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  • Writer's pictureBrian Porter

An Updated List of The Best Gated Communities in Lake Keowee

Updated: Sep 15

Do you dream of waking in the morning to the beautiful sounds of birds chirping and taking a morning swim in crystal clear waters? Is spending the day fishing, boating, and swimming your idea of utopia? Would living near world-class golf courses, miles and miles of hiking trails, and plenty of dining and entertainment opportunities be a dream come true?

If so, Lake Keowee is a hidden gem that you’ll want to explore. Located in Upstate South Carolina, you’ll find that the incredible views of the Blue Ridge Mountains and the gentle four-season climate provide a truly unique opportunity to live a life that is at once peaceful and exhilarating.

Of course, the last thing you want to worry about when you’re envisioning your dream home on the lake is the safety and security of your family. Living in a gated community provides security, privacy, and a sense of community that will support your family’s ability to enjoy the tranquility and adventure of life on the lake.

Which gated communities on Lake Keowee offer the best amenities, access to the lake, and homesites? Let’s take a look at the finest gated communities in the area to help you decide where to build your dream home.

Note: This is not a ranked list, and the selected gated communities appear in no particular order.


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The Cliffs at Keowee Falls

The Cliffs at Keowee Falls is located on 20 miles of Lake Keowee shoreline, owned exclusively by the gated community residents. There are 2,500 acres of gorgeous forest to wander around in this community, complete with fields of rare Oconee Bells and cascading waterfalls.

Within Keowee Falls, there are ten miles of nature trails to explore, as well as endless opportunities for boating, swimming, and other water sports activities. Complete with an impressive Adirondack-style clubhouse, wellness center, sports courts, pool, dining, and more; you might find that you are tempted to stay within the gates of this community more often than not.

About 20 minutes to Clemson by car and an hour from Greenville, living at a lakeside escape doesn’t necessarily mean you have to live out in the boonies.

Harbor View

One of the smallest Lake Keowee gated communities, Harbor View is at the heart of Lake Keowee landings. Offering a tremendous amount of privacy and serenity, this is a great place to live full-time, enjoy your retirement, escape for the weekend, or simply take a family vacation.

Not far from Seneca, you and your family can enjoy all of the thrilling benefits of the lake in this community, including boating, water sports, fishing, and swimming.

Thinking about building a home right on the lake? Don’t forget to check out our guide to restrictions and regulations on waterfront homes.

The Cliffs at Keowee Springs

If you’re searching for a family-friendly community on Lake Keowee, you’ll want to check out The Cliffs at Keowee Springs. One of the reasons this is a great place for your whole family is that you can boat right up to the Keowee Springs Beach Club– a place where your kids can have a great time on the water slides while you enjoy a refreshing drink at the grille.

If you and your family love outdoor water sports, living in The Cliffs at Keowee Springs will be like a dream come true. There are endless opportunities for kayaking, paddleboarding, boating, and swimming, not to mention miles of hiking trails and a state park close by.

On top of that, there’s also a family-friendly golf course that allows you to play together with the whole crew without committing to all eighteen holes. Just 20 minutes to Clemson, 45 minutes to Greenville, and an hour and a half from Asheville, this is the perfect place to live an exciting life by the lake without giving up the amenities of nearby cities.


Located on the north side of Lake Keowee, Turtlehead is one of the older gated communities on Lake Keowee. With around fifty properties, it’s also one of the less dense communities in the area. It’s worth noting that the area has changed a lot since Turtlehead first started developing, as the Cliffs Communities started developing a number of upscale communities all around the property, including The Cliffs at Keowee, The Cliffs at Keowee Falls South, and The Cliffs at Keowee Falls North.

Many amenities are available to Turtlehead residents– including a clubhouse, spa, pool, tennis courts, and boat launch. However, golf lovers should be warned that there isn’t a golf course in this community as there is in many other Lake Keowee developments.

Keowee Key

If one of your primary goals for building your own lakefront house on Lake Keowee is serenity, you’ll want to check out Keowee Key. When you live here, you’ll find that you are surrounded by the warm embrace of the lush natural world.

According to the Club and Resort Business Magazine, the wellness and fitness amenities offered here ranked number 11 out of 50 for the entire United States. The only community that made the top ten in the Carolinas (the rest are in California or Florida,) you’ll definitely want to consider Keowee Key if health and wellness are priorities.

Beyond that, the Club at Keowee Key was also awarded the title of “Top Ranked Clubhouse” in the same publication’s December 2021 issue. Complete with a ballroom, bar, covered bar terrace, and more; the Clubhouse is something you’ll need to see for yourself to really understand how much of a perk it is.

The Reserve at Lake Keowee

Are you looking for a larger lot in a gated community with a family focus? If so, you’ll want to check out The Reserve at Lake Keowee. With available lot sizes of up to an acre or even more, this is a great place to live where you’ll be able to enjoy a 30-mile stretch of the lake’s shoreline as well as scenic views of the Blue Ridge Mountains.

Only 30 minutes away from Clemsen and not far from Asheville, Charlotte, Greenville, and Atlanta, you can live in your own lakeside escape while being near big city amenities.

