Grand Hotel on Mackinac Island in Michigan celebrated its 125th birthday!
July 10, 2012
Ironically, it was a month ago today that my husband and escorted friends from South Dakota on their first trip to the Island so they could see Grand Hotel in person and it was 25 years ago this month that I had the opportunity to “spend the night on Mackinac Island” for the first time (at the Chippewa Hotel not Grand Hotel) and it was during Grand Hotel’s 100th birthday celebration.
I believe I have mentioned before that I have traveled throughout North America and to Europe and I can honestly say that Mackinac Island is my absolute all-time favorite place in the world. And Grand Hotel is the Island’s majestic centerpiece.
While I haven’t had the opportunity to actually spend the night at this magical place, I have enjoyed many Grand Buffet luncheons, self-guided tours, and plenty of golf. But last month, during our Island visit with our friends, I had the ultimate Grand Hotel experience, a “behind-the-scenes” tour with the hotel’s iconic historian, Bob Tagatz. I believe the tours are available throughout this summer as part of the birthday celebration.
It was an almost 3 hour tour and it was absolutely wonderful. I learned there is more to Grand Hotel than the long porch. Check out some of our behind the scenes photos.
A lounge in the center of the main hall. Those are doors at the rear of the lounge. Do you know what is behind these doors?
The Carlton Varney decor of this main conference/banquet room was a bit shocking, but it actually started to wear on us the longer we stayed in the room.
The best part of the tour was the kitchen. Staff were busy preparing the evening’s formal dinner and it was fascinating to watch.
Did you know that Grand Hotel was once the home to a “speakeasy” during Prohbition. We had a chance to see the “back room” and hear some wild stories.
Once the tour was completed, we rested our weary feet in the main hall and enjoyed the hustle and bustle of this grand old hotel.
A reception had been set up on the porch, but the afternoon rainstorm resulted in some fancy footwork by staff to move the tables inside.
CONGRATULATIONS GRAND HOTEL ON YOUR FIRST 125 YEARS!
WISHING MANY MORE YEARS OF SUCCESS TO MICHIGAN’S JEWEL OF THE NORTH
Photo credits: Linda Sorensen and Yvonne Campbell