Situated within walking distance of downtown Traverse City on East Front Street, Delamar Traverse City is an upscale boutique resort. Nestled by Lake Michigan’s shoreline, the 173-room full-service hotel will welcome you year-round.
What I enjoy the most about Traverse City is that it’s right on the Grand Traverse Bay and Delamar has stunning water views and a waterfront patio. Add to that the local art galleries, boutiques, antique shops, and eateries in the downtown area, and you won’t need to get into your car to have a great time. But if you venture out for a drive, you’ll be near some of the best vineyards and wineries in the nation. Nature is also a significant attraction with Sleeping Bear Dunes, a four-season national lakeshore park that features miles of hiking and biking trails.
While you’re in Traverse City, make your base camp the Delamar Traverse City. Here are nine reasons why the whole family will love that decision.
Delamar Traverse City hosted my stay; however, the opinions expressed are my own.
1. Location, Location, Location
While visitors from surrounding states typically arrive after a road trip, Cherry Capital Airport (TVC) services this northwest Michigan town via Delta, American, United, and Allegiant airlines. The hotel’s amenities include a 24-hour airport shuttle and plenty of free on-site parking.
One reason the whole family will love Delamar Traverse City is its proximity to downtown Traverse City, which is steps away from local boutiques, restaurants, and coffee shops. This means that you won’t be dependent on transportation if someone wants a change of scenery for a bit. If you prefer not to walk, request the hotel shuttle at the valet desk, and they’ll give you a lift.
2. Stunning Views
The lobby features stunning views of the bay through floor-to-ceiling windows, a deck, and a roaring elongated fireplace to sit and enjoy a good book.
While seats near the window at the Artisan Waterfront Restaurant & Tavern inside the Delamar showcase a beautiful view of the West Bay, they also feature outdoor dining on a deck that positions you closer to the water. Make your dinner reservations for sunset; dinner will be even more memorable.
3. Fireplaces And Firepits
With fireplaces and firepits throughout the property, you’ll be just as comfortable on crisp fall days as in the summer. The lobby area is in the rear of the property, so you won’t be interrupted by new guests checking in off the parking lot.
The main dining room in Artisan Waterfront Restaurant boasts a large fireplace to make those comfort food meals in the fall even more special. Comfortable sofas and chairs encircle a hand-crafted Swedish farmhouse fireplace for a cozy evening by the lake.
4. Artisan Waterfront Restaurant & Tavern
Artisan Waterfront Restaurant & Tavern features a Great Lakes-inspired menu reflecting the seasons. Sustainability is an essential aspect of the menu. Serving lunch and dinner daily, you’ll find yourself returning to try that other special dish you couldn’t fit in on the first visit.
Some of their signature dishes include a Great Lakes Chowder ladled over a mound of smoked whitefish and served with house-made fennel crackers. Another local favorite is the Michigan Lobster Roll, where they replace lobster with local whitefish, made with apples, corn, fennel, and dill, and served on grilled brioche. It’s then topped with crispy shallots.
Of course, you’ll find locally grown cherries on the menu in various forms. Michigan is the nation’s leading producer of tart cherries, and they show up in desserts, salads, and even dishes like bruschetta.
5. Heart Of Michigan’s Wine Country
Traverse City sits on the 45th Parallel, the halfway point between the equator and the North Pole. That’s the exact parallel of the great wine regions of France and Italy. You’ll find more than 40 wineries in the area, where many vineyards offer on-site hiking trails. Additionally, be sure to taste the hard cider offerings. Sip a cider flight in one of the tasting rooms, and you’ll enjoy sampling and scenic views.
6. Fitness Studio
You’ll find Yen Yoga Fitness, an on-site fitness studio that offers yoga and workout classes. Hotel guests receive a discount on their courses. When you call to make your reservation or register for a class online, note that you are a Delamar guest. They’d even provide you with a sanitized mat if you forgot your yoga mat.
On Friday afternoons, they have a Lavender Chill Restorative and Vino activity that will help you wind down from the crazy week you’ve just had. The session concludes with a lavender and peppermint-infused cloth, and then the group moves to Artisan for a glass of wine.
7. Family-Friendly Activities
You could spend your entire stay in the hotel, that’s how much you’ll find to do there. Delamar features two heated pools, one indoors and one outdoors. They heat the outdoor pool year-round, and the indoor heated pool features a sauna and jacuzzi for some added luxury.
The lawn games on the terrace fit the bill for families that enjoy a bit of competition. Challenge the reigning bocce ball or cornhole champions or give giant Jenga a try.
Heading outdoors, guests enjoy dining under the lakeside pergola, lounging by the fireplace, or meeting friends at the bar for cocktails or a game of bocce ball. Several nights a week during the summer, they feature live music.
If you want to get out on the water, they offer on-site watercraft rental and Nauti-cat sailing charters to make it easy.
8. TART Trail
If you decide to venture out, the paved, non-motorized Traverse Area Recreation and Transit (TART) Trail is a 10.5-mile-long route that you can access just steps from Delamar. You can bike, walk, jog, or in-line skate. Renting a bike at one of several local bike shops is a fun way to get out and explore, then rest a bit at one of the restaurants or wineries on the trail.
9. The Art
While the stunning views of Grand Traverse Bay are paramount, you’ll find plenty of eye-catching art throughout the property. For example, a mural that represents the tree of life, hand-painted by Stockholm artist Jonas Wickman, graces the walls in the Artisan Restaurant. In the main dining room, a second Wickman mural depicting birch trees reaching the sky is visible through glass walls encasing the “Birch Room.”
Pro Tip: While Traverse City is a year-round destination, I enjoy visiting in the warmer months. Spring affords the beauty of the cherry blossoms, summer showcases the cherries during the National Cherry Festival, and you can’t beat the spectacular fall foliage in mid-October.