Romance at a Waterfront Inn
© Becky Linhardt 2011
Where is New Buffalo, Michigan? This small lakefront town in southwest Michigan has a name that conjures up images of the prairies but instead is a lovely beach town that has remained charming – by design.
The town’s wide main street flows down towards the harbor and the clean, wide sandy public beach. In recent years it has been found by the Chicago crowd and other Midwesterners. New buildings – hotels and condominiums – fit the simplicity of the town with clapboard and shingle sided buildings that have the low profile and residential scale of times past. The small commercial district retains that indefinable beach town vibe with family run restaurants, ice cream shops, and small gift stores.
A short walk from the beach and nestled among docked pleasure boats is Harbor Grand: A Waterfront Inn. This Frank Lloyd Wright styled addition to the harbor area has a romantic ambience in all seasons. Most rooms have a gas fireplace to ward off any evening chill. Even though the building is small, one could say intimate, you can find big resort amenities: an indoor pool, fitness room, and a massage center where you can schedule massage services 7 days a week.
Enjoy dinner or drinks on the lower level patio when the weather is good or nestle inside the fireside Terrace Room wine bar and lounge. Whether you get up early or sleep in, breakfast is always delivered to your door in the morning – just select a time and the items from the continental breakfast menu card. If you want a big city adventure, you can book a relaxing Amtrak train trip into Chicago for a day and board at the stop a block away.
Summer is the active season of course. Fall is quieter with warm days and crisp clear nights. Even the winter is inviting. “A new winter amenity we started this year allows guests to roast marshmallows outside over an open flame on the Harborside cq Patio,” said Robert Kemper, Managing Director. “It is very romantic with the snow falling and a yummy Vosges Hot Chocolat cq drink in hand.” Inside you can enjoy the warmth of the gas fireplace, a view to a winter wonderland, or cuddle in bed to watch a favorite movie – as a complimentary service, the requested DVD title will be in your room when you arrive.
Harbor Grand, 111 West Water Street, New Buffalo, MI
Rates: Harbor View King – $119-349; Village View Suite – $109-329.
Information: 888-605-6800 or www.harborgrand.com
Harbor Country Information: 269-469-2400 or www.visitharborcountry.org