Last month I had the opportunity to visit Hotel Walloon for the first time. I’ve heard whispers about this magical little village, nestled between Petoskey and Boyne City, it’s a destination for summer dreams. We were greeted with snow squalls. But the charm and hospitality that waited just beyond the front door instantly warmed us.
I love classic homes and architecture and all the details that fill a space with a sense of nostalgia. I would choose to live in an early 1900s crumbling bungalow over a shiny new mansion any day of the week. I look for details that make a place feel authentic and remind us of day’s gone by. When I stepped inside Hotel Walloon for the first time, I thought I was walking into a renovated little piece of history. Aftern chatting with the general manager, I was absolutely shocked to find that the hotel is less than two years old. It was filled with endless amenities but also the little touches that make a space feel loved. The patina on the bar mirror, the elaborate craftsmanship in the woodwork that will surely stand the test of time and the tin look of the ceiling tiles.
My phone is filled with pictures of the baseboards, the ceilings, the bead board, the shiplap, the perfectly brass hardware and Italian chandeliers. I could gush about the flawless décor for at least a few more paragraphs. But beyond the beauty of a space, when I visit a destination I like to feel welcomed. I have a background in hospitality and I know all about “wowing” your guests and the customer experience. I have an unfortunate tendency to be overly critical when it comes to how I’m treated by the hospitality staff at a venue, hotel or dining establishment. But here, I cannot find anything to be improved upon.
From the moment we walked through the doors, we were greeted with a warm fire and European style check in. Appetizers, cookies, coffee and treats were made readily available throughout the day. Fine chocolates were placed on our pillows each night and a guest was left wanting nothing. There’s naught more I could ever want from a hotel stay. It wasn’t just the hotel itself, but the people that made you feel so welcomed.
Their event coordinator, Allison, was gracious enough to give us a tour of the entire space and this has now become my dream wedding location. I’d like to add it to my venue bucket list and I know it would be the perfect setting for the most perfect nuptials. Just imagine, renting out the entire 32 room hotel – filling the space with your most loved family and friends. A ceremony could be held on their lawn overlooking the shimmering blue waters of Walloon Lake. And then dancing the night away on a patio beneath the stars. I’m still dreaming of a humble 2 night get away in the dead of winter with my husband. A wedding warmed by the summer sun surrounded by all of those whom I hold dear would be better than any fairytale I’ve ever been told.
I still have a few openings for floral design and full wedding planning for 2017 and am beginning to book 2018 weddings as well. If you’re thinking of married at Hotel Walloon (or anywhere in Northern Michigan) we should talk!