&Beyond Yacht Charters

5 Reasons Why the Spanish Virgin Islands Should be on your Bucket List

You’ve heard of the US Virgin Islands (St. Thomas, St. John, St. Croix, + more) and the British Virgin Islands (Tortola, Jost Van Dyke, Virgin Gorda, Anegada, + more) – and maybe you’ve even visited them all – but have you explored the Spanish Virgin Islands yet?

If you’ve not visited this stunning stretch of islands, we recommend you add it to your bucket list stat!

The Spanish Virgin Islands are a relatively small cluster of islands and cays located in between St. Thomas and Puerto Rico. They are a part of the US, so no passport is required for US visitors.

The Spanish VI are comprised of two main islands – Vieques and Culebra – and several smaller cays, a few of which you may have also heard of such as Culebrita, Palomino Island, and Cayo Lobo.

Here are 5 Reasons Why You Should Add the Spanish VI to your Bucket List
 

1.- Wide open spaces

 
Far fewer people are familiar with the Spanish Virgin Islands in comparison to the USVI and BVI. That means there is much less tourism overall, so if peace, quiet, and near empty beaches are what you’re looking for, this is your place.
 

 

2.- It’s like stepping back in time

 
Visiting the Spanish VI feels a bit like a Caribbean of yesteryear. The beach bars and restaurants are small, locally-run, and have an off-the-beaten-path kind of vibe. Much of the islands and cays are rugged and untamed, allowing you to hike and explore, as if for the first time.
 

3.- Abundant flora and fauna

 
The Spanish Virgin Islands are home to a wide array of incredible plants and animals. If you’re a nature lover, you’ll be in heaven here among the free roaming horses on Vieques, the bioluminescent bay, goats, seabirds, and thriving reefs.
 

 

4.- The brightest stars

 
With very little development on these islands, that means the “light pollution” here is virtually non-existent. Some visitors say that they’ve never seen stars shine brighter than they do over the Spanish Virgin Islands.
 

5.- If you know, you know

 
Truly exploring the Spanish Virgin Islands is like entering into a secret club. Have you hiked to the old lighthouse? Did the sea turtles greet you when you pulled into their beach? Did you eat mofongo while watching the waves? If you know, you know.
How to Charter to the Spanish Virgin Islands
If you’re interested in your own sailing adventure to the Spanish Virgin Islands, we have several yachts in our fleet available to take you there (click the links to tour the individual yachts): Laysan, True Story, Champagne, Big Nauti, and Libra

Contact our yacht consultant for more details, to check availability, and to start planning your Spanish Virgin Islands yacht charter.

Why Now is the Perfect Time to Become a Yacht Owner + Start your Yacht Business

More and more people are entering the yachting universe. What used to be the privilege of a happy few is quickly becoming a reasonable investment opportunity for many. If you’ve been curious about how you, too, could become a yacht owner, as well as how it could be a viable business venture, read on.

 

Current boating trends open up the possibilities of yacht ownership

 

Boat sales have continued to be on a sharp rise since the start of the COVID pandemic – the NMMA, National Marine Manufacturers Association reports a 34% increase in power boat sales in February 2021 in the USA, compared to February 2020. At the Annapolis sailboat show this last October 2021, orders for new catamarans were taken into 2025. At the Paris Salon Nautique, December 4-12, 2021, record sales were being registered. This is a very good sign for the industry as a whole.

 

New ownership experiences: Yacht as Business

 

Owning a yacht is one thing, but turning it into a profitable business is another thing altogether. Doing this correctly will totally redefine your yacht. You don’t need to be an expert sailor, or boater, to participate in this adventure. The only way to accomplish this objective is to place your yacht into commercial charter operations.

Unless you have yacht maintenance, accounting, crew selection and recruitment, charter management skills, yacht charter experience, and significant time on your hands, you should seriously consider recruiting a professional charter yacht management company to provide these services to you.

Even though there are many “owner operators” running their own vessels, as well as owners personally managing their yachts, there are many drawbacks and pitfalls that owners unwittingly experience when pursuing this route.

 

Why buy a yacht and place it into business?

