Meet-the-CrewAt Mariposa Cruises we strive to exceed expectations and provide our guests with the highest levels of quality and service. It’s what sets us apart from our competition and why we are recognized as Toronto’s best recreational cruise by Consumer Choice Award and voted one of the top attractions in Toronto by Trip Advisor. It would be impossible to achieve this without the dedication and hard work that each of our team members exemplifies. For this reason, we want to celebrate our team members and let you get to know them a little bit better.

This month we would like to introduce you to our Fleet Bar Manager John Smyth.

John started as a Bartender and quickly made his way up to our Fleet Bar Manager. His organizational skills, commitment and sincere dedication to his role, makes him an individual everyone can rely on.

With his experience and expertise, he has diversified our beverage selection and continuously ensures the standards of all our bars are met. He is also responsible for many of the feature cocktail in our Behind the Bar segment on the Captain’s Blog.

We can always rely on John to get the job done – making him an exceptional leader and very valuable team member.

Let’s see what John had to say:

When did you start working for Mariposa Cruises?

I started working at Mariposa Cruises on July 17, 2013.

What is your role at Mariposa Cruises?

I was originally hired as a Bartender and was then promoted to the Fleet Bar Manager at the start of the 2014 season. I am now responsible for inventory control and ordering, making sure that there are supplies at all the bars as well as training our bartenders.

What does a typical day at work look like for you?

I start around 8 am with deliveries and ship preparations and finish around 3 pm. I then board a cruise at 5 pm and work till midnight bartending on the cruise and overseeing the other bartenders.

What’s your favourite thing about your job and working for Mariposa Cruises?

My favourite part about working at Mariposa is meeting people, developing relationships with guests and developing long lasting friendships with my fellow team members.

What do you do when you’re not working at Mariposa Cruises?

I am a registered massage therapist which I practice part time in Oakville. I am also a part–time Sports Official.

What’s your favourite sport? Why?

I like judo – martial arts are cool. I’ve been practicing judo for 30 plus years and train in Burlington. I have a second degree black belt. I also love to watch hockey. My favourite team is the Chicago Blackhawks.

What do you do for fun?

I go to the gym and work out. I go rollerblading, or hang out with friends. I like to do stuff that is spontaneous but meaningful. I’m a hopeless romantic and I love doing nice small gestures that will bring happiness to the people around me.

Do you have a favourite quote or words that you live by?

I have two:

1. “Really…”, – sometimes people do dumb things and the only response you can give is “Really?” I’ve also got this tattooed on my arm.
2. “Be Brave , Be Loyal, Be True and keep your white flag handy just in case.” – I think you always face challenges on any given day and you know you have to use your moral compass when you are making your decisions and sometimes you just have to admit that you are outmatched.

Who is your role model? Why?

Christopher Hanna…everyone wants to be Christopher Hanna. He’s a fellow bartender at Mariposa Cruises. He is so intense at what he does and doesn’t accept being mediocre at anything. He is an exceptional bartender and great to work with.

When you have been in this industry for a long time, sometime you are reluctant to open yourself up but then you meet someone like Christopher and he reminds you of why you are in this industry.

If you could charter a boat and take it anywhere in the world, where would you go? Why?

Big Island of Hawaii – there’s so much to do in a relaxed environment. I’ve been there before and would go back in a heartbeat with someone special.

If you could meet anyone, living or dead, who would you want to meet? Why?

Fleet Admiral William Frederick Halsey Jr aka “Bull Halsey”.  He was an admiral for the US navy responsible for the victory of the Battle of the Coral Sea. He was a tough no nonsense kind of guy… I actually met his grandson once at a BMX event in Toronto.


We hope you enjoyed getting to know John as much as we have. There are plenty of other Mariposa team members for you to meet. Be on the lookout each month, as we will be spotlighting a new team member on our Meet the Crew segment on the Captain’s Blog.

If you would like to join the Mariposa crew, visit our Mariposa Cruises Employment page for new job postings.