The 9th ICOYC European and South American Conference was held March 9 – 11, 2023, at the Gstaad Yacht Club in Switzerland. This event was incredibly well-attended, with more than 40 attendees plus partners. Nearly every European and South American club was represented, along with five North American clubs, two Asia/Pacific clubs, and two “guest” yacht clubs.
The Gstaad Yacht Club were wonderful hosts, offering an exceptional meeting space and terrific meals, both at the club and beyond. Attendees were even treated to a magnificent ski lift ride to enjoy lunch at the Eagle Club.
The conference opened midday on Thursday, March 9, with the traditional flag-raising and an introduction by Commodore Manrico Iachia of the Gstaad Yacht Club. This was followed by the introduction of and presentation by the ICOYC’s new Member Clubs: Coral Reef Yacht Club, St. Petersburg Yacht Club, Salinas Yacht Club, Monte Real Club de Yates de Baiona and the Crusing Club of America. The conference then proceeded with interesting panels on yacht club issues, followed by the presentation by Gstaad YC titled “Why a Yacht Club Without Water?”
Friday and Saturday were filled with expert panel discussions and presentations on various yacht club issues. The discussions were extremely insightful, with club leaders coming away with new ideas for their clubs. The final day of the conference ended with a presentation by Royal Swedish Yacht Club and Royal Vancouver Yacht Club on the next European Conference and World Forum, respectively. The planning for both is well under way, and all were encouraged to attend both events.
The final event was a gala dinner at the Gstaad Yacht Club, complete with a gourmet dinner and dancing to the tunes of a DJ. Many of the conference attendees took to the dance floor and stayed until closing time. All in all, the conference was expertly planned and executed, and was a great success.