What makes us who we are, to our very core, is our crew. We are so very proud to present to you
THE BEST CREW IN THE INDUSTRY!
For anyone who has traveled with us, you have probably met Julio as he has been with us from the very beginning. Julio started with us when the boat was being built in 2007. He did all of the amazing woodwork you see on Rocio del Mar including the wheel house. When you meet Julio, you would never know that he is not from the sea but he quickly adapted to it. Dora certified him as a diver and Julio was part of finding and naming your favorite dive sites in the Sea of Cortez. His first job was being a panga driver and, over the years, Julio has played most every role on the boats. Julio is now a captain and holds one of the highest certifications you can have. Julio lives in Puerto Pansco and has two teenage daughters.
Nestor loves being a captain with Rocio del Mar and Quino el Guardian and really enjoys working with the crew. His favorite part is welcoming the divers back to the boat after their dive. He enjoys seeing the happy expressions and hearing how fantastic their dive was.
Nestor studied in Escuela Náutica Mercente de Mazatlán, one of three nautical schools in Mexico. After multiple years and certifications, Nesto got his license to captain any vessel under 3000 gross tonnage (Rocio is 180 and Quino is 150 as a reference).
Nestor considers himself a rookie diver as he has only dived 15 times between San Pedro Mártir and Revillagigedo. He started diving because the dive masters on board encouraged him to try it and he was curious to see what all of the passengers were talking about. Having tried diving he now understands what a wonderful world it is underwater - it is where anything can happen. He especially loves "The Boiler" on San Benedicto where he got to be face to face with the majestic manta rays.
When Nestor isn't working, he spends all of his time with his family. He lives in Mazatlán with his wife, two-year-old daughter and a one-year-old son.
Jorge joined Rocio del Mar and Quino el Guardian Liveaboards three and a half years ago. Before then, he worked in some of the finest hotels and restaurants in Mexico. His favorite cuisine to make is Asian (especially sushi) and especially likes making prime rib, baked, and grilled meats. Even at a young age, Jorge liked the sea and was really excited to work on a ship. We could not be happier that he chose us!
He really enjoys what he does and loves traveling on the ships, especially the beautiful islands in the Sea of Cortez. When asked what he likes best about what he does he said making the guests happy. He loves meeting people from all over the world and learning about their cultures.
Jorge is not a diver yet but he is looking forward to learning so he can dive with the sharks in Revillagigedo.
When Jorge is not working, he spends time with his family in his home town of Melaque on the Jalisco coast; his wife, Virginia, and his children, Santiago, Johan, and Enrique.
Luis started diving in 2013. He has played all different roles including running the storage room, being a panga driver, a snorkel guide, and even a Hobycat instructor. Originally from Mexico City, he now lives in Cabo.
His dream was to be a divemaster on a liveaboard dive boat and that dream came true when he started working with us in 2016. His favorite dive site is Los Cuervos in the Sea of Cortez because there is so much macro life that can be found on one rock. But his favorite thing to do underwater is to look into the blue because he just loves the suspense of finding giant animals in the water.
Ben started diving in 2013 as a dive instructor in Cabo San Lucas. After 3 years a new adventure came calling and he joined the Rocio del Mar/Quino el Guardian crew in 2016. He is passionate about sharks and is a keen underwater photographer. He loves diving Revillagigedo and every dive site has something special. Still, his two favorites dive sites are "The Boiler" at San Benedicto and Roca Partida because that is where anything can happen.
His number one priority in the water is to his customers: it's very important to him that they dive comfortably no matter the conditions and that they see everything this amazing dive destination has to offer.
Ben is from Guadalajara and he lives in Cabo San Lucas.
To meet and know Andres is to love Andres!
Andres has lived in Mexico for three years. Originally from a small village in Spain, it had only 300 people and no ocean. Prior to Mexico he was in the Czech Republic, Portugal and Spain. He loves Mexico and calls it his new home and hopes to stay for a very long time.
Andres has two cats that he rescued from the street and feeds all of the cats in his neighborhood.
His favorite dive site is El Canon because of the schooling hammerheads and dolphins and he has been seeing more tiger sharks all the time. He also loves diving the Sea of Cortez because of the variety and the fact that you just never know what you are going to see.
