As a Superyacht stewardess, providing excellence in service is just what you do and providing a luxury dining experience on the sand is one way, which will create lasting memories for your guests.
Your guests are probably used to dining in luxury so it is your job to provide them with beautiful experiences, something that they just can’t do at home.
Before you start gathering everything you need, consider what you want from the dining experience for your guests. It could be the sight of the sun setting on the horizon, the evening breeze, or the view of stars and the moon late in the night.
Having the best possible moment for your guests in mind will help you find the perfect location. This could range from the sandy stretches with a graceful touch, to rocky ocean shores and to a place where the last rays of the sun are most visible as they disappear into the horizon.
The logistics of setting up a luxury dinner on the beach from a yacht can be a little bit of a challenge. However, remember you are professional superyacht crew, and making magical moments for your guests comes naturally to you.
How to set up a luxury dinner on the beach.
You will need to consider the following items when planning this dinner.
Lighting is an essential factor because you will not have a power source. Candles, hurricane lamps and tiki lamps are a great way to add ambience and practical lighting to this remote area.
Dinner candles are selected depending on your preferences. The most common candle styles include those that are 100% beeswax, bayberry tapers, colonettes, dollars, tapers and Aristas.
The candles could be patterned, coloured, and preferably non-scented (you don’t want this messing with the delicious menu that the chef has prepared).
Other essential factors included when setting candles are holders and warmers. Choose your most preferred warmer from a list of Aurora pewter, hurricane black, hurricane oil, hurricane rustic brown and the brushed bronze.
This is a tricky one because you will need somewhere to store this furniture. And as we all know, space on a superyacht is a precious commodity. Therefore, the obvious statement here to make is that the furniture must be able to fold away.
The chairs should be strong, firm to the ground, padded to improve comfort, meticulously neat, heroically arranged and not make screeching sounds due to movements. great choices when purchasing the furniture would be a royal palm beach solid wood chair, Moseley, fine view, parsons, Caravella, Chastain side chair or Aubrey.
Attractive chairs welcome you to the table and make the mealtimes more inviting the above image clearly demonstrates this point nicely.
The dinner tables should be stable to the ground and large enough to accommodate your guest’s needs comfortably. Linen should cover the entire table and add to the attractiveness of it. The colours and patterns of the soft material should blend perfectly.
Your chef is probably very good at what she/he does. However, the challenge here will be to create a menu that is up to standard, but with limited resources. I mean the tender runs back and forth to the yacht’s galley would be a real mood killer.
Therefore the foods, drinks and music should blend excellently with the location and as best you can with the resources that you have available to you.
You are going to have to ask the deck department to help you with achieving a luxury dinner on the beach. First, you may need them to scout out a super romantic location. You will also need them to help you to carry all of the items your need ashore. Moreover, finally, you will need help setting up this romantic dinner.
Set the service tables away from the guests, make sure you have adequate lighting and make sure the chef has as much help as possible.
The crew demonstrate a degree of confidence, maintain physical and verbal neatness, be attentive, fast acting and approachable. Lastly, A sparkling smile and a sharp eye will help you gauge the right level of service for this unique location.
The sand may brush off and the salt may wash away, but the memories will last forever.
Image via Strada
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We shall never know all the good that a simple smile can do. – Mother Teresa
The power of a smile in body language is significant. It’s a way to show your guests and customers that you have a strong desire and commitment to keeping them happy. If you work in a guest services field one of the most important things you can do is to learn to separate your personal and professional life. Maybe you woke up this morning and you weren’t feeling well. Or maybe you are having a lot of personal upheaval in your life right now.
The bottom line is that these are personal issues that have no place in your workplace. You need to learn to shut out all of your personal concerns when you are at work, and give your full attention to your guests and customers. They don’t want or need to know that you have personal issues going on. What they need is to see you with a smile, exuding positive body language, and being there to greet and help them with whatever they need.
Now that the power of a smile in body language should be clear to you, it’s important that you set an example for others in your workplace. It doesn’t matter if you are an owner, manager, or a regular employee, leading by example is a great way to get the message across to others that smiling and making the right impression on guests is essential to the success of your business. So what can you do as only one person?
You can help to start building a culture where smiling and positively greeting every guest becomes commonplace. You can help others to learn about how important non-visual communication is. Even if you aren’t in a position of leadership you can lead by example. Given enough time your co-workers should notice the way that you treat customers, and management will as well. This can lead to further career advancement opportunities for you, and it may also prompt management to urge other workers to adopt your example.
We’ve all heard the old saying that the customer is always right. The truth is that while the sentiment is a great way to look at customer service, it’s actually far from the truth. In fact, in many cases, customers are wrong and get upset about something that is not the fault of the business they are at.