Located on a 3,900-acre piece of land, amenities include a fitness center, clubhouse, hiking trails, golf course, picnic areas, and all of the perks of living right on the lake.

Keowee Bay

If safety and security are your highest priority, a great option for your new home is Keowee Bay. Under 24-hour gate watch and complete with tons of amenities within the community borders, this is an excellent community for full-time living, retirement, family getaways, or vacationing. It also offers ample opportunities for renting out your home short-term to vacationers during the summer months.

Located in the gorgeous foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains, this is one of the older gated communities on the lake. Developed in the mid-1980s, there are more than 120 lots with 71 homes and 28 families living there full-time. Heavily wooded and quiet, this is a wonderful place for nature lovers, as there is an abundance of wildlife in the surrounding area.

The Cliffs at Keowee Vineyards

The Cliffs at Keowee Vineyards is named for the native muscadine grape vineyards that can be found within the borders of the community. With incredible mountain views and all of the benefits of lakeside living, this is the perfect gated community for families that love outdoor activities of all kinds. With the opportunity to explore two hundred miles of incredible and scenic horseback riding trails right from the Equestrian Center as well as boating, kayaking, jet skiing, and other water sport amenities, this is luxury living at its finest.

Golf lovers will be glad to know that there is an Award-winning Tom Fazio-designed golf course with eight holes right on the shoreline of the lake. Other amenities include a wellness center with tennis courts, an outdoor pool, a full-service marina, and a stately clubhouse.

Hidden Harbor

Located on the western shore of Lake Keowee, Hidden Harbor is one of the many Crescent Communities located in the Lake Keowee area. Crescent Resources has developed more than fifty master-planned communities in the Southeast and Texas, and there are sixteen communities that vary in location, amenities, and size right on beautiful Lake Keowee.

Hidden Harbor is a gated community that is surrounded by incredibly tranquil, deep water coves. With eleven home sites of an acre or more that are all right on the water, one notable feature of this community is the towering oaks that provide shade and a beautiful natural environment.

Not far from all that Seneca offers– dining, shopping, and a world-class hospital, to name a few– this is an excellent place to enjoy a truly private and quiet life surrounded by woods and water.

The Landing at Keowee Springs

One of the newest communities in the Lake Keowee area, The Landing at Keowee Springs is another gated community developed by The Cliffs.

With 27 newly released lakefront homesites ranging in size from 0.7 to three acres, this is a great opportunity to build your own custom luxury home with mountain views and lakefront access.

Are you ready to begin the process of building your dream home on Lake Keowee? Make sure you take a look at our list of ten of the best custom home builders in the area.

Why Build Your Dream Home on Lake Keowee?

When it comes time to start thinking about where to build your dream home, it’s easy to get overwhelmed. After all, you want to find a location that supports your entire family’s lifestyle. While picking the right community is essential, you also want to consider what it means to live in the area.

It’s no accident that people have been flocking to Lake Keowee in recent years– its unique combination of natural beauty and proximity to amenities while offering the perks of luxury living will likely make it a strong contender for your dream home.

  • Recreational opportunities: When you live on Lake Keowee, there’s an abundance of opportunities to engage in all manners of water-based recreation. Whether you prefer boating, swimming, jet skiing, fishing, kayaking, or tubing, your whole family is bound to enjoy an active and exhilarating lifestyle on the lake.

  • Climate: The climate on Lake Keowee is gentle throughout the year without the extreme temperature variations of other regions of South Carolina. Since the lake is at a higher elevation, the summers are milder than the lowcountry, piedmont, and coastal regions of SC.

  • Proximity to amenities: No matter where you live on the lake, you’re never far from the amenities and perks of civilization. Close to Clemson University, which is home to a spirited college culture, and not far from the growing city of Greenville, you can enjoy a quiet life on the lake without giving up the benefits of city living.

  • Incredible topography: No matter what activity you’re engaging in on Lake Keowee, you’ll be surrounded by rolling hills and mountain views.

  • Crystal clear waters: Lake Keowee is famous for its crystal clear waters that range from a gorgeous sapphire blue to an emerald green. Fed by the reservoir of Lake Jocassee, which itself is renowned for its mountain-fed waters, Lake Keowee is truly a paradise.

  • Natural beauty and wildlife: Lake Keowee might be a man-made reservoir, but you’d never know it when you’re enjoying its natural beauty. Surrounded by beautiful forests that are teeming with wildlife, this is truly a nature lover’s dream come true.

Is It Time to Start Designing Your Dream Home?

For many people, designing and building your own luxury home would be a dream come true. You can control every aspect of your new abode– including the location, orientation, size, layout, style, amenities, and so much more. However, many don’t realize that there are many potential issues that can crop up during the home-building process that can push back your timeline and blast past your intended budget.

Using our Custom Home Guidebook and Workshop, you can make sure that you stay in control of the building process every step of the way and that you stay on schedule and on budget. In addition to helping you design the lakeside estate of your dreams, we can also offer guidance during the builder selection and property selection process.

At Dream Home Studio, our mission is to help you build the home of your dreams while steering clear of many of the expensive mistakes that are much too common in the home-building process.

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