5 Reasons to start planning your 2019 summer vacation in Michigan now

2019 summer vacation in michigan

Planning your 2019 summer vacation in Michigan is nothing to procrastinate. Popular summer vacation dates are the first to book up here in Saugatuck. To make sure you get the summer vacation you’re dreaming of, start planning now. Not convinced? Read on for 5 reasons you should get those 2019 summer vacation plans in motion.

5 Reasons to start planning your 2019 summer vacation in Michigan right now

Get the dates you want at your ideal home base

Now is your chance to define your perfect summer vacation in Michigan and not let limitations on available dates do it for you. Popular summer vacation dates are already getting scooped up at some of our vacation rentals. Make your plans now and reap the benefits of having set your summer vacation plans in motion early.

Save on travel arrangements

If you’re arriving to your destination via plane, your best chance to save on airfare is to plan early—especially if your vacation falls on a popular travel time. Plus, you get first dibs on the best airplane seats.

Have something to look forward to through the dreary winter months

Winter is coming, and that means the sun is going to be hidden behind clouds more often than it isn’t for the next couple months. Getting your 2019 summer vacation plans set now means you’ll have something real to look forward to when it’s dark and dreary. Daydream about sunbathing on Oval Beach, hiking through Saugatuck Dunes State Park, and roasting s’mores around a beach bonfire.

Collaborate with travel companions more easily

One of the biggest struggles about travel planning is coordinating with everyone who’s going on the trip. When you start planning early on, it’s easier to make sure everyone is on the same page. Planning your summer vacation to Michigan early gives everyone ample time to request time off at work, make arrangements for pet sitters, and gear up for a fun trip to the Great Lakes state.

Reduce stress

Nothing takes a load off your shoulders like checking something off on your to-do list. Taking care of next summer’s vacation plans now will ensure everything comes together exactly how you’re imagining it in your head. Once that’s all set, you can relax and focus on what’s in front of you.

Get first dibs on the 2019 Saugatuck summer vacation you’ve been dreaming of

2019 saugatuck summer vacation

For a handful of dates in summer, lodging in Saugatuck starts getting snatched up well before you’ve even started thinking about your 2019 Saugatuck summer vacation plans. When you plan in advance, you benefit from the most selection for lodging and the peace of mind for having secured your dream vacation early on.

Book these 2019 Saugatuck summer vacation dates ASAP

If you want your 2019 vacation in Saugatuck to include any of the following dates, book now. These ones are always the first to get scooped up!

Memorial Day (Monday, May 27, 2019)

The first official three-day weekend of summer is a beautiful time to visit Saugatuck. Everything is blossoming and you can feel the release and surge of energy after what has undoubtedly been a long winter. People are rightly eager to get back on Lake Michigan and into the full swing of summer, so these dates get snatched early on.

Fourth of July (Thursday, July 4, 2019)

This holiday is a classic time for a summer vacation for a reason: The weather always ushers in the best of summer and a resplendent fireworks display is basically guaranteed. Check out our fireworks when you stay over Fourth of July. Book now to make sure you don’t miss it!

Venetian Festival (Friday, July 26-Saturday, July 27, 2019)

Saugatuck Venetian Festival is a beloved annual event. With food, drinks, live music, and a themed dinghy poker run, there’s fun for everyone. It’s so popular, lodging around town becomes sparse fast. If this beautiful summer weekend is in your vacation game plan, book now.

Labor Day (Monday, September 2, 2019)

Don’t let the last hurrah of summer pass you by without the appropriate fanfare. Spend Labor Day in Saugatuck and send off our favorite season the best way you know how: by relaxing on the lakeshore. Book your Labor Day weekend plenty in advance to secure your vacation.

Stay with Lakeshore Lodging and get first dibs on the same dates the following year

The real trick to getting first dibs on your ideal Saugatuck summer vacation dates is staying with Lakeshore Lodging. After your stay, you have one week to book the same dates in the same vacation rental for the same rate for the following year before anyone else does. After that week, the following year’s rates are entered in and the dates are free game to anyone. It’s a great opportunity for those who’ve found the perfect vacation rental and know they’ll be making a tradition out of their Saugatuck summer vacation.

