This past weekend we were lucky enough to get to return to Mackinac Island and stay at the lovely Inn at Stonecliffe Mansion & Suites. We had a marvelous time and wanted to share with you the details of our adventure. We loved our time at the captivating Inn at Stonecliffe.
Our journey to the Inn at Stonecliffe
We set off on a Friday afternoon and traveled an easy drive up I-75 North to Mackinaw City where we caught the Star Line Ferry. The only way to get to Mackinac Island is to take a ferry; cars are not allowed on the island. Some of the packages offered by the Inn at Stonecliffe include your ferry tickets, which is convenient because you are able to pick the ferry tickets up at the office.
When we boarded the ferry our bags were checked in and designated for the Inn at Stonecliff; it was convenient not having to haul the bags around on the ferry boat with us. We we arrived on the island the Stonecliffe porter took care of loading our bags onto the horse drawn carriage that was going to the Stonecliffe. We didn’t have to touch our bags at all, even once we arrived at the Inn. A Stonecliffe employee took care of unloading our bags and delivered them to our room. It was so convenient!
The Inn at Stonecliffe property consists of two places to stay; The Mansion and The Summer House.
We stayed in the historic mansion, a stunning piece of Tudor architecture that has 16 guest rooms. The mansion was originally a private home built by successful businessman Michael Cudahy. Our room was lovely, with a scenic view of the Mackinac Bridge and surrounding water.
We enjoyed our own very large private bathroom, state of the art television and complimentary wireless internet access. Every room in the mansion comes with these features. The Summer House is a separate building on the grounds that has 31 suites. Each suite is professionally decorated in a summery cottage style and it offers a more modern feel for those desiring additional features such as refrigerator and microwave.
Having seen both properties we can see that each one has it’s perks but we are so happy we chose to stay in the mansion. The charm, the history and the overall feeling of being in the historical building was an experience we will remember for a lifetime.
When we arrived by horse drawn carriage we instantly were taken aback by the beauty of the grounds. From the luscious plantings and well manicured lawn to the high end welcoming lawn furniture, it was obvious that the Inn at Stonecliffe is more of an experience then just a place to stay.
We loved that the Inn was set back from the rest of the hustle and bustle of Mackinac Island. At just under 2 miles from the ferry docks, this secluded location is perfect for those looking to experience an upscale getaway without the touristy feel of a busy area.
Check in was a quick process and immediately we felt relaxed as we traveled up the winding staircase to our third floor room. We loved the old world charm of the doors, including the real key that we had to use to enter the room. We can’t remember the last time we had to use a real key at a hotel.
Our room was spotlessly clean and the bedding was luxurious. We loved that the original windows were still in use and that you could open them up to feel the cool breeze outside. It was charming and relaxing.
Explore the grounds
We investigated the grounds and discovered several walking trails; be sure to explore if you stay at the Inn.
The trail out the back led us to this magical look out point, although it was quite cloudy the day we were there. We know that the view of the Mackinac Bridge and surrounding waters would have been more breathtaking had it have been clear.
During our stay we saw a wedding take place on the grounds, as well as two wedding receptions. If you are looking for a destination wedding that is romantic and filled with charm, you should explore the weddings at Stonecliffe options with their wedding coordinator.
Since you are about 2 miles from the town center, more than likely you will want to explore the island during your stay. Convenient bike rentals are available at the Inn, and we strongly suggest hopping on a bike to tour the island.
If you are looking for an interesting bike ride, travel around the entire island in just over 8 miles. It’s a great way to get a grasp of the layout of the island. We had biked the perimeter of the island last year when we visited so this time we used the bikes to explore the inner roads and trails of the island. We had a phenomenal time riding, taking in the lovely scenery that seems to be everywhere. The Inn provided a very useful map when we picked up our bikes so that helped us determine our route (and helped us a couple of times when we weren’t 100% sure where we were).
We stopped at Arch Rock; don’t miss that!
We capped off our biking journey with a yummy lunch in town and then biked back to the Inn. The entire day had been somewhat gloomy but we had avoided the rain until the final 5 minutes of our bike ride back. It started to drizzle lightly which wasn’t a big deal at all. We returned the bikes and headed back to our room to unwind and relax. As we nestled in the plush bed and started to take a relaxing afternoon nap, we smiled because we could hear the wrath of Mother Nature as the rain intensified and it poured for about an hour. Hearing the rain and feeling the Autumn breeze through the windows transported us to a tranquil, peaceful place. We were so lucky to avoid that downpour; I think those happy thoughts helped us drift off to sleep and take a very unusual afternoon nap. We can’t honestly remember the last time we napped; but it was certainly a welcome part of this trip.
At night Jim experimented with some interesting night photography from the window of our room. The view of the bridge is phenomenal!
The Inn at Stonecliffe is perfect for a relaxing getaway. We found it romantic, but we can see that it would also be a family friendly place to stay.
They offer a heated outdoor pool, outdoor lawn games and a golf course is adjacent to the property. We loved that there was no dress code at the Inn. It is easy to be comfortable in casual clothing and there was no air of stuffiness or pretentiousness.
We should mention too that if you are hungry and don’t want to leave the Inn for dinner, try the Cudahy Chophouse. It is located inside the Inn, in the parlor and offers delicious menu selections. You can also enjoy drinks and appetizers in the Cudahy Room Bar. Breakfast is provided daily and the selection of hot and cold dishes, along with fresh fruit and pastries, was ample and delicious. It was the perfect way to start off the day. We enjoyed our breakfast on the patio, but you can also dine inside if you would rather.
When it was time to check out, the front desk clerk was helpful in arranging that we were on the next shuttle to the ferry. Again, we didn’t have to worry about our bags because their friendly and efficient staff took care of loading them on the carriage.
Our time at the Inn at Stonecliff was truly magical; we relaxed and unwound and connected with each other. The hustle and bustle of our hectic lives was forgotten, if only for a couple of days, as we embraced the splendor of the mansion and the island. We’d highly recommend staying here, and we hope to return again.
You can find out more about the Inn at Stonecliffe Mansion and Suites here.
Disclosure: We partnered with the Inn at Stonecliffe for an honest review of our experience in exchange for accommodations.