Since 1907, Captain Whidbey has been a locus of natural beauty, community gathering and quiet, exalted delight. A place where locals and visitors do things together — even if those things are simply eating, drinking, appreciating nature, looking out across the water, feeling alive, feeling grateful.
Captain Whidbey is the Unofficial Official Lodge of Ebey’s Landing National Historic Reserve. The gateway to beautiful and rugged wild, Captain Whidbey fosters a sense of romance, a longing for adventure and a communion with the natural world.
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“Stepping into the Captain Whidbey does feel like entering another (highly curated) era, a return to the slower days of summer camp.”
The presence of the inn itself demands this kind of myth-making. Its hulking imperfections, hidden staircases and infinite doorways, narrow pathways and intricate stonework, call to mind an honest, handmade world, where times were slower and things made to last. Rumors of its past are worn proudly on its proverbial sleeve — stripped wood where there once was a second floor balcony, prominently displayed plaques of historic register, mismatched sediments of historic photos, the speckled outline of a dart board and creaking floorboards. The front door was originally the back door because most guests arrived by boat.
It was a boarding house, private residence, post office, general store and girl’s school. There were dances and orchestras and Charles Dickens dinners. “Whid-Isle Inn,” Judge Still’s creative and euphonious name for the inn he envisioned, designed and built, was changed in the 1960s to “The Captain Whidbey Inn. In all this, there is comfort. Nostalgia for a time gone, and proof that it still exists.