How to master vacation rental cooking

vacation rental cooking

Cooking for friends and family is a joy. Good food is a force of connection, and the conversations had over preparing and eating meals become some of the most memorable. For many, vacation often means eating at a lot of restaurants. But when you stay in a vacation rental with a gorgeous kitchen, you can bring those good meal making feelings with you. Vacation rental cooking requires a little planning, but it can be remarkably rewarding.

We’ve got some tips that will help you make the most out of your vacation rental cooking experience.

Vacation rental cooking tips and tricks

vacation rental cookingPack the essentials

Vacation rental kitchens often have a basic selection of tools and equipment, but if you have some holy grail tools you can’t live without, pack them! And if you have a favorite seasoning or condiment that you aren’t sure you’ll be able to find at your destination, make sure you bring it along. Plan on purchasing fresh ingredients when you arrive.

When you arrive: Take stock of your rental’s offerings

Before you go grocery shopping, explore your vacation rental’s cupboards. Find out what seasonings, condiments, and tools are at the ready. Plan your meals around what you have, and make a list of what you’ll need. This way you can avoid purchasing a surplus of groceries, and your menu is kind of shaped by the space you’re spending vacation in.

vacation rental cookingKeep it simple

When it comes to vacation rental cooking, simplicity is key. You’re on vacation—don’t stress over a complex meal! Plan on using fewer ingredients so grocery shopping is quick and easy. You want to avoid ending up with too many leftover, unused groceries. And plan meals that don’t require a lot of tools. You won’t want to be bogged down with a lot of dishes to clean up.

Plan ahead

Plan all of the meals you’re going to make during your stay in advance so you can limit the amount of time spent in a grocery store. When it’s time to shop, get the essentials at a local supermarket or take advantage of a grocery delivery service like Shipt (now available in both Saugatuck and Douglas!).

vacation rental cookingWelcome serendipity

Add local flare to your meals with things you find in your travels. Visit the local farmers market, buy supplies for your own artisanal cheese platter at a local shop, and forage for herbs in the wild or in your vacation rental’s garden. Spend the day at a U-Pick orchard and make a dessert from what you gathered. These are the kind of things that will make your meals unique to your vacation and totally unforgettable.

Enjoy the process

Cooking is fun. Take your time when you’re putting together your meals and relish in the process. Get everyone involved by assigning different people to chop vegetables, cut bread, or prepare appetizers. Make an event out of cooking your meals, and you’ll make loads of delicious memories while you’re at it.

Reasons to stay in Lake Michigan holiday rentals this year

lake michigan holiday rentals

If you’re used to hosting family at home every year during the holidays, the idea of renting a vacation home for the holidays might strike you as unorthodox. But lend us your eyes for a moment and we’ll show you why staying in one of Lakeshore Lodging‘s Lake Michigan holiday rentals is actually a brilliant idea.

Hosting get-togethers for holidays like Thanksgiving, Christmas, and New Years Eve can be a lot of work. But choosing to host in a vacation rental can take a lot of the headache out, and you can enjoy the perks of a nice home with beds for everyone. Here are 8 reasons why you should spend the holidays in a vacation rental.

8 reasons to stay in Lake Michigan holiday rentals

1. Homes with great views

Maintaining holiday traditions is nice, but sometimes a change of scenery is in order. Make your holiday celebration picturesque: rent a vacation home with a view of Lake Michigan, or rent a cabin tucked away in a forest of vibrant autumn trees.

2. Room for extended family

One of the hardest things about the holidays is not having the space to host all of your family.  But it’s simple when you can just rent a larger home. When your house isn’t big enough to host the Thanksgiving, Christmas, or Hanukkah dinner of your dreams, it’s easy to find a spacious vacation rental with everything you need.

holiday vacation rental christmas cookies3. Homes with spacious kitchens/entertaining areas

Having the space for everyone to gather and enjoy each other’s company can be hard when you have a lot of people to host. But a variety of holiday vacation rentals come with open floor plans, large dining tables, and spacious kitchens with all the amenities you need to entertain and make the most of your togetherness.

