...Your way at the seas starts here!
Principal, Chief Instructor for Sail
Yiannos was born in Athens in 1977 and studied electronic engineering. His love for the sea and outdoor activities made him quit his career as an electronic engineer in 2004 and turn into professional sailing as charter and delivery skipper and sailing instructor. His first job on a private charter sailing boat was when he was 16 onboard a 70ft ketch as deckhand. Since then studies and the attempt to start a "proper" job kept him away from offshore sailing but not from the sea in the summers when he was sailing with a Laser 16 dinghy. In November 2004 he became a Yachtmaster cruising instructor in the UK, sharing his time between yacht deliveries and training. Since then he has been working as free-lance instructor for various schools in Greece teaching up to Yachtmaster prep courses both theory and practice. In March 2010 he gained the Yachtmaster Instructor qualification. Together with George started the school in 2012.
When he is not sailing you'll probably find him on a mountain, walking, climbing, skiing or just camping and taking landscape photographs as well as playing Greek folk music with friends in Athens.
Chief Instructor Power
George was born in 1974 in Athens. Spending 7 years in Germany studying engineering he discovered his passion for the sea and decided to take his passion and turn it into his destiny! He then journeyed to Croatia to learn how to sail and, in particular, how to embrace his love for the sea and became a skipper and instructor for sailing boats.
Since 1999, George has taught sailing for various sailing associations and over the years he has worked on numerous sailing and power vessels (private and commercial yachts) up to 140 feet and has sailed all over the Mediterranean, the Caribbean and has crossed the Atlantic Ocean.
In 2012 he went back to England to become an RYA certified instructor so he would be able to pass his knowledge to his students. George loves to take his students on tutorial trips which are always filled with tall stories of the seas.
He is pleasant and great company to be with and will do everything to ensure smooth and safe sailing. He speaks Greek, English and German fluently and for sure can handle some Spanish and Italian with the right company.
When he is not close to the sea he enjoys his motorbike and car to take on some new adventures and he likes to spend his time with good friends.
Cruising Instructor Sail
Born in Piraeus. As a child, he has been deeply impressed from the stories narrated from his seafarer father, so later, he abandoned his studies in maths, following the call of the adventurous nature of his character. Dinghy sailor in the beginning, he focused soon to offshore sailing. His mentors, two of the best Greek sailors in addition with his maths background helped him improve his sailing skills.
Professional skipper since 1989, sailing instructor since 1993, he joined recently the RYA scheme. His aim is to pass as much as possible of his knowledge and seamanship to newer sailors, combined with the fun on board.
Petros is the newest member of our team, passionate water sports & racing power boater, became YM Offshore in 2012. He grew up in Athens and he studied Applied Mathematics & Physics at the Technical University of Athens with specialisation in Hydro-mechanics. Since he was born, he is spending the most of his time on the water, and the last years as instructor for powerboats, power racing boats and jet skis and as well as for water ski & wake board. He is now test-driver and skipper for off-shore powerboats. His love to the element of water led him to explore the underwater world as well and he became PADI Dive instructor. When ever he is not close to the water, he is off-roading on the Greek mountains or participating, as a lotus and caterham driver, in circuits in Greece and Great Britain. Other passions of him are flying with PPL aircrafts and music.
Tasos is Greek, 55 years of age, married and has nearly 30 years yachting experience ranging from 12m sailing yachts up to 45m motor yachts and covering Greece, Turkey, Croatia, Italy and France. Apart from being expert in all aspects of yachting he is also RYA Cruising Instructor and Power Boat Instructor. As Officer of Watch 3000 gt and because of long years of service at large vessels he is the yachting guru of our team, revealing the magic of astro-navigation in our Yachtmaster Ocean courses.
Stellios Kyriakidis is 30 years old and is the sailing racer of our team. He is YM offshore & Cruising Instructor and on "Grasshopper" (X-Yacht IMX 40) is he unstoppable. He knew how to sail before he learned how to walk! Racing Coach and Sailing & Motor boat Instructor for the Greek sailing federation he is spending most of his life on the water.
All those who work hard behind the scenes, on the docks, boatyards, offices. Their high professionalism and years of presence in the yachting industry reassures a high-end service.
Our main cruising area is the Saronic Gulf. This exciting area can provide us with a variety of conditions depending on the course and the crew competence. The weather is generally good and in the summer the land breezes dominate and that makes a very interesting sailing ground even for the less skilled sailors.
With many islands and harbours on the mainland you will have a variety of places to choose from and lots of history too. The short distances will give students time to try their skills in 2-3 different harbours every day. Lunch stops are made in bays with crystal clear waters and very few can resist jumping in for a cool dip. Don't forget you're in the eastern Med!
