As a yacht club with 185 years of history, RSYC proudly notes that the first regatta ever held in Singapore took place in 1834. One of the famous regattas organised in 1866 and reported in the Illustrated London News magazine was a 28-mile race among four well-known racing yachts. It was won by “Ganymede”, a 36-ton cutter owned by William Read, a former commodore of Singapore Yacht Club, beating J.L. Kirby’s 18-ton schooner, the “Picciola” after almost 4 ½ hours. An oil painting of that race hangs in the RSYC Chartroom today.
When the SYC built its first clubhouse in 1920 at Trafalgar Street (now part of PSA’s huge container terminal at Tanjong Pagar), regular regattas were held by keen sailors off Singapore’s harbour. SYC morphed into the Royal Singapore Yacht Club from 1922 to 1967, and took its present name shortly after Singapore’s independence. For a number of years during the decade of the 1990s, regattas were not organised due to RSYC being preoccupied with securing a new site for its third clubhouse, completed in August 1999. To commemorate the official opening of the present clubhouse and marina in June 2000, the annual RSYC Regatta was revived on three consecutive Sundays in July 2000.