The family that plays together stays together. Luxury crewed yacht charters abound with family bonding opportunities and ways to create memories to last a lifetime.
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Family-oriented crew, a common starting point for a family yacht is the crew, and these captains make a point of hiring crew members who like children. Yacht crew are in the hospitality trade, after all, and many are excellent with children. One captain says his first question in a crew interview is: “Do you like kids?” Some super yacht crew are known for being extra-amazing with children, but all crew will have some tricks up their sleeves to keep children entertained, whether it’s a pirate treasure hunt on shore or amazing theme nights on board. Youngsters might discover a bottle on the beach, complete with an “ancient” treasure map, sending the excited children on a hunt that leads to a treasure chest filled with chocolate “coins”
Foodies aboard, child-friendly yachts also go the extra mile when it comes to food. Even a special baby food or formula can be provisioned aboard or especially prepared. On one charter yacht, the chef knows that children enjoy galleys, so she dresses them up in little sous chef outfits and has them help prepare meals, to their great success!
A little respite for the parents, crews understand that parents may like to have some private time, whether it’s to walk on the beach by themselves, curl up with a book, etc. One captains says “while we aren’t baby sitters we also understand that it’s important to give the parents an afternoon off, so we plan child specific diversions or time on the water toys”
For some it is about celestial luxury, for others it’s champagne-soaked parties - but most super yacht vacations are all about lovely family occasions. For many charterers, it is families that make the scene more than any big soiree. Charter yachts are often viewed as adult playgrounds, and that image is supported by brochures showing couples sipping champagne or dressed elegantly for dinner. But that’s only one side of the charter coin. The flip side is that a yacht charter is a wonderful family holiday. Big Blue can advise you on the yachts with outstanding child friendly environments and philosophies.
Child-friendly amenities, board and beach games, films and videos are essential - as are water toys, so good water access from a stern platform is important, or on a traditional sailing yacht, consider steps and a platform that can be set up on the side of the hull. On some larger yachts, owners and designers have the opportunity to take “the child in all of us” entertainment to sumptuous heights with full cinema and video games rooms.
Equipped for safety, one yacht, built for family use, has baby gates on most doors, pocket doors to protect kids from stairwells, and the crew adds safety nets around the decks for protection when children are aboard. But the yacht still has a sophisticated decor, so guests don’t feel they’re in a nursery.
Quality time, while one yacht has a 300-game video arcade and an array of board and video games another captain takes the opposite approach, “confiscating” the ubiquitous electronic games that children bring aboard under the ruse that they may interfere with the navigational equipment just like on an airplane. The children are kept fully engaged with snorkelling, shelling, and water toys - and family time, of course. Another captain turns the yacht charter into an educational opportunity, teaching about islands and sea life. One charter, a marine biologist was placed aboard as a guide for the family, another a tutor traveled along on an extended charter to ensure the little ones were well kept up on their school work and supported with all that was learnt while underway.
With a little planning, Big Blue and the captain can even arrange for a teacher or lecturer upon arriving to give lessons on your destinations history. After an afternoon of exploration on land, the gained knowledge can become the key to evening trivia contests or conversation over a beautiful dinner. There is no better way to connect with the family than spending time visiting new places, experiencing amazing things and having fun on the water together.