 

One really good reason to place your yacht into commercial charter operations is to take advantage of the US tax code. Section 179 of the US Tax Code allows for a very effective deduction of the cost of your yacht against your taxable income.

Another good reason for entering into this luxury niche market is that yacht owners are somewhat like art collectors; the more you share your asset, the more aspirational it becomes, which in turn increases its value. Commercial yachts, like works of art, honestly could be classified as “public” assets, i.e. privately owned but enjoyed by the public. It is very difficult to accurately assess their true value.

For example buying an exquisite piece of art is not necessarily “profitable,” however it most certainly will transform your lifestyle. The yachting market behaves in a similar manner. The current reality though has had market values boosted due to the enormous current supply chain challenges for new yacht manufacture.

 

How you can avoid issues when structuring your yacht ownership as a business

 

 

  • Do significant due diligence and select a reputable yacht broker to guide you through the acquisition process and assist you with the difficult buying decisions including:
    • Yacht selection – The most suitable vessel for commercial charter operations is most often not the most suitable for cruising.
    • Equipment and feature selection
    • Flagging and licensing
  • Similarly, do significant due diligence and select a reputable yacht management company. The good businesses in this space will:
    • Work with your yacht broker to advise on the most suitable vessel, systems, configuration, etc. for commercial charter operations.
    • Advise on the most appropriate charter base to select with appropriate infrastructure, like an international airport with several mainland connections, and services, etc.
    • Provide a detailed pro forma income statement for the vessel you are considering to allow you to fully understand the anticipated results your yacht owning business might achieve.
  • In selecting your charter yacht management company, you should:
    • Compare the rates and services the yacht management companies offer and understand how you will be charged for the management of your yacht.
    • Select a company which is clear about your exit strategy.
    • Ensure they adopt a fully transparent approach to their managed yacht’s accounting including making detailed reporting available on a regular basis.
    • Select a modern company which uses reliable software for accounting, fleet management, utilizes compliant contracts, and offers excellent customer support.
    • Ensure they have competent experienced staff covering yacht operations, charter operations, accounting, and broker management.
    • Ensure that they are an established entity with a growing reputation, including membership to professional yachting associations such as IYBA, MYBA, VIPCA, CYBA, etc. ensuring that they can participate in yachting events worldwide to promote your vessel.

 

 

We hope this helps give you a useful peek into the industry of yacht ownership and the yacht charter business. If you’d like to dive deeper into what’s involved in yacht management, feel free to contact our yacht consultant. We love chatting about all things yachts.

Now you can comfortably start looking for the nearest boat show to imagine your next investment!

Stay & Sail: What Vacation Dreams are Made of

Are you planning an upcoming vacation to the Virgin Islands?

We hear from many guests that they feel torn when doing their research on where to stay. On one hand, they love the idea of taking their holiday to sea – exploring the islands by yacht and waking up in a new bay each day. But they also feel drawn to the land-based resort experience – a beach and pool just steps from their room and a restaurant to pop into whenever they like.
 

The USVI Vacation Dilemma: Solved

 

Typically, planning a vacation that includes both options – time staying at sea and time staying on land – hasn’t been easy (or even feasible) when it comes to length of stay and logistics. That is, until now.
We’ve got good news: you can now do both! And we’ll help make it simple and easy to plan.

 


 
&Beyond Yacht Charters has partnered with the private island resort, Lovango Beach Club, to bring travelers an exclusive new vacation concept called Stay & Sail.

 

Stay & Sail: Your Ideal Blend of Yachting + Beach Club-bing

 

The Stay & Sail Vacation Package gives travelers the best of both worlds. We work with you to customize an itinerary that blends your perfect mix of 3-5 nights on a luxury yacht charter with however many nights of indulgence you desire at the Lovango Resort.
You can view sample itineraries here. 
Lovango Resort’s boutique accommodations are unlike anywhere else in the Virgin Islands. Whether you choose to stay in one of their glamping tents, or their luxury treehouses, or their private villa, you’ll feel ensconced in the natural, tropical environment while still enjoying all of the upscale amenities of a 5-star resort including shopping, a beach club, and waterfront dining.
 