His greatest passion? Traveling to new places and getting to know new cultures.
Tico has been working in Reviagilledo for five years and, while he knows the islands like the back of his hand, it never ceases to amaze him. "I love the fact that I can dive with big, pelagic animals almost every dive. I especially enjoy how they just come out-of-the-blue." His favorite dive site is El Cañón in San Benedicto because of the hammerheads as well as the chance to see tiger sharks in the sandbanks.
Tico is originally from Costa Rica. In fact, that is how he got his nickname. His real name is Michael but everyone calls him Tico. "Growing up in Costa Rica, it is almost impossible not to have a fascination with the ocean."
Tico came to Mexico specifically to be a divemaster in Socorro. He's looking forward to his second season in the Sea of Cortez.
Tico lives in Cabo San Lucas with his girlfriend, Maria, and his three dogs, Kira, Deco, and Aqua. When he's not working he loves spending time with them, playing on the beach, having a barbecue, or having friends at the house.
Special note: When asked if there was something special Tico wanted people to know about him he said, "My profound love for tacos. All-day, every day, any kind of tacos." His favorite - al pastor 🙂
Bob has been with us since the very beginning. He met Dora at a dive show in 2008 when Rocio del Mar was being built. As Bob said, "Once you hear Dora laugh, you are hooked on liking her. She is so genuine and full of life and joy. The crew and I always say, 'God loves Dora' because she can make anything happen despite the trials and tribulations that come with owning a liveaboard dive business." Bob came on board the first season in the Sea of Cortez with a couple of divers, and Dora asked him to help divemaster. He's been with us every summer since.
Bob is an interesting character. Bob's father was in the Navy, and his family always had boats, so his love for the sea started as a toddler. He learned to dive in 1966. Before working with us, he taught diving at Marin Diving Center in California. When he's not on the boats, he is an analyst for the RAND corporation and dreams of diving.
The thing that brings him back every summer is the joy of engaging with the divers. He enjoys keeping them safe and informed so they can have fun. He also loves working with the entire crew and says, "They are the best people in the world." As a divemaster, his focus is safety first, second, and third, so everyone can enjoy themselves and have a wonderful time.
Bob's favorite dive sites are Ravijunco on San Pedro Martir in the Sea of Cortez and Cabo Pearce on Socorro Island. He loves them both equally as each never ceases to amaze him with its surprises and challenges.
His most memorable moment was snorkeling with sperm whales in the Sea of Cortez, and one came within a foot of him. "It was amazing to look one right in the eye just one foot away."
Bob lives in Southern New Jersey with his wife, Deanna, who is a diver, too. Bob has two sons, Devin and Damian and two grandchildren, Ocean and Soldier.
When asked if Bob had a nickname on the boat, he said that the crew gave him many, but most are not safe enough to print 🙂
Edgar (Pollo), Panga Driver
Edgar has been with us for over eight years. Most of you know Edgar by his nickname, Pollo, which means chicken in Spanish. He got this nickname when he was born because his grandfather's nickname was Rooster and, when he was a baby, they put a chicken costume on him. He's been Pollo ever since.
Before Pollo came to us, he owned a car wash and then worked with wave runners, jet skis and banana boats. That is when he discovered his love for the sea and all activities surrounding the ocean.
In addition to being a skilled panga driver, he is also a diver. His first dive was at San Pedro Martir and the sea lions but his favorite dive site is El Canon at San Benedicto because it always brings him surprises. His favorite is the tiger shark. He says that you don't always see them but, when you do, it's a spectacular experience.
Pollo really enjoys driving the pangas as there is always something to see from them. "For example, in the Sea of Cortez, you can see dolphins and whales and the sea lions love to play around the boat. I also really love the relief of the islands. In Socorro, the giant mantas, sharks, and dolphins come right up to the ship's platform. It can be quite a spectacle without having to be in the water."
When Pollo was asked what he liked best about what he does, he said he loves interacting with people from other countries and how open people are about teaching him about where they come from and their cultures. In return, he loves showing people the beautiful landscapes that Mexico has. "I always do my very best to give guests the best experience possible."
