Valentine’s Day is on a Saturday this winter. It’s the perfect time for a romantic getaway with some skiing, riding and romance. Here are some of the best choices around the Great Lakes. These packages are also available through the rest of the month and into March.
Petoskey, often called the “Nantucket of the Midwest,” is located on Lake Michigan’s Little Traverse Bay. It offers Old World Charm and country inns overlooking the scenic bay, a little slice of New England in the Heartland.
Stafford’s Bay View Inn, built in 1886 offers a Hit The Slopes package, which starts from $349 on weekends, based on two people in a room. It includes two nights lodging, a country breakfast each morning, and two vouchers for a day’s lift ticket at either Boyne Highlands or Nubs Nub, both nearby. Superb dining, the charm and hospitality make this a memorable Valentine’s stay.
The Homestead Resort, nestled in Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore overlooking Lake Michigan, offers a Couples Retreat that includes a night’s lodging, hot breakfast, a bottle of wine, and passes to access the National Lakeshore for cross country skiing or snowshoeing. Rates start from $80 per person, per night, and all day lift tickets can be added for $40 per person or $27 if you want to sleep in and ski or board from 1 p.m. The resort’s Just For Two package starts from $83 per person, per night, and includes a hot breakfast and dinner at the resort’s signature restaurant, Nonna’s. Lift tickets can be added separately. The Homestead is open Friday-Sunday for skiing and snowboarding.
Wisconsin’sGranite Peak and Wausau make a nice romantic combo. The city is draped around the base of Rib Mountain. At night the ski area illuminates the mountain rising above the city. The Jefferson Street Inn, located on the town square, offers a Romantic Getaway that includes a two-night stay in a two-room suite with in-room whirlpool and fireplace, lift tickets for two days and a couple’s message. The package starts from $615.
Lutsen Resort has been called one of the “grand old resorts” along Lake Superior’s North Shore, and it’s located just across the road from Lutsen Mountains, the Heartland’s largest snowsports resort. Minnesota Monthly Magazine calls it “most romantic resort in the state.” They offer a Feb. 4 for 3 Package that gives you the fourth night free. Lutsen Resort offers guests roundtrip free shuttle service to the ski hill, just minutes away. Buy your Lutsen Mountainslift tickets online and save $20 per adult on two-day lift tickets.
One of the more unusual getaways involves Mackinac Island where "Somewhere In Time" was filmed; one of my favorite romantic movies. Fly over to the island, a short 25-minute flight, on Great Lakes Air, and spend the weekend cuddling and enjoy scenic cross country skiing on island trails. Several of the island’s historic inns stay open during the winter as well as a few restaurants. They are hosing the Great Turtle Chili Cook off and a Washington’s Birthday Bash Feb. 13-16.
Photos: Top -- Head to Granite Peak and the Jefferson Street Inn for your romantic getaway (Granite Peak); Bottom -- Lutsen Mountains called Minnesota's "most romantic resort." (Lutsen Mountains)