Aug 20, 2014

Afternoon Tea; Grand Hotel style on Mackinac Island (Island Hopping)

The Grand Hotel on "Mackinac Island" is the world's largest summer -only resort. It was built over 100 years ago with the help of big railroad money and hard workers. To this day the Grand Hotel is a high style hotel with sheer elegance and traditions. 

One of the traditions that still takes place is "afternoon tea" inside the Parlor of the Grand Hotel. Guests are able to enjoy fresh baked scones, petite fingers sandwiches, an array of delicious pastries along with champagne, tea, and sherry. The elegant afternoon tea is accompanied by a chamber music recital. Served daily from 3:30 pm - 5:00 pm it costs $30.00 per person plus 6% sales tax to enjoy a memorable afternoon inside the lovely Grand Hotel. Non -guests must pay the $10.00 entrance fee to enter the Grand Hotel if they'd like to partake in "afternoon tea."
A recipe for Traditional Scones:

2 cups all purpose flour
1/3 cup sugar
1 tablespoon salt
1/2 cup cold butter, cut in 1/2 inch cubes
1 cup whipping cream, divided
2/3 cup dried currants

Preheat oven to 450 degrees. Stir together the flour, sugar, baking power and salt in a large bowl. Cut the butter into the mixture and a pastry bleeder until crumbly and mixture resembles small peas. Freeze for five minutes.

Add 3/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons whip cream in the dry mixture and stir until moistened.  Add the dried currants to the mixture. Turn dough onto wax paper and press the dough into 7 inch round mixture (it will be crumbly). Cut into 8 wedges. Place the wedges 2 inches apart on a lightly greased cookie sheet. Brush the tops of the scones with the remaining heavy cram until moistened.

Bake the scones in the over at 450 degrees for about 13- 15 minutes until they are golden. Serve on a plate with clotted cream and jam.

                                       Enjoy "afternoon tea" at the Grand Hotel!

A visit to the Grand Hotel is like stepping back in time and partaking in "afternoon tea" is something you'll very much enjoy and remember for a very long time. 

Aug 19, 2014

A Step Back in Time to Mackinac Island (Island Hopping)

As I sit in front of the majestic bay in Traverse City (Northern Michigan) typing away on my laptop I can hear "Mackinac Island" calling out to me. Having been to Mackinac Island a handful of times I can honestly say that it's one of the most idyllic islands in the world. Located on Lake Huron and the Straits of Mackinac and covering 3.8 square miles "Mackinac Island' is a shining star that draws 15,000 visitors per day during the summer months of June, July, and August.

Mackinac Island was formed as the glaciers of the last Ice Age began to melt around 13,000 BC. Today in the 21st century locals and tourists are captivated by the island's magnificent beauty. There have been no motor vehicles allowed on the island since 1898. Bicycles and horses are the only modes of transportation on Mackinac Island and that's what makes it feel so old fashioned and unique.

From the moment you set foot on the island all your troubles seem to melt away and you can enjoy hours upon hours of feeling carefree. Whether you want to enjoy afternoon tea at the "Grand Hotel," bicycle the island, take horse drawn carriage rides, swim in the water, shop, or eat fudge….you will love Mackinac Island.

Ferry Companies Sailing to Mackinac Island:

Arnold Transit Company

Shepler's Mackinac Island Ferry
Star Line Ferry

                                           The Grand Hotel

Places to Stay on Mackinac Island:

Grand Hotel is sheer opulence and the crown jewel of Mackinac Island.   1-800 33 GRAND

Mission Point Resort is a full service resort with modern and old world charm.   1-800 833-7711

Bogan Lane Inn is a bed and breakfast that was formerly a family home.  (906) 847-3439

Chippewa Hotel Waterfront with it's Victorian ambiance is located on Main Street.  (906) 847-3341

Hotel Iroquois is a recipient of a Conde Nast Reader's Choice Award.  (906) 847-3321

Island House Hotel is a romantic place to stay and be pampered.
www.the 1-800 626-6304

Inn at Stonecliffe is a historic inn that resembles a mansion. It has 16 guest rooms.  (906) 847-3355

                           Making and eating fudge is a Mackinac Island tradition
Fudge Shops on Mackinac Island:  (During the high season on Mackinac Island, 10,000 pounds of fudge leave the island daily...that's a lot of fudge).

Joanne's Fudge Shop                                   
460 Main Street

May's Candy Shop

1 Main Street

Murdick's Fudge 

6343 Hoban Road

Murray Hotel Fudge Company

7260 Main Street

Ryba's Fudge Shop

7245 Main Street

Where to eat on Mackinac Island:

Carriage House (inside Hotel Iroquois)
7485 Main Street
An award winning classic American cuisine restaurant.

Cawthorne's Village Inn
1384 Hoban 
A cozy and good place to dine for lunch and dinner. The planked whitefish is the signature dish.

Island Slice Pizzeria
7248 Main Street
A great place for pizza and subs.

Seabiscuit Cafe
7337 Main Street
A charming atmosphere with tasty comfort food.

The Yankee Rebel Tavern
1493 Astor Street
Enjoy an eclectic choice of regional favorites at this quaint tavern.

Grocery Stores on Mackinac Island:

Doud's Market

7260 Main Street
Doud's is America's oldest family owned grocery store and they have an amazing selection of groceries. Locals and visitors flock here to do their food shopping. Some of my favorite items here are the homemade soups and ready made salads….absolutely delicious and a great value.

Even Hollywood is mesmerized by the beauty of Mackinac Island. Television shows have been filmed on Mackinac Island as well as the movies "This Time for Keeps" with Esther Williams and "Somewhere in Time" with Christopher Reeve. 

If there's one island in this world that's worth hopping to it's Mackinac Island. The year round population of Mackinac Island is about 500 but with so many people being fascinated by the wonders of Mackinac Island that number may soon become 5,000 year round residents.

See you soon on magical MACKINAC ISLAND!

                          "Somewhere in Time" was filmed on Mackinac Island!                                          

AUSTRIA; Ever-So-Wunderbar

                                                                            Everyone has a favorite place on this earth, for ...