Special crew accommodations, known as crew houses, can be found in every major hiring port and are available to crew throughout the industry for the purpose of giving them somewhere to stay when they are either looking for work or going through training.
- Yacht Crew Houses in Fort Lauderdale, FL, USA
- Yacht Crew Houses in Antibes, France
- Yacht Crew Houses in other key hiring ports, including Newport, R.I., Palma de Mallorca, and St. Martin/St. Maarten
Basically, a crew house is a facility that is privately owned, most of the time by fellow or former yacht crew who do not live in the home, but manage it on their own or through a local agency. The size and type of home can vary. Many have been renovated or upgraded over the years, and while they aren’t exactly luxury accommodations, they are certainly clean and livable. Some of the larger crew-housing businesses manage a number of properties—entire homes, apartments, studios, and efficiencies—that are typically only available to yacht-industry professionals.
Crew houses will also be used by entire crews; if a yacht must come out of the water or have its power shut off, a captain and crew will move into a house all to themselves while they wait for the work to be completed. These homes differ from the ones you will look for as an individual, which are those catering specifically to crew who come into town and stay temporarily while they look for work. Such crew houses operate similarly to hostel-style lodging, where you receive a bed in a room with one or two other people.
And here’s the beauty of crew houses: You don’t sign a lease; you usually don’t pay a deposit; the furniture, bed, linens, phones, and TVs are all there; and the kitchens come stocked with pots, pans, and utensils. Most all homes offer Internet access nowadays, but make sure to ask when you contact them.
There are many reasons why crew house accommodations are your best bet for a place to stay in any hiring port, especially over backpacker hostels, motels, and hotels:
- They are economical like hostels, but in most cases, everyone there will have some connection to the yachting industry.
- They are ideal places for networking.
- They will typically be located near the yachting action in town. Rides places will typically be plentiful.
- Day working opportunities may just come to you if you are staying in a crew house (rather than you having to chase them down).