Gulf Shores – History of the city and its neighborhoods

Be either a snowbird, city-breaker, or spring-breaker, Gulf Shores, Alabama must have caught your eyes by now. The beach town displays colorful and diverse pastime activities and splendid views you can dream about. Either you plan on staying here for just a couple of days or for a more extended period, our realtors in Gulf Shores AL can bring you up-to-date with the latest housing or renting possibilities.

The history of this marvelous resort in a nutshell

How did Gulf Shores come into existence, and how did it rise to fame, you may wonder.

The city isn’t just an astonishing tourist attraction. Despite its relatively small population (around 12,000 citizens in 2019) and expansion of 33.02 mi², it has an impressive history dating back to the 1800s. A small fishing community populated the area at the dawn of the 19th century.

Virtually two significant events were leading to the proper foundation of the city in the 20th century. Firstly, the Intracoastal Waterway was completed in 1937. Secondly, a trendy public recreation area, the Gulf State Park, opened in 1939. Both of these proved to be decisive reasons for people to move to the region. In search of the American Dream, they found here promising prospects deciding to settle. Soon, it turned out that they made a perfect choice.

Another milestone in its history was the opening of the post office in 1947.  In 1958 the Town of Gulf Shores finally received validation for the incorporation.

Thanks to the dredging contractors near me, the Intracoastal Waterway area essential for fishing, the town opened a flourishing pathway for family-owned enterprises, such as grocery stores, restaurants, cottages, and motels for the summer tourists. Unfortunately, Gulf Shores virtually would turn into a ghost town during the winter months with everyone abandoning the ship. Locals wisely came up with original events to lure back travelers to their town to combat the emerging problems, such as fishing rodeos.

Gulf Shores hosts the National Shrimp Festival since 1971, an event that became a national tourist attraction held in October and drawing more than 200,000 visitors annually.

‘Natural’ cause and ‘urbanization’ effect

Hurricane Frederic stormed the town in 1979. In order to correct the massive damage caused by this natural blow, locals started a re-construction campaign with even more condominiums, restaurants, and retail outlets. The settlement outgrew its frontiers, and the City of Gulf Shores came into being. By the turn of the century, the population grew to 5,044, with 2,344 permanent households in 2000.

One thing is for sure, the number of the population keeps on multiplying over the years, and it is subject to constant change. By 2021 it reached around 13,200 residents while maintaining a stable annual growth rate of approximately 2%.

Top neighborhoods and suburbs in the city

Make no mistake, Gulf Shores has evolved into a truly archetypal resort town. There are, however, many newcomers who decide to move here permanently. This place will satisfy every need. On the one hand, large condos are lying in the top beaches of Gulf Shores, Alabama, serving as a somewhat playboy mansion extravaganza. On the other hand, it is warmingly family-friendly, proudly presenting single-family neighborhoods too. You will indeed find something for your taste and a lot of things to do in Gulf Shores.

Have a look at the most popular districts in Gulf Shores, Alabama, in terms of amenities, affordability, and location. Since each of them has something quite unique to offer to travelers and house hunters, we highly recommend checking all of them out.

  • Sandhurst Walk is located near the Gulf Shores Sports Complex with new construction homes at affordable prices.
  • Baldwin Beach, a majestic region located near the Lagoon Pass Bridge. The houses in the area are either on the beach or just across the road. Since the beach is in proximity, real estate prices can go pretty high.
  • Bay Gardens. A quiet and small district featuring cobblestone streets and exquisite handmade houses on stilts definitely adds some extra spice to the city’s local character. Fishing and wildlife amateurs will be thrilled here. A great fishing pier, boat launch, and slips will welcome them with open arms. All these waterfront activities create the experience of a lifetime.
  • Craft Farms is presumably the largest neighborhood in the Gulf Shores. The ‘Farms’ is highly popular among residents. Visitors will find 2 Arnold Palmer golf courses and many vivid home styles as nearby amenities.
  • Islandwood is a neighborhood located on a golf course which is a couple of miles from the beach in Gulf Shores.
  • Morgantown is located in the Fort Morgan area. What makes it so exclusive is that it offers purchasers the deal of a lifetime for single-family homes on stilts just next to the beach.
  • Raintree Place, though is a smaller community situated off of Route 8 near Highway 59, it has the incredible advantage of being very close to the beach.
  • Stonegate Estates is located near the Foley Beach Expressway and hosts houses with a surface between 2,000 and 2,500 square feet.
  • The Peninsula is one of the prettiest and well-tended neighborhoods in Gulf Shores, which sits on a pure golf course. The security of the gated neighborhood is excellent. The Peninsula showcases a pier on its private beach (imagine that!)
  • Twin Pines – Twin Pines is perfect for those looking for smaller homes at a cost-effective price.

Gulf Shores, then and now

What originally started as a mere shrimping, oystering, and fishing community in the 1800s, by the 1980s, it turned into a tourist attraction and a booming real estate market. Subsequently, Gulf Shores’ families are now enjoying a more colorful lifestyle than early settlers. Prices on the housing market and the high cost of living in Gulf Shores, AL are apparent signs of the city joining the “Ivy League” of elite beach town resorts.

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