On Sunday 29 September 2019, the Silver Swan team will be in Antibes after the Monaco Boat Show with our non-profit partners – Plastic Patrol and The Green Stewardess to clean the beach at Plage du Gravette.

To support the exceptional efforts of our partners as they work towards a greener and more eco-friendly planet, we asked seven eco-awesome yacht industry pros for their top tips on how to be greener.

Next up is Isobel Odendaal of Super Yachting South Africa.

Current Location:

Cape Town, South Africa.

Current Position:

Co-owner and Director of Super Yachting South Africa and Principal of the Steward/ess Training Programme. We are a training school focusing on entry-level Steward/esses, Deckhands and Chefs wanting to enter the super yacht industry.

We are committed to our students first and foremost, ensuring each of them meet the standards of excellence expected by the super yacht industry.  By training our students to these exceptional standards, not only are we giving them the knowledge and skills to do the job, but we focus on instilling a professional and disciplined mind-set. The challenges facing each entry-level crew member is tremendously exciting, but can be equally challenging, especially when not properly prepared. Having the right skills for the job is certainly of the utmost importance, but having a positive attitude, excellent manners, great work-ethic and personal etiquette above all is what makes you the complete package.

Through continuous study, research and presence at the world’s biggest Super Yacht Trade Shows, we meet not only the highest standards of training and most up-to-date super yacht information, but we ensure that our graduates are the best prepared crew when entering the industry.

What moment made you go green:

There wasn’t a specific moment per se, but after working in the industry for 10 years and starting the training school in 2008, I realised gradually how yachts are still very far from doing everything they can to establish eco-friendly habits and regulations on board.

As I teach Steward/esses and Chefs, I have been specifically committed to creating a mind-set within these two departments on board and influencing the way they clean and advising them on using eco-friendly products and cloths, the amenity products they provide to guests, including ocean-friendly sunscreens, crew toiletries, rubbish control and recycling on board and in ports and just in general focusing on providing insight and advice on changing the way we think and what we end up putting in the oceans.  At the end of the day, everything that goes into the yacht’s greywater tanks will end up in the ocean.

For the group Yacht Stewardess and Steward Tips, I myself am still constantly learning so much from other yachting professionals and crew, and I have been researching the various ways that we can make changes in our daily lives on board, especially when it comes to guest and crew amenities, and the laundry and cleaning products used, even the uniforms we wear, as a lot of synthetic fabrics also add to plastic pollution.   I always tell my students during training sessions that our grandmothers had so much knowledge on utilizing products like lemon juice, baking soda, vinegar and other natural cleaning products and it is time we realise that we don’t need to treat our laundry or clean our yacht’s interior with chemically-laden products.

Eco & Sustainability Tips:

There are so many I can share, as written in the articles below, but a couple of points are:

– use more natural cleaning products and toiletries (as these products all end up in the ocean through the greywater system)

– focus on onboard recycling and put pressure on all marinas to provide recycling facilities

– use more reusable water bottles and glass, metal or bamboo straws provided to guests (changing the way guests think – they do not always need a plastic bottle for their water or expensive brand-name toiletries full of chemicals).

Isobel has written three brilliant pieces about going green on the Onboard Online website:

– Going Green – part 1

– Going Green – part 2

Going Green – part 3


Find Isobel and SYSA online at: 




Super Yachting South Africa

Facebook group: Yacht Stewardess and Steward Tips 

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