For advanced courses or longer cruises we are a day sail away from the Cyclades, a group of islands in the Aegean Sea which offers exhilarating sailing conditions when the meltemi is blowing. Cruising this area will also take you to astonishing bays with miles of long sandy beaches and turquoise waters. In the evenings you will experience the Greek spirit when we dock in one of the many scenic harbours.
Royal Yachting Association (RYA)
The Royal Yachting Association (RYA), is the British national body for all forms of boating, including dinghy and yacht racing, motor and sail cruising, RIBs and sports boats, powerboat racing, windsurfing, inland cruising and narrowboats, and personal watercraft, even training the sailing TeamGB.
RYA's training scheme is considered the best in the world. It is recognised by big organisations and adopted by public services in the UK like Police, Fire Service, RNLI etc. The certificates of competence backed by the MCA are recognised worldwide and if commercially endorsed can be used for employment in the sailing and superyacht industry.
The Royal Yachting Association (RYA) sailing qualifications have been voted the premiere sailing accreditation for excellence and global reputation following a recent survey targeting 200 professional yacht and motorboat charter companies. The professional charter companies that were surveyed own and manage in excess of 6,000 charter boats across the Mediterranean, Caribbean and Asia.
This survey was conducted in response to the growing requirement for sailing qualifications by local boat charter authorities. Where once a very loose approach prevailed, this is now tightening considerably, particularly in the Mediterranean. Where once some sailing holidays companies had even issued their own 'licenses', we are now provided with a prescriptive list of acceptable sailing licenses. Consequently, there is an increasing international demand for sailing accreditations by sailors looking beyond their own local accreditations.
The survey asked the yacht charter companies to rate the quality and international reputation of 10 nationally accredited sailing accreditations including those from the United Kingdom, France, Germany, New Zealand, Italy, Netherlands, Poland, Russia, Spain, Sweden and the USA.
On average, across all of the respondents, the British RYA regime was rated a whopping 9.28 out of 10 by the yacht charter companies, followed by the German Sailing Association (Deutscher Segler-Verband) with 8.7 out of 10. The Russian qualification came in last with a rating of only 5.6 out of 10. Berni Blaha, who runs a charter company in Turkey that completed the survey comments: "I have been in the yacht charter industry for eight years and recently we have seen an improvement in skipper's abilities and qualifications, notably those charter guests with the RYA training course accreditation. Those charter guests holding an RYA qualification has significantly decreased the volume of damage on charter boats and saved our labour costs for repairs."
Tim Anderson, who has worked in the UK yacht charter industry for the past decade, comments: "We are seeing in the yacht charter market a transition towards a more stringent requirement for quality sailing qualifications, which can only be a good thing for the wellbeing of both boats and the people operating them. Thankfully the days of sailing holiday companies issuing their own mock certificates to even novice sailors, whereby exposing other sailors and insurance companies to unnecessary risk, are rapidly coming to an end."
Professional yacht charter skipper, Thomas Karanatsis from Greece, comments: "I chose the RYA qualification because simply, it is the most respected worldwide. Since I wasn't only interested in the Greek sailing market for professional opportunities, I knew I had to sign up to the RYA course in order to pursue a sailing career internationally."
Upon hearing the results of the survey RYA Training Manager and Chief Examiner, Richard Falk, had the following to say: "We are very proud of the outstanding work done by our 2,500 RYA Recognised Training centres around the world. However, there is nothing quite as flattering as independent confirmation of the quality of RYA training from the companies that see so many RYA qualification holders use their services each year. Our instructors are passionate about what they do and I am delighted that the quality of RYA training is as evident to those within the charter industry as it is to those who actually deliver the training. Money and time spent on RYA training is a sound investment in ensuring you get the skills and qualifications you have paid for."
To maintain its high reputation the RYA controls the quality by means of annual inspections of the training centres to ensure that the standards are kept. All RYA Instructors are trained to use the latest teaching methods, and they are patient, friendly and helpful as well as highly skilled sailors.
RYA courses can only be run by recognised training centres by suitably qualified instructors. This is your quality assurance when joining a RYA course.
Anton, Day Skipper from Russia
The best ever met instructor and skipper Vassilis gave a lot of useful information. He has a talent to teach very interesting and with humour. I'll recommend him to my friends. Thank you!
Andrey, Day Skipper from Russia
The best skipper I have ever seen. He did his best!
Markus, Day Skipper from Germany
The instructor made clear what the important aspects of the course were and conveyed the knowledge required. He was always in control, proved his competence and knew how to transport knowledge.
Ananda, Coastal Skipper from Switzerland
Having an instructor with more than 25 years of experience besides the RYA competencies was of very high value as this experience was shared during the course. Like the winds, not everything are written in a book!
Panos, Day Skipper from Greece
The Day Skipper course offers you a very big amount of theoretical and practical knowledge. Reaching the 6th day of the course I feel that all this information is taking shape and coming in an order. I wish we could have a couple of days more to practice the skills and knowledge that we received and increase the level of our confidence.