CAPTAIN - RON WOODS, American
PREVIOUS YACHTS: Golden Rule, Perseverance, Paramour
PROFILE: Captain Ron has been aboard MIA ELISE since 2010. He has worked in the yachting industry for over twenty-four years and has traveled more than most people doing a lifetime. Ron was raised in Alaska on a small sailboat where he developed a love for the sea. At the age of 18, he moved to Florida and began his yachting career working strictly on charter yachts. Over the years, Ron has refined his technical skills and knowledge. In 2009 Captain Ron received the highest honor of his career being named “Charter Captain of the Year". Aboard the MIA ELISE, Captain Ron runs with a young,enthusiastic and energetic crew who are highly qualified to cater to every need and show guests a wonderful time while cruising Bahamian waters in the winter or the sunny Mediterranean for the summer months.
WATERS CRUISED: Caribbean, Bahamas, US East/ West coasts, Central America, Mediterranean
JOB DESCRIPTION: Ron's main role is the safety of all guests and crew. He is responsible for all transit passages, navigational watches and charter destination planning. His numerous ancillary duties include all accounting matters and compliance issues.
LICENSES/CERTIFICATES: USCG 3000T Unlimited, Maritime Professional Training (Florida)
HOBBIES: football, poker, Scrabble and traveling.
FIRST MATE - PATRICK FYNN, South African
PREVIOUS YACHTS: Casino Royale, Imagine, Pure Bliss
PROFILE: Patrick became accomplished in the hospitality industry as a restaurant manager at a young age. His thirst for adventure and travel led him to pursue a career in the yachting industry in 2010. Patrick is currently working on obtaining his Master 3000 GT License. He is enthusiastic about leading excursions and water sports and ensuring guests have the yacht cruise of a lifetime.
WATERS CRUISED: US East/West coasts, Bahamas, Central America, Mexico Caribbean, Mediterranean
JOB DESCRIPTION: Responsible for the safety and security of guests and crew. Assists the captain with flag/port state compliance matters, navigation, itinerary planning and crew management.
HOBBIES: In his time off he loves to go mountain biking, traveling, hiking and maintain his general fitness.
CHEF - KEITH O'DELL, American
PREVIOUS YACHTS: Azzurra II, Destination Fox Harbour Too, Charade
PROFILE: Chef Keith O’Dell hails from the Catskill Mountain region of New York State. Training early in his career in Manhattan at restaurants, Butterfield 81 with Tom Valenti, and at Patroon with Geoffrey Zacharian, Keith was drawn by the competitive and creative nature of being a chef. After graduating from culinary school he focused on restaurant management and advanced baking.
Keith next decided to travel and pursue his culinary career. He soon found that combining the two would prove to be a way to fulfill his dream of seeing the world and learning different cooking cultures firsthand. Before long, Keith was Chef de Cuisine at a fine dining/boutique hotel in La Jolla, California, the La Valencia Hotel. Chef Keith was directly involved in all kitchen operations and produced the menu for the Sky Room. He also assisted the Executive Chef in menu orchestration for renowned California vineyards such as Cakebread Cellars, the Hess Collection, Flora Springs, Robert Mondavi and Chalone. This is why you will see an element of California Cuisine and Pacific Rim/Asian Fusion in his cooking.
Keith has spent the last two years living in Sweden where he has been working in restaurants, experiencing and learning the New Nordic and Scandinavian cuisine and culture. In 2012 he completed an apprenticeship at the restaurant, Noma, in Copenhagen, Denmark, where chef Rene Redzepi has all but changed the culinary world with his revolutionary cuisine and way of thinking. Redzepi was voted as one of Time Magazines’ "Most Influential People" in 2012 and Noma has been voted the “Best Restaurant in the World” by San Pellegrino’s “World’s 50 Best Restaurants” list for three consecutive years.
The influence that can be seen in Keith’s cooking as a result of this experience is a regular focus on vegetables and certain preservation techniques such as pickling, curing, and smoking, with an emphasis on seasonality.Today Keith works as a private chef around the globe, often in the yachting industry. He breaks the mold of traditional old world cuisine and has a gift of creating bold, intriguing, and delicious food by combining different cultural ingredients with flavors spanning the mundane to exotic. He possesses a deep knowledge of food and understands the importance of a balance between the dish being served and the dining experience.
Aboard MIA ELISE he shares what he has learned which is the source of so much enjoyment to him as a chef. Through his life Keith has been driven by tradition, taste, culture, and celebration. Accompanied with a love of entertaining,
Keith brings to the table a dining experience unlikely to be forgotten.
WATERS CRUISED: US East/West coasts, Mexico, Central America, Caribbean, Bahamas, Canary Islands, Baltic Sea, Mediterranean
EDUCATION: Associate's Degrees / Professional Chef and Hotel & Restaurant Management / State University of New York / Sullivan College (Loch Sheldrake, New York)
HOBBIES: fishing, diving, archery and writing
CHIEF STEWARDESS - BERTINE TERLANCHE, South African
PREVIOUS YACHTS: Apoise, Carpe Diem, Idyllwild
PROFILE: Bertine is from South Africa’s capital city. After completing university, she worked as an employment risk specialist for one of South Africa’s largest banks. While there, Bertine met someone who introduced her to yachting. Bertine decided to pack her bags and head to Antibes; she joined her first yacht in 2011 for a busy Mediterranean charter season.
