HistoryA Hamptons Legacy for 80 Years - Celebrating the tradition 2008-2009
For nearly eight decades, Montauk Yacht Club Resort & Marina has been a perennial favorite playground for those who frequent the shores of Long Island's South Fork East End. The Resort actually began as three separate estates. The original club building was built in 1928 by entrepreneur Carl Fisher, the master builder who turned Miami from a sleepy backwater town into a thriving resort city. Fisher had dreams of replicating his success with the small seaside village of Montauk to create a playground for the rich and famous.
He began with an elegant Tudor manor and quickly realized that he needed a harbor to attract the grand pleasure yachts of the day. He had a deep channel dug between freshwater Lake Montauk into Gardiner's Bay, constructing what was then the world's largest private harbor.
His crowning glory was the 60 foot replica of the Montauk Lighthouse in the midst of twenty elegant guest suites. The lighthouse served as a perfect beacon to guide guests to the resort. Today the lighthouse remains as a focal point of the resort that, today, houses meeting rooms and beckons visitors to the Resort's celebrated Lighthouse Grill.
The club's original membership included Vincent Astor, J.P. Morgan, Nelson Doubleday, Edsel Ford, Harry Payne Whitney, Thomas Eastman, John Wanamaker and Harold S. Vanderbilt. Among the many guests was famed aviator Charles Lindbergh, who often flew his seaplane into the harbor to dock at the Marina.
According to local legend, the Island Club, which was located next door and would eventually become part of the Resort, had become the area's most popular speakeasy and gambling casino. To ensure total privacy, the Island Club posted sentries at the stone stanchions at the end of the island's causeway. When the police stopped by to pay a visit, the sentries would radio the club and management would hide the liquor and gambling equipment.
The third piece of property that forms the current Montauk Yacht Club Resort & Marina was the Bragg estate. Caleb Bragg, one of the original governors of the club, was so enamored by the Island that he built himself an elaborate pleasure palace right next door. Florence Ziegfield of the Follies fame eventually purchased the estate and they remain as our picturesque Villas.
Montauk Yacht Club Resort & Marina: the grace, refinement and elegance of yesteryears preserved and updated for your enjoyment today and beyond.