Cyprus Ski Club History

The CYPRUS SKI CLUB was formed in 1947 by a group of Ski Enthusiasts consisting of Cypriot and British Nationals as at the time Cyprus was part of the British Empire.

At the time, the Troodos resort was used only in the summer when the Government moved there for cooler conditions. The Pioneers of Skiing in Cyprus used to walk to Troodos in order to practice their Sport, as the roads were not cleared from the snow.

The first ski lift was constructed on the hill opposite the Jubilee Hotel, and the pylons of this Lift can be seen today. It was an ingenious contraption, powered by a Ford Diesel Engine, which through rollers, would circulate a continuous sisal marine rope, on which the Skiers would hook a belt they were wearing and would be dragged to the top where they released the special clip of the belt.

For accommodation the old Military hospital at Troodos was used with one dormitory for men, one for women, and a common room, which was used for eating and resting. The Ski Shop was housed in a wooden building, which was situated where the road ends today in the Government house complex above the Troodos - Prodromos road.

In the late 50s the British Military in Cyprus bought 2 small portable lifts, which they installed in the winter at the site where the Hera Lift is today situated. The one lift was installed starting from the Prodromos Road and would drag one person at the time. The second lift started from where the 1st lift finished and almost reached the top of the North Face.

With the Cyprus Independence from British rule in 1960, the Cyprus Ski Club had Cypriot and other Nationality members and the British Military and their dependants created the Near East Forces Ski Club (NEFSKI). The two Clubs co-operate until today.

The Cyprus Ski Club Committee, under the Presidency of George Michaelides changed the Emblem of the Cyprus Ski Club to what it is today and started work in order to find the funds to build a modern lift for the time as well as a shelter.

It took 6 years for the new Lift to the installed as agreements had to be made with the Forest Department to rent the land and format the piste, bring Electricity to the site and construct a small shelter. The North Face Ski Lift started operating in winter 1967 and is still in use today

There was a problem with the beginners as the North Face Piste was steep. As the Cyprus Ski Club was putting all its funds for the North Face Lift, discussions were held with NEFSKI about the installation of a small lift at Sun Valley. An agreement was made with NEFSKI - AMIANDOS MINES - DOPPELMAYER - and the CYPRUS SKI CLUB to construct the Sun Valley Lift by which NEFSKI would arrange the transportation, and supply the construction manpower as well as the operating manpower. The Amiandos Mines would make the foundations as well as the small hut near the lift. Doppelmayer would supply the equipment on a long term easy terms policy and the Cyprus Ski Club would rent the land and slowly pay off the Factory. At the same time a nissen hut was bought from the army and installed at Sun Valley. The hut is part of the existing facilities and houses part of the ski store.

In 1972 the Hermes Lift was installed and as there was a requirement in the valley for a shelter, the Royal Engineers helped build the Sun Valley 2 Cafeteria with materials, which were supplied by the Cyprus Ski Club.
In 1985, the Hera Lift was installed at the site of the old British Army portable lifts, thus this installation was the most friendly to the environment lift installation.
Since 1960 the Cyprus Ski Club was also the representative body of Cyprus in the International Winter Sports Organisations.
The first Ski Instructor, who voluntary worked for the Cyprus Ski Club, was Mr. Bo Lumberg from Sweden. He was in Troodos all through the winter of 1962 and trained members both in Alpine and Cross Country disciplines. In 1963 Cyprus, through the Cyprus Ski Club became a Member of the International Ski Federation.

The first International Ski Competition was held at the North Face Piste, in 1969 with participation of teams from 9 Countries.
In 1973, the FIS Congress was organised in Nicosia and Famagusta, with over 500 participants, which was the largest meeting held in Cyprus until that time. The Cyprus Government issued a Commemorative postage stamp at the time, and this is now a collector's valuable item.
In 1978, Cyprus participated for the first time in the Alpine World Championships in Garmish Partenkirchen GER with Lambros Lambrou, Demetris Papatheodotou as athletes and Paul Michaelides as Team Captain.
The Cyprus Flag was raised in Olympic games for the first time in the 1980 Winter Olympics in Lake Placid USA. Our Athletes were Philippos Xenophondos, Andreas Pilavakis and Lena Aristodemou. Team Captain was Mr. Nearchos Theodorou.
In 1992, the Cyprus Ski Federation was formed and the Competitive and International Powers of the Cyprus Ski Club have been transferred to this new body. The Cyprus Ski Club however is the owner and operator of the Troodos Ski Resort and offers its services to the Cyprus Ski Federation and its Clubs for training and competitions.
In 1989 the Charalambos Koukkoularides building was built on the Zeus Piste and houses the Dias Restaurant and the Conference Centre.
In 2003 the Cyprus Ski Club made yet another 1st in the Sport of Skiing. With the help of the International Ski Federation, the Cyprus Sports Organisation and Sufag, we installed the 1st Snow Making Machinery on the 35th Parallel.
The machinery consists of 3 Computerised movable snow guns, which have been installed on the Dias FIS homologated piste in Troodos.
In 2008 a 380m chairlift has replaced the old T-Bar ski lift, in the homologated slope of North Face.