Is there career progression for Spa Therapists in yachting?
Spring 2015 has seen an increase in requests for permanent spa therapists on board various size yachts, we are seeing competitive packages being offered for these positions but I am often faced with more experienced therapists saying that they would like to focus on getting service experience. They feel there is no room for promotion to the echelons of Chief Stew whilst using the beauty skills and staying in housekeeping. One candidate with three years experience as a therapist comments “I quickly realised after joining my first yacht that I had to decide which route I would take for my career, I chose to stick with my beauty therapy. I have always been in housekeeping, I don’t think it is possible to be a Chief Stewardess and still offer your skills for treatments, the two roles are just two demanding.”
We have seen some therapist / housekeepers work their way up to Head Housekeeper on the 100m+ yachts. My worry is that some of you don't want to limit yourself to housekeeping but potentially feel like that is your only option. One of our clients, a busy 80m charter and private yacht has two therapists and rotates them through housekeeping and service along with the other stews. Speaking with the Chief Stewardess she confirmed they never had a problem or shortage of service stews through the busy Mediterranean season.
When I was in yachting I will admit I was a bit of a junky to pamper days and having the odd beauty treatment. Anyone else who has had treatments in high end salons will know how great the customer service can be from the therapist. They make you feel like a million dollars, why wouldn't you want them as part of your service team, offering this service to your guests 24hours a day?! I have also been a Chief Stew and I can empathise with them when they are in the middle of a busy charter and don't want to have to worry about where one of the service girls is. So where is the middle ground, is there the option to put them on service during quieter trips?
One candidate suggested that perhaps as the yachts get bigger the spa teams will grow on board and therefore introduce the option of working up to spa manager and leading a team. Perhaps this is one of the many answers to this question...watch those new builds closely all you beauty stews and aim high, we will need you as our industry grows :)
Let us know what you think?