Captain - Grant Young
Grant and Tara’s love of the ocean, sailing and discovering new places is infectious. They are both certified and experienced Yacht Master Ocean Skippers. Over the past ten years they completed over 200 weeks of charter as captain and chef, sailing catamarans throughout the Bahamas, Caribbean and USA. Tara is a gifted Dive Instructor and Chef and enjoys sharing both of these skills with guests. They met 10 years ago in South Africa while attending the Ocean Sailing Academy. In early 2008, the opportunity presented itself to crew on a luxury catamaran and they have been together ever since. In addition to their significant sailing, diving and hospitality experience, their warm, outdoorsy and fun personalities as well as welcoming manner make them a delight for charter guests to spend time with, aboard Dama de Noche.
Grant was born in South Africa and grew up in Botswana, before moving back to Cape Town. He has been sailing the unpredictable African wild coast from a young age with his family. Shortly after finishing high school he moved to the United Kingdom to study Software Engineering. After years of study and part time racing sailing yachts on the south coast of UK, Grant decided that a 9 to 5 job was not for him and so pursued a career in the yachting industry. He holds a Sailing Yacht Master Certification. He has sailed the coasts of South Africa, the U.K., the Caribbean island chain and the east coast of the USA. Grant’s technical and computer (software diploma) skills contribute to his expert seamanship as well as in-depth understanding of the varied mechanical, electrical and digital systems aboard Dama de Noche. Grant’s Advanced open water diving qualification helps Tara’s diving stewardship as a Master Diver and Scuba Dive Instructor.
Deck/Stew- Tara Hartz
Tara was born in Victoria, Australia in the outback countryside. From a young age she loved the water and working with animals. While training and competing in the equestrian industry, she also excelled in national swimming competitions. After finishing high school she complete a Diploma of Dive and Resort Management. The love of animals and swimming brought her to the ocean to discover more about marine life and so pursued a career as a scuba diving instructor, working the islands of the Great Barrier Reef in Australia. Scuba diving opened the doorway for her into the yachting industry. Her first step was getting a powerboat license. Next she became a crew member on Super Yachts in the Mediterranean and Caribbean, working her way up to assist the chef on a 41 Meter mega yacht. Finally she earned her Yacht Master license. In addition to working on yachts in the Mediterranean, the Bahamas and the Caribbean islands, Tara was also part of three Atlantic crossings. She worked as a charter chef for over 10 years and is now handing the reins over to Chef Tyler, she will still be a part of creating a wonderful menu for your time on board, as well as catering to any of your needs. She will also be your personal Dive Instructor and snorkel guide.
Grant and Tara’s vast experiences combined in sailing, dive instruction, world travel and gourmet cooking, blended with the warm hospitality of the Safa’s and the Aussies, will guarantee you the vacation of a lifetime, every time, aboard the Luxury yacht Dama de Noche.
Chef - Tyler Dawson
Chef Tyler Dawson has recently joined the Dama De Noche crew as her executive chef after several successful seasons as a charter chef in the British Virgin Islands. When he is not on the ocean sailing, Tyler lives in the BVI and is the Chef Owner of ‘Family Food Bakery’ a much-loved institution on Tortola which specialises in artisan bread, traditional baked goods including patisserie along with a full-service café, boat provisioning and villa catering service. The bakery also supplies supermarkets, hotels and restaurants.
Tyler’s award winning culinary experience includes a Bakers Apprenticeship under Chef Stuart McClarty at ‘The Chef Bakery’ in Johannesburg, specialising in artisan bread. He has worked as Exec Sous Chef at the award winning ‘The Attic’, Johannesburg, under Chef Tom Hughes and also as a Senior Chef for the Executive Hospitality Suites at the FIFA Soccer World Cup 2010. On his return to the Caribbean in 2010, Tyler was appointed Executive Sous Chef for Marriot Autograph Hotels and managed the day operations for the full suite 5-star Scrub Island restaurants, bars and services under Chef Andy Niedenthal. He opened Family Food Bakery in 2012 where he is now based when not on charter.
Tyler loves all outdoor activities and has taken and fed groups up Kilimanjaro, down the Fish River Canyon and along the Otter Trail on the Garden Route. He is an Advanced Open Water Diver and a Rescue Diver, enjoys spearfishing and visiting farmers markets and artisan speciality stores, incorporating as much fresh, local ingredients as possible. Although Tyler is classically-trained, his style of cooking is influenced by his colonial West Indian and African upbringing and he loves to incorporate Middle Eastern, Indian, French and English cuisines.