The Amelia Island Williams House
Table Of Contents
Come fall under the spell of the Amelia Island Williams House Bed and Breakfast, an award winning Fernandina Beach bed and breakfast located in Amelia Island, Florida. The historic Williams House is a Select Registry Inn and AAA 3 diamond property that tempts travelers with the delightful charm of a historic Amelia Island B & B and the luxurious amenities of a boutique Inn. Selected by Food and Wine Magazine as one of America’s top Bed and Breakfast, chosen by Florida Monthly 2011 Where to Stay and Play and 2010 Fabulous Florida Bed and Breakfast Inns and selected by National Geographic Traveler for their 2009 Places to Stay List.
For couples craving a romantic Amelia Island getaway, or those seeking serenity in a long weekend, our Inn offers respite from the distractions of everyday life. Soak in a Jacuzzi tub, indulge in a in-room massage, sip wine on our verandahs underneath live oaks dripping with Spanish moss. Rejuvenate yourself or your relationship at the Williams House bed and breakfast.
"One of the top 25 inns in the South.... Break pace with the everyday and surrender to gracious hospitality." - National Geographic Traveler Magazine
We offer ten distinctive guest rooms with private baths in the Inn, Hearthstone House, and Carriage House each celebrating the rich history of Amelia Island. We serve a three course gourmet breakfast each morning that will delight.
We are located close to unique shops, art galleries and antiques and just a short trip to Amelia Island’s beautiful beaches. Walk to world class dining or enjoy a historic horse drawn carriage tour of our seaside town.
Destination Weddings at the Williams House are a memory in the making. Exquisite island destination weddings don’t just happen, they are created! We are committed you helping make your day the intimate wedding of your dreams. Your Williams House wedding celebration is complete when you and your guest stay in our elegant bed and breakfast, sharing old times while creating new memories for a lifetime.
The Amelia Island Williams House is more than just a home turned bed and breakfast. It’s a Victorian dwelling that’s been beautifully restored and is continually maintained to preserve its elegance. The property is also surrounded by gardens, old oak trees, and a koi pond. Learn more about the inn and surrounding property.
An ornate wrought iron fence topped with gold fleur-de-lis ushers guests into a mansion with a unique gingerbread design by famed New York architect Robert Schuyler. Guests are greeted by beautiful moldings, massive pocket doors of heart pine, cherry and mahogany, heart pine floors and gorgeous hand-carved mantles surrounding original tiled fireplaces. Crystal chandeliers, stained glass windows and antiques take one back to the 1800s and life as it might have been for the Williams family.Flower gardens, huge live oak trees, fountains, a koi pond and a wagon wheel rose garden provide a beautiful and relaxing setting for romantic getaways, weddings, reunions or retreats. Wide two-story sweeping verandas stretch across the fronts on each house to provide space for relaxing, intimate conversation or quiet for reading.The Amelia Island Williams House Florida Bed and Breakfast has ten beautifully decorated guestrooms, each with its own theme and style of furniture, private baths for each room and antique furnishings from around the world. All have modern amenities such as telephones, air conditioning/heat, Flat screen HDTV and DVD players, wireless internet access, hair dryers, and make-up mirrors. We also provide beach towels, chairs and umbrellas during your Florida island getaway for use on our spacious, clean beaches located nearby. We offer luxurious spa robes, Frette Bath towels, and Greenwich Bay toiletries, as well as “Comfy” linens and custom bedding. Some rooms have gas fireplaces with lovely hand-carved mantles, whirlpool tubs, and one room with a private hot tub. Fresh flowers and home-baked cookies with complimentary beverages are placed in the room awaiting your arrival to Fernandina Beach.Two night minimum stay required on most weekends-one night stays must call to book.
