Vibrant and beautiful, Oak Bluffs is, for many, a place of special warmth on the Island. From historic revivals to generations of family reunions, people have flocked here to enjoy its pristine beaches, colorful spirit and thriving downtown. And Oak Bluffs’ summer ferries only add to the fun, docking within easy distance of shops, bars and restaurants. In more ways than one, Oak Bluffs is a place to celebrate.
Oak Bluffs Real Estate
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Oak Bluffs Real Estate
Like the rest of New England, Oak Bluffs’ history stretches back a long way. Indigenous people were here centuries before the first European settlers arrived in the 1650s. But as settlements took hold, the area changed ownership and identity several times; for a while, it was considered part of Edgartown.
Things changed again in the 19th century, when a religious movement left a lasting mark. In the early 1800s, Methodists began to hold outdoor revival meetings here; by the 1850s, they were attracting thousands. And within a decade, the congregation was building a society of small cottages, brightly trimmed with Victorian gingerbread. That same enclave still stands, as well as many similar cottages in a much broader area beyond. Because of them, the entire town was incorporated as Cottage City—after it seceded from Edgartown in 1880.
That held until 1907, when the town’s name changed once again, to Oak Bluffs, and the cottages became the Martha’s Vineyard Camp Meeting Association. From here the town began to assume its iconic summertime holiday status, including the nation’s oldest, continually-operating carousel.
Today’s Oak Bluffs is a wonderful mix of home styles, from classic shingle to modern. Buyers can look to the Copeland District for houses close to beach and harbor, East Chop for many historic oceanfront homes on the bluff, Harthaven for beach access across from Nantucket Sound, and a bit further from town, lovely houses in Central/Lagoon Heights and Sengekontacket.
The Oak Bluffs Lifestyle
Oak Bluffs offers the best of both worlds: a quiet off-season retreat and endless fun in the summer. It’s true that for some, the downtown summer scene can be a bit too lively. But the convivial at heart find much to enjoy here—including the fact that Oak Bluffs is one of only two places on Martha’s Vineyard where alcohol can be purchased at stores, not just restaurants and bars.
Yet there’s much more to Oak Bluffs than its famous party atmosphere. It’s also historically inclusive, welcoming African-American families for over a century around iconic Inkwell Beach. There’s a thriving arts and music scene here too, as well as films at the historic 1915 Strand Theater. Meanwhile, the high school, hospital and myriad parks attest to a rich community spirit.
So is Oak Bluffs for you? Perhaps, if you like to people-watch, savor great food, discover new shops and stay fit biking, golfing, swimming and kayaking along quiet beaches. What’s certain is that Oak Bluffs has a great capacity to surprise and delight you, as it has for so many over the years.
Is Now A Good Time To Buy Real Estate In Oak Bluffs?
With so much to offer its residents and summer visitors, Oak Bluffs is perennially in demand. It’s hard to imagine that scenario changing or prices on homes dropping significantly. That means now is a great time to put on your explorer’s hat and discover what Oak Bluffs could hold for you.
Oak Bluffs Properties
4 Quail Run #3
List Price: $613,000
2 Beds / 1 Full Bath / 1 Half Baths
181 Edgartown Vineyard Haven Road
List Price: $850,000
11 Isaac Avenue
List Price: $1,400,000
3 Beds / 2 Full Baths / 1 Half Bath