4. Sleeping accommodations for the whole family

Everyone can have a comfy bed to retreat to when the festivities are done in a vacation rental big enough to host everyone. No one need sleep on an air mattress when you choose to stay in a vacation rental for the holidays.

5. Off-season pricing

The fall and winter months mean lower prices on all our Lake Michigan holiday rentals. You can save between 30-50% off of peak season rates when you stay with us for the holidays. So, really, the holidays couldn’t be a more perfect time to stay in a Lake Michigan vacation rental!

6. Personal catering and grocery delivery services

Take advantage of the hospitality hook-ups vacation rental services can offer. You can arrange to have your meals personally catered by a local business or have your grocery shopping done for you in advance when you stay with Lakeshore Lodging. Grocery delivery is available in the Saugatuck area via Shipt, so Shipt members can have groceries delivered right to their vacation rentals. Take the tedium out of your holiday hosting tasks!

7. Homes are clean and ready when you walk in

Another stressful chore associated with holiday get-togethers: making sure everything is clean and ready for your guests. Well, when you choose to stay in a vacation rental for your holiday extravaganza, we take care of all the cleaning for you.

8. Housekeeping service when you leave

When all is said and done, you don’t have to clean after your guests when everybody leaves. All we ask at Lakeshore Lodging is that you load and run the dishwasher (no need to unload it) and take out the trash. The rest is up to us.

There are even more reasons to book a holiday stay at a Lake Michigan vacation rental. Discover them for yourself when you book a cozy cabin at Lakeshore Lodging.

Plan a Lake Michigan romantic getaway

lake michigan romantic getaway

Whether you’re celebrating an anniversary or you’re just celebrating your partnership, one of the most romantic places to steal away to is Saugatuck, Michigan. With beautiful beaches to stroll, exquisite eateries, and some of the finest Michigan-made wine, all you need for your Lake Michigan romantic getaway is a cozy nook to call home.

We can help you with that.

Build the perfect Lake Michigan romantic getaway 

To create the ultimate couples retreat you need a few key ingredients: great dining, activities and attractions, and a romantic place to settle in. Here are some things you shouldn’t miss on your romantic vacation in Saugatuck, Michigan.

Romantic places to eat in Saugatuck

A great meal can seriously enhance any vacation, and Saugatuck has many romantic (and delicious) places to dine for breakfast, lunch, and dinner.

the southerner

Pumpernickel’s Eatery

This cute cafe has an array of great breakfast dishes, and it’s the perfect place to start a day of spending quality time with your significant other.

Uncommon Coffee Roasters

If a lighter breakfast is in order, hit up Uncommon Coffee Roasters for delicious coffee and a selection of yummy baked goods.

The Southerner

Grab lunch at this southern-inspired eatery. From the hospitality to the gourmet food, the influence of the south pervades every aspect of this restaurant, and it’s a total delight to visit.


Marro’s Italian Restaurant

Italian cuisine is a classic choice for a romantic dinner, and there’s no better place to enjoy such a meal than Marro’s Italian Restaurant. In addition to favorite Italian dishes, Marro’s has over 30 wines you can order by the glass.

Bowdie’s Chophouse

One of Saugatuck’s finest eateries, Bowdie’s is a great place to go for the couple that appreciates good American food and excellent steak. A meal at Bowdie’s is guaranteed to be delicious.

Things to do during your romantic getaway

There’s activities for every kind of couple in Saugatuck. Adventurers, foodies, and art enthusiasts will all find plenty to do. Here’s some ideas to get started.

saugatuck art

Art Galleries

Saugatuck and Douglas are filled with great art galleries to explore. If you’re interested in getting some culture while you stay in the area, check out one of the many galleries.

