Port Washington Library Local History Center

Yacht Clubs: Then and Now

pwpl.mason.r0129Summer is finally upon us. I was reminded of this fact when I stumbled upon this image from the library’s Mason Collection which captures a young woman’s graceful dive into a pool. On July 17th, 1960, photographer Stanely Mason ventured out from his studio on Main Street and photographed this woman at a swim meet at the Riviera Bath Club. The club was part of the Riviera Restaurant located on 43 Orchard Beach Blvd in Manorhaven. Built in 1925 and known originally as the North Hempstead Yacht Club, then later as the Columbia Yacht Club, it eventually became the Riviera. Famous crooners of the day, including Perry Como made appearances there, arriving by boat from the city. Unfortunately, the Riviera Restaurant and Bath Club burned down on January 9, 1974 in a fire whose cause is unknown.

Nowadays, clubs such as the Port Washington Yacht Club, Manhasset Bay Yacht Club, and the North Shore Yacht Club continue the long time tradition of creating social communities in Port Washington. Since the early 1900s, these clubs have marked the area as symbols of affluence where the wealthy have the opportunity to not only boat together but to swim in pools, play tennis, attend dinners, parties and lectures. From the early days to the present, these places come alive in the summertime providing their members an exclusive opportunity to relax, socialize and enjoy the great outdoors along the bay.

If you are interested in discovering more about this subject, the library has additional material on the various yacht clubs including old postcards which are available online. https://www.flickr.com/photos/pwpl/sets/72157621386835082/

Additionally, the library has inherited the records of the Knickerbocker Yacht Club, a 135 year old club located in Port, which shut down in 2009. View the digital collection at: https://www.flickr.com/photos/pwpl/collections/72157624969389409/

July 1st, 2014 · No Comments · Mason Collection