Pawleys Island is a quaint community located thirty minutes south of Myrtle Beach. It is beloved by locals and tourists alike for its pristine beaches, world class golf courses, and vibrant shopping and restaurant scenes. This community is deeply rooted in history and still holds on to its humble beginnings. The land was first developed by Percival Pawley in 1711. As the first European settler in the Waccamaw Neck, he was given land grants to develop plantations throughout the region. Due to a loss of records during the Civil War, it is unclear as to who from the Pawleys family lived and owned houses on the island.
Pawleys Island, unlike other communities in the Grand Strand, still retains many of the historic markers and buildings from the 1700’s. Many antebellum homes still line the historic district and are owned by the descendants of the original builders. In order to prevent commercial businesses from establishing on the island, residents incorporated the area in 1986 and passed ordinances. The Pelican Inn built in 1858 and the Sea View Inn built in 1937, which were already established in 1986, are the only commercial businesses allowed to operate on the island in order to preserve the historic culture.
The beaches and marshes of Pawleys Island are renowned for their untouched beauty and versatility of options. As with the historic district, residents have worked hard to protect their coastline from development and unnecessary changes. The beach access in in this community offers families the opportunity to surf, crab off a crab dock, kayak, and participate in many other recreational activities. For public beach access, Pawleys Island has the largest public beach access lot in Georgetown County including eight other smaller lots dotting the coastline. The island also boasts two marsh bridges for fishing and three boat launches. Overall, Pawleys Island offers an activity for anyone who visits this quaint island, described by the locals as “arrogantly shabby.”
Mainland Pawleys Island houses many modern amenities for both locals and tourists. Ten golf courses and a large tennis facility are only a short drive from the island. Two of the most well-known courses in the area are Pawleys Plantation Golf & Country Club and Caledonia Golf & Fish Club. Pawleys Plantation Golf & Country Club is a Jack Nicklaus signature design golf course that offers marsh views and villas for rent. Caledonia Golf & Fish Club is a Mike Strantz design with an award winning club house. For those who enjoy tennis, The Waccamaw Regional Tennis Facility offers ten hard courts for both personal rentals and clinics.
In addition to recreational activities, mainland Pawleys Island offers a plethora of restaurants and unique shops. Franks Restaurant and Bar, Quigleys, and Perrone’s Restaurant and Bar are some local favorites for dining. The Hammock Shops Village is a shopping plaza that started nearly 75 years ago as a single store. It is now made up of nearly two dozen shops. Each shop is unique and many of them offer local crafts and goods that the lowcountry is known for.
Pawleys Island–HOME. Though this slice of heaven at the beach is one of the more expensive areas with an average sales price of $402,355 for single family homes and $227,000 for condos and townhomes, the limited supply and constant demand makes Pawleys Island a sound investment. Over the past year, Pawleys Island has experienced a more modest sales price increase of 4.5% since last June compared to North Myrtle Beach that saw a 28.5% increase, but over the past 9 years, single family homes in Pawleys Island have increased an average of 3.5% per year.
Adding to the increased popularity of this community, is the increase of new construction communities. The average sales price of a new construction home in Pawleys Island over the past 12 months was $150,000 less than the resale homes in Pawleys Island. New construction homes in the area offer a more affordable option for those looking to live in Pawleys Island . From National Builders like D.R. Horton to local custom home builders, there is a new construction option for many different budgets. The variety of communities range from waterfront properties on the ocean or inlet with priceless views to traditional neighborhood communities.