Last week, my sister and I spent a few days on Mackinac Island in northern Michigan. Mackinac is truly a Michigan treasure. (I have never met another Michigander who doesn't sigh and nod when you tell them you're headed to Mackinac . . . and then say, "I love that place.") (And - just so you know - it's pronounced Mack-i-NAW. You just ignore that "c." ) (Trust me.)
There really is something magical about the place. Maybe it's the bridge . . .
The island offers clear views of the 5-mile Mackinac Bridge joining Michigan's upper and lower peninsulas. (You can reach the island by ferry from either peninsula.)
Maybe it's the lack of cars . . .
Motor vehicles are prohibited on the island. (No cars. No trucks. Period.) You walk or ride a bike -- or take a horse-drawn carriage. Even deliveries are handled by horse drawn freight carriage. It's very quiet, except for the clopping of horses. (But you do have to watch where you step.)
Maybe it's the fudge . . .
Mackinac Island is America's "fudge capital," and there are fudge shops up and down Main Street. So. Many. Fudge. Shops. (Seriously, you can't walk 10 steps without finding ANOTHER fudge shop.) It's good. It's tradition. You visit Mackinac Island, you come home with fudge.
Maybe it's the island itself . . .
There's just something fascinating about being on an island. And especially an island you can walk or bike around in a manageable 8.2 miles. (My sister and I opted to walk.)
Or maybe it's the magic of the Grand Hotel . . .
Totally living up to it's name, the historic Grand Hotel is, well. . . pretty darn grand! We splurged by staying at the Grand Hotel for our time on Mackinac. Here's a little peek inside:
The lobby . . .
The Cupola Bar . . .
Our room . . .
(We squealed when we saw the canopy beds. We always wanted canopy beds when we were little girls . . . )
All VERY . . . Grand! So in the spirit of Three on Thursday, here are Three Things About the Grand Hotel:
1 - The Porch
The porch of the Grand Hotel is truly fabulous. Guests of the hotel can sit in the rockers and sip a drink while enjoying some of the most spectacular views on the island. It is such a treat. (Folks who aren't staying at the Grand Hotel can enjoy the porch, too. But they have to pay to enter the hotel.) Personally, the porch at the Grand Hotel is my favorite thing about Mackinac Island.
2 -- The Geraniums
The red geranium is the official flower of the Grand Hotel -- and you find it everywhere . . . in planters, in flower boxes, on the carpets, in each room, on stationery, in the lotion and shampoo in the bathrooms. Everywhere! (Maybe next week I'll do a post on all the geranium carpets I found in the hotel.)
3 -- The Dress Code
Yep. There it is. You must "dress" for the evening at the Grand Hotel. Or . . . you can't eat dinner there or hang around in the main areas of the hotel after 6pm. (You really do kind of feel like you've stepped back in time . . . with the clopping of horses and the dressing for dinner.) It's pretentious and off-putting . . . and pretty lame. (Because, trust me, just because you slap on a tie and wear a jacket . . . or put on a dress . . . doesn't mean you're more presentable than my sister and I in our "slacks.") Anyway, we got around it by not eating dinner at the Grand Hotel, and then we just hung around in the Cupola Bar (which is not included in the dress code) or our room after eating dinner elsewhere on the island. It's weird. But I will trade the dress code nonsense for the porch any day.
So. What do you think? Have I sold you on the magic of Mackinac?
Be sure to head over to Carole's for more Three on Thursday posts today!