Eden Isle was developed in the early 1960s by Herbert L. Thomas, Senior. Eden Isle was developed on a 500 acre tract that Mr. Thomas purchased from the Estes family. After Greer's Ferry Dam was completed and Greer's Ferry Lake was formed, the 500 acre tract (which is surrounded by Greers Ferry Lake) was reduced to 400 acres. The Red Apple Inn and Country Club was built as the anchor for the Eden. Our vacation rental, the Retreat at Eden Isle, was designed and built as a "summer vacation villa" for visitors to Eden Isle.
From its inception, every aspect of Eden Isle was planned. After the land for Eden Isle was purchased, a causeway was built to ensure that Eden Isle would remain "connected" to the mainland and Heber Springs after Greers Ferry Lake was formed. Early Eden Isle homes were constructed with native stone or stucco, wood and plenty of glass to ensure that Eden Isle's full-time residents and visitors could readily enjoy the beauty of the Arkansas Ozark.
The Red Apple Inn's lodge and restaurant first opened in 1962. It was, however, closed by kitchen fire that delayed its reopening until 1965. The Red Apple Inn incorporates native Arkansas stone, wood and extensive glass. The Red Apple Inn's Restaurant offers a sweeping view of Greers Ferry Lake. The entry to the Red Apple Inn's bar features a 400-year-old wrought iron gate (formerly used in a Spanish palace). The Retreat at Eden Isle pays homage to Spanish colonial architecture. It was constructed with an arched entry to its private courtyard. The Spanish colonial theme was carried indoors and can be seen in the Retreat's massive fireplace, vaulted plank and beam ceilings and the Spanish tiles that serve as a baseboard.
Mr. Thomas engaged landscape architects as Eden Isle was being developed to ensure each property's setting would designed to blend in with Eden Isle's natural setting. The Red Apple Inn's grounds include extensive stone fountains and a small waterfall that leads to the Red Apple Inn and Country Club's "Cider Barrel" pool. While Eden Isle is surrounded by Greers Ferry Lake, Eden Isle in turn surrounds a championship golf course. As a result of the Thomas family's approach to the development of Eden Isle, native trees and plants thrive, and deer foam freely throughout the community. The local bird population ranges from bluebirds to bald eagles. Other wildlife is abundant throughout Eden Isle.