Weddings at the Gibson Island Club
In my ongoing self-education of places less than 30 minutes from me that I’ve never visited in my entire life, this week took me to Gibson Island. I have a good friend from Pasadena, MD who often referenced the posh and private island on the Western Shore of Maryland but I’ve never actually been there. With Rivion filming the impossibly sweet and lovely Andrew and Kaleigh wedding at The Gibson Island Club I thought I would look into the history of Gibson Island a bit.
The island as it stands today can be credited to a handful of entities, most notably Stuart Symington along with his brother Thomas. Stuart was a Baltimore judge and businessman and he purchased Gibson Island in 1921 for $165,000 which today would buy you 2 years of community college. He had a vision of a private summer community akin Newport, Rhode Island with 423 private residences and two 18-hole golf courses. In fact, the impetus for pursuing this venture was his displeasure at the quality of and the long wait times at Baltimore golf courses. Unfortunately, his desire to get in a swift round of golf would lead to his financial ruin. While the vision of the island was mostly achieved, the execution was not. Financial setbacks reduced the residences to roughly 190 and just one 9-hole golf course. However, two things turned extremely successfully; the Gibson Island Club achieved its goal of becoming the social center of the island and apparently the Gibson Island Yacht Squadron is one of the more notable Yacht Squadrons in the world (?). Don’t quote me on that.
Perhaps one of the more interesting things I learned was that the island was designed by the Olmsted Brothers who had their hands on notable projects such as Central Park, Stanford University, the National Mall, and the Jefferson Memorial. With beautiful landscape architecture like that, close proximity to the water, and over two-thirds of the island undeveloped for nature and open space, it’s no wonder home prices on the island start at $1 million with median price range at around $2.7 million making Gibson Island the 23rd most expensive zip code in America, outpacing Malibu, California!
The Gibson island Club itself retains its place as the focal point of the island today:
“During 2016-2017, the original Clubhouse was torn down and a brand new facility was built on the existing footprint. The new Clubhouse features two stories of beautiful space with all dining venues taking full advantage of the spectacular views of the Chesapeake Bay. The Bay Side Bar is a popular spot for Friday night Happy Hour and the second floor Grill Room is a favorite for casual dining. Many Gibson Island families are booking the Rotunda for weddings and special events! Outside, the grand porch across the back of the building and the dance terrace on the pool side, are wonderful places to relax and enjoy the cool evening breezes.”
If anyone from The Gibson Island Club happens to see this, please invite Rivion Weddings! We’d love to see this beautiful island in person.