The History of Nettles Island
Rise from the Wild
The Nettles Island community originated in 1969 through Outdoor Resorts of America as a recreational vehicle condominium.
In the beginning, Nettles Island was a natural, wild extension of Hutchinson Island and was built up with fill by dredging the Indian River. The fill stabilized the outer walls of the island giving it it’s shape, but it also raised the island from 2 feet above sea level to 6-7 feet providing greater protection from flooding than surrounding communities. Nettles Island opened for business around Christmas, 1971 and has been going strong ever since.
There are still many operational Outdoor Resorts across the country that include their signature features such as clubhouses, landscaping, golf courses, swimming pools, tennis courts, spas, fitness facilities and where possible, convenience stores, marinas, shops and restaurants. For full-time or professional RVers, Outdoor Resorts are quite a place to visit and have certainly come a long way from ‘roughing it’ and camping.
That’s how Nettles Island started.
Quite a Transformation
In the 40 years since opening, Nettles Island has undergone an interesting metamorphosis – from RV park to a private community of a growing number of site-built homes. This is what has given Nettles Island it’s own character and uniqueness. While there are still plenty of original mobile homes, ~30 years of site-built homes are slowly taking over and bringing a new level of comfort, design and appeal. This of course has raised lot owner’s value significantly.
A community that started off with lots for sale for $5-9,000 now has lots/homes worth nearly $1 million. And yet, there is still a close-knit community that actively engages in the multitude of clubs and social events. There is a reason generations of family members continue to come here for vacations and later retirement.
Looking at a map you can see that the streets are actually named after states and *roughly* coordinate north, south, east and west with each state’s geographic location in the country. As you get to know other vacationers and lot owners alike during your visit, you may find that a handful of states are represented disproportionally in population – namely Michigan, Ohio and Indiana representing the Midwest as well as Massachusetts and New York representing New England. And because the Nettles Island experience is so lasting, there’s a good chance your from (or pretty close to) one of those 5 states too!