And his most memorable moment ever? It was the first time he saw a tiger shark. He still remembers screaming in his regulator 🙂
Pollo lives in Puerto Penasco with his new little dog named Libra. When he's not working, he enjoys spending time with his family but most especially with his friends in search of new adventures, driving their 4x4's and camping on the beach. Whatever he does, he likes to be next to the sea.
When asked if there was something special that he wanted people to know about him he said this; "I consider myself a person who loves the sea. Until I came to work here, I had no idea that I would be so enchanted by the ocean. That is why I dedicate myself to diving whenever there is an opportunity to go. I want to know everything about the dive sites, both above and underwater."
Leonel, Panga Driver
Leonel (known as Leo) has been in and around the sea his entire life. He is originally from a tiny fishing village named Tortuga near Guerrero Negro in Baja California Sur. It is here where he was a commercial diver and would dive for abalone. Leo joined us in September 2017.
Leo's lifetime of experience on the ocean is only part of what makes him an incredible panga driver. He knows the sea, so he has complete control over the boat as well as can see divers bubbles in any conditions. He's strong, patient, and genuinely loves what he does. "I love to see the guests' expression on their faces when they come up from a dive."
Leo is an avid diver, and his favorite place to dive is El Canon at San Benedicto, where he has seen schooling hammerheads. His goal is to become a Dive Master.
When Leo isn't working, he likes to visit his home town with his wife.
In every organization, there is the person who is behind the scenes making sure everything is working. When they are doing their job, no one even knows they are there. The engines hum, the shower is hot, the toilets flush and the air conditioning cools. They are tireless at ensuring everything goes as it should. That is Eduardo.
Eduardo, known by his fellow crewmembers and our guests as Lalo, is an engineer aboard Rocio del Mar and Quino el Guardian. He's been an engineer for 25 years working on fishing boats and, before that, was an engineer's assistant and even a cook. Lalo has been there, seen that, and fixed it when it was broken. He knows every sound the boats make and, if you have an issue with your dive equipment, he's right there to help.
Eduardo is originally from Nayarit and lives in Puerto Penasco with his wife of 18 years and his two daughters who are 17 and 9. When he's not working he likes to explore different parts of Mexico with his family.
We have the best crew in the industry on our boats. That is why so many people come diving with us again and again. Some of the team are more outgoing than others (like the divemasters) and some more reserved (like the engineers). But it's the steward that can take a trip from fantastic to a memory of a lifetime. That is Dory.
When you wake up, you see Dory. After your dive, she welcomes you back with a warm smile. At every meal, Dory will take care of you. And if there is anything special you want, she will do her very best to make it happen. Everywhere you turn, you will find her - you will think she is twins!
Dory joined us one year ago. Before that, she worked in beach restaurants and wondered what it would be like to work on the sea every day. The thing that Dory likes best about what she does is she genuinely loves to help the guests and her fellow crewmembers.
Dory is an avid diver, too. Her favorite dive site is The Boiler at San Benedicto because she, along with other guests, witnessed the birth of a dolphin. In Revillagigedo, Dory loves the Volcan at San Benedicto, and in the Sea of Cortez, can't stop watching the islands and the sunsets. Her best memory is when she got to snorkel with a giant pod of dolphins at San Pedro Marti in the Sea of Cortez.
When Dory isn't working, she loves to discover new places in Mexico and the US. She lives in Cabo San Lucas with her husband, Luis.
Javier (Flaco), Maintenance
Flaco has been with us since 2015 and has worked on boats his entire life. He loves every aspect of working on ships, and he really enjoys being at sea and seeing all of the incredible animals.
His real name is Javier, but everyone calls him Flaco. Flaco means "skinny" in Spanish.
Flaco lives in Puerto Penasco, and when he isn't working, he likes to go on walks with his wife, Lupita, and children Kimberly, Vanesa, and Javier Alonso Jr.
When asked if there was one thing he wanted people to know about him, he said, "I can repair almost anything." Yes ... yes, he can!
