A shoreline oasis, conveniently located between New York City and Boston, Branford was once one of the most popular summer resort destinations on the Atlantic Coast. Traveling by train, trolley, steamer or horse and carriage, people would make the pilgrimage to Branford, where they would spend the entire summer. While the height of Branford’s by-gone hotel era boasted over 30 resorts, only one remains – The Owenego Inn.
Until the late 1700’s, Native Americans heavily inhabited the Indian Neck section of Branford. The first English building in the “Neck” was erected in 1812 by Elias Pond and became part of the Pond Family Farm. In 1847, this building became a boarding house operated by David Lounsbury. Lounsbury named his boarding house The Owenego after the warrior son of an Indian Chief of the Montowese Tribe. Due to an increasing number of boarders, with many guests coming from as far as Europe, Lounsbury expanded his operation in 1867, at which point he built his main hotel, the “Owenego House.” This structure still exists today and serves as an Inn, as well as the hub of the Owenego Beach and Tennis Club. With its’ commanding views of Long Island Sound, coupled with its’ excellent catering facility, the Owenego is a very popular choice not only for beach-goers, but for one-of-a-kind summer weddings as well.
Along with catering for wedding and events, we offer seasonal lodging, beach and tennis club memberships, the casual “Hungry Dog Cafe,” and a friendly pub with happy hour specials and scheduled live entertainment.
Jane W. Rosenthal, the sole proprietor of the Owenego, has been at the helm of the business since the 1950’s, when her first husband, Cornelius T. Driscoll purchased the property from Dr. Joseph Higgins. While Rosenthal is very much involved in the daily decision-making at the Owenego, she has entrusted her nephews and niece to manage her operation. A long-standing, family-run business, then, the Owenego proudly welcomes multi-generations of families each summer to enjoy frolicking in Long Island Sound, playing on any of the three, red-clay tennis courts, or simply seeking respite from the dog days of summer on our expansive lawns.
So, we delve into our future upon the very cornerstone of our historical past – a firm commitment to the families and individuals who enjoy the simple pleasures of a day at the beach! And for those who choose the Owenego for a wedding, our commitment to family will positively enhance your special day as well, granting you a personal touch not found in other, more commercial venues. We are proudly unique in character and deeply rooted in history. Become part of our tradition, by joining us at the Owenego, for a summer, a day, or, like many, a lifetime!
Click here to learn how to order a limited edition, commemorative giclée of the Owenego Inn. The perfect wedding gift or anniversary gift.