NAVY HISTORY CHINA FLEET CLUB
A SAILORS LANDMARK!
HISTORY OF THE CHINA FLEET CLUB IN HONG KONG!
The China Fleet Country Club has a remarkable history.
Here’s the basic timeline of one of my favorite places. 🙂
1901 – The mudflats of Victoria Harbor were bought for $2.50 per square foot by a Hong Kong businessman who began charging for tipping rubble from the growing colony.
1903 – The land began selling for $25.00 per square foot. Short of buyers for the land, the businessman joined with the personnel of the Royal Navy’s China Fleet to raise funds for a Royal Naval Canteen.
1929 – The canteen proved to be extremely successful and was soon demolished to make way for a new building.
1933 – Using the club funds and with a generous loan from the Hong Kong and Shanghai Bank; Admiral Kelly, Commander in Chief, China Station, laid the foundation stone for the seven-story China Fleet Club building. For the men who served on the China Station “The Old Blue” as it was known provided a place for refreshment and decent accommodation away from their crowded ships.
1941 – During the battle for Hong Kong, the Japanese occupied the Club using it as the Navy HQ.
1945 – The Club was extensively refurbished and returned to its former use after the Royal Marines and Royal Navy liberated the colony.
1950-53 – During the Korean War, the Club became a major rest and recreation center for the UK and allied Sailors.
1959-73 – During the Vietnam war allied and American Sailors used the club extensively between tours of duty boosting club profits.
1980 – Land values escalated and the trustees sold the air space over the Club. A developer paid for temporary facilities while building a new luxury club on the first nine floors with 14 more floors of office space above.
1985 – Fleet House opened and because of the agreement to hand back Hong Kong to the Chinese in 1997 the search began for a suitable successor to the China Fleet Club in the UK.
1986 – A proposal to build the China Fleet Country Club at Saltash in Cornwall was put to the Hong Kong Sailors Committee and Trustees.
1987 – The feasibility study was approved by the Hong Kong Sailors committee, the land was purchased and design of the complex began.
1989 – Building work began on the 180-acre Saltash site.
1991 – The new China Fleet Country Club was officially opened on June 1st along with its prestigious golf course. The designer of the golf course was Dr. Martin Grant Hawtree who worked on the controversial course for billionaire Donald Trump in Scotland.
1992 – On 30 November 1992 the Hong Kong China Fleet Club closed its doors for the last time ready for the Chinese takeover of Hong Kong. Me in middle 1967 USS WHITFIELD CTY LST 1169 HONG KONG
7 thoughts on “NAVY HISTORY, CHINA FLEET CLUB”
Visited in ‘81 when we pulled into Hong Kong.
R&R in 68, Station ship in 69, R&R in 70. Good times
Spent one month station ship aboard USS Haverfield. Loved the China Fleet Club.
I was forward deployed on the USS Sterett CG31 home ported in Subic Bay. I believe We made at least 7 trips to HK. I loved the club and the exchange up stairs.
Vietnam on the USS Long Beach CGN-9. WE STOPPED in Hong Kong several times. Got some great deals at the CFC. GOOD BEER TOO!
Well how do you do???
Pulled into Honk Kong several times during 2 Wes pac cruises 1966 to 68. This was a favorite port of mine. Favorite bar was Hong Kong Playboy Club. In Feb 1968 I celebrated the birth of my son there!
The China Fleet ub was great. I ordered a cheeseburger and fries there. I was surprised that instead of a bunch it was on white bread with the crust trimmed off to match the hamburger. Still tasted good!