A tip of the hat to the Detroit Yacht Club: The 146-year-old club in it 91-year-old building marks a relatively minor anniversary today. Forty years ago, the club was registered as a historical site by the state of Michigan, and had its state historical marker erected.
Originally founded as an exclusive yachting society for white, male, Anglo-Saxon, Christian industrialists, the yacht club is much more inclusive these days. That said, a "yacht club" is still what it implies: a place for people of certain means, although social memberships for younger folks who want to enjoy the facility's gym, pool, bar and grounds are more affordable than you might think. We've been fortunate enough to have some friends who are members, and it's a pleasant oasis during the summertime.
It's a cliché of life in Detroit to talk about our "jewels," but the club is a treasure indeed. When we dropped in 10 years ago
, we asked then-general manager Tom Trainor to put a price tag on the place. He laughed at us and said, “Invaluable. There’s Pewabic tile all over the building, there’s marble all over the building, there’s wood that was brought over from other countries to help construct it, when you could afford to do those types of things. Now you really couldn’t replicate the building. Well, you could, but it would just be astronomical.”