Captain: Oswaldo Cruz
Oswaldo fell in love with the Ocean during his time in the Mexican Navy. After completing his service, he spent ten years developing a specialist dive center in which he took Mexico’s elite on dive tours around the world. For several years he worked on many different shores including Canada, Egypt, and the Mediterranean. Oswaldo completed his RYA yacht-master training in the challenging waters around the UK, and in 2009 after moving to the BVI he met Chef Briar. They have been working side-by-side ever since. Oswaldo’s rich knowledge of the islands and witty sense of humor will ensure you have an unforgettable experience onboard BELLA VITA.
Captain (rotational): Jean Groenewald
Captain Jean has had a passion for the sea since early childhood. His love of animals and all things to do with water first led him to pursue a career in sailing as an RYA yachtmaster instructor and delivery skipper where he spent the next decade at sea either teaching or delivering sail boats around the globe.
After this he found his way to the Superyacht sector where he found himself a niche. Jean loves nothing more than sharing his love and knowledge of the sea with his guests and has an unwavering enthusiasm for helping others and making sure everyone is having a good time. Jean is quietly confident and holds safety and enjoyment on board for all involved as his highest priorities.
Chef: Briar Smith
Like many adventurous Kiwis, Briar left New Zealand to travel the world in her early 20s. This led her to discover a passion for food and cooking. She trained as a travel agent and worked in the UK for several years, a computer programmer in the USA for 2 years and as an avid volunteer worker in Israel and the Galapagos. Throughout this time Briar developed her culinary skills which she has since complimented with a number of training courses in the UK as well as advanced courses at ‘Gastronomicom’ in the South of France which is a world-renowned Michelin starred International training academy. This training, her love for food of all cultures and experience in the galley has her effortlessly delivering a variety of cuisines with amazingly full flavors. All dishes are presented with flair and elegance. Briar’s enthusiasm for food and people will win you over and her attention to detail will ensure that your vacation aboard BELLA VITA is perfect.
Chef (rotational): Nicholas Cherry
After his extensive training in South Africa and Italy, Nick worked in some of South Africa’s top restaurants. He racked up 5 years of solid experience as a chef in professional kitchens – he was the senior sous chef of the Pot Luck Club (the ninth best restaurant in South Africa 2016) for 18 months and worked there for 3 years in total. In May 2017, he moved on to yachts, working on both private and busy charter yachts of all sizes.
Nick loves the ocean and has a passion in finding what the local waters can offer guest in their meals. Outside of being a chef, he enjoys traveling, being outdoors and experiencing new cultures as well as people. He desires to see as much of the world as he can whilst discovering new knowledge in food, music and literature. One day he will take his knowledge and experiences on board to open his own restaurant/private cheffing company.
Chief Stewardess: Isabel Casanova
Life for Isabel started in Venezuela, in her family from a young age traveling was a passion. Upon completing a degree in business she decided to pursue a career on cruise ships which relight her love for exploring and the ocean. Her role as youth counselor gave her skills in entertaining children and interacting with guests. Super yachts came as a natural progression to continue discovering the world and taking care of people!
Stewardess: Silvana Caolo
Silvana, from Venezuela, knew from a young age that the sea was her passion; always wanting to see the world from a different window. That’s why she decided to make a career as an officer on commercial ships and this gave her great skills with a strong personality, attention to detail, professionalism and discretion. As well as attending and helping others she enjoys the overall experience of being on board. She has a gentle, friendly nature and is often found working behind the scenes to ensure a smooth running for your vacation.
First Mate/Engineer: Daniel Alcaraz
Daniel was born in one of the smallest states in Mexico called Colima. His passion for the sea started at an early age when he started surfing with his friends. He moved to Mazatlán to study at one of the nautical schools in Mexico. When he finished his engineering degree, he started working on merchant ships and in oﬀshore industry. He started his carrier in yachts on a scuba diving program where he developed his passion to travel and provide a quality and safe experience for guest and crew.
Deckhand: Wesson Moore
Wes was born in South Africa. After studying Adventure Tourism Management, he decided to follow his love for the ocean and pursue his passion for traveling the globe and therefore joined the cruise ship industry where he traveled to 75+ countries. Having built up experience in the maritime industry, Wes decided to seek new challenges in the yachting industry. He enjoys making sure you have a great time onboard taking part in all the water sport activities and exploring all the beautiful beaches.