A Chief Steward or Stewardess is the Head of the Interior Department onboard a yacht. Reporting directly to the Captain, the Chief Stew is responsible for the interior management of the vessel and for providing superior hospitality service to owners and guests onboard, which often requires anticipating their needs and desires. To achieve this, a Chief Stew manages a team of yacht Stews.
What does a Chief Stew do? | Chief Stew Job Description
As the Head of the interior, a Chief Stew is not only responsible for the maintenance of the interior and the whole team that comes with it, but they are also the first point of contact for the guests onboard. Subsequently, a Chief Stew is responsible for making their luxury yachting experience unforgettable.
The responsibilities of a Chief Stew include:
Ensuring the everyday smooth operation of the boat’s interior department
Management of a team of yacht Stews
Interior crew hiring, training and management
Interior department budget management and accounting
Provisioning and inventory management
Crew uniform purchasing
Ensuring guest satisfaction by providing constant impeccable service
Organising guest activities and parties
Executing flawless meal service for the guests
Flower and table decorations
Collaborating with the Head Chef regarding meal service for the guests
Maintaining, and caring for valuable interior items and surfaces, such as artwork, silks, china, crystal, linens, fine woodwork, and marble
Creating, implementing, and maintaining standard practice procedure manuals
Collaboration with shipyard contractors
Soft and hard skills required to be a Chief Stew
The Chief Stew onboard a yacht is extremely skilled in five-star hospitality, various service styles and interior maintenance, in addition to possessing extensive wine knowledge. They are responsible for guest satisfaction onboard and must have the ability to anticipate yacht owners’ and guests’ needs and exceed their expectations.
Strong verbal and written communication skills are essential to success in this position, as well as team management and fiscal administration. This role typically requires at least three years of experience in the superyacht industry.
The skills of a successful yacht Chief Stew include:
Superb organisational skills
Strong leadership and management skills
Ability to assign duties and delegate crew on projects
Excellent communication skills and interpersonal skills
Ability to assume a confident yet discreet manner with guests
Excellent knowledge of all types of service and housekeeping including laundry
Wine, cigar, barista and cocktail-making knowledge
Plant care skills
Extensive etiquette knowledge
Table decorating skills
Flower arrangement skills
Excellent knowledge of products used to maintain the interior
Knowledge of activities and restaurants in popular yachting areas
Passion for creating unforgettable experiences for the guests
Attention to detail
Budget management skills
Ability to stay calm under pressure
Mandatory certificates needed to work on board a yacht
All crew members regardless of position and seniority need to have a valid STCW Basic Safety Training certificate, along with a recognised Seafarers medical certificate, the most popular being the ENG1 which is issued by an MCA (Maritime and Coastguard Agency) professional medic.
Without these two certificates, it is not possible for crew to work on board a yacht and a Recruiter will not be able to assist you in finding work onboard a yacht.
For more information about mandatory certificates please visit our Mandatory Certificates Guide.
Are you ready to land a Chief Stew position onboard a yacht?
Become a member of YPI CREW through a free registration and let us guide you through your job search.
Each of our recruiters is specialised in crew placement for a particular department and they will do their best to get you an interview onboard a yacht. They will also advise you on how to best present your experience and skills and prepare for a yacht job interview.
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Chief Steward and Chief Stewardess jobs
A Chief Stew is the Head of the Interior department and a person responsible for leading the delivery of ultra-luxurious hospitality onboard the yacht.
Photo of Chief Stew Jamila García