Grand Hotel Mackinac Island

10 Reasons to Stay at the Grand Hotel Mackinac Island

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If you’ve never had the opportunity to stay at the Grand Hotel Mackinac Island NOW is the time to book your getaway.

The season for visiting the Grand Hotel is short going from around the end of April through October. It’s definitely a bucket list opportunity to check off your list this year.

Don’t miss this complete guide on what to do on Mackinac Island.

Front of the majestic Grand Hotel on Mackinac Island

Staying at the Grand Hotel is an idyllic way to spend a weekend. Here are my 10 favorite reasons to stay at the Grand Hotel.

Colorful lobby of the Grand Hotel Mackinac Island

1. Carlton Varney Design

Mr Varney is responsible for all the interior design at the Grand Hotel and it’s a colorful feast for the eyes. His designs are either love or hate, but I love it!

A mix and match of so many colors and pattern and somehow Mr. Varney makes it all come together in a beautiful display.

It’s like the Grand Hotel was wrapped up in a bright, cheery birthday wrapping paper which makes you happy just looking at it.

2. Grand Hotel Porch Length

At 660′ feet long the Grand Hotel front porch is one of the longest in the nation.

Pull up a white wooden rocking chair, order a glass of porch punch and enjoy the view of the Straits of Mackinac.

Grand Hotel gardens in full bloom on Mackinac Island

3. Grand Hotel Gardens

Take time and walk around the gardens. When it is in full bloom it’s an explosion of colors.

There is also a labyrinth that is worthy of visiting.

The gardens remind me of English cottage gardens. Benches along the way entice you to sit for a while.

dinner served at Grand Hotel Mackinac Island

4. Dinner at the Grand Hotel Mackinac Island

There are a number of on and off property restaurants.

The main dining room is an event not to be missed where the wait staff ensures an enjoyable dining experience. All entrees are prepared with the freshest ingredients available.

Be sure to enjoy demitasse and music in the parlor after dinner.

4 1/2. Grand Hotel Pecan Ball

This is a delightful treat on Mackinac Island. A big scoop of Hudsonville vanilla ice cream is rolled in chopped pecans and then served over Grand Hotel fudge. Absolutely delicious!

Grand Hotel Stables resplendent in forrest green and red trip at the Grand Hotel Mackinac Island

5. Grand Hotel Horse Barn

Carlton Varney’s design is at work here as well.

A chandelier hangs in the center of the horse barn where antique carriages are showcased and the horses are treated very well.

Live 3 piece band performing at the Grand Hotel on Mackinac Island

6. Live Music

Every night after demitasse the doors to the Terrace Room swing open and an orchestra encourages dancing throughout the evening.

7. Shopping

Not to be missed stores include the Carleton’s Tea Store and the Mackinac Market. The Colony Shop offers fashions for women.

Near the gatehouse you’ll find the Grand Hotel Outlet Store with discounted items from the hotel’s kitchen, housekeeping, and shops departments.

Inside Sadie's Ice Cream Shop in the Grand Hotel on Mackinac Island

8. Hudsonville Ice Cream

Michigan made Hudsonville Ice Cream is served at Sadie’s Ice Cream Shop.

Be sure to try their Mackinac Island Fudge or Tigers Paws for a true Michigan experience.

Want to learn more about Hudsonville Ice Cream check out my recent visit to the ice cream factory <<<YES, I have the best job ever!


9. Take A History Tour of the Grand

Resident historian Bob Tagatz has a way of turning history into an entertaining story.

Walking through the hotel with him is a treat that gives behind the scenes details about running and maintaining this magnificent hotel.

Manoogian Art Gallery in the Grand Hotel on Mackinac Island

10. Art Gallery

Directly off the main parlor is the Manoogian Art Gallery. The rotating gallery shares a selection of artwork from the Manoogian’s private collection.

Each year has a different theme.

Learn more about the Grand Hotel Mackinac Island.

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