Why Yachting is the Ultimate Gourmet Luxury Vacation

Fine dining is at the very heart of the yacht charter experience. If luxury, for you, is an elite dining experience in a spectacular setting, then a superyacht vacation is paradise found.

By Lizzie Ross • 07 March 2023

What Is Luxury to You?

The gourmet offering on a yacht is impossible to surpass. You have a highly trained private chef at your service day and night who tailors the menus to your tastes and sources the finest ingredients from providers, organic farmers, and local fishermen. Nothing is too much trouble — no request, dietary requirement, or midnight craving. Each meal is presented at an exquisitely dressed table by a professional yacht crew who serve the table in an unobtrusive, graceful dance, running courses up from the galley —the beating heart of the yacht— where the chef stands like a conductor, a genius at work.

Unlike hotels or restaurants, you don’t share your chef with anyone; the menu is crafted for you alone, with the finest ingredients. The chef visits your table during the charter, and you chat about food, choose menus, and make requests. The level of personalisation is sublime.  

Of course, there are great chefs on land, but the singularity of the gourmet offering on a yacht is that the privacy of the dining experience is complete, and the backdrop to your meals is ever-changing. You’ll wake to a breakfast anchored just off a tropical beach; lunch is a luxury beach picnic on a sandbar or secluded cove; dinner is at anchor, twinkling lights of Cannes in the distance, a vast moon rising high in the sky.  

Every day, a different place, a different view to dine by.

Why Food on a Yacht Tastes Better than Anywhere Else

Everything tastes better on a superyacht. We eat with all of our senses—and that doesn’t just extend to the sight of exquisitely plated food on fine china or the delicate rim of a wine glass glinting in the candlelight. It’s the soft ‘give’ of a spoon sinking into a chocolate mousse. The salty, heady rush of a fresh oyster slipping off its shell down your throat, the taste of the ocean, of diving through a just-breaking wave on a perfect summer’s day. It’s the smell of sea air, the feel of the evening breeze on bare shoulders. The sound of water lapping at the hull or cicadas from the pine forest in a tranquil cove.

Each element of the dining experience on a yacht creates a sense of luxury far greater than the sum of its parts.

Foodie Destinations for Gourmet Yacht Charters

Because a superyacht has a private chef and service team, every charter is a gourmet yacht charter. However, for a truly decadent foodie experience, many guests charter in a gourmet destination, alternating meals on the yacht with VIP tables at some of the finest restaurants on earth.  

There are many gourmet hotspots to choose from: the chic French- Caribbean restaurants of swanky St Barts, the exciting foodie scene of the Balearics, or floating down Italy’s Amalfi Coast, eating in shady citrus groves on the cliffs of Capri.  

But suppose a dazzling cluster of Michelin-starred restaurants in a yachting playground is what you seek. In that case, it’s hard to go past the French Riviera, where, at one end sits the magnificent three- Michelin-starred Le Louis XV at the Hotel de Paris overlooking Monaco, and — bookend at the other end of the Cote d’Azur is the three-starred La Vague d’Or, standing guard over the Bay of St Tropez. In the middle sits Cannes, home of the iconic two-starred Palme d’Or. At the same time, in the rolling foothills behind the coast, you’ll find a glorious sprinkling of Michelin-starred restaurants in perched medieval villages.  

A gourmet food charter on the French Riviera should also take in its more rustic pleasures —including the delights of local markets, where wheels of cheese are sold alongside cured meats and bunches of lavender, and hot slices of socca, a chickpea pancake, are served up from pizza ovens all oily and peppery and devoured quickly.

The Best Charter Yachts for Gourmet Dining

The standard of both the food and the service on superyachts is elite. Yacht chefs train ceaselessly to hone their skills for the refined palates of UHNWI yacht owners and charter guests and become extraordinarily versatile across many cuisines and dietary requirements. 

Many yacht chefs also enter competitions to increase the gourmet reputation of their yachts through industry awards, but many more don’t enter competitions due to busy schedules. It is thus difficult for a charterer to research the best yacht chefs from the outside. However, Bluewater can share feedback from past charterers about yachts with a history of outstanding food and service (and there is no better feedback than from your UHNWI peers). In addition, if you are a guest who enjoys watching the chefs while they work, please get in touch to find a list of recommended yachts with open galleys or country kitchens. 

In addition, some yachts are particularly well-known for stunning table settings, catered yacht parties, or gourmet theme nights. The Bluewater charter team know the fleet inside-out; please get in touch to take advantage of our insider industry knowledge so we can pair you with the perfect yacht.