Guest Experience Team

Our guest experience and operations team are the individuals that will greet you in the Discovery Marine Safaris front office and gift shop. They are also the voices you will hear over the phone. They are here to see that your experience from the very first point of contact is professional efficient and friendly. Always, ready to help you with any enquiries and questions you may have.

Meet our welcoming office based Guest Experience team

Ashley is a local, born & raised here on the North Island

This is my 3nd season working with Discovery Marine Safaris. I previously worked as a naturalist for their sister company Stubbs Island Whale Watching. I love learning more about the amazing wildlife we have around here and being able to help people from all around the world share the experience.

I have a degree in Biology and when I’m not here I’m working with the Coast Guard.

Front of house and driving the smooth operations of the company

Up front & central to the smooth operations and earned global reputation is Discovery Marine Safaris founding owner/operator, Heike Garton (nee Wieske). She is supported by a small dedicated guest experience and operational support team. Together they ensure that day to day operations run smoothly and that the needs of our guests, travel partners and staff are met.

Heike is a true advocate of ethical whale watching tours here on Vancouver Island

As an owner of Discovery Marine Safaris my goal is to have our guests from all over the world fall in love with the beauty of our pristine environment and the amazing wildlife that can be viewed from a respectful distance “observing without disturbing” has always been our mantra.

Our team’s mission is to provide marine mammal education with the goal to encourage the protection of our precious oceans. YOUR adventure is our passion! And we want you to have the very best guest experience.

As for our tours: Having had 20+ years of experience in the Marine Tourism industry I have a clear picture of what our visitors expect when they sign up for one of our safaris. I want our guests to really feel our dedication to our guests experiences, from the moment of your inquiries, your reservations, the check-in and then the actual tour. We have our hearts in what we are doing and our goal is to make this safari the highlight of your trip!

Seeing a whale or Grizzly on a photo is nice but seeing them out in the wild, listing or even smelling them in their natural habitat…. that’s an experience nobody can ever take away from you . . . Can’t wait to share this with you!

Sarah truly believes in the value of sustainable tourism and an authentic experience

When I moved to the Island in 2001,
it didn’t take long to recognize what a special place it was. Before long I became actively involved in the Tourism Industry a journey that has followed our Alpine to Ocean lifestyle.

Since then, it has been my goal to play an active role in promoting the destination and ensuring visitors have the opportunity to see and learn about our wildlife and local history. While also enjoying the other seasonal activities and attractions in the area. It’s all part of a positive guest experience.

I feel extremely fortunate to be in a position where I can combine my marketing background, tourism industry experience, awe of our natural environment, its wildlife and my love of the ocean as part of the Discovery Marine Safaris family. I am living the dream as I am at my happiest watching wildlife or being on the ocean.

The greater Discovery Marine Safaris family includes:

Dominik Friede – Website & It
Born in Berlin, Germany, I fell in love with the great Canadian out-doors as soon as I got here. Two or more decades later, I still get as excited at seeing Orcas and Grizzlies as I did for the first time! It’s this excitement that keeps me attached to the business.

A permanent move to Calgary to join the Calgary Fire Department has not stopped me from keeping a close eye on the website and giving technical support to our team thanks to digital technology. After all, the website is often the first guest experience and introduction to the company.

Dominic is Heike’s nephew and not only did he work with us but he and his wife Stephanie were married in a small intimate ceremony onboard the Tenacious III on August 15, 2012. This unique nautical knot makes them a very special part of the Discovery Marine Safaris family. Contact us if a similar wedding is of interest to you.

CREWS TIP . . . Be warned this is not just a job it’s a passion! When joining our team be prepared to become part of an extended family that supports and cares for each other and loves what they do! Visit our FAQ’s for more info.