 


credit: @lovangoresort

Before or after your nights at the resort, depending on your personalized itinerary, you’ll board one of our modern, spacious catamarans to explore more of the surrounding islands and cays.  Your all-inclusive yacht charter experience comes with a talented private chef who will cater to your dietary needs and preferences, plenty of yacht toys, and plush accommodations.
 

Let us help you plan your ideal land + sea holiday

 

Contact our yacht consultant to design the Virgin Islands getaway you’ve been dreaming of. There’s no better way to experience the full magic the VI has to offer than through Stay & Sail. Away we go!

Peek Inside: Yachting with a Personal Chef

Do you ever wish you could have your own personal chef? Even those of us who love to cook appreciate a break from time to time, especially on vacation.
The all inclusive experience is one of the main attractions of the yacht charter vacation. Knowing that your food and drinks will be taken care of is a huge weight off everyone’s shoulders in your family/group. No research, no shopping, no budgeting, no planning, no reservations – it’s all taken care of on yacht charter so you can relax and play, free from those responsibilities.
Each of our luxury yachts is crewed by a captain and a chef. Our chefs are a highly talented, creative group who love nothing more than pleasing the palates of the guests who come aboard their vessels.
 

credit: @thebignauti

While the perks of having your own personal chef are many, here are a couple, in particular, that our guests consistently rave about.
 

Special requests? No problem!

 
Your yacht chef will do everything they can to accommodate your specific dietary needs and preferences. Simply let us know in advance and your chef will not only ensure you’ve got plenty of options onboard for your entire stay, but they may even come up with something extra delicious that you’ve never tried before. Vegan? Gluten free? Allergic to shellfish? No problem!


credit: @sail.felix

You’re never without a tasty treat nearby.

 
First time guests sometimes ask us if there will be enough food or if they need to bring anything extra. Not to worry – we’ve got you covered. Our chefs not only plan your main meals, they also plan out an array of fun treats and snacks for you to grab anytime. No one is ever hungry on yacht charter!
 

You get to discover dishes + flavors that quickly become your new favorites.

 
We can’t tell you how many times past guests have reached out asking for what was in a particular dish they had on charter, telling us they’ve been craving it ever since they got back home. Our chefs are well-traveled and come from a variety of backgrounds. Many have extensive culinary training and specialties that they showcase in their creations while on charter. Our chefs also love to incorporate locally sourced ingredients and destination-specific flavors to complement your Caribbean experience. One piece of advice? Be prepared to be wowed!
 

credit: @islandrandr
 
If you have more questions about food options on yacht charter (or anything else), feel free to reach out to our yacht consultant – we’re always available to chat and help you plan the trip of a lifetime.

Adventure through the most amazing corners of the Virgin Islands

Published in NewsWeek on November 22th,2021

Discovering the underwater world is, without a doubt, a different and unforgettable natural spectacle. And although there are several destinations that offer this activity, practicing it in a personalized way can completely improve our experience. For this to be possible, &Beyond Yacht Charters proposes us to enjoy a vacation manned by two diving professionals, lovers of the ocean and true connoisseurs of the most amazing corners of the Virgin Islands. They have lived on the islands for many years, they have sailed and explored endless hours and that is why they know incredible places, only accessible by boat, and they know the perfect time of day to go.

On board &Beyond, the diving experience begins with Heiko and Rebecca, who take us on a unique adventure in the Caribbean, prioritizing our enjoyment, care and comfort at all times. Heiko, born and raised in Germany, is certified as an RYA Offshore Yachtmaster. He is a yoga and freediving instructor and his passion is being able to share unique experiences in nature. He worked for many years in technology until in 2014 he decided to fulfill his dream of traveling the world. He traveled the five continents, visited more than 30 countries in which he climbed mountains, learned Spanish, scuba dived and lived incredible adventures in and out of the sea. What started as a temporary trip, became a before and after on the way to his new lifestyle in the Caribbean paradise.