Abraham, Captain & Engineer
If you have dived with us in the last few years, you'll recognize Abraham as he's always on the deck when the pangas come back from a dive with open arms, a big grin, and a loud yell. Abraham joined us in 2015 as an Engineer helping us to refurbish Quino el Guardian. He just loves working on motors and making them purr. Abraham became a Captain last year.
Abraham's goal this year is to learn how to scuba dive. He loves breathing on a tank and does dive but so far it has only been in the marina and to scrape the bottom of the boat.
Abraham is married with three children and lives in Puerto Penasco.
Joshua is one of the most popular crew members because he is the chef and keeps us all very well fed! The food starts at 6 am with a continental breakfast, full breakfast after the first dive, homemade soup and plated hot lunch, heavy snacks like ceviche, chocolate-dipped strawberries, and homemade donuts and then a three-course dinner of plated salad, elegant entree, and beautiful dessert.
Joshua also loves to dive. His favorite place is San Benedicto. He's done three dives and has seen hammerheads, silky and white tip sharks and manta rays but he hasn't seen his favorite animal yet - dolphins!
Joshua's favorite thing to cook is Italian food and desserts.
Joshua lives in Puerto Penasco with his wife and four children.
Miguel, Chef & Steward
Whenever you see Miguel, he always has a giant smile on his face.
Miguel joined us in February 2017. From his earliest memories, he has loved the kitchen and the sea. When he was 11 years old, he would watch the boats coming into the harbor and see people working on them. One day, Miguel went up to one of the men and told him that he will work on a boat, too. And now his dream is a reality. "I work on one of the best boats and I love working with my fellow crew. The guests are wonderful and every trip I learn something new from them. I especially enjoy working as a steward as I get to interact with the guests all day long."
Miguel was born in Guadalajara and lives in Manzanillo, Colima, Mexico with his family. He has been married for 18 years and he has two beautiful girls and two handsome boys. When he isn't working, he likes to spend his time with his family outdoors.
When Edgar was a kid, his parents took him for a vacation to the ocean - that is when he fell in love with the ocean and it became his dream of living near it one day. In 2011, he went diving for the first time. One of his first dives was a night dive. Even though he was scared, he loved it. He quickly became a dive instructor and worked in Cozumel and Cabo. In October of 2016, he joined Rocio del Mar and Quino el Guardian Liveaboards. He loves waking up on the sea.
Edgar's favorite dive site in the Sea of Cortez is at San Pedro Martir island (Xarenis and Morro). "I think it's an amazing combination as you can have a forest of black coral, play with sea lions, maybe get a glimpse of a hammerhead and the macro life is amazing. And the landscaping is just gorgeous. I just love the entire island of San Pedro Martir."
"In Revillagigedo, I love Cabo Pearce because it's a super wild dive site. The conditions can change rapidly so you need to be watching the conditions all the time. What I love about this place is you can have the best experience with dolphins, so many different sharks, and even whale sharks. Some of my very best dives have been there."
Edgar says what he loves best about working with divers is he gets to show them all of these amazing creatures and the breathtaking landscape. "I love helping divers to have remarkable experiences that fill their minds and hearts. I love seeing them with a big smile at the end of the trip."
Edgar lives in Mexico with his girlfriend, Heather, and is a very proud father of two children.
DIVEMASTER JOB DESCRIPTION: Keep everyone safe underwater, point out cool stuff to see, entertain the guests throughout the day, and make your job look easy. That's Peter!
"I've always loved the sea. I love being in another world, not knowing what I might see or experience. What I like best about diving, and being a divemaster is finding pelagic animals for people to see. I want to share the underwater world with others. My favorite dive site is Cabo Pierce because the currents can be challenging, and that is where you can see schools of hammerhead sharks. Plus, the dolphins are the best in the world!"
When asked whether he likes Socorro or the Sea of Cortez better, he said he could not compare them as they are both fantastic. In the Sea of Cortez, he got to swim with fin whales, and Socorro is the best place in the world to dive with pelagics. His best experience was last summer when the boat was at Las Animas (in the Sea of Cortez) and spotted orcas. "The divemasters got the guests to skip breakfast so we could jump in and see them underwater."
