A n iconic northern Michigan landmark opens its doors to kick off the 2013 summer tourism season.
T he Grand Hotel on Mackinac Island welcomed their first guests of the year. And one-by-one guests checked in for the weekend.
" I love the elegance , I feel like I'm treated like a queen here ," hotel guest Pam Binson explained.
A nyone who takes the horse buggy ride up to the Grand will notice some things have changed. A new flower shop was added, where you can watch florists put together hundreds of arrangements each day.
T hese workers along with more than 600 others around the hotel have been working around the clock to get things ready for today's opening.
" We are a detailed business and it's very important from making sure all the light bulbs are on, to making the floor clean, to make sure the beds are made so it takes a village to make all that happen," Grand Hotel President Dan Musser explained.
A nother new feature here at the Grand Hotel is Sadie's Ice Cream Parlor, where you can get one of their mini Grand Pecan Balls along with other island favorites. New features like these keep the tourists coming back.
" Last year was the biggest growth we've ever seen in our history , both in volume and dollar and I'm pleased to say we are looking at it three to four percent increase on that this year so we're very optimistic," Musser said.
T hat optimism shows in the smiles of the hotel ' s employees and in the heart of this historic landmark.