The term "yacht stewardess" typically refers to a professional woman who works as a member of a private yacht's crew. Depending on the size of the yacht and the number of people aboard, her duties can vary. She is generally responsible for maintaining the interior of the boat as well as seeing to the personal needs of its guests. The lifestyle of those with yacht careers is considered by many to be both glamorous and physically demanding. There are a number of professional training programs and guides available for someone who wants to be a yacht stewardess.
A luxury yacht, sometimes called a “super yacht,” usually differs from a commercial cruise ship. Many of them are individually owned for personal use, while others are part of charter businesses. They can require crews of fewer than ten or as many as 100 people, depending on the size of the yacht. The service also is more personal on luxury yachts, as the number of guests is normally smaller than on an ocean liner. They may be either motor boats or sailing yachts, and many of them have three to five decks.
Of all the crew members, the yacht stewardess generally has the most personal contact with the guests. She attends to their individual needs, such as noting their food preferences and arranging recreational activities for them. The yacht stewardess usually prepares and maintains the guests' living quarters as well, which can include making the beds, cleaning the bathrooms and any other necessary housekeeping tasks. Additional obligations could include laundering and ironing clothes, or coordinating such services with other crew members. She might also provide the guests with toiletries or any other items that they need while aboard the yacht.
The typical housekeeping duties of a yacht stewardess also include tending to the rest of the yacht, making sure the public areas are clean and attractive. Depending on the size of the crew, she may be the only stewardess or she may be part of a group that reports to a chief stewardess. The crew might remain on board the boat even when it is not in use, ensuring that it is maintained and always ready to accommodate guests. Some yacht stewardesses have backgrounds in interior design and can help decorate the yachts according to the owners' preferences. Others have public relations skills and might assist with advertising a yacht charter business, for instance.
To obtain a job as a yacht stewardess, one is not usually required to have a specific academic or professional background. Prior to being hired to work on a yacht, however, most applicants must complete some required training. The training often includes personal safety and first aid procedures as well as basic firefighting. It also might help to have good customer service skills and knowledge of proper etiquette.