Peter joined us two years ago. Before that, he was a dive instructor in Cozumel and Puerto Vallarta, a whale shark guide in Playa del Carmen, and a flyboard instructor. He makes a pretty good bikini model, too!
Peter lives in Cabo and, while he is single, he says he has high hopes for 2020. When isn't working, he's exploring nature in Baja, whether that's wild animals, ocean activities, waterfalls, just about everything. He has two nicknames, Bam Bam and El Toro Loco, but swears he doesn't know how he got them. 🙂
Jerson is our newest divemaster, who joined us in September of 2019. Before we were lucky enough to nab him, he was working in Sharm el Sheik in Egypt, Manta Divers in Cabo San Lucas, and, before that, as a diving guide in the caves of Playa del Carmen. Wow - that's a lot of experience!
In fact, Jerson grew up in Playa del Carmen and started working at a dive center at the age of 15. He learned how to do everything from fixing a regulator to driving a 42' boat.
Jerson is a true diver as he feels his best when he is underwater. "I love seeing big animals and feeling my breath. It is my happy place!"
Jerson lives in Coatzacoalcos, Veracruz, in Mexico. He has a son, Rajiv. When he isn't working, he likes to visit his family. He also enjoys cave diving.
When asked if he preferred Socorro or the Sea of Cortez, he said he doesn't know as this will be his first Sea of Cortez/Midriff Islands season. So far, he likes the BIG STUFF of Socorro. His most memorable dive was when he saw a humpback whale with her baby at Roca Partida. Yet like most divers, he is eager to explore a new area.
Jerson does not have a nickname, but the rest of the crew is eager to remedy that. In Jerson's words, "I just know that I am the most handsome boy I know." There is probably an excellent (and fun) nickname in there somewhere!
Manuel joined the crew of Rocio del Mar and Quino el Guardian three years ago. Before he joined our team, he had been cave diving for 5 years in Playa del Carmen. Originally from Spain, Manuel loves to explore the world and find new places to dive. He's loved the sea as long as he can remember.
When asked what he likes best about what he does, he had a list! Manuel loves to be close to Mother Nature. When he's underwater, he feels a genuine relationship with the animals and the reef. He also loves the lifestyle of living on a boat and sharing the experiences and daily life with the passengers and crew.
Manuel lives in La Paz, Baja California, Mexico. When he's not working, his daily life involves sports, anything to do with music, going to the beach, and being with his family and friends. Manuel is also a DJ! Most of his family is back home in Spain, and he has created a family with his girlfriend, Marisela, and his nieces, Nazbeth (13) and Fernanda (4). When he has vacation time, he loves to travel.
Being the avid diver he is, he would not admit to having a favorite dive site. He's been to and loved diving in the Indo-Pacific, Belize, Thailand, and the Red Sea. He's also addicted to cave diving. He loves both Revillagigedo and the unique diving in the Sea of Cortez. Of the Quino and Rocio destinations, he loves Socorro as it offers incredible opportunities to interact with the big animals.
As for his best memory, that's easy. Once when he was on Rocio del Mar, everyone had a spectacularly fantastic trip. During one dive at Roca Partida, they got to dive with a 40' whale shark. After the dive, the whale shark circled the boat for an hour and a half. Everyone got to get in the water and snorkel with it. It was mind-blowing.
He doesn't really have a nickname, but most of the crew likes to call him Meño. He said that it is another way to call someone named Manuel in Mexico.
Something people may not know about Manuel is he is open-minded and always up for a good conversation. He loves adventure and surprises. Whatever life brings his way!
Everardo, Panga Driver
This is Everardo. If you’ve traveled with us before, you know Everardo! He’s been with us for years as a panga driver (he’s got an eagle-eye) and steward. He’s the proud father of 2 and his family lives in Puerto Penasco.
Antonio, Panga Driver
To be a panga captain with us, you have to have many skills. Keen eyesight to spot the divers' bubbles, an intimate knowledge of the sea to calculate how to maneuver the boat in all conditions, strength to lift even the biggest rig out of the ocean, kindness to help an unbalanced diver negotiate themselves on the panga and a sense of humor to keep everyone entertained. And that is Antonio.
