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mariann - crew profile
captain: mark turner (uk)
Captain Mark Turner grew up in a small village in Leicestershire, England, before moving to the US over 20 years ago. When Mark first moved to the US he lived in Santa Cruz, California where he learned to sail and would go fishing for salmon and halibut in the Monterey Bay. Later he moved to Florida where his passion for being on the water and sailing led him to become a sailing instructor. He discovered the Virgin Islands around 15 years ago and since that first visit always dreamed of living the island lifestyle. Captain and chef aboard Mariann, all-inclusive Virgin Islands charter yachtFinally in 2015 he made that dream a reality. He is really excited to share his passion for sailing and the island way of life with guests aboard Mariann.

Mark is a U.S. Coast Guard Captain, RYA/MCA Yachtmaster Offshore, open water certified scuba diver, and a U.S. Certified Sailing Instructor. He enjoys traveling to new places and meeting people, making new friends along the way. He enjoys being on the water more than being on land, so its no surprise that his favorite sports other than sailing are wake boarding, scuba diving, surfing, and kiteboarding. On land, he also enjoys watching his favorite football team Leicester City.

Mark's sailing experience includes sailing the Atlantic, Pacific, Caribbean, and the Mediterranean. His favorite sailing grounds, however, are right here in the Virgin Islands. His local knowledge of hidden places and local hot spots enables him to take his guests to the best places throughout the islands.

chef/first mate: heather hessler (usa)
First Mate/Chef Heather Hessler joins Mariann as a highly regarded chef working in the charter yacht industry.

Born and raised in NJ, Heather's dad had her up on a surfboard since she was three years old. Her passion for the ocean started then. She fell in love with the Virgin Islands after traveling here as a competitive surfer and attending the University of the Virgin Islands. As much as Heather loves being in or around the ocean she has spent equal time in the kitchen. She started working in the restaurant/hospitality business at 16. She learned from great chefs in the super, high-end restaurants of St Thomas where she also became a sought after mixologist creating inspired libations in some of the island's top martini bars. Guests can look forward to her creative cocktails aboard!

Heather specializes in preparing healthy, flavorful well-balanced meals that are also aesthetically pleasing. She communicates with her guests pre-charter to tailor a menu to suit any dietary restrictions or preferences. She is well versed in vegetarian/pescatarian/vegan/ gluten free diets. Heather draws particular inspiration from Latin, Caribbean and Asian cuisine influences.

Together, Captain Mark and Chef Heather offer an unparalleled vacation experience aboard Mariann - great days of sailing and exploring the BVI with delicious cuisine served with a smile.



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