The community is named after the Glenbrook House hotel and is at an elevation of 6,250 feet . Glenbrook is included in the Gardnerville Ranchos micropolitan statistical area.
As the oldest settlement on Lake Tahoe, it played a significant part of Nevada's statehood as the main supplier of timber to the Comstock Lode and Virginia City. The first settlers of the valley, which included Captain Augustus W. Pray, arrived in 1860. It was named for its two primary geographic features — Glen, a secluded valley, and Brook, a small stream.