIUM 55 m, ILLUSION 57 m, DB9 50 m, LADY LARA 60 m, ARETE 44 m.
Biography: Hervé, originates from the Ivory Coast in West Africa & Brittany, North of France, his home. He is multilingual in French, Italian, Spanish and English which has been a great asset for his over twenty years’ experience in the yachting industry.
Being a MCA qualified marine engineer Hervé takes great pride in overseeing Sovereign’s technical department ensuring the ultimate comfort and safety of our owners, guests and crew.
Waters Cruised: Atlantic, Caribbean, Mediterranean, Adriatic, Aegean, North seas as well as USA Potomac river.
Job Description: The Chief Engineer is responsible for the running, maintenance and repair of all mechanical, electrical and electronic equipment on board, including all machinery in the engine room, domestic equipment, bridge and deck equipment. He works closely with the Second Engineer to maintain detailed, up-to-date logs of all equipment, engineering activities and critical systems, as well as, providing an accurate inventory of spare parts, technical consumables and tools. In addition, he ensures adherence to International Flag, Port State and local laws and regulations in regard to engine room operations.
Licenses & Certificates: Chief Engineer MCA Y2.
Hobbies: When not onboard M/Y Sovereign, Herve will relax with sport activities like Golf, jogging, physical training as well as reading, theater, traveling, family, cinema.
SECOND ENGINEER | NEIL SMITH | British
Previous Yachts: SY Vanina, SY Ludynosa G, SY Irelanda, SY Victoria, MY Lady Leila, MY Aspen Alternative, SY Bella Regazza
Biography: Neil was born in South Africa and was raised in Zimbabwe. From a very young age he enjoyed the family holidays to Mozambique where his passion for the ocean was born and nurtured. After graduating from High School, he was drafted into the South African Defense Force. Upon leaving the military he qualified as a Commercial Diver as well as a Senior Nuclear Plant Operator. After immigrating to the UK in 1996 he decided to go into yachting on a full-time basis and successfully Captained numerous sailing vessels worldwide. In 2014 he made the decision to concentrate on the engineering aspects of yachting.
Waters Cruised: Pacific, South Pacific, Indian Ocean, Atlantic Ocean, North Sea, Coral Sea, Red Sea, Bahamas, Caribbean, Mediterranean,
Job Description Under the direction of the Chief Engineer, the Second Engineer is responsible for the running, maintenance and repair of all mechanical, electrical and electronic equipment on board including all machinery in the engine room, domestic equipment, bridge and deck equipment. He works closely with the Chief Engineer to maintain detailed, up-to-date logs of all equipment, engineering activities and critical systems, as well as, providing an accurate inventory of spare parts, technical consumables and tools. In addition, he ensures adherence to International Flag, Port State and local laws and regulations regarding engine room operations.
Licenses & Certificates: STCW 95 & Advanced, MCA AEC, MCA MEOL, Craft Skills, Powerboat II, Yacht master Offshore, Commercial Diver, NAUI Open water II, NAUI Dive Rescue, Proficiency in Medical Care onboard, Long Range Radiotelephone, HELM, Y4 Theory, Senior Nuclear Plant Operator, NCFE certificate for Outdoor Industry
Hobbies: Hunting, Fishing, playing golf, Collecting fine wines.
BOSUN | CHRIS PARKER | British
Previous Yachts: 7J’s, Jamaica Bay III
Biography: Chris comes from Cornwall, the South-West coast of England. He grew up in a large family with five brothers, enjoying boating and water sports. Prior to yachting, he was a former high school theater teacher.
Waters Cruised: East USA, Caribbean, Europe
Job Description: The Bosun assists the Chief Officer and Captain in the daily operation of the vessel. As well as being responsible for maintaining all the deck areas, he also ensures that all the recreational equipment is mechanically sound and cosmetically flawless. Additional duties include bridge, harbor and anchor watches, guest service operations, administrative work, safety management and detailing, paintwork, and the repair and maintenance of all surfaces and equipment. The Bosun is also the RYA Wave Runner Training Instructor.
Licenses & Certificates: MCA Yachtmaster Offshore, A.E.C, STCW 95, Rescue Diver
Education: Post Graduate Certificate in Education, MA Theater Practice, BA Hons Drama Studies
Hobbies: Soccer, Wakeboarding, Playing the guitar
DECKHAND | DIEGO PEREZ | Spanish
Previous Yachts: White Pearl, Mi Vida, Nassica
Biography: Diego was born and raised in beautiful Palma de Mallorca. He grew up on the water, spending many weekends and holidays traveling around the Balearic Islands on his family’s sailboat. At the age of sixteen, he started working at the Real Club Nautico de Palma as a Sail Monitor. It was a perfect match for his love of the sea. After graduating high school, he started his studies to obtain his MCA Master 500gt at the age of 18. He finished his studies and spent a year on a Search & Rescue vessel. Shortly after that he joined the exciting world of superyacthing. He is always ready for a new adventure and is most at home when he’s cruising the open ocean.
