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51 River Marsh Lane: Kiawah Island waterfront living at its finest

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51 River Marsh

The home at 51 River Marsh sits on an acre lot and has vista views from every room. Photo/KIRE.

Rhett’s Bluff on Kiawah Island is a private riverfront community flanked by Bass Pond and the Kiawah River. It is the epitome of waterfront living – with access to boating, kayaking, paddle boarding and fishing. Sitting on the dock viewing an awe-inspiring sunrise or glorious sunset is everyday life here. 

“The neighborhood is close to many of Kiawah’s world-class amenities and has its own neighborhood pavilion and boat landing which provides easy access to the Kiawah River,” said Kelly Blair Henry of Kiawah Island Real Estate. “It’s a warm established community that shares a love for the exhilarating lifestyle that can be enjoyed along Kiawah’s waterways.”

Henry lists a five-bedroom, 7,427 square-foot home in Rhett’s Bluff at 51 River Marsh Lane. The home sits on just over an acre and has six bedrooms. Owners Don and Ann Johnston said that the home was designed as a personal residence and to accommodate extended family and guests.

“We worked with Skip Wallace Architects to fine tune every single detail with the vision and aim of creating an ideal layout that maximized a natural, open floor plan flow, the best views from every vantage point possible, while tying together optimal natural light, airy breezes and a full immersion into the jungle-esque landscape that is quintessential Kiawah,” the couple said. 

The view

The home is the last dock on the westward side of Rhett’s Bluff. “The views of Kiawah River are unobstructed and truly unparalleled,” Ann Johnston said. “Sunsets straight down the waterway can light up a palette like no other place we’ve ever experienced on earth.”

Her husband agreed. “One of the many porches of the home allowed us, our friends and family to soak in the views so that the sunset hour was pure anticipation.”

The deep-water dock gives access to more water views – the most private, unspoiled and tranquil river system in the Southeast, according to the Johnston’s. 

“We’ve lost count but never take for granted the lifetime of memories and experiences that have been launched from our dock. It’s waterfront living at its best – gliding atop paddleboards in the mornings, lowering the boat for a family party cruise to the Charleston harbor and living among the myriad of tidal creeks, marshes and islands that form the backdoor view has been an adventure. The experiences here have been some of the best of our lives,” the couple said.

Add to those views, the wildlife menagerie of fish, dolphins, otters, deer, bobcats, bald eagles and other Lowcountry animal residents and it is, as the owners described, “a retreat that rejuvenates the mind and body and invigorates the soul.” 

The home

The home’s exterior is cedar wood shingle siding, with a copper roof. The thoughtful design incorporated a Charleston brick foundation and entry staircase. Gables, columns and porticos add grace to the structure, while curved (open and screened verandas) provide plenty of spaces for family and guests to relax. These elements -- curved doorways, columns, bricked walls and unique nooks and niches carry through to the home’s interior.

Porch 51 Marsh

There are numerous open and screened porches for entertaining and relaxing. Photo/KIRE.

The home has a reverse floor plan that captures vista river views from every room. The two-story entry foyer has access to the home’s club room which has wall-to-wall windows, pecan-wood walls and three televisions. Two guest suites and a large home gym make up the remaining spaces on the first floor. A curved stairway leads up to the second level which houses two guest suites with private porches, living room, kitchen, dining room and kitchen.

51 Marsh Family Room

The spacious living room is on the second level and has a bank of window overlooking the river. Photo/KIRE.

“Every room in this home has an aesthetically pleasing mix of exquisite design such as beamed and coffered ceilings, exposed brick, shiplap, oversized fireplaces, fluted millwork, curved walls and staircases, handsome moldings, clever built-ins, and gorgeous stone appointments,” said Henry. “The second level has a living room that has 12-foot coffered ceilings, heart pine flooring and floor-to-ceiling windows with stunning river views.”

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Kitchen 51 River Marsh

The elegant kitchen leads into a family living room. Each side has windows to take advantage of water views. Photo/KIRE.

The gourmet kitchen has black soapstone counters. Bright white and glass-front cabinetry, shiplap walls, soapstone backsplashes and custom lighting create a homey, yet elegant ambiance. There’s a 11-foot marble center island, two Sub Zero refrigerators, two dishwashers and a cooking hearth with Viking gas range. A large window over the sink lend views to live oak trees outside.

The separate, windowed pantry has tons of cabinet space and a wine refrigerator.

There’s also a cozy library nook, with a built-in daybed for rainy days and reading on the river.

51 Marsh Bedroom

The master bedroom suite makes up the entire third level. It has coffered wood ceilings, a sitting area, spa-like bath and the best views in the home. Photo/KIRE.

The third floor comprises the master suite with its own private foyer, office, sitting room with fireplace and private covered porch and sundeck. This floor with a spa-like master en suite bath has the best views of the home. 

Add a four-car garage, abundant storage and dock with water and electricity, and 51 Marsh Lane ticks every box for ideal waterfront living.

“The home is almost exactly centered from east to west along the 13 plus mile long island,” Ann Johnston said. “At a moment’s notice, you can be at any of the fabulous public or private amenities that the island and Kiawah Island Club have to offer.”

Henry said that the private riverfront community is also close to miles of walking trails.

“What’s more, the oceanfront Beach Club, Cassique Clubhouse and downtown are all just a short drive away,” she added. 

Plans for a pool addition have been conceptually approved by the Architectural Review Board, in case new homeowners want to add yet another element of elegant waterfront living to 51 River Marsh Lane. 

Kelly Blair Henry


Kelly Blair Henry

Kiawah Island Real Estate


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