The Nassau Yacht Club was founded on September 9, 1931 to promote yacht building and yacht racing and to provide a clubhouse and marina facilities for the enjoyment of members. Founding members were Roland Symonette, Charles Albury, Charles Arteaga, Roy Arteaga, John Knowles, Harry Knowles, J.E. Lewless, Herbert Mckinney, Dudley Sands, Everette Sands, Stafford Sands, William Saunders, and Joseph Thompson.
The Bahamas has a distinguished sailing history, having produced several Olympic medallists and world champions over the years.
Most of these great Bahamian sailors have been associated with the Nassau Yacht Club, which was founded in 1931 to further the sport of yacht racing. The NYC became the country's first National Yachting Authority in 1952.
Fourteen charter members (led by Roland Symonette, who also became the country's first premier) acquired the old Tom Thumb miniature golf facility on East Bay Street. Morton designed the clubhouse, which was built in 1932 and upgraded over the years.
In that same year the NYC introduced Star Class racing to the Bahamas, and hosted its first Star Class championship in 1934. NYC members Roland Symonette and Basil Kelly went on to win the 1937 Star Class World Championship.
The NYC co-founded the Miami-Nassau Ocean Race in 1934 and in 1965 helped establish the Southern Ocean Racing Conference, which took over management of this prestigious event
Club stalwarts Durward Knowles and Sloane Farrington competed in the 1948 Olympics held in Torquay, England. Knowles represented the Bahamas and the NYC at seven more Olympiads, bringing home the first Bahamian gold medal from the 1964 Tokyo Olympics, where he sailed with Cecil Cook.
Snipe Class and 5.5 Metre racing were introduced to the Bahamas by the NYC in the 1950's. The club hosted the 5.5 Metre World Championships in 1967, 1976, 1981, 1992 and 2008.
Leading club members like Bobby Symonette, Basil Kelly, Sloane Farrington, Carleton Mitchell, Kenneth Albury and Don Pritchard competed and won medals in many world championship events over the past 70-plus years.
And three former NYC Commodores (Bobby Symonette, Percy Knowles and Sir Durward Knowles) were selected as judges by the International Yacht Racing Union.