Does this mean that you should tell a customer they’re wrong? No, of course not. You may have to explain the position or policies of your business, and you may not be able to give them the resolution that they want. However, you should never be as harsh as to tell a guest or customer that they are wrong. Instead, you should remember to approach them with a smile, and always be respectful to them. Even if they don’t like what you have to tell them, the fact that you use nonverbal communication such as smiling will help to make the encounter with them less hostile and more positive.
Learning excellent customer service skills is the key to both your success as a person and the key to the success of the business that you own or work for. Remember that a lot of how we communicate as people is nonverbal in nature.
If you approach a guest or customer with a frown and a slouch you are going to get your interaction with them off on the wrong foot. At that point, even if you have nothing but wonderful things to tell them they will already get a bad feeling just by looking at you.
Instead, you need to make sure that you stand up tall, show them that you are a positive person, and always greet them with a smile. You want your guests and customers, to feel welcome and appreciated, and showing them a smile is a great way to start this process.
A good cup of coffee is like warm liquid gold, and learning how to make a great cup of coffee is like one of the many things in life that “you just have to know”.
Traditionally a great cup of coffee comes from fresh coffee beans, but I believe you can produce a fantastic cup of Joe, with whatever you have at your disposal.
The name Coffee in English was a word adapted from the Dutch Koffie, who borrowed it from the Turkish Kahave, who in turn borrowed it from the Arabs Qahwa.
A possible origin of the name is the Kingdom of Kaffa in Ethiopia, where the coffee plant originated.
The History of Coffee: The history of coffee goes as far back to the 9th century, when a humble Ethiopian goat herder called Kaldi noticed that his goats became spirited after eating the berries from a certain tree.
He reported this information to the monks who in turn made a drink out of the berries and discovered that they could stay awake longer to pray. From Ethiopia it is said that coffee spread to Egypt and Yemen.
As interesting as the goat herder story is, the first credible evidence of coffee as a drink is in the middle of the fifteenth century in the Sufi monasteries of Yemen.
By the 16th century it had spread throughout the world, reaching Europe, the Americas, Persia, Turkey and North Africa.
The 10 Steps of Coffee:
According to the National Coffee Association of America, there are 10 steps to producing coffee, these are:
Harvesting the cherries
Processing the cherries
Drying the beans
Roasting the beans
Milling the beans
Exporting the beans
Grinding the coffee
Brewing the coffee
Tasting the coffee
Buy Good Coffee:
Now this is an important step, buy the best coffee that you can afford! It’s one of those things that the better quality coffee you buy, the better cup of coffee you will make.
Storing Your Coffee:
Storage is integral to maintaining your coffee’s freshness and flavour.
It is important to keep it away from excessive air, moisture, heat, and light — in that order — in order to preserve its fresh-roast flavour as long as possible.
It has been a popular myth for years now that you should always store your open bags of coffee in the fridge or freezer, however, this may lead to the deterioration of the coffee as contact with moisture is a big no-no.
Instead, buy your coffee a quality airtight ceramic or glass container and store in a cool, dry and dark place.
How to Brew Your Coffee:
OK, here is the fun part. There is no right or wrong way to making a cup of coffee… it’s up to you and how you like your coffee.
What is important is that you get the measure of coffee to water ratio right.
You do not recycle used coffee grind.
Your coffee has been stored appropriately for freshness and aroma.
Whether you are using a top of the line coffee machine or a simple kettle for instant coffee, make sure your equipment is clean.
The coffee you use should be no older that 2 – 3 weeks old.
Use bottled water if the water in your area is not clean.
If you are reading this article then that means that you can afford your own or have access to a computer… whenever possible buy fair trade coffee, your conscience will thank you for it.
Enjoy Your Coffee
Now all the hard work is done, sit back, and take a minute to smell that beautiful aroma, and taste that amazing flavour.
When serving coffee remember that coffee drinkers are very particular about the way they drink their coffee.
There is in excess of over 36 known coffee bean types in the world, with over 60 different ways of making coffee. So it’s no wonder that many stewardesses get a little intimidated by the thought of making a double macchiato skinny latte, for example.
However, in my experience the most popular types of coffee that my guests enjoyed are as follows:
Cappuccino: Is an Italian coffee drink, which is traditionally prepared with espresso, hot milk, and steamed-milk foam. Sprinkle chocolate or cocoa over the top for something special.
Espresso: Is coffee brewed by forcing a small amount of nearly boiling water under pressure through finely ground coffee beans. Espresso is generally thicker than coffee brewed by other methods.
Café Latte: Is a coffee-based drink made primarily from espresso and steamed milk. It consists of one-third espresso, two-thirds heated milk and about 1cm of foam.
Drip/brew/filtered Coffee: Is a method which involves pouring water over roasted, ground coffee beans contained in a filter.
This was most popular in the mornings, where simple coffee was required.
This should not be mistaken with Café Americano which is coffee prepared by adding hot water to espresso.
