Camper and Nicholsons Grand Harbour Marina Malta is successfully creating a Crew Community Culture at the harbour through various events and activities specifically organised for yacht crew.
For many crew, the feeling of missing loved ones and special events back home is all too familiar. Birthdays are very often celebrated onboard as well as family holidays such as Christmas and New Year. It comes as no surprise, that crew find themselves forming bonds with the team at Grand Harbour Marina and other crew members which, more often than not, turn into long lasting friendships. The crew become somewhat of a family, and the vessel, a home away from home.
Gordon Vassallo, Marina Manager stated, ‘’The End of the Summer Season saw the return of our resident Superyachts and their crew along with some new arrivals. We therefore decided to kick things off with a Welcome Back Party, which has marked the start of our weekly social event tradition. Sometimes we even shake things up by throwing in a theme which is always something crew love to get involved with.’’ Every Wednesday crew are encouraged to come down and meet up with their neighbouring crew members, over some food and drink, and get to know the other crew they share the dock with.
The annual Grand Harbour Marina Halloween Party is always a success, and lived up to its expectations this year with crew going above and beyond with their fancy-dress and ghouls inspired costumes. This year, the crew of MY 6711 GEO took home the trophy for best costume for their fantastic interpretation of Cruella Devil and her 101 Dalmatians.
Pumpkins where also delivered to each crew a few days before, by the marina, in attempts to host a crew pumpkin carving competition. We were blown away by the effort from all crew but special mention must be given to the crew of MY SKY who impressed us all with their pumpkin carving skills.
Although social events are a great way of getting crew together and mingling, Grand Harbour Marina has a diverse selection of activities to keep crew busy throughout the winter season. The marina offers complimentary yoga and circuit training classes which have proven to be very popular, as well as weekly Football Tournaments which sees our Grand Harbour Marina staff getting involved with crew as well.
Emma Cassar, PR & Events Manager comments, “We have received a lot of positive feedback from Captains and Crew which motivate us into keeping these initiatives going. And as ex-yacht crew myself, I understand the importance of such a community and culture being available for crew as they enter a port, especially if it is one they have never been to before.”
For those who miss being out on the water on a daily basis during the winter months, thankfully, Malta remains a warm destination! This has prompted Grand Harbour Marina into organising monthly cruising regattas and SB20 rally’s (meaning small-boat rally’s). Crew can enjoy being back out on the water and are encouraged to show off their sailing skills! Moreover, locals with berths in the marina integrate with the yacht crew, often inviting them onboard to take part in the races.
Emma Cassar mentions, “We are only a few months into the ‘winter season’ and already we feel a crew community forming. The marina is full of life, with crew hanging out together after work at the numerous café’s and restaurants found down at the marina and taking part in extracurricular activities as a community out of their own accord.”
Emma Cassar continues, “Events including the Rolex Middle Sea Race and the world renowned Super League Triathlon were highlights for our crew to witness and participate in throughout this off season. Crew were also treated to a Classic Car Show with the option of taking a ride in a choice of classic car by way of a donation to raise funds for Men’s Mental Health, and it was a fantastic success.”
The yachting community is very tight knit and fast growing, so it is important for crew to feel at home, and help them create connections and friendships with other crew members in the marina.
The scope of creating a crew culture at Grand Harbour Marina is to make crew feel comfortable on their own yacht, but also in their port-of-call, and for Grand Harbour Marina and the staff inside to be apart of their extended family and experience of being a crew.
Grand Harbour Marina continues to strengthen the relationship between Marina Staff and Yacht Crew helping create a community of like-minded individuals from all over the globe.
For further information about winter or summer berthing at Grand Harbour Marina and to be apart of the Crew Culture, click here to book a berth. To keep up to date with the activity, search #crewculture online.
(This article can also be found in the December 2018 edition on The Islander Magazine.)