Luxury Charter Yacht NIKATA Crew


Captain Matt Hardy

Licensed by the Royal Yachting Association as an Offshore Yachtmaster with commercial endorsement, Matt first took hold of a tiller at the tender age of nine. He quickly fell in love with sailing and his life has revolved around being on the water ever since - to the point that at university he took his BSc degree, with honors, in Maritime Business and Maritime Law. Matt has been involved in everything from international dinghy and yacht racing (and has won his fair share of competitions), to island hopping, coastal and long distance cruising, and deliveries. He is particularly proud to have won the Formula 18 national championships a few years ago and to have represented Great Britain at the International Sailing Federation Worlds, an event ranked second only to the Olympics.

After beginning his professional yachting career as a mate, Matt quickly worked his way up to captain. He is also a qualified RYA sailing instructor and will be happy to introduce you to the pleasures of navigation, sail trim, and helming, or help you hone your skills.When he is not on the water, Matt likes to be in the water, and is an accomplished scuba diver and windsurfer.When on land, he enjoys cycling and skiing. On board and off, he loves entertaining guests, showing them his favorite anchorages, and mixing them their favorite cocktails

Chef Ayla Lewis

Like Matt,Ayla grew up in England and was introduced to sailing at an early age.As a teenager, she competed in Optimists, Mirrors, Toppers, and Dayboats, and then went on to J24s, larger J's, and Swans.With a bright and bubbly personality,Aylabrings the same enthusiasm to cooking as she does to sailing. Her exceptional cuisine is infused with flavors from the world over, including Asian, Mediterranean, and regional American. She has been chef on several busy yachts, and has also received certificates in advanced culinary techniques from The Gables Institute and in Mediterranean cuisine from Kilbury Manor College. Ashore, she has worked in the kitchens of prominent restaurants in England, the US, and the British Virgin Islands.Ayla holds a BSc degree with honors in psychology and business. In addition to dinghy and yacht racing, she loves scuba diving, windsurfing, snorkeling, and fishing. In quieter moments, she enjoys reading, drawing, and painting.

Matt and Ayla not only have extensive cruising experience in the Mediterranean, UK, Caribbean, and New England, but also have made a number of transatlantic crossings and offshore cruises along the coasts on both sides of the Atlantic.Together, they make a winning team - both as experienced sailors and as attentive, accomplished, and entertaining hosts on board Aurora.

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