Marcia Frost shares fall travel ideas.
Although the weather is just showing signs of fall, it’s been two months since school started and it’s time to think about taking a break. This is the perfect time of year to catch both fall foliage and special deals.
Inn at Bay Harbor in Michigan
The foliage is reaching its color peak along Lake Michigan and there’s no better time to catch the beauty of the fall, even though the Inn at Bay Harbor is a resort for all seasons.
The scene on the beach couldn’t be any more beautiful for sunsets and walking along the water, where they serve complimentary s’mores over a fire every night.
It’s all about affordable luxury here, with little touches, such as the nightly chocolates delivered to you room with a small bottle of Kahlua, or the full-service spa, where I can attest the signature fall treatment, Ginger Glow, will definitely leave you warm and fuzzy.
I stayed in one of the renovated Master Suites (all of the resort’s rooms will be refreshed by next spring). It was bright and spacious enough for three adults, and included a kitchen, living room, and dining area.
The resort also has 35 two- and three-bedroom cottages available if you’d like to get a group of your girlfriends together or plan a family reunion.
Bay Harbor is located just around the corner from the active beach town of Petoskey, but it’s also only about a half hour from sister properties Boyne Highlands and Boyne Mountain. In the winter the concierge can easily arrange your downhill skiing, snowboarding, ziplining, and even use of the indoor water park. The resorts are ready with the latest equipment you may need to rent so don’t worry about bringing it from home.
If you’d like to stick around the resort, the Inn at Bar Harbor offers golf on the courses in the spring, summer and fall; and then cross country skiing and snow shoeing in winter. The outdoor pool is closed in the colder months, but the hot tub remains open all year.
The path along the water is welcoming if you’d like to take a walk or bike to the shops at Bay Harbor for some unusual finds along the dock. If you are feeling homesick you’ll also find an Original Pancake House there.
This is the perfect time of year to get deals for this between seasons, or to set your plans for winter break. Check out the Inn at Bay Harbor website for specials.
Pheasant Run Resort in St. Charles, Illinois
A little closer, but just as much fun in the fall, is Pheasant Run Resort. This is definitely a year-round getaway for families or friends, regardless of what the weather is.
Pheasant Run is located in St. Charles, only about three hours from here. The resort is on 250 acres that include rooms and suites for the whole family to comfortably stay in.
Five restaurants are on the property so you’ll find something to please everyone. Harvest Restaurant is upscale Farm-to-Fork dining for a special evening. Make sure you start with the Yukon Gold Leek Soup and end with the Apple Cobbler, and you can’t go wrong.
For a more casual or family friendly evening, visit “Bourbon Street,” where you can help yourself to popcorn from the cart, get a grab n’ go snack at Thieves Market, eat at Jambalaya, or chow down at Zydeco Jack’s Beach Bar. For dessert, the Bourbon Street Creamery is worth the wait, as they serve delicious Chocolate Shoppe Ice Cream, which is made in Wisconsin.
Pheasant Run offers plenty to do at night as well as day time. The Mainstage Theater has continuous year-round shows of cover bands. I saw a talented trio of women called the She Gees, performing Bee Gees songs. They also have plays, such as Irving Berlin’s White Christmas The Musical.
You can also attend a show at Zanies Comedy Club in Pheasant Run. It is open Thursday, Friday, and Saturday Nights, for those 21 and over.
Kids activities take place all day long and they have family-friendly movies at night so parents can enjoy a quiet meal or a show. The whole family can play at the iPANiC Escape Room.
During the day, there’s still some time left for golf, or to play around in the indoor/outdoor pool, or tennis, volleyball, and basketball. If it’s too cold, there is an all-season indoor pool and hot tub.
The best part about Pheasant Run is not looking at the weather report since all the buildings are connected. Be sure to check out their special packages for a more all-inclusive vacation. Prices are especially good this time of year.
Be sure to Like Midwest Travel with Marcia Frost on Facebook for more information on her trips, and read her stories on her Wine And Spirits Travel blog. You can also follow Marcia @Spiritstraveler on Twitter and Instagram.