Culture & Club History

Culture & Club History

Welcome To The Alfreds

Royal Prince Alfred Yacht Club

Our Vision, Values and Mission

Our Vision

Our vision is to provide a world-class yachting facility that attracts and involves members in the enjoyment of the sport of yachting and sailing. 

Our Mission

To achieve our mission we will: 

  • Offer comprehensive programs in racing, cruising, youth development and sail training.
  • Provide a world-class marina, waterfront and clubhouse facility.
  • At all times provide a standard of excellence in service to members.
  • Interact with industry bodies such as Yachting Australia.
  • Provide a sense of belonging and ‘Club spirit’ for our members and their guests.
  • Provide a motivating working environment for our staff.
  • Proactively contribute to supporting the external community.

Our Values

‘One Club’
The Club embraces and supports the diverse sailing interests of its members.  Unity across all groups is paramount to the success of the Club, which offers a diverse range of sailing programs, clubhouse, marina and ship repair facilities.  

The Club expects the highest levels of individual and corporate integrity.  Compliance with the Club’s Constitution, it’s by-laws, policies and State & Federal legislation are paramount.  The Club’s assets will be preserved and safeguarded. 

Openness & Transparency
Decision-making processes should be open, transparent and rational.  Decisions are made for the common good of the membership rather than individual members.

All actions, decisions and communication should be respectful of all members, staff, the community and the environment.

The safety of our members, guests, staff and visitors is fundamental both on land and water. 

Delivery of quality service across all levels (internally and externally) is vital to the success of the Club. We welcome challenges to existing processes to foster continual improvement and a drive to excellence.

Fairness & Equity
The Club promotes an environment that fosters fairness, equity and respect for social and cultural diversity.  Everyone is to be treated fairly and equitably regardless of their status within the Club.

Proud History
All stakeholders will preserve, respect and contribute to the history that has created the Royal Prince Alfred Yacht Club since 1867.

Success is valued and celebrated across all activities within the Club.

Community Support

The Club and its members support the following organisations:
  • Homes for Heros
  • Marine Rescue NSW
  • RSL Active
  • Sailability Crystal Bay
  • Soldier On
  • St John of God Hospitals

Flag and Yacht Etiquette

Flag and Yacht Etiquette are derived from the custom and usage of Royal Navy Members. Royal Prince Alfred Yacht Club wishes to maintain similar high standards of seamanship and good manners.

1. All Australian Ships are entitled to wear The Australian Red Ensign.

2. RPAYC Yachts may wear the Defaced Blue Ensign provided that;

  • The owner has an admiralty warrant to fly the Blue Ensign.
  • The warrant is aboard the yacht at the time.
  • The owner is on board or in effective control of the yacht (eg. ashore in the vicinity).
  • The RPAYC burgee is worn.

3. Colours in Harbour
The Burgee and Ensign should be hoisted at 0800 hours and lowered at sunset. The RPAYC requires ships to lower all colours at this time.

4. At Sea
The Ensign should be worn in daylight, within sight of land, or when in company with other yachts or ships. The burgee is not required to be lowered at sunset.

5. When Racing
Burgees and Ensigns must not be worn. Racing flags should be flown from the backstay in all RPAYC races. Yachts having retired should wear the burgee and ensign.

6. Salutes
The Red and Blue Ensigns should be dipped to warships of all nations and to The Royal Prince Alfred Yacht Club Flag Officers. The White Ensign is never dipped except when returning a salute.

Archives & History

It is known that a club called the Mosquito Yacht Club was founded in 1856. On Tuesday, 15th October 1867, an advertisement was placed in The Sydney Morning Herald – “Mosquito Yacht Club – Boatowners wishing to join please meet at McGrath’s at 8 tonight.” The advertised meeting duly took place at Punch & McGraths Hotel in King Street and, with Mr. T. Strickland in the chair, it was decided to form a yacht club to be called “Prince Alfred Yacht Club.”

The name Prince Alfred was adopted to commemorate Prince Alfred’s forthcoming visit to Sydney. In January 1868, His Royal Highness, Prince Alfred, The Duke of Edinburgh, in command of HMS Galatea sailed into Port Jackson. He was met by two lines of yachts from the Royal Sydney Yacht Squadron and The Prince Alfred Yacht Club, between which HMS Galatea passed.

In August 1911, The Prince Alfred Yacht Club was given permission by King George V to use the prefix “Royal”.

The Club originally occupied premises in Moore Street, Sydney, known today as Martin Place and it eventually moved into 51 Castlereagh Street. In 1956, the Club purchased property in Rowe Street and a new building was built on the site.

In 1919, the Committee decided that Sydney Harbour was becoming too congested for yacht racing and a sub-committee was formed to inspect land that would be suitable for yacht racing in the Pittwater area.

As a result, Green Point was purchased for this purpose for an amount of 650 pounds. Apart from a few tree-planting ceremonies, the land remained practically unused until a group of enthusiasts, who had built Jubilee class yachts, banded together and built a boatshed, slipway and pontoon to cater for their needs. The Governor of New South Wales, the Honorary Commodore of the Club, Lord Wakehurst, officially opened the current premises on 17th December, 1938. No less than 22 Jubilees started in the race held that day.