Waters Cruised: East Coast USA, Bahamas, Mediterranean Sea
Job Description The Deckhand is responsible for cleaning and maintaining the exterior and technical spaces of the vessel to standards and procedures set down by the Captain, Chief Officer and Bosun. These duties include bridge watches, harbor watches, guest services and administrative work. The Deckhand is an integral part of the Emergency Fire Response Team on board. He also assists with preparing, painting, repairing and maintaining all surfaces and equipment as well as the tender operations and all water sports activities.
Licenses & Certificates: STCW-95, Advanced Fire Fighting, ARPA, GMDSS, RYA Yachtmaster, OOW.
Education: Skipper Unlimited, CIFPNP Palma.
Hobbies: Motorcycling, mountain biking, watersports, and spending time with his dogs, Ona & Lupé.
DECKHAND | PATRICK FORD | American
Previous Yachts: Renaissance, Carson
Biography: Patrick was raised in a rural area in southern New Jersey. He grew up camping and boating with his parents and younger brother and was involved in many school activities. He has always enjoyed being active, playing soccer and track competitively in high school. After working for his father’s construction company while attending university at night, he accepted a position at a leading, nationwide travel agency in the U.S. He excelled in his role and surpassed all expectations for his young age, but after four years of expertly planning his clients’ once-in-a-lifetime travel experiences, he felt compelled to find a way to travel the world as well. Patrick’s incredible work ethic and passion for the ocean made for the perfect segue into yachting. He looks forward to serving Sovereign’s guests with a smile and ensuring their time onboard is unforgettable.
Waters Cruised: Atlantic Ocean, Caribbean Sea
Licenses and Certificates: STWC95, Powerboat Level 2, Personal Watercraft Operations, PADI Open Water, Associate of Science in Business Management
Hobbies: Running, hiking, photography, soccer, volleyball, and traveling
CHEF | CRAIG STEVENS | British
Previous Yachts: Icon, Radiant, Mondango III, Queen K, Moka
Biography: With a passion for the creation of great food, Craig’s career has seen him cross the globe in search of perfection. It all started at a young age when he used to pick rhubarb for rhubarb crumble and strawberries for strawberry shortbread with his grandmother on their farm. At the age of sixteen, Craig enrolled in a NVQ Hotel and Catering course. Upon completion, he spent six years in London developing his skills at the Dorchester, the Four Seasons Hotels, and the Ivy Restaurant working with Gordon Ramsey. After his time in London, Craig joined the cruise ship Queen Elizabeth II. It was there that Craig was able to pursue his two passions together– cooking and experiencing new foods and cultures while seeing the world. After 2 years on the QE2, he took a year’s sabbatical and headed to Australia working in 2 of the best Restaurants in Sydney “Banc and Prime” restaurants. On his return back to England, Craig decided that rather than heading back to the big city, instead he would take a role as Head chef at the 1 star Michelin star “Horn of Plenty Country House Hotel” where he won “Devon Chef of the Year” and “Devon Restaurant of the Year” 2006. In 2008 Craig joined the yachting industry, gaining quick notoriety by winning the Dessert Competition of the “Monaco Rendezvous Yacht Show” and 1st place in the “Antigua Yacht
Show Chef Competition” in 2014. Craig is very competent in a variety of cuisines having trained in British, French, Mediterranean, Thai, Indian, Japanese, New World styles. A must try is Craig’s Grandmother’s recipe, “Steamed Ginger Sponge with Caramel Sauce”.
Waters Cruised: All oceans
Job Description: Craig undertakes all cuisine requirements for crew while tailoring guest menus with an artistic flare. Craig’s philosophy is “you’re only as good as the team around you”.
Education: Hotel & Catering City , Guilds of London, Advanced Pastry Modules, Certificate in Thai Cuisine
Hobbies: Bike riding, Martial Arts, Football, Card Magic
SOUS CHEF | ALEX JOHNSON | Australian
Previous Yachts: Sovereign
Biography: Alex is a highly trained Chef who has worked most notably in Australia and the UK. Although new to yachting, he grew up on the beaches of Queensland, Australia. His passion for cooking, with special note to Thai and Japanese cuisines is evident in all that he prepares onboard. His previous restaurant experience comes from some notable restaurants, such as Freds and Longchim in Sydney. Alex’s eagerness to develop under the guidance of the Head Chef, will certainly add to the amazing culinary experience aboard Sovereign.
Waters Cruised: Atlantic, Pacific.
