The banner of the Lion of San Marco returns to wave to kick off the Venice Hospitality Challenge: the seventh edition of the Grand Prix sailing of the City of Venice was presented a few days ago at The Gritti Palace in Venice, which won last year.
The regatta will be held on Saturday 17 October with a new record of participants: fifteen Maxi Yachts will be lined up on the starting line of the only sailing competition that takes place in the heart of Venice.
Internationally renowned skippers will compete on the race course to compete for a prestigious victory and the now famous doge’s hat, specially made this year by the historic Murano glass factory Signoretto.
Born from an intuition of Mirko Sguario, creator of many famous Venetian regattas, the Venice Hospitality Challenge represents the combination of the Venetian maritime tradition and the will to relaunch the image of the Serenissima’s hospitality of excellence. The regatta then grew over time becoming a real “Grand Prix” on a city circuit that offers a unique scenario in the world. The event also this year involves the high Venetian hôtellerie which since the first edition has been alongside this event that brings together the passion for the sea and the love for this city and which, especially this year, has once again found the courage and strength to bring this event to life because Venice needs to share a positive image that transmits all its potential.
The last edition of the Venice Hospitality Challenge ended with the Overall and Class 1 victory of Way of Life – The Gritti Palace helmed by the Slovenian Gaspar Vincec. Second at the finish line in real time Gulf of Trieste – Hilton Molino Stucky, with an entirely female crew led by Francesca Clapcich and third Idrusa – Palazzina Grassi with the Olympic skipper Paolo Montefusco.
The welcome to the skippers and crews will be held on Friday 16 October at 7.30 pm at the San Clemente Palace Kempinski. The departure of the regatta, marked by the jets of the Panfido tugs, is scheduled for 1.30 pm on Saturday 17 October, followed by the award ceremony at the Zattere at the VYP Venice Yacht Pier at approximately 4.30 pm. As usual, the base of the fleet will be Marina Santelena while the public will be able to follow an unforgettable competition from the shores of the San Marco basin.
A single judge for a single regatta
To referee a high-level competition, a single international judge could not be missing: Alfredo Ricci, born in 1970, CONI Golden Star for sporting merit, Umpire Internazionale, International Judge, International Race Committee, the only Italian regatta official to have all and three qualifications. From the regatta fields of the America’s Cup and the Olympic Games, he will chair the Committee of the Venice Hospitality Challenge assisted by Emilia Barbieri and the National Judge Gianfranco Frizzarin aboard the Venice since the first edition.
Sailing and sustainability on the same wavelength
The objective shared by the Municipality of Venice, the Yacht Club Venezia and the participating hotels is the commitment to sustainability. With particular reference to the protection of marine environments, the Municipal Administration, the Venice Hospitality Challenge and the Yacht Club Venezia have signed the Charta Smeralda, the ethical protocol of the One Ocean Foundation aimed at spreading awareness at an international level on the issues and problems inherent in marine ecosystem. This seventh edition will also see the GFG Style Vision 2030 prototype car, a full electric 4×4 hypersuv designed by Fabrizio and Giorgetto Giugiaro, positioned in the San Marco basin, with buoy functions to mark the course of the regatta. The safety of the crews will be guaranteed by the masks made by Energia Pura with materials obtained from fishing nets and PET waste, certified and completely recyclable.
Everyone knows that Venice in its history had to face the plague and epidemics of various kinds
evokes Mirko Sguario, President of the Venice Yacht Club and organizer of the event
Yet, despite everything, the city did not stop. In us Venetians, difficulties and courage have never ceased. To honor our history and our deep-rooted traditions, with all the realities involved, we will do our utmost for the best outcome of the regatta in full compliance with current regulations and with all the necessary precautions to fight and win this battle, united but in responsible way. In 2021 the Serenissima will celebrate its 1600 years of history which has rooted an unparalleled maritime tradition in the soul of the Venetians. In moments of difficulty Venice has always looked up to the sea to rediscover its soul and its strength. And this is why I have never lost hope of being able to create, this year too, the best expression of sailing, a sport that better than any other represents the essence of this city
Venice is proud to host the seventh edition of the sailing Grand Prix
declares the Mayor Luigi Brugnaro
An event that has been able to grow internationally in recent years and that has always had the full support of this municipal administration that has wanted to be particularly present also for this edition. The city that in recent months has had to overcome dark and difficult moments, also shows with this event its desire for rebirth and its great resilient spirit. An event that brings the best of international hulls and sailors to Venice thus becomes a sort of real prelude to the second edition of the Venice Boat Show scheduled from 29 May to 6 June 2021 in the Arsenale spaces. Unique opportunities to celebrate and give prestige to that “people of the sea” and those excellence of Made in Italy in the nautical field that will always find a home here in Venice. For the city and for all of us, it is our pride to strengthen this already close bond with the Venice Hospitality Challenge. Good wind to all crews
The Councilor for Tourism Simone Venturini intervened underlining the importance of this indispensable event for the tourist and social development of the city which historically has always had a privileged relationship with the sea confirmed, also in a future perspective, by the success of the Boat Show from Venice.
The Venice Hospitality Challenge 2020 benefits from the patronage of the Municipality of Venice and has the support of the main partners Salone Nautico, Generali Italia, Mastercard, Bisol1542, Dolomia, Energia Pura and Vetreria Davide Signoretto. Sustainability Partner of the event is One Ocean Foundation which is joined by the Media Partnership of Boats, Excellence Magazine Luxury, Venezia Made in Veneto, Assonautica, Wonder World and Wonder Cortina. For the important collaboration we thank CMV Panfido, VYP Venice Yacht Pier, Portodimare, Alilaguna, Venezia Unica and Ve.La.
These are the participants in the Venice Hospitality Challenge 2020: Alajmo Ristorante Quadri, Bauer Palazzo, Ca ‘Sagredo Hotel, SINA Centurion Palace, Belmond Hotel Cipriani, San Clemente Palace Kempinski, Hotel Danieli a Luxury Collection Hotel, Hotel Excelsior Venice Lido Resort, The Gritti Palace a Luxury Collection Hotel Venice, Hilton Molino Stucky Venice, Hotel Londra Palace, Palazzina and The St. Regis Venice. The maxi yachts combined with the hotels are joined by the Moro di Venezia which will race for the Venice Boat Show while New Zealand Endeavor Covid19 will compete with a crew of Venetian doctors who have fought the pandemic.