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A role typically found on yachts over 70m, the Head of Service works directly under the Chief Stew to lead all service onboard a yacht. The role requires training and guiding the service Stews, providing direction on how service will run for each meal served to guests onboard, as well as maintaining a strong presence with guests.

What does a Head of Service do? | Head of Service Job Description

The prime responsibility of the Head of Service is to ensure the owner of the vessel and the guests receive the highest possible service and the best experience possible on board. This includes both meal service as well as ensuring that guests' needs are understood and anticipated throughout the yachting experience.

The responsibilities of a Head of Service include:

  • Running a high-level guest service

  • Plan the direction for each of the meals served onboard

  • Manage Stews that are on service

  • Providing drink service to guests whenever needed 

  • Setting up for meal service

  • Plan and execute theme parties when needed

  • Set up table decorations

  • Assisting in maintaining the interior

Soft and hard skills required to be a Head of Service

A Head of Service is in charge of executing and maintaining the highest levels of service and assistance to guests onboard whilst ensuring that their needs are met at all times. 

To stand out in this role one must demonstrate excellent service skills and thorough etiquette knowledge, paired with exceptional communication and organisational skills: the key to anticipating every guest’s needs.

The skills of a successful yacht Head of Service include:

  • Superb service skills

  • Extensive knowledge of all service types

  • Extensive etiquette knowledge

  • Wine knowledge

  • Table decorating skills

  • Flower arrangement skills

  • Cocktail making skills

  • Barista skills

  • Cigar knowledge

  • Strong management skills

  • Passion for creating unforgettable experiences for the guests

  • Excellent communication skills

  • Ability to assume a confident yet discreet manner with guests

  • Excellent eye for detail

  • Ability to anticipate guests’ needs

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 secure a Head of Service position on board a yacht?

Become a member of YPI CREW and connect with our recruiters so they can 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 on board a yacht. They will also advise you on how to best present your experience and skills and prepare for a yacht job interview.

Explore more yacht roles

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Head of Service jobs

The Head of Service is the focal point of delivering the highest level of service imaginable and providing guests with the ultimate in luxury escapes.

Yacht Head of Service Jobs, Head of Service Yacht Jobs, Superyacht Head of Service Jobs

Annabelle Huvelin, Interior Recruitment Specialist, YPI CREW Yacht Crew Agency

Annabelle Huvelin

Interior Recruitment Specialist





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