Michigan’s Lower Peninsula — its “mitten,” is nearly encircled by two glorious Great Lakes — Lake Michigan and Lake Huron. And the harbors all along its shorelines are home to some of the country’s finest bed and breakfast inns. Part 11 of our “Michigan’s Best B&Bs” series focuses on three outstanding inns along the northerly portion of Lake Michigan’s western coastline. Here, it’s just called “The Big Lake.” Meet Chateau Chantal B&B on Old Mission Peninsula, Oviatt House B&B in the heart of Traverse City, and Pentwater Abbey B&B, nestled near the water’s edge in the charming beach town of Pentwater.
Chateau Chantal, Traverse City (Northwest Region)
Just where in Provence is this? Actually, you’re seeing the smallest detail of Chateau Chantal, one of Michigan’s most romantic B&Bs. Also a working vineyard and winery operation, it’s located just outside Traverse City. Built in the style of an elegant French chateau, it spreads its wings and turrets and terraces among 65 acres of lush, rolling vineyards that fuel its winery with award-winning product celebrated year around in tapas tours and tastings, wine dinners and jazz and wine pairings on the terrace in summer at sunset. It houses an 11-room B&B with elegant guestrooms that offer sweeping views of both the west and east arms of Grand Traverse Bay from near the tip of Old Mission Peninsula. Every breakfast promises its own small miracle of flavors. A getaway here deserves a place on everyone’s bucket list.
Pentwater Abbey, Pentwater (Northwest Region)
Less than a block from everything a beach town’s downtown should be, right across the street from Pentwater Lake and the boat channel and just three blocks to the sweeping, sugar-sand Lake Michigan beach, Pentwater Abbey B&B is the ideal headquarters for an idyllic getaway. The harbor Village of Pentwater is the epitome of “quaint” – a step back in time to a simpler, friendlier world, yet not so far back that you won’t pick up WiFi. The Abbey, built in 1868, is meticulously maintained and features lovely gardens with areas to gather, read, play Scrabble… or just sit. Borrow an Abbey bicycle to explore the nearby neighborhoods. Enjoy any of three comfortable guest rooms with private baths, complemented by a Victorian ambiance. Awaken each morning to a delicious, homemade breakfast. It’s the good life! Enjoy.
Oviatt House, Traverse City (Northwest Region)
Oviatt House B&B is just two blocks from downtown Traverse City – so close you can walk there on the “river walk” along the nearby Boardman River that flows right through its heart. The 1,500 foot-stretch of Clinch Beach park on the west arm of Grand Traverse Bay parallels downtown and is accessible via a pedestrian tunnel. This B&B is a sweetheart of a find for guests who love to shop and sun, swim, wine, dine and follow the trail of great local brew pubs without having to get in the car and drive. But the Oviatt House is also easily accessible to all the attractions of the Grand Traverse area. Having your own keys to the front door gives you total privacy to come and go on your own terms. This versatile B&B offers six comfortable guest rooms, a small kitchen, outdoor deck and gardens, hot and cold beverages 24/7, delicious breakfasts homemade with local, fresh and organic ingredients and gracious hospitality.
You can find all of Michigan’s best B&B’s by visiting our website. Search by the name if you know it — or kind of know it. Search by region, by city, by its special offerings and deals or by its proximity to activities from golf courses and nightlife to lighthouses and biking trails. Or “design your stay” to your precise specifications. After your visit to any of our quality-assured B&Bs, be sure to come back to the website to “rate your stay”.