Wineries, Breweries, and Cideries

Taste the vibrant flavors Michigan wines have to offer at one of Saugatuck’s great local wineries. Or if you’re more of a brew dog, try Saugatuck Brewing Company for an excellent craft beverage. Nearby orchards Crane’s and Virtue Cider produce great hard apple cider as well. There’s something for every preference!


Treat yourselves to a relaxing couples massage at one of the great spas in the area. Try Bella Vita in Saugatuck or Salubrity Vida Day Spa in Holland.

Parks and Trails

For the explorers among us, Saugatuck offers plenty of great spots to hike, bike and climb. For great views of the lake and unique flora, check out Saugatuck Dunes State Park, the trails near Oval Beach, and Mount Baldhead. They’re all great spots to catch a romantic sunset over the water, too. Pack a bottle of wine and a blanket for a peaceful evening outing.

Best romantic vacation rentals in Saugatuck

Lakeshore Lodging has the best vacation homes for a couples getaway. Our cottage and cabin rentals have it all, from nooks for morning coffee, to hot tubs for relaxation, to jaw-dropping lakeside views. Here are a couple we think are particularly well-suited to a romantic stay in Saugatuck.

Cozy Hideaway

cozy hideawayThis quaint cottage is located right just a block away from the banks of the Kalamazoo River. Enjoy the water garden, peaceful back deck, and relaxing hot tub when you stay here.

The Nest

This home is only one mile from downtown Saugatuck, but it feels like a secluded cabin surrounded by lush woodland and greenery. It’s a petite cottage with all the amenities you need and a very relaxing atmosphere.

Rise N Shine

If your couples getaway needs to include your dog too, Rise N Shine is a perfect choice. This dog-friendly cottage rental is located within walking distance of downtown Saugatuck. It has a fenced-in backyard and a screened-in front porch made for morning coffee.

Peterson Mill

Historic, whimsical, and exceedingly charming, Peterson Mill is just a couple blocks from downtown Saugatuck’s shops and restaurants. The home has warm interior decor and calming water features in the yard, and it’s a picturesque place to steal away to.

Bluffs Cove

Let’s face it, one of the best parts of Saugatuck is its proximity to the beautiful Lake Michigan. If you and your partner are interested in making the most of it, stay at Bluffs Cove. With a stunning panoramic view of the lake, a hot tub, and beach access, it’s a dream come true.

Take your romantic vacation to the next level

Lakeshore Lodging has a number of hospitality partners who can take your romantic stay to the next level. If in-home wine tasting, flower delivery, private dinners, and professional photography sound like they could enhance your romantic getaway, these are the businesses we’d recommend.  

Spend Labor Day in Saugatuck

Start planning your summer send-off

The end of summer is probably the last thing you want to think about right now. But if you’re looking to end the season with a bang, you should start planning your vacation ASAP.

Labor Day is one of the most popular times to visit Saugatuck, and availability for vacation rentals becomes limited fast. Book your Saugatuck vacation now.

What will you do when you get here? Whether you want to partake in our town festivities, enjoy a celebration with close friends and family, or make the most of the end of beach season, there’s lots to do in Saugatuck around Labor Day. Allow us to give you some ideas:

Your in-town itinerary

Catch one of these great Saugatuck-area events during your Labor Day stay.

Saugatuck-Douglas 19th Annual Bridge Walk – Join the community in a walk across the Blue Star Bridge on September 4, 9-10am. Starts on the Douglas side and proceeds to the Saugatuck side. Held in solidarity with the annual walk across the Mackinac Bridge, this walk is quite a bit shorter.

Labor Day Truck Parade – Celebrate the businesses of West Michigan in Holland’s annual parade of big trucks. Bring your family, some earplugs, and an appetite for ice cream.

All-Crafts Fair – Peruse hundreds of exhibitors with fine arts, crafts, and food in South Haven during Labor Day weekend.

Fenn Valley Fall Vineyard Tour – Take part in one of Fenn Valley’s first fall vineyard tours. Learn about grape growing and winemaking.

Saugatuck Chain Ferry – Labor Day weekend is your last chance of the year to ride aboard the Saugatuck Chain Ferry—the only remaining hand-cranked ferry in the country. Hitch a ride across the Kalamazoo River for a shortcut to Oval Beach.