Regardless of the type of coffee you will be required to serve, you will need the following:
A tray: ready, neat and clean
Sugar bowl (white sugar, brown sugar, sweet’N Low and Candela)
Coffee cup with underline and relevant coffee spoon
Milk creamer with the coffee or tea orders as per the guest requirements
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If you’re the one who’s throwing the party, you want to make sure that it’s an event to remember.
Whilst having a party can be great fun, organising what’s going on can get stressful – so make sure that you have every aspect of the event under your control.
Follow this handy guide – covering everything from party themes to food ideas – so you can be the perfect party hostess.
Picking a theme is a crucial starting point when throwing a party. You don’t want everything to look like it was thrown together without any real thought, so you should make sure you have a clear idea as to the overall theme of your event, ensuring that each aspect ties together nicely.
As children, it was easy to think of party ideas – princesses and fairies for girls, cowboys and pirates for boys – but when throwing an adult party, you have to come up with something innovative and memorable.
No pressure! If you’re feeling overwhelmed, consult some of your friends/family who’ll be attending the party, to see what they think will work for your particular event, making sure that it matches the tastes of the majority.
If you have chosen a venue already, see what kind of themes will fit in the space provided – for example, a park setting would be a perfect fit for a sports theme.
Also, consider the current trends in popular culture and fashion – a ‘The Great Gatsby’ themed party would be topical with the recent release of the film last year, and allows your guests to get creative with 1920s fashion.
On the subject of the 1920s, parties with a theme from a certain decade provide a chance to rummage around in charity shops or wardrobes to assemble great costumes – consider the average age of your guests in order to pick a decade that suits.
Another easy theme is a masked ball event. You can pick up Venetian masks quite easy and its a great way to add a little glamour to your event.
For more party theme ideas, please follow The Stewardess Bible on pinterest.com
The way you decide to decorate is of course very much dependent on your chosen theme. However, there are certain tips that are universal to decorating for a party.
If you don’t want to spend a fortune on decorations, there are ample opportunities to grab a bargain if you invest the time. Ebay is a great source of party decorations at low prices, as you’ll often find sellers who’ve bought items for an event and never used them again.
For standard items such as balloons and serviettes, try your local bargain store – you’ll be surprised what you can get for your money.
Charity shops are also a great way of finding niche artefacts for your chosen theme.
There are also plenty of tutorials on the internet teaching you to make things like bunting or tablecloths, if you want to spend the time crafting the decorations yourself. However, don’t overdo it – sometimes less is more, and you don’t want your guests to feel like they’ve walked into a balloon factory!
Party Food Ideas
Catering for any event can be stressful – especially if you’ve put yourself under pressure to be hailed the new Gordon Ramsay.
Ease the pressure by sticking to recipes that you’re familiar with – it may be tempting to try that new youtube tutorial, but you don’t need that added stress when you have other things to be planning.
Don’t try and do it all yourself, either – enlist the help of a few family and friends who’ll be able to chop/peel/mix under your instruction.
Also, make sure to check if any of your guests have special dietary requirements you need to cater for – you don’t want the vegetarian in your group to be faced with nothing but steak!
Once you’ve decided whether you want a full sit-down meal or a buffet, you can start to plan. If you’re going with a sit-down meal, consider making something low-maintenance, like a casserole or stew.
That way, it doesn’t matter if anyone is late or if things run over, you can keep it warm.
For buffet-style food, there’s plenty that you can make with minimum effort – favourites like potato salad and pasta salad always go down well.
If you’re not keen on trying your hand at some more complicated dishes, like samosas or falafel, then there are many catering options that can provide you with the food fuss-free.
Party favours are small presents given to guests who’ve attended an event, as a memento and sign of thanks.
If you’ve been on Pinterest, you’ll undoubtedly have seen some incredible creations – but don’t think that this is the standard you have to aspire to.
Your guests will likely be happy with a small token, and if you’ve made it yourself then it’s even better. If you opt to buy your party favours, then key rings, tins of mints and candles always go down well.
If you want to try your hand at something creative, then sweet treats like chocolate or cookies are a great option – just make sure you leave them somewhere cool before handing them out. Adult Party Games
Entertaining children is easy – from pass the parcel to musical chairs, there are a range of party games to keep kids entertained.
Finding something appropriate for adults is a little more difficult, but there are still tons of ways to entertain your guests and have them engaging in fun activities.
Charades is a classic option and requires no preparation – something that all your guests, no matter what their age or interests, can get involved in.
A further great option is the ‘Who Am I?’ game, where each member of the party writes the name of a famous person on a piece of paper, and then sticks it on another person’s head. Taking it in turns, each person must ask questions – with yes/no answers only – to figure out which famous person they are. Consequences is also a lot of fun – each person has a piece of paper and must draw on ahead, then fold it overpass it around the circle, and proceed to draw the rest of the body parts in turn, until the end. You’ll definitely end up with some weird and wonderful creations!