Happy 131st Birthday to Michigan’s Best Porch!

Mackinac Bridge from the Grand Porch, photo by Marilyn Bogle

Happy 131st Birthday to The Grand Hotel on Mackinac Island which opened on July 10, 1887. Here’s some historical highlights about Michigan’s most iconic hotel:

1887 Grand Hotel opens, billed as a summer retreat for vacationers who arrive by lake steamer from Chicago, Erie, Montreal, Detroit, and by rail from across the continent. Rates are $3 to $5 a night.

1890s Grand Hotel’s Front Porch – longest in the world—becomes the principal meeting place for all of Mackinac Island, as well as a promenade for the elderly and a “Flirtation Walk” for island romantics. Grand Hotel Manager James “The Comet” Hayes invites an agent of Edison Phonograph to conduct regular demonstrations of the new invention.

1895 Mark Twain lectures in the Grand Hotel Casino. Admission: $1.

1897 The West Wing is added to the hotel.

Turn of the century – The automobile finds its way onto the island. Grand Hotel supports an island-wide ban. A law is passed, but not strictly enforced until the 1930s.

1919 Hotel rates: $6 a day per person.

1935 A radio salon where patrons can listen to Jack Benny and other popular programs is added.

1947 This Time For Keeps starring Jimmy Durante and Esther Williams is filmed on the island and at Grand Hotel.

1960 Grand Hotel owner W. Stewart Woodfill appoints R.D. (Dan) Musser president of Grand Hotel.

1976 Musser and wife Amelia begin the redesign of the hotel’s interior and exterior with the help of architect Richard Bos and decorator Carleton Varney.

1979 The Mussers purchase Grand Hotel.

1980 Somewhere In Time, filmed at Grand Hotel and starring Christopher Reeve, Jane Seymour, and Christopher Plummer, is released.

1989 The U.S. Department of Interior designates Grand Hotel a National Historic Landmark.

View Marilyn’s photo background bigilicious and see more in her Mackinac album.

More Grand Hotel and more Mackinac Island on Michigan in Pictures!

Michigan Front Porch is the World’s Longest!

Grand Hotel

Grand Hotel in the Early 2016 Season, photo by Corey Seeman

The Grand Hotel opened on Mackinac Island in the summer of 1887. At 660 feet, Grand Hotel’s Front Porch is the world’s largest. They note that early on the porch became the principal meeting place for all of Mackinac Island, a promenade for the elderly, and a “Flirtation Walk” for island romantics. Their History photo gallery has a couple of cool photos of the porch from back in the day.

Corey took this last weekend when the Hotel opened for the season. View it background bigtacular and click for tons more of his Mackinac Island photos.

More about the Grand Hotel on Michigan in Pictures, and here’s a video look at the porch:

 

Happy 128th Birthday to the Grand Hotel

Grand Hotel at Night

Grand Night, photo by Wade Bryant

Sending out an early Happy 128th Birthday to The Grand Hotel on Mackinac Island which opened on July 10, 1887. Here’s some historical highlights about Michigan’s most iconic hotel:

1887 Grand Hotel opens, billed as a summer retreat for vacationers who arrive by lake steamer from Chicago, Erie, Montreal, Detroit, and by rail from across the continent. Rates are $3 to $5 a night.

1890s Grand Hotel’s Front Porch – longest in the world—becomes the principal meeting place for all of Mackinac Island, as well as a promenade for the elderly and a “Flirtation Walk” for island romantics. Grand Hotel Manager James “The Comet” Hayes invites an agent of Edison Phonograph to conduct regular demonstrations of the new invention.

1895 Mark Twain lectures in the Grand Hotel Casino. Admission: $1.

1897 The West Wing is added to the hotel.

Turn of the century – The automobile finds its way onto the island. Grand Hotel supports an island-wide ban. A law is passed, but not strictly enforced until the 1930s.

1919 Hotel rates: $6 a day per person.

1935 A radio salon where patrons can listen to Jack Benny and other popular programs is added.

1947 This Time For Keeps starring Jimmy Durante and Esther Williams is filmed on the island and at Grand Hotel.

1960 Grand Hotel owner W. Stewart Woodfill appoints R.D. (Dan) Musser president of Grand Hotel.

1976 Musser and wife Amelia begin the redesign of the hotel’s interior and exterior with the help of architect Richard Bos and decorator Carleton Varney.