Antonio started working with us aboard Quino el Guardian when it launched in 2015. He has always worked on the sea. Before he joined us, he worked on shrimp boats for 10 years and was the captain of a sport fishing boat.
While he doesn't dive, he does like to snorkel and his favorite is the Sea of Cortez. He says it is incredibly beautiful above and below the surface.
When asked what he liked best about working on the boats he said "everything". As you can see from the photos, Antonio loves working with the crew. When he was asked to narrow that down, he said he liked taking care of the clients.
When he isn't working, he is with his wife, his 22-year-old son, 29-year-old daughter, and his grandchildren who are 3 and 8.
Jaime, Panga Driver
Jaime joined us in 2018, but he has been a man of the sea all of his life. Before he came to work with us, he was a fisherman and a commercial diver for 15 years. In 2010, he began his journey as a scientific diver assisting scientists with monitoring transects. He met the folks from Niparaja, an organization devoted to working with fishing communities and teaching them about sustainability when they came to his village, where he lived with his parents in Tembabiche. He was invited to join the scientific team because of his skills, and that is when he became a certified diver. He was part of creating the very first refuge area in the Gulf of Californi.
Jaime is one of our fantastic panga drivers, but he also works with us as a divemaster. Because of his vast experience in and around the ocean, Jaime has a sixth sense when it comes to finding critters underwater. His current goal is to better his English, so he enjoys practicing this with the guests on the boats.
When he isn't working, he loves to spend time with his family, parents, and community. Jaime has a son who is 16 and a daughter who is 11.
Ricardo (Tigre), Engineer
Ricardo, known as Tigre, joined the Rocio del Mar and Quino el Guardian team in June 2019. He has worked on vessels, both for tourism and industrial, all of his life. Even when it can be challenging due to storms, Tigre has always loved the sea.
When asked what he likes best about what he does, Tigre said that he enjoys everything about being a machinist, being able to assist divers, and even helping them repair their photography or diving equipment.
Although he doesn't dive, he loves being on the sea and appreciates the incredible landscape and sunsets of the Sea of Cortez. In Revillagigedo, he enjoys the crystal clear waters and can see, from the surface, whales, sharks, the majestic mantas, and incredible varieties of fish. Whether sailing or at anchor, his daily goal is to ensure the safety of the boat and divers on board. When asked if he wanted to share something that people might not otherwise know about him, he replied, "I get great satisfaction from my work. To be able to contribute to the divers having a great experience in such an incredible and magical place is very special ".
When he's not working, he's a dedicated family man to his wife, Leticia, daughters Tannya and Rebecca, and his youngest son, Elliott.
Wondering how Tigre got his name? He said that he got it from the crew and his coworkers. "It is a name given to someone, highlighting their ability to perform their various duties well."
That you do, Tigre, that you do.
Francisco (Cinco), Deck Hand / Steward
Francisco, also known as Cinco, is why we have such a fantastic reputation. It's the authenticity and devotion of our crew. When you board, you will immediately notice our team loves what they do, and there is almost nothing they will do to ensure that our guests have the best experience possible, above and below the water.
Francisco works as both a steward and a deckhand. He joined us one year ago, and, before that, he was a fisherman on a shrimp boat. Being from Puerto Penasco (Rocky Point), he has always loved the sea; it's beauty and animal diversity.
When asked what he likes most about what he does, he said, "It depends. When deckhand hand, I really enjoy getting to sail the ship. When steward, I love the opportunity to interact and get to know people who come from all over the world."
Francisco knows the Sea of Cortez like the back of his hand, the dive sites, and the islands. He is excited to go to Revillagigedo and go 250 miles offshore to see Socorro, San Benedicto, and Roca Partida. "I'm looking forward to this new, great adventure!"
When asked what his favorite memory is from being at sea, he said it is when he saw a mother whale and calf jump together.
Francisco lives in Puerto Penasco, Sonora, Mexico, with his beautiful wife, Oneida, and 3 children, Cristian, Oneyda, and Stefany. When he isn't working, he likes to exercise, walk on the beach, eat well and sleep 🙂
When asked how Francisco got his nickname, it was easy - that's his last name!