Cap­tain Emile Coetzee


Yachts International - - On Charter - For more in­for­ma­tion: Camper and Ni­chol­sons In­ter­na­tional, camperand­ni­chol­ By Kim Kavin

Grow­ing up near Cape Town, South Africa, Emile Coetzee thought he was go­ing to be­come a city plan­ner. Then he joined the mil­i­tary, and a friend talked him into ex­plor­ing be­yond South Africa’s bor­ders—but he didn’t have any money for plane tick­ets. So he took a job as crew on a 70-foot schooner and sailed into An­tigua in 1988.

The world’s cities would have to make do with plan­ning by some­body else.

Af­ter stints work­ing on yachts in the Caribbean, Mediter­ranean, South Pa­cific and South­east Asia, Coetzee earned his cap­tain’s li­cense. In 2003, he up­graded his cer­ti­fi­ca­tions and scored the top job aboard 164-foot (50-me­ter) Amels Thun­der Gulch. When that owner took de­liv­ery of 164-foot (49.9-me­ter) Fead­ship High Cha­parral in 2004, Coetzee moved over to the new boat.

He’s been with the same yacht owner ever since, to­day in com­mand of Hur­ri­cane Run, the 175-foot (53.5-me­ter) Fead­ship that launched in 2009. And in all that time, Coetzee and his crew have been known for the ex­pe­ri­ences they of­fer char­ter clients in the Caribbean each win­ter. The owner has long lived aboard his yachts in the Mediter­ranean dur­ing prime sum­mer dates, lim­it­ing char­ter avail­abil­ity there to a week or so in late Septem­ber.

That’s chang­ing this year. The owner is mak­ing Hur­ri­cane Run avail­able out of the yacht’s home port of Monaco from May 1 through June 15, July 1-14 and Au­gust 1-9.

For Coetzee and his crew, the Mediter­ranean char­ter dates are a chance to show clients how well they know ev­ery­thing the re­gion has to of­fer.

“We spend most of our time in the Mediter­ranean,” Coetzee says. “We’ve been in the Western Med, but also as far as Cyprus. Just last year we were in Greece, which we’ve done three times. We’ve done Venice through Croa­tia. We re­cently re­fu­eled in Al­ba­nia. We’ve done Mon­tene­gro and the Pelo­pon­nese, the Turk­ish coast all the way to An­talya, and we’ve been go­ing to Ibiza in Spain for the past three years. We’ve gone from Cyprus to Seville and ev­ery­where in be­tween.”

All the while, Coetzee says, the owner has made it a key part of his job to en­sure that Hur­ri­cane Run re­mains in tip-top shape from au­dio­vi­sual to air con­di­tion­ing.

Hur­ri­cane Run also has plenty of ways for char­ter guests to work off any overindul­gences, Coetzee says. While the yacht has never been known as “heavy” on wa­ter sports, he says, she does have a 215-square-foot (20-square-me­ter) swim plat­form where guests can launch the yacht’s Se­abobs, per­sonal wa­ter­craft, wake­boards, wa­ter skis and more.

But more than any­thing, Coetzee says, he is ea­ger to share his love for and lo­cal knowl­edge of the Mediter­ranean in all new ways this sum­mer. The yacht’s low­est weekly base rate for char­ter will be 245,000, or about $263,000 at press time.

“Bring your fam­ily, bring your friends,” Coetzee says. “We know where to take you, we know the restau­rants, we know the shops and the mar­kets.”

‘No ex­pense is spared to main­tain this ves­sel in as-new con­di­tion, things the guests can see and that they can­not see. We have kept up with IT on the boat and com­mu­ni­ca­tions, so we can pro­vide what­ever the client wants. We have a Cre­stron ar­chi­tec­ture for our re­mote con­trols and have trans­lated that into iPad, so in the mas­ter ar­eas and pub­lic spaces, we have iPad con­trol of our au­dio­vi­sual equip­ment, air con­di­tion­ing, blinds, ev­ery­thing.’ —Capt. Coetzee

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