Rebecca, born and raised in New York, graduated with degrees in Economics and Psychology. Her life changed completely in 2005 after a trip to Australia in which she learned to dive in the Great Barrier Reef. Two years later, she left the city to live surrounded by nature. She spent two months diving in the Philippines, three months on a marine conservation expedition in Madagascar, and four months completing her Divemaster internship in Malaysia. After these experiences, she lived in Sweden where she discovered her passion for sailing. She is PADI certified and has worked as a dive instructor in Thailand, Hawaii and Indonesia.

Today she enjoys her life in the Caribbean and sunrise every day with a view of paradise. As well as diving professionals, Heiko and Rebecca are navigation captains and did their training and licensing together. With them, clients live a relaxed experience while they enjoy discovering the natural wonders of underwater life. After personalized and supervised dives, they get their clients dedicated to enjoying all of &Beyond’s onboard amenities and services.

Rebecca is a lover of cooking and some of her specialties are the plant based and raw menus, since they both have a vegetarian diet. Heiko spends his free time exploring the islands, discovering new corners to share. Both usually entertain and surprise guests with their delicacies, their tours of the best spots on the islands and their passion for inspiring a lifestyle in harmony with nature. Passionate about providing high-level service in a relaxed and friendly, Heiko and Rebecca as well as the entire team of &Beyond Yacht Charters, create unique experiences in the Virgin Islands for those seeking a vacation of relaxation, enjoyment and adventure in the Caribbean.

What are some of the most amazing places to dive with &Beyond in the Virgin Islands? One of our favorite dive spots is Great Lameshur – it’s covered in pink, purple and yellow coral, creating a dazzling underwater landscape that reminds us of a garden. The marine life that we can find is very abundant and includes tropical reef fish, small creatures such as shrimp, crabs and snails and larger species such as green sea turtles, Caribbean reef sharks and nurse sharks.

What are the requirements to dive with &Beyond? Is it necessary to have any previous experience? On &Beyond’s Felix Yacht we offer guided dives for certified divers, usually with Heiko, and an introduction to scuba diving called PADI Discover Scuba Diving, which is a highly supervised experience for those without scuba certification. The latter is done with Rebecca, who is an instructor and therefore qualified to do this program. The dives we do are generally shallow (maximum 12-18 meters, average 6-7 meters), relaxed and easy dives for all ages and levels, so even if a person hasn’t dived in many years, the places are and we also adjust our level of care and supervision. For those who have never dived before and want to give it a try, the PADI Discover Scuba Diving experience is the ideal way to try it out.

How many dives can be done during our stay with &Beyond aboard Felix? The Felix onboard experience includes 3 dives for certified divers in a minimum rental of 6 nights. All equipment (BCD, regulator, mask, fins, wetsuit, weights, tank) is included and these dives are guided by Heiko. Additional dives can be added for an additional cost, subject to the planned itinerary, other activities the group has requested, and at the captain’s discretion. Doing a dive will normally take up the entire morning between breakfast and lunch.

What is the main differential of diving with &Beyond? On our Felix boat and together with &Beyond we offer a luxury diving experience. We help and supervise them at all times, before, during and after entering the water. It goes without saying that during the dive, we focus on everyone being safe throughout the journey. Before each dive we provide a complete and detailed dive summary covering all necessary information, tailored to our guests’ experience and comfort level. We provide a much higher level of service than many of our guests are used to – all they have to do is dive!

If you had to describe the diving experience with &Beyond in the Virgin Islands in a few words, what would you say? We would say that it is without a doubt… an experience that will take you further!

 

Nautica News

Published in Nautica News on December 12th,2021

&Beyond Yacht Charters launches the Stay and Sail program to create the perfect vacation for travelers who want adventure and luxury on both the land and sea.

2021 USVI Charter Yacht Show by VIPCA

Published in VIPCA on November 12-15th 2022

We were honored to have our yachts showcased and meet all of the great attendees of this year’s USVI Charter Yacht Show by VIPCA.

Caribbean Journal

Published in Caribbean Journal on March 3th

&Beyond Yacht Charters is sailing into another great season as St. Thomas continues to be one of the hottest yachting destinations in the Caribbean.

360 Magazine

Published in 360 Mag on March 3th

Announcing details on the &Beyond Yacht Charters fleet of yachts for the 2022 season and the enhanced Stay and Sail experience that was enjoyed by so many guests the previous year.