Restaurant: +27 (0)11 805 3040 OR Club Office: +27 (0)11 805 3039 (Please note this is diverted to Cell No: 083 412 0161)

About Us

The Early Years

Following a preliminary discussion amongst Swiss on the 28th January 1890 to form a Swiss Society, a foundation meeting was held on the 4th February 1890 when a Committee was formed and it was decided to call the Society “Helvetia”

The aims of the Society were defined to make sure that the Swiss in Johannesburg meet, get to know each other and spend their leisure times together. It was also discussed to possibly form a Choir and to assist any Swiss in trouble or need to advise and help!

The first Chairperson of the Society was Mr. L.W. Wedekind and the total Club Membership was 16. On the 19th of February already they opened a Passive Membership for friends of Swiss as well as Member’s wives.

These early days also saw regular change of Chairpersons mainly due to the fact the Swiss of the time seemed to have stayed only temporarily and it was therefore decided to elect or re-confirm a Chairperson every quarter. – can you imagine this now!

The first Swiss National Day Dinner Dance was held on the 1st August 1891, also celebrating Switzerland’s 600th Birthday. 1891 also saw the first efforts to create a Choir, which sadly only lasted until February 1893. The first Constitution was formally accepted in 1892.

In 1894 the investigation to form a Rifle Club started and intensive budgeting including the procurement of Rifles from Switzerland took place. The Swiss Club which by now had grown to 35 Members was prepared to provide the necessary credit for this venture. However, a huge amount of “red tape” and regulations which, although eventually approved, the import of the guns was dashed.

The Wynberg Era

With many years of extremely hard times including talks of dissolving the Club, which in the end was quashed, in 1936 the Club was now so well established that they could purchase the Wynberg property which lasted well into the late sixties. Their hard labours resulted in tennis courts, a small building, a small-bore shooting range which became a boccia alley and a small park. In 1940 a skittling alley was added and in 1957 a pool was officially inaugurated. The Wynberg property was sold in 1969 or 1970?

The Halfway House Facilities

By the end of 1971, detailed plans for the current site were on hand and through huge fund raising secured by Industry as well as individuals, building of the Club House and a Management accommodation started in 1972 with the Membership at the end of that year standing at 569.

The official opening of the new Club was on the 10th March 1973.

Also in 1973 a Swiss Bank loan secured the ordering of two automatic skittling alleys and thanks to a substantial interest free loan from the Council, which years later almost entirely turned into a donation, the building could be implemented in 1974 with the official inauguration of the alleys on the 6th October 1974. By the end of 1975 the Membership had risen to 885 to which 18 Company Corporate Members were added and by the end of 1976 the Membership was as high as 972!

Throughout the years as many as 15 Sub-sections formed part of the Club in the form of:

Amicale Suisse Romande, GSDF (German Shepherd Dog Federation of SA), Pro Ticino / Pro Grischun (Boccia Club), Swiss Riding Club, Swiss Tennis Club (Roger Federer’s beginnings!), Swiss Soccer Club, Swiss Wine Circle, Swiss Rifle Club, GSNA (Gesellschaft Schweizer Nationalspiele), Midrand Country Striders, Swiss Festival Club (Afro Gugge), Swiss Ladies Club, Swiss Skittling Club, Senior Swiss Circle “Oldies”, Swiss Choir.

Sadly though by now this number has substantially reduced with many of the Sub-sections no longer in existence, many for reasons of natural attrition and being unable to entice “new blood”

And The Current

Following discussions at AGM’s as well as EGM’s from about 2003 to 2005 about the future of the Club, the 2005 AGM approved the sale of some ¾ of the land. After the successful sale, a rather lengthy but critical AGM took place in April 2006 where after huge deliberations, an agreement was eventually reached to spend the proceeds of the sale of the land on the upgrade and renovations of the Club House facilities. A special task force was created to deal with this rather huge project which culminated in 2008 with the current facilities.

A fantastic outcome providing a fully licensed Restaurant called “The Courier” with a large variety of different culinary treats, a small-scale conference as well as special function facility for everyone to enjoy with Members getting special discounted rates for such events.

OPEN TIMES

The Swiss Country Club JHB is open to the public Tuesdays to Sundays, so come and visit this beautiful venue for a Lunch/Dinner or a Sundowner with incredible views into JHB. For enquiries and/or bookings you can contact Devan Govender on 079 519 3563.