|Hilton Head Harbor Town Lighthouse, Hilton Head, SC|
At the heart of his Sea Pines Resort development, Fraser envisioned an “intimate harbor village with low-country ambience seasoned by the influence of the small distinctive ports along the coast of southern France and Italy.” To achieve this affect, Fraser flew his design team over dozens of small Mediterranean harbors so they could capture the unique coastal charm of places like Portofino, Italy. The result is Harbour Town with its marina, shops, restaurants, and striped lighthouse.
Construction on the octagonal Harbour Town Lighthouse began in 1969 and was completed in the spring of 1970. Those who questioned the effectiveness of building such a structure to attract boaters from the Intracoastal Waterway called the tower “Fraser’s Folly.” Within a decade, however, the lighthouse was acclaimed a “stroke of genius.” Positioned as the backdrop for the final hole of the Harbour Town Golf Links, the tower has made many an appearance on golf telecasts. The red and white lighthouse, seen by millions of tourists, boaters, and golfers, has become a widely recognized landmark and a symbol for all of Hilton Head Island.