A building with such detail and character is hardly something you’ll find in a new development. The Williams House has a rich history, read about that to learn, among other things, why the inn is called the Williams house.It’s said that a picture is worth a thousand words, so feel free to view our photo gallery.Unable to visit the inn yourself, but know someone who’d love to? Consider sending them a gift certificate for their anniversary, birthday, or just to say “I’ve been thinking about you.”The Amelia Island Williams House is an elegant bed and breakfast located in the historic seaside village of Fernandina Beach. Situated in a quiet neighborhood of beautiful restored Victorian homes, the inn is made up of three buildings. The Williams House, circa 1856, is an antebellum mansion owned and occupied for 100 years by the family of Marcellus Williams, and offers five guest rooms. Our second building, The Hearthstone House, circa 1859, was built by Mr. Plotts as a wedding present for his daughter and contains four guest suites. And lastly, the Carriage House, built in 2003 on the site of the original carriage house, offers one guest room, a meeting and conference room and the owner’s quarters. The property was restored in 1993, and opened as a Bed & Breakfast in 1994. The Williams House has won numerous awards for elegance and hospitality.
History of the Inn
The Williams House is one of the oldest and most historic homes in the town of Fernandina and has been named a Florida Heritage Landmark Site. Though built in 1856 by a wealthy Boston banker, it was purchased by Marcellus A. Williams in 1859 and it is for him that the house is named. Williams, a highly successful man was born in North Carolina in 1818. He married Emma Wightman and they had nine children.
The Williams House is guarded by its original iron fence, one of the few left standing after the Civil War. The fleur-de-lis detail reflects the French influence in the islands early history. The south wing of the home was added in 1880 and the beautiful porch gingerbread was designed by R.S. Schuyler a famous New York architect and added in 1860. He signed an agreement stating that he would not duplicate the striking design and it remains unique to this date.
Williams worked for the surveying firm of Lawrence Washington, a nephew of George Washington. The firm was deputized to survey Spanish Land grants in the state of Florida. One of his assignments was David Yulee’s railroad from Amelia Island to Cedar Key. Williams was one of the first to befriend the Seminole Indian Nation. Once his surveying days were over he partnered with Samuel Swann to locate and sell land for the state. In 1865, President Andrew Johnson appointed him Registrar of the Public Lands for the state of Florida. At the time of his death in 1888 Williams owned almost 400,000 acres in Florida. The Williams family occupied this home for over 100 years.
During the time that the Island flew under the flag of the Confederacy, Jefferson Davis, a friend of Williams was a guest in the house on many occasions. It is said that Davis stored some of his furniture and personal affects in the home. During the war the family moved to Waldo, Florida for their safety. When Union troops occupied Fernandina, they used the Williams House as headquarter and the Hearthstone as an infirmary. Williams, who had released his slaves prior to the war, upon his return to the island, became active in the Underground Railroad, offering a safe house for slaves. A secret room exists in the dining room that was used to hide them until safe to travel.
The Amelia Island Williams House has operated as a Bed & Breakfast since 1994 and has ten elegant guest rooms. We serve southern breakfasts, a sunset wine social in the evenings and provide a relaxing environment amid beautiful gardens,ancient oaks and magnolias.
A letter from the Owners & Innkeepers:
Welcome to The Williams House Bed & Breakfast located on Amelia Island, Florida’s first barrier island, and within the charming historic seaside village of Fernandina Beach.
After many years in corporate environments, we decided to search for a different lifestyle. We have always enjoyed staying in bed and breakfast inns and decided to explore locations that we might enjoy. We looked for a place that would provide rest and relaxation for guests longing to escape, celebrate special occasions or looking to explore natures’ wonders. We found it all on Amelia Island, Florida after searching the coastal regions from North Carolina to Florida. A quaint historic village with beautiful restored Victorian and Antebellum homes surrounded by the sea, the Intracoastal Waterway and all the wonders that north Florida’s beaches have to offer. We are very passionate about the wonderful history of the Williams Family for whom the house is named and all that the island has to offer guest who visit.
As innkeepers, our specialty is personalized service, delicious breakfasts, and hands-on attention to create a relaxing getaway, luxurious yet comfortable in a place of rest, retreat and memories. Whether you want to experience the numerous activities found nearby, read that special book, get reacquainted with that special person in your life or just relax and stroll the historic shops & dine in our wonderful restaurants, our goal is to make this experience your best ever.
We are always working hard to make The Williams House the finest bed & breakfast on Amelia Island with the highest standards for quality and service. We enjoy meeting guests from all walks of life and creating for them an experience they will share with friends and family. We take pride in the elegance, comfort, beautiful antiques and unique furnishings of our guest rooms. The Inn has grown to include ten guests rooms and this spring we added a conference/meeting room for corporate retreats, family gatherings, and special events.