Music on the Lawn at Borrowed Time – Catch some outdoor tunes on the lawn at Borrowed Time before they’re done for the season.

Find the best home for Labor Day festivities

The perfect Labor Day vacation requires a home base that’s best suited to your planned activities. We have properties that’ll make your weekend unforgettable.

Grill out

Ferry’s Landing – This tastefully modern, farmhouse-inspired home has a spacious backyard with a firepit. Grill your meal and enjoy it on the screened-in porch. Spend the evening around the fire with friends.

Kingfisher Cove Cabin 28 – A log-cabin inspired home on the shores of Goshorn Lake with plenty of space for entertaining both indoors and out. Grill out in the wooded, secluded backyard and later enjoy a fire in the firepit or a dip in the hot tub.

Stay in town

Mason Loft
– Stay above a Saugatuck storefront in this quaint apartment. This shotgun-style loft has a fully equipped kitchen and is awash in natural light. You’ll be within walking distance of many great Saugatuck activities when you stay here.

Cozy Hideaway – This cute cottager is perfect for small groups and families and is located just a walk from the action downtown Saugatuck.

Beachside holiday

Beach Cottage – Enjoy the fresh lakeside air and a view of the lake framed by tall trees at Beach Cottage. Sunbathe on the private beach during the day, enjoy the gas grill and firepit in the evening.

Mixed Doubles – Recently re-furnished, this home is beautifully designed and has unreal views of Lake Michigan and a great beach. It has a traditional cottage charm and is nestled on a quiet, wooded acre.

Heron Creek – Descend the stairs to get to this property’s beach and catch a few great views along the way. Located in a deeply secluded, wooded area, this property is a perfect place to truly get away from it all.

Here’s Why You Should Stop by Tabor Hill Wine Port

tabor hill wine port

In cozy Saugatuck, MI, an array of shops and storefronts welcome you to wander downtown. One of those wonderful storefronts is the Tabor Hill Wine Port. As Saugatuck’s premier wine tasting room, Tabor Hill is the headquarters for wine in the area. Let the experts at Tabor Hill Wine Port guide you to the best wine experience you’ve ever had. It’s a great activity to sample the local flair and fare during your visit to Saugatuck!

Are you looking for the best things to see and do on Michigan’s Art Coast? Then, look no further than the recommended activities from Lakeshore Lodging! Our recommendations are sure to make your visit the best one yet. Trust us, we’re experts and we’re local!

You’ll Love the Selection and Expertise at Tabor Hill Wine Port

Though the wine is produced about an hour south of Saugatuck, the Tabor Hill Wine Port offers to residents and visitors of Saugatuck the chance to experience wine like never before. If you’re looking for quality wine with the opportunity for a tasting, then this is the spot for you. At the store, Tabor Hill’s wine experts are ready and waiting to guide you through their selection. They will walk you through tasting notes of each of their wines, highlighting flavors and aromas that make the wines special. It’s the perfect complement to the art galleries and boutiques downtown, too, meaning your shopping trip won’t be complete without a stop into the Tabor Hill Wine Port.

Tabor Hill Winery in Buchanan, MI

If you’re up for a little bit of an adventure from Saugatuck, then you should definitely make the trek down to Buchanan to visit the winery itself. At the winery lodge, you’ll love the hardwood floors and decor, and the unique lighting will set the mood for your visit. It’s the perfect place to relax and rest with quality Michigan wine. Plus, they’re open during the winter for wine tastings and dining, as well as the rest of the year. You can take a tour beginning in the springtime, and keep in mind that the restaurant is closed the week before Christmas to the middle of January. To stay up to date, you can check out their hours and locations.