Unfortunately, during World War II yachting in Pittwater and Sydney Harbour was disbanded. After the war, in 1947, the boatshed was increased in size, moorings were laid in Crystal Bay and Pittwater again came to life.

In 1956, a caretaker’s cottage was erected adjacent to the boatshed; a liquor licence obtained and a small bar built by converting four lockers in the boatshed. Four sheep were kept on Green Point for use as mobile lawn mowers and a cattle ramp was erected at the front entrance to contain the sheep within the property.

The slipway and boat storage area were re-built in 1957 by the use of voluntary labour and the racing fleet on Pittwater was increasing in leaps and bounds. The Club purchased the adjoining property, Moonbar, on the western side of Mitala Street and converted the building into a Clubhouse. This land, previously owned by Mr. Ashley Buckingham, became known as Buckingham Palace, and it was a popular venue for club members, with a lawn area and in-built swimming pool.

In 1962, the Club dredged the north western side of Crystal Bay and reclaimed an area between Moonbar and Green Point. Marina A, accommodating some 52 vessels, was constructed from the dredged area. At the same time, a hardstand area was established in front of the cottage to accommodate ten 5.5 metre yachts.

Yacht racing on Pittwater in the sixties was gaining momentum. Moonbar, although extended, was unable to cope with the influx of members and guests, so it was decided that a new clubhouse should be built on Green Point to cater for the larger patronage. On 15th May 1968, probably the club’s most important function was held. His Royal Highness, Prince Phillip, the Duke of Edinburgh visited to lay a foundation stone for the present clubhouse. Unfortunately due to torrential rain and a 60 knot southerly, Prince Phillip laid the stone by remote control from Moonbar. Regardless, it was a memorable day for members when this royal “sailor” joined them for lunch.

1969/70 saw significant progress in the club’s development. Pittwater was booming, the city premises were wanted by developers and an opportunity arose for the city club to join The Sydney Club, formerly The Millions Club. By selling the city property and developing Pittwater, it meant that members using the city premises would be happily accommodated almost next door at the Sydney Club and development could continue at Pittwater. The Sydney Club was located at 9 Rowe Street, Sydney, and all RPAYC members were automatically yachting members of the Sydney Club.

The Sydney Club had excellent bar and dining facilities available for lunch and dinner and RPAYC members were welcome to join in any of its activities such as golf and theatre parties. The Sydney Club ceased when it amalgamated with the University and Schools Club, which is now situated at 60 Phillip Street, Sydney.

The RPAYC Clubhouse was erected on Green Point together with four marina arms on the western side of Green Point and additional hardstand areas.

Reciprocal Yacht Clubs

The International and Australian reciprocal yacht clubs are as follows:

United Kingdom

  • Poole Harbour Yacht Club Poole, Dorset (
  • Royal Motor Yacht Club, Poole, Dorset (
  • Royal Dart Yacht Club, Dartmouth, Devon (
  • Royal Northern & Clyde Club, Helensburgh, Dunbarton (
  • Royal Solent Yacht Club, Yarmouth, Isle of Wight (
  • Royal Southampton Yacht Club, Southampton, Hampshire (
  • Royal Southern Yacht Club, Hampshire (
  • Royal Thames Yacht Club, London (
  • Royal Corinthian Yacht Club, Burnam on Crouch, Essex (
  • Medway Yacht Club, Lower Upnor, Kent (
  • Royal Temple Yacht Club, Ramsgate, Kent (
  • Royal Northumberland Yacht Club, Blyth, Northumberland, (
  • Royal Irish Yacht Club, Dun Laoghaire, Dublin (
  • Royal St George Yacht Club, Dun Laoghaire, Dublin (


  • Norddeutscher Regatta Verein, Hamburg, Germany (
  • Yacht Club of Cannes, Port Palm Beach, Cannes, France (
  • Yacht Club of Greece, Piraeus, Greece (

North America

  • Balboa Yacht Club, Newport, California, USA (
  • St. Francis Yacht Club, San Francisco, USA (
  • Eau Gallie Yacht Club, Florida, USA (
  • Royal Victoria Yacht Club, Victoria, BC, Canada (


  • One 15 Marina Club, Sentosa Cove, Singapore (
  • Republic Singapore Yacht Club, Singapore (
  • Royal Hong Kong Yacht Club, Hong Kong (
  • Raffles Marina, Singapore (
  • Hebe Haven Yacht Club, Hong Kong (
  • Australia/New Zealand/Pacific region
  • Southport Yacht Club, Main Beach, QLD (
  • Cruising Yacht Club of South Australia, North Haven, SA (
  • Royal South Australian Yacht Squadron, SA (
  • Royal Yacht Club of Victoria, Williamstown, Victoria (
  • Royal Brighton Yacht Club, Brighton, Victoria (
  • Sandringham Yacht Club, Sandringham, Victoria (
  • Derwent Sailing Squadron, Sandy Bay, TAS (
  • Royal Yacht Club of Tasmania, Sandy Bay, TAS (
  • Swan Yacht Club, Perth, WA (
  • Gosford Sailing Club, NSW (
  • Lake Macquarie Yacht Club, NSW (
  • Royal New Zealand Yacht Squadron, Auckland, New Zealand (
  • Bucklands Beach Yacht Club, Auckland, New Zealand (
  • Cercle Nautique Caledonien, Noumea, New Caledonia (