WATERS CRUISED: Caribbean, Mediterranean
JOB DESCRIPTION: Guest relations; in charge of the interior staff and leads all service for meals, in charge of all guest event planning.EDUCATION: Human Resource Management and Industrial Psychology / University of Pretoria
HOBBIES: In her free time you will find Bertine reading, on a beach, or jogging.
2ND STEWARDESS - MARIA KROUPYCHEVA, American
PREVIOUS YACHTS: Sudami, Madsummer
PROFILE: Maria was born in St. Petersburg, Russia, and raised in Detroit, Michigan. From a young age her taste for fine art, culture, and dance was cultivated through schooling and practical studies. Upon moving to Florida, completing her certification in Ballroom Dance Instruction and adopting a rambunctious pit bull, Maria was introduced to the yachting industry by absolute chance. She now executes her creative talents through elegant table settings and flower arrangements--and by making guests smile.
WATERS CRUISED: Mediterranean
JOB DESCRIPTION: Responsible for assisting with interior and exterior guest areas and table service.
HOBBIES: While enjoying time off, you will always find Maria exploring new places camera in hand, frolicking with her dog on the beach, dancing, painting, practicing yoga, and living a healthy lifestyle.
THIRD STEWARDESS - JESSICA GAWRONSKY, South African
PREVIOUS YACHTS: Boardwalk
PROFILE: Jessica grew up on the coast of South Africa surrounded by nature. Her well-traveled family instilled in her a sense of adventure and a desire to explore. This led her to taking a gap year in New Jersey immediately following high school where she worked with children at a summer camp. Returning home, Jessica completed a 4-year degree which gave her a great sense of teamwork. Upon graduation she wasn’t yet ready for the day-to-day life of an office job. When a friend mentioned the yachting industry, Jessica quickly jumped at the opportunity and found herself hooked on the challenging and rewarding nature of the job. She is excited to have joined the crew aboard MIA ELISE and is looking forward to exploring new waters.
WATERS CRUISED: Gulf of Mexico, US East Coast
JOB DESCRIPTION: Responsible for assisting with interior and exterior guest areas and table service.
EDUCATION: Marketing and Advertising
HOBBIES: You will find her surfing, hiking and horse riding in her free time.
CHIEF ENGINEER - BEN VOS, Canada
PREVIOUS YACHTS: O'Hana, Apoise, Lady Sheridan, Idyllwild
PROFILE: Ben spent much of his childhood playing competitive hockey in delightful (but cold!) Charlottetown, on Prince Edward Island. He was a promising player, but an injury at a young age diverted him away from hockey and into the Canadian Navy where he worked as a Naval Weapons Technician for four years. On a trip to Florida to complete his Dive Master Certification in 2006, Ben was introduced to the world of yachting and was quickly scooped up. In 2007, he was then lucky enough to join a yacht on an extended world cruise where he discovered an aptitude for yacht engineering (spending four years aboard). Ben is very happy to join the hard-working crew of MIA ELISE.
WATERS CRUISED: Baltic, Mediterranean, Northwest Passage, Russia, Pacific / Asia
JOB DESCRIPTION: In charge of all technical, mechanical, and electrical systems and engineering.
HOBBIES: Ben loves the outdoors and you will find him playing guitar in his free time.
BOSUN - NEIL GREENWOOD, Canadian
PREVIOUS YACHTS: Paraiso, Awaroa, Queen K
PROFILE: Neil grew up on the Great Lakes where he discovered a passion for water. He learned to sail on Lake Huron with his grandfather. This early introduction to boats clearly left an impact. Neil began his studies in microbiology at the University of Guelph, but the call of sailing has temporarily pulled him into the yachting industry. Neil started his yachting career on sailing yachts and eventually moved on to motor yachts over 6 years ago.
WATERS CRUISED: Caribbean, Mediterranean, Panama, Galapagos, Maldives
JOB DESCRIPTION: Responsible for exterior areas, navigational watch and guest water sports.
HOBBIES: Neil has a keen eye for photography; you will see him with a camera strapped around his neck at every opportunity.
DECKHAND - DANE VAN HETEREN, South African
PREVIOUS YACHTS: Rare Diamond
PROFILE: Dane was fortunate to grow up in the Northwest Province of South Africa on the Madikwe Game Reserve where his family own and operate guest lodges. This gave Dane an early exposure to the hospitality industry and ultimately developed his interest in adventure and travel. After graduating from Andrews College in 2013, he spent two months on a family road trip from Cape Town to Kenya before hopping on a sailing catamaran to the Seychelles. It was during this trip that Dane decided to complete his yachtmaster training and launch himself into the world of yachting.
WATERS CRUISED: Bahamas, Indian Ocean/Seychelles
JOB DESCRIPTION: Responsible for the maintenance of exterior areas, assists with guest water sports.
HOBBIES: In his spare time, you’ll find Dane doing anything and everything that keeps him active and outside-waters ports, snorkeling, and geocaching.