In 1997 Lucy’s Branch Resort and Marina was bank-owned and in a state of disrepair. Local businessman Jim Christopher seized the opportunity to purchase the property which included more than 1.5 miles of shoreline on the Tennessee River, 40 cabins, a marina, boat rentals, a gas facility, restaurant, tennis court, swimming pools, and a full-service RV park. His original vision included combining his nearby luxury waterfront development named Brigadoon with Lucy’s Branch Resort and Marina, but after selling Brigadoon, he turned his focus to the Lucy’s Branch Facility.
After operating the resort for a few years, Christopher sold the marina and decided to replace the obsolete cabins with new cottages. With the new cottages came a new name – Bay Hill. He envisioned the cottages to be getaways with spectacular views of Lake Wheeler. However, the market soon developed into permanent home sites for full time living. Christopher built the first two cottages and since then more than 40 single family dwellings have been built on the lots he sold to other builders. The cottage getaways grew in size to include extra wings and wine cellars.
Additional resort property was later sold and two off-shore condominiums were built. It became possible to build the high density living units after a sewerage package plant was constructed. The package plant is now operated by Limestone County Water and Sewer. Further development included an additional multi-story condominium called Bay Pointe located next to Bay Hill Marina and River’s Edge, a waterfront condominium with its own marina. This sewerage package plant made it possible for condos to be built all the way to The Pointe subdivision (another Christopher development) in westernmost Limestone County where Two Rivers, a 67-unit condominium, is located.
Christopher still owns a few lots at Bay Hill. He is now upgrading the RV park facility. Lucy’s Branch campground had become somewhat obsolete and had been closed for a few years. Having acquired additional property the campground now includes 50 acres facing the Tennessee River. Each site has a newly poured concrete pad, sewer hookup, water, and new 50 Amp / 30 Amp individually metered electrical service.
The original campground had more than 150 sites. Phase 1 now contains 24 spaces. The facility includes a swimming pool, restrooms, showers, laundry mat, and roads in place for walking. A private four-acre fishing pond is located on site in addition to a great fishing cove on the Tennessee River. Plans include additional RV sites, boat storage, boat launch ramp, fire pits, picnic area, and a beach area.
Christopher’s vision and efforts transformed the foundering Lucy’s Branch Resort and Marina in south-western Limestone County to a vibrant and modern waterfront community adding tens of millions of dollars to the local tax base while still offering the public access to the Tennessee River and all of the recreation it provides in the form of a private RV park.
Original Source: The Star Sportsman, October 24th 2013