Career Spotlight: Young Island Thatchers
Grass thatching may be considered a dying art…but, not at Young Island. Vidal Joseph and Kenville James are the official thatchers at Young Island and carry one of the world’s most unique hotel job titles, according to AFAR.
The Thatching Tradition
In the days of the Caribs, house roofs were thatched using local grass. This tradition was handed down throughout the years, and those who could not afford to purchase roofing materials would use grass to thatch their roofs.
At Young Island, a local man named Coolie was one of the last remaining indigenous thatchers, and luckily taught Vidal and Kenville the craft and its essential skills. Vidal and Kenville worked alongside Coolie as he created Young Island’s dining huts and beach hammocks. The duo mainly helped cut grass or pass bundles up the ladders. However, at times when Coolie was absent, Vidal and Kenville would take over unfinished projects and put their new talents to work.
After Coolie sadly passed away, Vidal and Kenville completely took over his role. Now, they maintain the resort’s intricate thatching and are considered local experts. In fact, many businesses, hotels and individuals contact the resort in hopes these professionals can assist with their own thatching projects.
In addition to thatching, both gentlemen provide maintenance care on property so guests enjoy a carefree Young Island experience. We are thrilled to have Vidal and Kenville on the Young Island staff and appreciate their hard work and dedication!