Job Description: The Sous Chef assists in the preparation of guest and crew meals under the direction of the Head Chef and plans menus and caters to guests’ preferences and dietary requirements. She is also responsible for provisioning within a specified food budget. He maintains safe and efficient galley standards by keeping all areas and stores immaculately clean and organized, and remaining current on relevant safety procedures and equipment.
Licenses & Certificates: STCW 95, Hospitality College Certificate, Food Safety Officer.
Hobbies: Photography, Film, Snorkeling, Surfing, Travel and Food.
CHIEF STEWARDESS | SAMANTHA KLEPPER | American
Previous Yachts: Huntress, Huntress II, Lady Michelle, Penny Mae
Biography: Samantha is a native of the Sunshine State but has called Savannah, Georgia home since 2006. Ten days after graduating with her Master’s Degree in Clinical Social Work, she was enticed by her previous owners to join the luxury yachting world aboard their original vessels, M/Y Huntress and M/Y Huntress II. What started as a celebratory summer adventure quickly grew into a passion the likes of which even she could not have anticipated. Samantha has a heavy background in formal fine dining having put herself through 6+ years of college moonlighting in the service industry. Her years in hospitality helped instil in her a desire to achieve and maintain the highest standards of guest satisfaction at all times. She prides herself on providing each group of guests with a “wow factor” that will keep them talking for years to come.
Waters Cruised: Atlantic, Caribbean, Mediterranean, Bahamas, Gulf of Mexico
Job Description: The Chief Stewardess provides superior service and aims to exceed the owners’ and guests’ expectations. She is responsible for the overall smooth operation of the interior crew and provides direction, guidance, and encouragement on a daily basis. She maintains an accurate inventory of all service items and supplies and is in charge of provisioning the vessel for both guests and crew. She also handles the organization and management of all interior spaces and guest storage areas. In addition to ensuring that all guest needs are attended to with the utmost care and enthusiasm, she also provides valet services, care of personal and speciality items, and making arrangements for activities ashore.
Licences & Certificates: WSET Level 2 Wine & Spirits Award, PYA G.U.E.S.T. Interior Intermediate Service, Interior Yacht Management Service Arts Certification, Master of Social Work, Clinical Concentration, Bachelor of Psychology, 200hr Vinyasa Flow Yoga Certification
Hobbies: Community outreach, exploring local sites and cultures, soaking up sunrays, practicing yoga, and studying all things Croatian
SECOND STEWARDESS | RAISA GAUCI | Second Stewardess
Previous Yachts: Elisa, Talisman Maiton, Indian Empress, Seawolf, Sealyon
Biography: Raisa hails from Malta, a tiny Mediterranean island about one third the size of New York City. Due to it’s strategic location between Europe, Northern Africa, and the Middle East, it has long been know for it’s tourism industry. Seeing an opportunity with the growing number of visitors, Raisa’s father opened a thriving, family-operated restaurant in the heart of the city. It was there that Raisa learned all she knows about the importance of personalized guest service and striving for the highest level of satisfaction, always. It wasn’t until she joined her grandparents on a very special two-week cruise along the East Coast of the U.S. that she was bitten by the sailing bug. Since 2011, working in the yachting industry has provided Raisa with the perfect union of her two passions – travel and hospitality.
Waters Cruised: Mediterranean, USA and Caribbean.
Job Description: Full support of the Chief Stewardess in all interior duties including, but not limited to: guest interaction, excellent personalized service, and managing housekeeping and laundry. She also assists with fine dining and wine service as well as inventory management, skilled organization, and administration of interior items.
Licenses & Certificates: STCW 95, PDSD, Power Boat Level 2, PYA Interior Administration & HR, Diploma in Health and Social Care, Customer Care Certificate, Food and Hygiene Certificate
Hobbies: Interior design, yoga, dance, rollerblading, swimming, kayaking, and paddle boarding
THIRD STEWARDESS | BRITTANY SCHNARE | Canadian
ABOUT: Brittany comes from Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada. She moved to Montreal at the age of 18 to study International Relations and Economics. After finishing her degree, she travelled to New Zealand to pursue competitive sailing. After two years of dynamic sailboat racing she was ready to make the switch to larger scale boats and became interested in the yachting industry. She loves the travel, meeting people from all around the world and being close to the ocean.
JOB DESCRIPTION: As stewardess and part of the Interior crew her duties include laundry, housekeeping, meal and beverage services and attending to the charter guests. She also assists with administrative tasks, inventories and scheduled interior maintenance.
WATERS CRUISED: South Pacific, West/ East Coast of the U.S.A & Canada
JOB RELATED LICENSES & CERTIFICATES: STCW 95, Proficiency in Designated Security Duties, Level 2 Food Hygiene & Safety, Silver Service, certified Barista
HOBBIES: Sailing, Equestrian, Yoga, Running, Water sports, hiking, and non-fiction literature.
CHASE BOAT CAPTAIN | FRASER FLIGHT |