The academy is based at the Victoria & Alfred Waterfront

South Africa’s first-ever Superyacht Training Academy has officially opened in Cape Town.

The Academy, based at the Victoria & Alfred Waterfront, launched stewardess, deckhand and chef career courses last week, but intends to expand into all aspects of superyacht training. The launch comes amid renewed efforts by Cape Town maritime stakeholders to establish the Port of Cape Town as a superyacht maintenance and repair hub.

“We started negotiating with the (V&A) Waterfront about a year ago and identified the building,” Academy co-director Brett Nussey told IBI. “We said we want to put together a superyacht training academy and establish a one stop shop for anything to do with superyachts. We see it growing into a much larger thing,” Nussey said.

The Academy is a joint venture involving Nussey’s Superyacht Culinary Academy, established several years ago, and Ocean Star Sailing Academy, which offers a broad range of sailing and power training. The target market is both local and international clients.

Nussey said the Academy was also looking at setting up a provisioning business to further expand their service offering. “There will also be other business spin-offs, such as a chandlery business. The idea is that any superyacht coming through here [Cape Town] would be able to get any maintenance products.”

Cape Town’s superyacht ambitions were highlighted earlier this year in a V&A economic impact study which found the V&A business activity makes up almost 2% of the entire Western Cape economy. V&A marine and industrial executive manager Andre Blaine last month also highlighted superyacht development in an interview with the Sunday Times newspaper. “If we could draw the superyachts here then that would be a whole new industry, and we already have the expertise here that can deal with that kind of refurbishment and maintenance,” Blaine said.

Earlier this month Cape Town received an unexpected visit from one of the world’s largest superyachts, 86m Aquijo, the largest high-performance superyacht in the world.