Well, it would be hard to believe if I didn’t read it myself in today’s Wall Street Journal. That’s right, Nelson’s Navy is now training in megayacht napkin folding.
In Ahoy, Billionaires: The Royal Navy Is at Your Service, Stacy Meichtry reports that a Royal Navy contractor has recently taken to training captains, crews, butlers, stewards and chefs for some of the largest yachts in the world. However, not everyone thinks this is a grand idea:
A descendant of Lord Nelson’s isn’t amused. “I don’t expect anyone thought of such a thing in 1805,” says Anna Tribe, the naval hero’s 78-year-old great-great-great-granddaughter. If drill instructors divulge too many trade secrets, Ms. Tribe warns, the Royal Navy risks “Mr. Abramovich and his compatriots very suddenly coming to war with us.”
“Mr. Abramovich” is a Russian billionaire and megayacht owner.
Robert Frank of the WSJ also wrote an amusing post on The Wealth Report blog entitled, Yacht Training Camp: Man the Martinis.
…Naval training doesn’t exactly prepare a crew for all of the potential hazards of high-class boating. Like the “raucous parties at sea, where fancy people, lavish furnishings, flammable alcohol and cigarettes are all part of the mix.”
But with yachts becoming increasingly huge and sophisticated, crew training has become more critical — just as it has for butlers. One of the program’s clients is Roman Abramovich, who, as I reported last year, is building the world’s largest yacht to add to his existing fleet. When the boat is up and running, Mr. Abramovich will have a private boat staff of about 400. (Yes you read that right, 400.)
Visit the Never Sea Land blog for an embedded WSJ video supporting these articles.
Related posts: Superyacht stalkers (Wall Street Journal)
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