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Luxury yacht spaces and their impact on the well-being of guests and crew

Tatiana Gladkikh (Business School, University of Aberdeen, Aberdeen, UK)
Victoria Gladkikh (University of Aberdeen, Dunkeld, UK)

Worldwide Hospitality and Tourism Themes

ISSN: 1755-4217

Article publication date: 10 May 2023

Issue publication date: 28 July 2023




The purpose of this practice-led article is to explore yachting tourism and its impact on visitors' well-being. This is specifically addressed through the lens of yacht spaces on luxury boats, their use and therefore the enjoyment they facilitate for guests. The article argues that the sense of well-being and satisfaction with life can be facilitated by creating stylish and comfortable spaces which allow a closer connection and interaction with the outdoor environment, ability to combine work and pleasure, and offer retreat for personalised well-being activities such as beauty treatments.


The article is supported by knowledge derived from relevant books, academic and practitioner journals and media, including newspaper articles and websites. The article utilised a qualitative methodology to obtain first-hand luxury yacht practitioner knowledge through ethnographic methods of the life-course of the researcher. Primary data were qualitatively analysed in the context of prior knowledge of the industry.


The findings demonstrate that interior and exterior spaces on luxury boats can contribute to and enhance the state of well-being and satisfaction with one's life by providing spaces which are not only unique and exclusive in their beauty and comfort but also can facilitate the quality of overall experience when on a luxury yacht holiday. This includes connection with the broader environment of the area, tranquillity, possibility to enjoy one's holiday while being able to engage in one's work, enhancing the quality of a luxury yacht holiday experience through customising one's recreational and relaxation activities such as beauty treatments, sunbathing and offering space for personal seclusion and privacy. Design of yacht spaces in some cases also offers recreation areas for crew, which is a considerate approach towards the well-being of staff. However, this is not currently common practice, especially on smaller boats.

Practical implications

One potential implication is recognition of the use of space on luxury yachts for the particular benefit of guests. This is a critical consideration at the stage of architectural design of the yacht and its interior planning. Another practical implication is the introduction of recreational/well-being spaces for crew to maximise their productivity by offering them space to recharge their physical and psychological state while working away from home and at intense work levels.


The value of the article is in shedding light on the importance of spaces on luxury yachts and discussing their impact on the well-being of guests and crew. The article provides an insight into daily operations and the use of space to achieve the enhancement of well-being of guests and crew. It also offers recommendations to relevant stakeholders in the luxury yacht industry, charter companies and luxury yacht architects and designers regarding the importance of spaces for owners and guests of luxury yachts to maximise their satisfaction with their luxury yacht experiences and, more specifically, their state of well-being. Understanding the reality of the luxury yachting experience contributes to our academic engagement with this sector of Special Interest Tourism (SIT) which is currently under-researched.



Gladkikh, T. and Gladkikh, V. (2023), "Luxury yacht spaces and their impact on the well-being of guests and crew", Worldwide Hospitality and Tourism Themes, Vol. 15 No. 4, pp. 362-370.



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