We all know that a picture can be worth a thousand words, and today’s blog will be proof of that. I wanted to show you the inside of the Grand Hotel, so today I walked down and met Jill in the lobby. I needed a buddy on this photography expedition, and Jill is the best buddy to have with you when you are on any part of this island. She knows everyone!
The Grand opened its door in 1887 after being built in only 90 days. It was financed and built by two railroads and a steamship company to meet the needs of the Victorian traveler.
We entered at the east ground floor entrance and started the photo shoot there. Instead of writing a lot of text, I am going to just caption the pictures. The Grand tells its own story with its beauty, style, sophistication, grace and charm.
Looking down the length of The Grand's ground floor lobby all the way to the check-in desk at the far end.
In keeping with a 100 year tradition at The Grand, Afternoon Tea is served each day at 3:30 p.m. in the Parlor. Guests enjoy teas, sherry, and champagne, finger sandwiches, fresh-baked scones, and an array of pastries.
During Afternoon Tea, guests enjoy a chamber music recital provided by a talented harpist.
The main dining room of The Grand, Salle a Manger, is a 3,400 square foot room that seats over 750 guests. A five course dinner and full breakfast are included in the room rate. Over 100 people make up the kitchen staff, and the Executive Chef oversees as many as 4,000 meals a day.
The Geranium Bar is right outside the main dining room and a great place to have a before dinner cocktail.
The lobby outside the main dining room, looking east. The interiors of The Grand are the inspiration of legendary designer Carleton Varney. Varney has been involved in the transformation of other historic hotels and Dromoland Castle in Ireland. He was the design consultant for the Carter White House and twice decorated the presidential yacht, Sequoia.
The "Above Mackinac" Room, featuring the aerial photography of Robert Cameron, who has published 22 "Above" books featuring great cities and sweeping landscapes from Hawaii to Paris.
Looking into the Terrace Room.
The stage of the Terrace Room, where the world famous Grand Hotel Orchestra fills the dance floor with the best big band dance music in the country.
The Audubon Wine Bar, a popular gathering place in The Grand (I love the riding boot lamps).
In days gone by, an employee would pedal this coke wagon up and down the porch of The Grand providing ice cold Coca Colas to guests.
The children's center, where planned activities throughout the day entertain the kids.
Rows of candy jars, filled with every imaginable treat, fill the shelves in the children's center.
The Grand Hotel winter sleigh.
Shops line the ground level promenade.
Bright colors abound in the Oil Paintings by Marlee Gallery.
Reported to be the longest porch in the world.
Geraniums line the steps leading from the porch to the ground level, where carriages await.
My friend Jill, who loves to take pictures of me taking pictures.
Me sitting still a minute, so Jill can take a picture.
NOTE: Much of the information provided in the text and in the captions of the photographs was taken directly from Grand Hotel, Mackinac Island written by Robert M. Tagatz, the Grand’s resident historian.