Greetings from Mackinac Island!
I’m writing this from a suite in the beautiful Mission Point Resort, typing with one eye toward a clear view of the lake through the French doors. (The life of a magazine editor can be truly tough at times).
My visit here is my first ever to the island (ridiculous, given that I grew up in Michigan), and it was precipitated by an invitation from the resort. Mission Point was sold at the end of last year to Dennert Ware, a Texas businessman with Michigan roots, and the staff at Mission Point is clearly excited by the changes the new ownership is bringing.
MIM+E’s upcoming issue will give the details of the improvements and changes, both under way and upcoming, to the resort. (Suffice to say, they range from simple changes like painting the walls brighter colors to major efforts like adding a spa and totally reimagining buildings like the activities center.) For now, I’ll offer my impression of the property.
The new ownership seems to be coming at the right time for Mission Point. General Manager Bradley McCallum arrived at the resort three years ago from the Westin Book Cadillac and has been steadily steering it toward a revitalized position. McCallum is calm, gracious and congenial, but he’s also highly alert to small matters happening around him and gives the impression of someone with high expectations of others. In other words, he has the personality one would want in resort general manager. The Wares have said publicly they plan to keep him on board, which is a good move.
When I arrived at Mission Point, it was clear that most of the staff was unaware that I was a member of the media, and so treated me as they would any guest. To a one, they were great. All my questions were answered promptly and politely, concerns were resolved immediately. I tend to be persnickety about customer service, and large properties, by sheer size of their staff, often stumble on this front. Mission Point did not, and that meant a lot.
The property itself, like much of the island, holds a lot of appeal for anyone with an interest in U.S. history. It abuts the 1825 Mission House, now on the National Registry of Historic Sites, and the history of the hotel itself includes its genesis as a conference center for the peace-loving Moral Re-Armament, a few-year stint as a college and its selection as the site for the filming of “Somewhere in Time” on its sound stage.
Of course, those interesting historical details are just a pleasant diversion, not a reason in themselves to choose Mission Point. For that, you can look to the gorgeous views from its front lawn, the beautiful grounds designed by new staff horticulturist John Van Etten, the dedication of the resort staff and the many upgrades to come.