Crew insight – Ocean Independence charter yacht MATA MUA
An ever-popular charter yacht, 38m motor sailer MATA MUA is an intrepid explorer - spacious, luxurious and bursting with character. Aptly taking her name from Gauguin's vibrant painting depicting his view of idyllic Tahiti, MATA MUA has sailed around the globe with the illustrious families who owned her. On board, her loyal Spanish crew are a close knit squad, led by highly experienced Captain Pablo Delgado. Taking an opportunity to delve deeper into what makes this great team tick, we were able to catch up with crew members preparing for the season ahead and to gain a personal insight into time on board this stylish charter yacht.
Captain Pablo Delgado is instantly likable with a welcoming manner and, predictably, an enviable year-round tan. Truly an ocean-lover, from a tender age he spent many happy hours learning to fish with his father, and by 7 years old he was snorkelling around rocks on his local beach in Spain to catch octopus. It is no surprise to learn that, as a certified diver, keen spearfisherman and water sports enthusiast, he is also a highly qualified and passionate freediving instructor. Asked to choose his favourite piece of watersports equipment, without a second thought Captain Pablo declares, "carbon free dive fins and mask" as "they help you move through the water as if you were a marine mammal, without motors or noise, just your physical ability to carry them". Cataloguing a quality mask that is personally adapted in order to "see the wonders clearly that are under the sea", his respect and admiration for the marine environment is palpable.
As far as plans for this summer go, so long as restrictions permit, MATA MUA is looking forward to a host of charters sailing around the Balearic Islands and the Costa Brava. With a mass of sensational destinations to choose from, what type of cruising does the yacht enjoy with guests and are there any hidden hotspots to recommend? A connoisseur of the Balearics and beyond, the captain is keen to comment, "I really like natural bays and beaches without buildings around, places without many boats plus beaches with large stretches of sand, protected by cliffs and clear waters". Fitting the bill he lists picturesque La Mola in Formentera, and the natural sandy bottom of Es Caló as key must-see's, continuing " I don't have favourites because I am a person who loves the sea and the coast, I always try to look for the beauty of each place I go, sometimes the charm of the sea is not on it but immersed under the water, other times the weather conditions are what gives it that magic".
As a seasoned captain, we were interested to get Pablo's take on the biggest changes he's noticed in the yachting industry. Of specific note, he cites an abundant increase in the manufacture of more environmentally friendly and efficient equipment, whilst giving a nod to great advances in communications and online services that have certainly served to make onboard management a whole lot easier. After a difficult 2020, with constant plan changes due to external factors, this certainly placed a strain on charter yacht captains and crew alike. However looking ahead to enjoying sailing with guests on board again Captain Pablo speaks of his affection for MATA MUA, "I like her wide decks and overall spaciousness compared to any other motor sailer of the same length. She is seaworthy, very safe at anchor and has a fantastic, almost museum-style, décor".
The crew under Captain Delgado are an enthusiastic, knowledgeable and friendly line-up, many coming from a family of sailors who grew a passion for the sea from a young age. Stewardess Maria Jose Baroja is keen to explain that she relishes working in the fresh air amongst nature and loves seeing new places along the way. Getting a real buzz from keeping the boat well maintained and immaculately clean, she has been glad to be kept busy in her role, stating, "the most difficult thing is missing family", something all crew members can definitely relate to. Putting a hard year behind them, first mate, Pablo Rebollo, looks back on how they have kept motivated during the pandemic, "being philosophical, at the beginning it was more difficult because of the confinement situation, but then you acclimatise to the changes. My experience is that a passion for my work makes me remain strong and able to adapt well to any situation". Engineer, Raul Gomez, has made sure he stayed active and kept positive, enjoying sport and spending time with loved ones, when possible. With an aim of hopefully visiting Ibiza in months to come, noting this as his stand-out isle in the Balearics, he also enjoys letting off steam with the wakeboard table as soon as the water temperature is warm enough!
Prepping up for the season, Chef Raul Caballero thoroughly enjoys creating a variety of Mediterranean dishes with a Catalan influence, working imaginatively with local ingredients, such as fresh fish and organic vegetables. Always ready to take on a challenge, he has encountered diverse requests on charter, somewhat different from the norm, such as cutting ingredients to a specific size or using temperatures contrary to recipe indications! No matter what is asked of him Chef Raul has so far managed to turn his hand to everything, producing sensational cuisine from MATA MUA's galley that continually delights all on board.
Evident from their positive attitude and sunny disposition, the crew on MATA MUA are an exceptionally cohesive team, working in unison during a year of change and uncertainty. It is clear for guests on board, they bring an element of fun to any charter, alongside the commensurately professional service that they pride themselves on.
MATA MUA holds a full Spanish Charter Licence and has availability with no delivery fees in the Balearics this summer, plus the yacht will consider charter rate flexibility, depending on the booking duration.
Summer Low - EUR 68,000 Weekly
Summer High - EUR 75,000 Weekly
Ocean Independence is a full-service superyacht brokerage company, specialising in yacht sales, charter, new build and management. One of the fastest-growing companies in the luxury-yachting sector, it has the largest crewed charter fleet in the world and a team that combines more years of marine expertise than any other brokerage company globally. Founded in 2005, Ocean Independence now has approximately 115 employees, operating from 13 offices around the world, speaking 23 different languages.