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Deauville (Municipality, Calvados, France)

Last modified: 2021-07-01 by ivan sache
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[Flag]         [Flag]

Flag of Deauville, current and former versions - Images by Olivier Touzeau, 20 September 2020, and Arnaud Leroy, 6 January 2004, respectively

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Presentation of Deauville

The municipality of Deauville (3,968 inhabitants in 2008; 357 ha) is a posh sea resort located on the Channel.

Deauville was originally a tiny village (113 inhabitants in 1825) called Auvilla or Dosville. The village was built on a hill set back from the sand beach; at that time, sea was considered as dangerous and fishers were at the bottom of the social scale.
In the middle of the 19th century, the English fad of sea bathing reached the coast of Normandy. The coast of Calvados was less windy and rocky than the coast of Pays de Caux, in Upper-Normandy, where the first sea resorts had been built. Members of the upper classes in Paris decided to build sea resorts on the coast of Calvados, which was the nearest friendly coast. Some of these resorts were built in existing fishers' villages, such as Houlgate and Trouville.

Deauville, however, was built from scratch by a consortium led by the Duke of Morny, Prince Demidof and Dr. Oliffe.
Charles, Duke of Morny (1811-1865) was the natural son of Queen Hortense (1783-1837, the wife of Louis Bonaparte, King of Holland) and of Count Auguste Flahaut de la Billarderie (1785-1870, Napoléon I's aide-de-camp, and, probably Talleyrand's natural son). Hortense was Napoléon III's mother, therefore Morny was the Emperor's uterine half-brother. Morny was the main henchman of the coup of 2 December 1851 that ended the Second Republic and prepared the proclamation of the Second Empire. He was appointed Minister of the Interior soon after the coup, and, subsequently, President of the Legislative Corps (1854-1865), strongly influencing the political evolution of the Second Empire. Morny, involved in all the industrial and financials operations set up under the Second Empire (Morny est dans l'affaire, more or less, "It's Morny's business"), was portrayed, as the "Duke of Mora", by the writer Alphonse Daudet (1840-1897) in his novel Le nabab (The tycoon).
Anatoli Nikolaiewitsch Demidof, Prince of San Donato (1812-1870) married Princess Mathilde Bonaparte (1820-1904, whose brilliant salon was frequented by Marcel Proust, who gave a very benevolent portray of the old princess in À la recherche du temps perdu).
Doctor Oliffe was physician at the British embassy in Paris.

The consortium selected the site of Deauville because of its sand beach and the availability of land to build a horsetrack close to the beach. The building of the resort started in 1860; Deauville became rapidly the prefered sea resort of the upper classes of the Empire and all Europe. In 1918, Mayor Eugène Cornuche increased and modernized the town. The boardwalk (planches) was built on the beach in 1923, using azobé timber, from an African wood tree (Lophira alata Banks ex Gaertn.) with a specific mauvish brown specific color. The airfield of Deauville was inaugurated in 1930.

Deauville is still today the absolute chic sea resort in Normandy. Evil tongues nicknamed the posh town le 21e arrondissement de Paris (the 21st district of Paris, by reference to the 20 administrative districts of the capital) or "a Paris suburb in an operette Normandy".
The Deauville season begins in July with the "Grand Prix de Deauville" horse race. Other main events of the season are the "Deauville Yearling Sale" (last week of August), the polo "Deauville Gold Cup" (last Sunday of August), and the "Deauville American Film Festival" (autumn).
The beach of Deauville was immortalized by Claude Lelouch's movie Un homme et une femme (A Man and a Woman, 1966), starring Anouk Aimée and Jean-Louis Trintignant, and especially by the film musical score Chabadabada, written by Francis Lai (music) and Pierre Barouh (lyrics).

Ivan Sache, 6 January 2004

Flag of Deauville

The flag of Deauville (photo, photo) is blue with the municipal logo, which was adopted around 2008, in white. The former flag of Deauville was white with the former municipal logo.

Olivier Touzeau & Ivan Sache, 20 March 2021

Traditional flag of Deauville


Traditional lag of Deauville - Image by Arnaud Leroy, 6 January 2004

The traditional flag of Deauville, once hoisted on the Europa traffic circle, is white with the municipal coat of arms, "Azure on a pale argent between four hands two in dexter in pale bend sinisterwise and as many in sinister also in pale bendwise or three towers in pale gules a chief gules a lion passant gardant or", crowned and placed over an anchor, was hoisted on the Europa traffic circle. The flag is very similar in design to the flag of neighboring Trouville-sur-Mer.
The coat or arms of Deauville, adopted in 1878, was previoulyused, chief excluded, by the Brancas, local lords in the 18th century.

Ivan Sache, 6 January 2004

Yacht clubs

Deauville Yacht Club

[Flag]         [Burgee]

Flag and burgee of DYC - Images by Ivan Sache, 13 December 2011

The first port basin was built in Deauville in 1866. In 1878, the Société des Régates de Deauville-Trouville organized a regatta entered by 48 boats. In 1926, the aircraft manufacturer Louis Bréguet (1880-1955), an expert yachtman who had won a medal in the Paris Olympic Games in 1924, founded the Comité de la Société des Régates de Deauville. With the support of the Société des Régates du Havre and of the Cercle de la Voile de Paris, Bréguet transformed in 1928 the Comité into the Deauville Yacht Club (DYC, website).
DYC had to be recreated at the end of the Second World, following the destruction of the Deauville marina and of the DYC clubhouse. The club organized in 1949 the "Croisière Internationale du Pavillon d'Or" to celebrate its refoundation. In 1962, the DYC created the Cowes-Deauville race.
Twinned with Cowes, Deauville is still one of the main centers of European chic yachting.

The flag of DYC (photo, 2009) is quartered blue-red with a yellow leopard in canton.
The burgee of DYC is a triangular version of the flag, with the cross skewed to the hoist.

Ivan Sache, 13 December 2011

Deauville Sailing Club


Burgee of DSC - Images by Ivan Sache, 13 December 2011

The Deauville Sailing Club (DSC, website) was founded on 5 March 2011.
The flag and burgee of the club are prescribed (but not described!) in Article 11 of the club's By-Laws, as follows:

The members of the DSC shall fly the triangular pennant [...] at sea, except abroad, where the burgee should be replaced by the courtesy flag.
The flag [étendard], square in shape, shall be hoisted over the clubhouse.

The burgee of DSC (photos) is divided by a chevron red-blue-white, with the letters "D" (white), "S" (blue) and "C" (white) in the respective fields.

IVan Sache, 27 February 2012