Come join us at the Amelia Island Williams House. We look forward to sharing our home with you.
See you soon,
Deborah & Byron McCutchen
The Amelia Island Williams House is the perfect venue for your special event. Facilities are available for wedding parties of up to 50 people. As well as weddings, we also offer special honeymoon packages and Vow Renewal Packages for your stay at the inn .
We offer plans for meetings, retreats and other private parties. There are multiple rooms available in order to best suit the size of your group.
We also provide catering, letting you choose from a wide selection of hors d’oeuvres, platters, breads and main courses. See the catering menu for more information.
One of our own annual events is Christmas at the Inn. Join us for holiday fun and thousands of tiny white lights, greenery draped over everything, festive red bows and beautiful Christmas trees adorning the Williams and Hearthstone Houses. Every guest room is decorated. Come and Celebrate the holidays, book early.
A two course gourmet breakfast is served daily in our beautiful red and gold dining room on beautiful family heirloom china, sterling silver and crystal. Fresh coffee, a wide selection of tea, orange juice and baked goods are waiting for you in the dining room. Learn more about breakfast at the inn.
Breakfast at the Inn
A bountiful breakfast is served daily in our elegant dining room from 9:00 am to 10:00 am. We also have seating available in our parlor and on our wide verandas. Breakfast at the Williams House is intended to spoil you while you are our guest. Two courses are served each morning with fresh coffee, orange juice, or choose from our broad selection of hot teas. Our first course is a fruit dish served with muffins, scones or fresh pound cake followed by a savory dish of eggs & sausage or one of our signature dishes such as our special Blueberry Strata with warm maple syrup or Strawberry Croissant French Toast.
We are happy to accommodate special dietary needs, so please do not hesitate to mention them to us.
A Victorian Seaside Christmas
Known as the “Christmas House” the Amelia Island Williams House, Hearthstone and Carriage Houses are turned into a wonderland of lights, themed Christmas trees, Santa clauses and poinsettias. Thousands of tiny white lights adorn garlands, wreaths, and mantles for a festive holiday display. Every guest room is decorated with decorations to match the décor and all have Christmas trees. The decorations are up by Thanksgiving and remain up till the middle of January. Join us for a fun-filled time.
Island Festivals and Events
- Amelia Island Bed & Breakfast Tour-November 23, 2013 from 12-5 pm
- Concours d’Elegance-2nd weekend of March
- Isle of Eight Flags Shrimp Festival-1st weekend in May
- Chamber Music Festival-May thru June
- Amelia Island Jazz Festival-October
- Amelia Island Film Festival-February
- Amelia Island Book Festival-February
Art & Antiques
- Blue Door Artist
- Eight Flags Antiques Market
- Trailer Park Collectibles
- Wall Art Gallery
- Amelia River Cruises
- Kayak Amelia
- Kelly Seahorse Ranch
- Ecomotion Tours
- Fernandina Beach Golf Club
- North Hampton Golf Club
- Amelia River Gofl Club
- Windward Sailing-private sailing tour
Sightseeing and History tours
- Amelia Island Museum of History
- Amelia Island Carriage
- Amelia Island Ghost Tours
- Downtown Fernandina is a shopper’s paradise:
- Specialty stores
- Fort Clinch State Park
- Big Talbot Island State Park
- Amelia Island Lighthouse
- Magna’s Salon
- Plantation Spa & Shops
- Ritz Carlton
- Amelia Community Theatre
- Fernandina Little Theatre
- David's Restraurant
- Joe’s 2nd St. Bistro
- Le Clos
- Pablo’s Mexican Restaurant
- 29 South Eats
- From I-95 (North or South), take Amelia Island/Callahan Exit 373.
- Follow A1A East 13.5 miles and cross the Intercoastal Waterway. Stay on A1A -it becomes 8th St. once you enter the Historic District. Keep straight until you reach Beech St.
- When you get to the Beech St. light turn right on Beech St. Take the 1st left onto 9th past a couple of homes.
- The Williams House is on the left, two houses down (corner of Ash and S. 9th). Parking is available in front of the inn on the street. Have a safe trip.