This latest visit to Mackinac Island was my third time there. The first time I went, I was a little kid, and my parents and sister and I went for a day trip during a vacation to Michigan. When Jay and I went together ten years ago, we stayed at the Murray Hotel, and this time we stayed at the Lilac Tree Hotel. Both of them were great hotels (I mean, the Murray Hotel sells fudge right in the lobby, so there's really no need to even go outside, and the Lilac Tree staff delivered free Oreos to your room at night), but they are regular hotels for the commoners. My lifelong dream is to someday stay here:
This is the Grand Hotel on Mackinac Island. Of course, if you're someone who can actually afford to stay here, you don't have to go through the long, tedious process of calling it "The Grand Hotel." You can simply call it"The Grand", as in, "When I've become worn out screaming at servants, climbing all of the stairs on my yacht, and setting piles of hundred-dollar bills on fire, I relax and unwind at The Grand." The Grand Hotel has a dress code after 6 p.m. If you can't read the small print on this sign, it says, "Ladies may not be attired in slacks."
I don't know if I even own anything that could be considered "slacks". I think "slacks" would be dressing up for me.
Anyway. The second a commoner sets one pinky toe on Grand Hotel property, a person in a red blazer whooshes out the front door and suddenly materializes in front of you, much like Edward Cullen in the Twilight movies, and asks if you are guests of the hotel. I suppose since we were all wearing things a few rungs below slacks on the fashion ladder, it was pretty easy to tell. Non-guests can still come inside and walk around, but you have to pay $10 per person ($5 for kids). The good news is that you can put the entrance fee toward the $45-per-person brunch, served here:
Jay refused to stay for the $45 brunch, even though I told him that the Internet claimed it was the best brunch you would ever have in your life. I think they serve grilled unicorn.
Still, we spent a couple of hours just wandering around the inside of the hotel and the gardens. We even went up to the cupola at the very top. When you pay your entrance fee, they give you a little green map of the hotel, so it is easy to identify the other commoners, also clutching their little green maps and sniffing the hint of unicorn in the air.
When we got home, Jay saw in a magazine that they actually sell Grand Hotel paint colors at Lowe's. Hmm. I see some redecorating in the future, and it will probably cost less than the brunch, too. Then I can start referring to my own house as "The Grand", as in, "We have a bad ant problem in the kitchen of The Grand." It'll be great.