Part I – Yacht Club de France: History; Location; Racing; Library & Membership

Philippe COURT, Président,
Yacht Club de France

The Grande foyer of this highly prestigious club is adorned with trophies, cups, sculptures, paintings and half-hull models (of its members).

Yacht Club De France (YCF) was founded in 1867 during the Second French Empire, and according to Maritime Literature is one of the oldest yacht clubs in the world.
Admiral Rigault de Genouilly served as the club’s first Président from 1868 to 1870. According to Philippe Court, twelve of the 20 past-Présidents have been Admirals. By tradition, a strong bond unites the Navy and the Yacht Club de France. This relationship extends to marine trade, fishing and salvage values which are fundamental to the Yacht Club de France and its members.
The club remains faithful to its mission: “helping the development of recreational boating in all its forms; cruise as race, defending and promoting values of solidarity, courtesy and moral elegance that motivate all seafarers”.

Yacht Club De France was formed and established to be close to the “Power” or the “Institutions”. Avenue Foch has the reputation of being the most expensive residential neighborhood in Paris and one of the most expensive addresses in the world, as well as home to many grand palaces, including international ambassadors, Onassis and the Rothschild families and others.
In addition to its landlocked Paris headquarters, Yacht Club De France has developed close–ties with yacht clubs located on all coastlines of the hexagon and overseas.

During 1907 Union des Yachts Francais, Société d’Encouragement pour la Navigation de Plaisance and YCF merged and were recognized by the International Sailing Federation.

Apart from the trophies and cup races, YCF organizes the annual prestigious Coupe de France (the elite of the yachting world), the annual Autumn Cup, and together with the Yacht Club Italiano, the Giraglia Cup regatta from Saint Tropez.

The Coupe de France Cup is a beautiful ornate silver trophy,
designed by the jeweler of the Place Vendome Cardeilhac


Yacht Club De France is one of the world’s most distinguished and influential yacht clubs. The membership currently has over 500 members, (20% female and 80% male members).

A prospective candidate must have two sponsors in order to obtain membership admission. Ownership of a sailboat, large or small, civil recognition, civic and military, are not part of the election criteria, only a matter of adherence to the values of the club and the desire to “serve” to defend, at sea and ashore. The merit of the application is submitted by the sponsors to be reviewed by the Commission of the Interior, who shall in turn submit to the Council.
Distinguished Members include under the high patronage of the President of the Republic

Minister in charge of the Navy
Minister of Merchant Marine

HM Queen ELIZABETH II of England
HM King Juan Carlos of Spain l
HM King Constantin of Greece Il
HRH The Duke of Edinburgh
HSH Prince Albert II of MONACO
HIH the Princess NAPOLEON
HRH Prince Consort Henrik of DENMARK

Since its inception, the Yacht Club de France has been and continues to build, collect and preserve prestigious maritime heritage that illustrates the memory, and new maritime adventures of its members. The Heritage Commission is working to highlight these treasures.

Through text, photographs, and illustrations you will find many big names in sailing such as Marin-Marie, Alain Gerbault, Olivier de Kersauson Virginie Heriot, Commander Charcot Montpassant Guy, Eric Tabarly, Damien, the America’s Cup Jules Verne.

Part II (coming February, 2011)

Dining, Menu and Wine list
Taittinger is a staple on the wine list
Secrets from Chef Benoît Fleury