To be sure you're invited back...

August 13, 2019

An idyllic sunset can rapidly turn into the perfect storm. Here are a few suggestions on how to avoid that permanent sunburn of shame as a guest.

Be grateful

Firstly, there’s the gauche swagger that some people adopt when stepping on to a big boat. The better the vessel, the more entitled that strut becomes. Full-on Dalai Lama piety is not necessary, but your hosts will have gone to some effort to entertain you on their ravishing gem, so be appreciative. This is not the moment to display nonchalance – leave that, along with your shoes, on dry land. Read more, ‘Twenty Ways to Be Fabulous.’

Microsoft co-founder Paul Allen’s superyacht, image via   

Don’t bring uninvited guests with you

Bringing uninvited companions puts you in the danger zone of rudeness. Don’t turn up with an extremely attractive friend who finds speaking English a challenge, or someone who poses endlessly, cluttering up the best parts of the boat and annoys everyone. Read more, ‘How to Be Better at Parties this Season.’

‘Monte Carlo’ by Slim Aarons Print, via

Don’t ever ask the captain to change course

Even if you pop on board to say hello to friends, while they are docked in the marina, and it’s only meant to be for a few minutes – then you find the boat is heading out of the harbour – quite a way along the coast actually – to a divine swimming spot.

You have to go with it. It is the captain’s prerogative to set sail.

Image from Slim Aarons Book ‘La Dolce Vita’, via

Refrain from being too intimate on-board

Speaking of passion, do stuff a sock in it. Likewise mooning, unless you’re six. The same goes for jovially pushing guests off the deck. Don’t do it, not even off the RIB. And no matter how convincing your hosts sound when they insist you should stay up after they retire, they don’t mean it. Read more, ’20 Little Social Etiquette Rules Everyone Should Follow.’

Finish your drink and leave the crew to clear up.

Behind the scenes of the Michael Kors ‘Wonderlust’ Perfume campaign, image via

About tipping

Do tip the crew, by the way. To all the meanies out there, not having any cash on your person is no longer an excuse – you can transfer straight from your phone to the head steward’s account.

Do find time to dance on the deck

The one thing you absolutely must do? Dancing on a yacht is one of life’s joys. You can have three left feet, be practically passed out on mango margaritas and still look cool. That’s because you appear to have rhythm when really you’re moving in time to the rolling waves.

*This is an edited excerpt from the September issue of Tatler magazine, on sale now.

S/S 2010 Salvatore Ferragamo campaign featuring the legendary Claudia Schiffer turned into the iconic Grace Kelly. Shot by Mario Testino

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