Emperor Divers - The Liveaboard Team
As a boy growing up in Cairo, I was always fascinated by the boats cruising up and down the Nile. I trained as an accountant and, whilst working for a travel agent, was given the chance to move to Sharm El Sheikh in 2002, which is where I first saw the Red Sea. As well as the intense colours of the sea, I was fascinated by the wooden boats taking divers out every day.
I joined Emperor soon after, and as the accountant in charge of dry docks, I learnt a lot more about boats from a technical and aesthetic point of view. I quickly learned to dive and undertook the operation of running our range of liveaboard trips. Being named Fleet Manager in 2013 was a very proud moment indeed for me.
My duties include looking after the construction, maintenance and operation of Emperor's fleet of safari and daily boats. As a football fan, and if I'm not buying a new gadget or working with the onboard chefs with their menu ideas, you can find me in one of the local coffee shops cheering on Ahly and Barcelona. A keen traveller, I am also a PADI Rescue Diver and my favourite dive was on Daedalus Reef, where I was lucky enough to see schooling hammerheads and a manta ray on the same dive.
I was born in Switzerland, grew up in Colombia and have lived in Egypt for 16 years so the question of where I am from is rather a difficult one but mostly and proudly Egyptian I would say.
Even though I am an instructor, I think of myself as a dive guide as there is no job I would rather do than being underwater sharing the wonders of the marine world with fellow diving enthusiasts. I hope to be a dive guide for as long as I can carry my tank, especially as a diving nomad living on a liveaboard.
I started working in diving in 1997 in the Red Sea. One dive at Ras Um Sid was all it took to give up my academic career as an anthropologist and dedicate my life to being a dive guide instead; the anthias and soft corals of the Red Sea conquered my heart irrevocably. My first full time liveaboard job was with Emperor Divers on Pegasus in 1998, so Emperor and I go back a long way.
Love and other circumstances made me wander a bit even as far as the Solomon Islands, Fiji, Indonesia, Sudan and Djibouti but the Egyptian people, with their hearts of gold and unconditional friendship, my dear Emperor family, the Egyptian Red Sea with its incredible visibility and light quality and the most beautiful scalefin anthias in the whole wide oceans, have brought me back home to Egypt again and again - and back to Emperor since spring of 2009. I am, through and through, a Red Sea Emperor girl, wearing my Emperor blue uniform even when off on vacation...no kidding...I have witnesses!
Being born and raised in Alexandria, my love for the sea and its beauty above and under water was given to me at birth and drove me to learn to dive at age seventeen. I finished my Dive Master one year later and have been working in the Red Sea for more than ten years now, mainly in the Hurghada area, Marsa Alam and Hamata as well as in Alexandria with maritime archaeology.
For the last four years I have been an enthusiastic liveaboard dive guide, loving to be under water amongst the magnificent fish and coral of the Red Sea, as much as sharing my affection for the sea with fellow fans of the marine environment. There's nothing like that feeling of sharing years of experience and knowledge with divers who just drink it up and equally love to learn what lies in our teeming waters.
Parallel to my diving career, I also pursued university studies in dentistry, which I switched to a more sea-oriented subject, Maritime Studies, as boating is another of my passions. I have now reached the degree of Second Mate.
Mohammed El Khatib (Momo)
Born and brought up in Cairo, I have fifteen years' experience of diving the Red Sea and all its glories. My diving career began with Emperor Divers where, under the tutelage of Emperor instructors, I moved through the diving ranks to reach my current level of PADI Master Scuba Diver Trainer. During my extensive career I have worked with several dive operators but chose to return to Emperor as I felt most at home and part of a family.
Many years ago I decided to change my career from working in hotel management to scuba diving just to live close to nature and enjoy this peaceful world underwater. Even when I go on holiday I head for camping in the mountains or desert safaris. I'm a relaxed person and like to help others to share this feeling and get the most from their holiday and their diving.
I was born and raised in the Swiss alps, in the small village at the foot of the beautiful Matterhorn. I was always fascinated by the snow and learned how to ski and snowboard as a child, then becoming a part-time instructor at age 16. I would say water is my element, no matter in what state, I can't be without the snowy mountains or the deep blue sea. So I learned how to dive 2011 in Egypt and dove about a week a year on holidays, soon realising this was just not enough.
After diving with Mantas and Sharks in Labuan Bajo Indonesia in I knew I had to do more with diving. Also I'd just completed a bachelor's degree in art of education so it was natural to get into dive education, attaining my Divemaster and then Instructor rating in 2015. Afterwards I had the chance to guide a few weeks in Mexico and I absolutely loved it. The winter came and the mountains called...but when the ski season finished I headed to the sea again!
After working as an Instructor in Thailand for a couple of months in 2016, I saw the opportunity to complete a two months internship with Emperor Divers in the Red Sea. During this internship I truly saw what Egypt had to offer above and underwater, I always knew about the incredible coral and smaller marine life, but I would have never dreamed of seeing Hammerheads, Oceanic White Tips, Thresher Sharks, Whalesharks and Manta Rays in the Red Sea (sometimes on the same dive!). The hospitality of the Egyptians is just amazing and I immediately felt like part of the team, even part of the family on board, so it was natural for me to want more. After yet another ski season, I was offered a job with Emperor and I gladly accepted, and hope that I can follow the ski and diving seasons for many years to come!
Mostafa el Abd
I've been born on the mouth of the Nile connected to the Mediterranean sea, so as a child I learnt the joys of being in and around water, that's never changed.
I was studying at school and my eldest brother encourage me to visit Hurghada with him one day but I had to finish my degree. I spent months anticipating what the Red sea would look like, but nothing could prepare me for seeing it for the first time. It was 1999 and I felt so lucky to go with on a boat for 5 days, it became a goal of mine to do it more often. Since that moment I loved the liveaboard life.
Of course becoming a Divemaster would be the first step to help me with my goal and in 2005 my dream came true as I certified and immediately started working on a Red Sea liveaboard.
I've moved around a few of the big companies, in the Red Sea even becoming an instructor, but always dreamed of wearing Emperor blue. Finally I am with the company that I wanted to be with!
Every week I had get the same question from the guests "Don't you get bored after 12 years?" And my answer is never! Every dive is different, and I count myself lucky to be able to witness the Red sea day in, day out. Hopefully I get to meet you soon on an Emperor boat and share the Red sea with you.