Take the Journey During Your Saugatuck Getaway

Whether you’re just stopping in for some quality wine at the Tabor Hill Wine Port or making the journey down to Buchanan to see the winery, itself, you can’t go wrong during your Saugatuck getaway! And, when you stay with Lakeshore Lodging during your time here, you’ll feel right at home! Our beautiful vacation rentals are both comfortable and convenient, and we’re confident you’ll enjoy your time with us more than anywhere else. So, check out our available rentals and see for yourself the quality you’ll enjoy. Then, contact us to reserve your stay! Finally, if you need more ideas for things to see and do in the area. We guarantee they’ll make your vacation the best one yet!

4 of the Best Reasons to Spend Christmas in Michigan

christmas in michigan

If you’re planning a vacation in the winter, a state that experiences heavy snowfall annually like Michigan might not be at the top of your list. However, don’t let the precipitation scare you away – Michigan embodies every essential Christmas element. Cozy fireplaces, snowy evenings, and an atmosphere that encourages community and cheer: if you ask us, that sounds like the perfect place to spend Christmas 2016. There are a lot of things that we love about living in Michigan, and one of them is spending time with the ones closest to us over the holidays. Christmas in Michigan provides the perfect opportunity to do that, and if you stay with us in Saugatuck, you’ll see for yourself why we love it!

4 of the Best Reasons to Spend Christmas in Michigan

1. The Scenery

We’ll start with the most obvious reason: postcard-worthy scenery. What comes to mind when you think of Christmas? Presents, lights, and Santa aside, you might picture smoke rising from chimneys on snow-covered roofs, fir trees, and the gentle glow of streetlamps illuminating gentle snowfalls. That’s what you’ll find here. It’s hard to beat the views that we have in winter! Bundle up and explore the beauty that is Christmas in Michigan.

2. There’s Actually a Town Called Christmas in Michigan

Alright, we couldn’t resist listing this one. A town in Michigan that’s actually called Christmas? Yes, it exists, and yes, it’s celebration of all things Christmas! If you’re looking for the ornaments decorations or anything other Christmas related item, well, this is the place to be. The hotels in town capitalize on the name, and you can stay at places like Evergreen Cottage, White Pine Lodge, and Winter Dreamland. In the winter, snowmobiling is the activity of choice. Note: Christmas is quite a drive from Saugatuck (over six hours). We listed it here not as a local attraction, but more of a reason to visit our state during the holidays. And, well, how could we not talk about such a unique town?

3. Snow

If you live in a state that considers 70 degrees to be chilly, then Christmas for you probably involves palm trees, the sunshine, and flip-flops. There’s no better place to get your fill of snow – or experience it for the first time – than here in Michigan. That white powdery stuff that falls from the sky arrives in feet here, not inches, and transforms the Great Lakes State into a winter wonderland.

4. Christmas Celebrations in Saugatuck-Douglas

We saved the best for last. All across the state, you can find holiday festivals and craft shows, but if you want the best Christmas in Michigan experience, then make plans to visit Saugatuck. Between our lovely town and neighboring Douglas, we celebrate the season throughout the entire month of December! This Saugatuck-Douglas Christmas calendar is packed with great events for everyone. The fun gets going on Saturday, Dec. 3, with the Christmas Bazaar, Saugatuck’s “Whootville” Christmas Parade, and much more. That’s only the start of the fun! Other great events include Winterfest at Felt Mansion (Dec. 10), performances of Dickens’ “A Christmas Carol,” Wine Tasting at Felt Mansion (Dec. 17), Christmas Eve services, and a Christmas dinner! Visit the Saugatuck-Douglas events calendar for more information.

Spend this Christmas in Saugatuck

A pleasant town with a creative community and welcoming spirit, Saugatuck draws people from across the country annually. Located on the shores of Lake Michigan, our town is the ideal getaway, any time of year. Enjoy a lazy vacation on Oval Beach, explore local art galleries and vineyards, or cozy up for the holidays here. No matter when you visit or how many people you bring with you, let Lakeshore Lodging help you find the perfect place to stay. Our Lake Michigan vacation homes feature all the amenities and space you need, whether you want a house on the shore or an apartment in town. Stay with Lakeshore Lodging, and see what makes Saugatuck so special. Contact us today, online or by calling (866) 765-7522.