1979 The Mussers purchase Grand Hotel.

1980 Somewhere In Time, filmed at Grand Hotel and starring Christopher Reeve, Jane Seymour, and Christopher Plummer, is released.

1989 The U.S. Department of Interior designates Grand Hotel a National Historic Landmark.

View Wade’s photo from May of 2010 background bigtacular and see more in his My Favorites slideshow.

More Grand Hotel and more Mackinac Island on Michigan in Pictures!

Birthday Butterfly for the Grand Hotel

Grand Hotel Birthday Butterfly

Grand Hotel Butterfly, photo by Alicia Bock

Today is the 127th birthday of the Grand Hotel on Mackinac Island. You can check out the Hotel’s historic photo gallery or if you want to roll with the times, the Grand Hotel Instagram.

View Alicia’s photo bigger, see more in her Mackinac slideshow and view and purchase more in the Mackinac Magic photo gallery on her photography website.

More about the Grand Hotel on Michigan in Pictures.

A birthday card from the Grand Hotel

View from West Bluff of The Grand Hotel

View from West Bluff of The Grand Hotel, photo by MI photographer

126 years ago today on July 10, 1887, The Grand Hotel opened for business on Mackinac Island. In honor of Michigan’s most famous hotel, here’s a seldom seen view.

Check it out bigger and see more in MI photographer’s Mackinac Island slideshow.

PS: The lighthouse you can see in the distance is Round Island Lighthouse – click the link to get closer with Michigan in Pictures.

July 10, 1887 was a Grand day

Grand Hotel Pano (3 photo pano)

Grand Hotel Pano (3 photo pano), photo by raddad!

Today is the 125th birthday of the Grand Hotel on Mackinac Island which opened on July 10, 1887. Wikipedia’s Grand Hotel (Mackinac Island) entry explains:

In 1886, the Michigan Central Railroad, Grand Rapids and Indiana Railroad, and Detroit and Cleveland Steamship Navigation Company formed the Mackinac Island Hotel Company. The group purchased the land on which the hotel was built and construction began, based upon the design by Detroit architects Mason and Rice. When it opened the following year, the hotel was advertised to Chicago, Erie, Montreal and Detroit residents as a summer retreat for vacationers who arrived by lake steamer and by rail from across the continent. At its opening, nightly rates at the hotel ranged from US$3 to US$5 a night.

Grand Hotel’s front porch is purportedly the longest in the world at some 660 feet (200 m) in length, overlooking a vast Tea Garden and the resort-scale Esther Williams swimming pool.

Also see the History photo gallery from The Grand Hotel and a cool old travelogue on Mackinac Island.

Be sure to check Randy’s great panorama out bigger and in his Mackinac Island slideshow.

Fancy a stay at the Grand Hotel?

Privileged

Privileged, photo by cmu chem prof.

mLive reports:

Mackinac Island’s grande dame of lodging, recently named among the top 50 hotels in North America, is hosting its fourth wildly popular Celebrate Michigan promotion, during which residents of the state can stay for half the hotel’s usual rate.

The package costs $95 per person, per night (taxes and fees are extra), and is offered Sept. 11, Sept. 20-22, Oct. 3 and Oct 23. It includes one night’s lodging, a full breakfast and five-course dinner, Michigan-themed reception and complimentary golf green fees.

I feel like I have to mention a particular movie that was shot here so let me say that if you’re interested, you probably better act fast so you can be somewhere in time for this offer which usually sells out. ;)

Seriously, while there’s no doubt that the Grand Hotel can be a little hoity, but the Mackinac Island landmark is also one of the coolest properties in Michigan. This morning I sorted through photos of the Grand Hotel from the water, the Grand Hotel’s signature front porch (including a very interesting composition on the porch), a panorama of the Grand Hotel and even a sight I’d never seen in quite this way, the Grand Hotel at night. Next year the hotel turns 125, so I’ll return then for some of the history and such.

Check it out big as the Grand and in Phil’s massive Northern Michigan slideshow.