What's New in the Med?

2 June 2011 By Claire Griffiths

The only constant is change and, as such, there are lots of new and exciting things going on in the Med this season. Check out these new services or companies you may want look into.  

This season wine snobs and novices alike will be relieved to fall upon the services of The website was created by Louise Sydbeck, who recently passed her Masters of Wine theory exams and soon hopes to join the elite ranks of only 289 Masters of Wine throughout the world. The Yacht Cru Wine Guide was tailor-made for the yachting industry and on it you can find a wine region guide, vintage charts, food and wine matching suggestions, as well as a “how to decant a bottle” guide. Interesting wine ‘gossip’ includes the 1000-euro-a-bottle, non-vintage Brut Angel Champagne, partly the creation of Maria Carey – but is it worth it? You’ll have to log on to see. The information is based on the most common questions asked by over 250 crew trained by Sydbeck over the years. If you can’t find what you’re looking for on the website, Sydbeck will answer individual questions raised on “Ask Louise.”

Led by Capt. Mike Jenkins, there’s a new drive in Antibes this season to help raise awareness and funds among the English speaking yachting community for the Antibes Lifeboat SNSM 148 Notre-Dame de la Garoupe II. SNSM Antibes, a charity that helps saves lives at sea, is funded by local contributions. Unsinkable and self-righting, the Notre-Dame de la Garoupe II is just under 17 metres and is managed and crewed by unpaid volunteers. Last year, in forty emergency call-outs, she went to the assistance of 70 people in distress and saved five people from certain death. Lifeboat collecting boxes can be found in local pubs and shops in Antibes or contact Mike Jenkins or Jon Usher for details on how to give.;

But if you’re looking for a job line rather than to fund a life line, check out the PYA’s first App: PROJOBS – a job resource for PYA members. The PYA lists approximately 500 captains amongst its members so it’s a good tool for skippers seeking to fill crew positions and for sea going crew looking to find a job. The App allows for an instantaneous "top down," "bottom up” communication directly between master and crew. Each time a posting is made, the system automatically notifies PYA members via the PYA Members Portal. The App is specifically designed to work on restricted bandwidth, but also has been designed to “go mobile” and is supported by iOSX, Android and BlackBerry handsets.

Former deckhand semi-pro windsurfer  Sergio Ravenet Huveneers is awash with business drive, having set up a new service based on his many years’ experience of sailing and working in the industry. Based in the Barcelona area, Boatwash Company offers yachts up to 100 feet a cleaning and maintenance of deck and interiors service using the same products, utensils and expertise that he learnt while on board the superyachts. The service is aimed at yachts up 100 feet, and, he explains, is useful for captains who skipper a yacht with minimal crew. He also proposes to manage the renting out of port-based yachts as static floating apartments for tourists.