In 1860 the businessman and pioneering naturalist John J. Crooke bought a small piece of the Staten Island waterfront and lived in a wooden house at the beach which he named Crooke's Point. In 1916, severe water erosion cut into the narrow spit of land and Crooke's Point became an island to itself. In 1929 New York City bought Crooke's Point and adjacent lands and started to build a public park. Due to the Great Depression, the work was delayed and the park could not be opened to the public until 1949.
Great Kills Harbor, located within the 580 acre park, is a man-made harbor that was created by joining Crooke's Island back to the mainland of Staten Island with dredge material. The marina was started as a small New York City municipal marina facility in the 1960's. In 1973 the entire park was turned over by the City of New York to the US National Park Service and has remained as part of Gateway National Recreation Area every since.
Over the years the marina grew to 350 slips with haulout facilities and upland winter storage as well. In 2013 Hurricane Sandy visited Staten Island and wreaked havoc on the facility. In addition to severe upland flooding and the loss of many boats, most of the docks and pilings were swept away in the storm. With such devastation to the entire area, the National Park Service decided to suspend all operations and to close the marina. A concerned group of boaters from the marina formed a grassroots marina advocacy group and with the help of many prominent local politicians, they were able to convince the Park Service to reconsider their position. As of the spring of 2015, the marina has been totally rebuilt with all new state of the art Sullivan Flotation docks, steel pilings, potable water, and metered electric at every slip.
The park is frequented by many various species of birds and wildlife due to the diverse green habitats within the park. Only a short stroll from the Atlantic shore and its rolling seaside dunes, Nichols Great Kills Park Marina is located in Staten Island just off Hylan Boulevard in Gateway National Park. Our brand new 250 slip marina makes an excellent jumping off spot for some of the best fishing and cruising on the east coast. Just minutes from Manhattan or New Jersey, you can ride the gentle waves of the Atlantic and battle bluefish, tuna and the occasional marlin! Courtesy dockage is generally available with a simple phone call to our main office. At the end of the day, tie up and walk the sandy dunes or simply enjoy a quiet evening in the park. Please feel free to contact us with any questions you may have, we look forward to making your boating experience a most pleasurable one!