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Tybrisa Pavilion and Pier—Where to Meet on Tybee

Built in the early 1900s, Tybrisa Pavilion once defined the heart of Tybee culture. Located near the south end, the Pavilion was located near many hotels and beach clubs on or near the Strand (Strand Avenue), including the famous Tybee Hotel. The pavilion, the largest and most popular on the island, connected to a bathhouse and restaurant and eventually to a bowling alley, skating rink, arcade, and lounge. A pier jutted out from the pavilion into the Atlantic.

In the first half of the twentieth century, Tybrisa’s large dance floor hosted the country’s best bands, such as those of Benny Goodman, Tommy Dorsey, Cab Callaway, and Guy Lombardo, and many young couples sparked their first romance here. Families and friends used the pavilion as a meeting spot, for picnics, or for other social outings. The pavilion, featured in postcards of Tybee, was first owned and operated by the Central of Georgia Railway and purchased in 1924 by the Tybrisa Company. A long boardwalk was connected to the Pavilion, the scene of much social activity, to judge by photographs of the era. In 1967, Tybrisa Pavilion was burned down by an arsonist. Plans to rebuild the pavilion finally came to fruition when the 1996 Olympic Games came to Georgia. In 1996, the new pavilion opened at 16th Street and Strand Avenue, featuring a long fishing pier and a new pavilion, where bands play and young couples dance again.

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