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luxury family resorts driving from chicago

luxury family resorts driving from chicago


Old Apr 11, 10, 10:56 pm
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I can't explain why we haven't tried this out yet as it is a very short drive for us other than to say we just haven't found the time yet Therefore I really can't make a recommendation from my own experience other than having walked through the lobby one afternoon when I happened to be driving through French Lick.

There is quite a bit of history associated with the place. For years it had fallen into ruin and the restoration is nothing less than a miracle. Also keep in mind that with the exception of the French Lick Springs Hotel just down the road there is not much in French Lick. Larry Bird grew up there and has a home there as I understand it.

There is a casino and a couple golf courses otherwise it is a typical small town but I still suggest giving it a try if just for a stopover on the way to someplace else It really is an amazing place. Prior to the modern day domed stadiums it was the largest domed structure in the world.
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Old Apr 12, 10, 7:54 pm
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Originally Posted by peersteve View Post
For family-friendly and beach, perhaps look at some of the towns in Michigan on the beaches of Lake Michigan.....can't think of names of town at moment, but look at towns on the lake in Michigan just north of Indiana border. Some are known as the weekend retreats/2nd homes for Chicagoans living on Gold Coast. Should be some rentals of luxury houses within walking distance of beach, and an easy drive from Chicago.

Aiming for the luxury of having family all together without wasting a lot of travel time & hassle can outweight pure luxury surroundings. When we rent a beach house we bring our own fluffy towels and better sheets, plus plenty of hotel soap and it's nice......easy to do when driving!
I think peersteve may have been referring to Grand Beach, MI, and the towns around there. I think Mayor Daley and his cronies have summer places around there.
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Old Apr 12, 10, 8:18 pm
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Originally Posted by paterwdb View Post
Anyone have thoughts in Toronto maybe?
... there's a few nice properties in Toronto..but is 8-9 hours + border time really what you'd call a reasonable drive?
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Old Apr 12, 10, 9:58 pm
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A lot of Chicago-area families have houses on various lakes within a couple of hours drive of Chicago. Wisconsin and Michigan are the obvious choices and Lake Geneva is the most obvious choice. However, I have stayed with friends at some wonderful homes on smaller lakes. The key is to find nice ones that are available for rental. (Most of the time the nicest ones are not rented but there are exceptions).

It's not hotel service but a beautiful lakeside home with a sandy beach and options for getting on the water (ask about renting boats) is a great vacation.
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Old Apr 29, 10, 10:36 pm
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Originally Posted by sabieboy View Post
You are right about the Dells - cheesy and not lux (there is a spa there, Sundara, but it's a mixed experience, and not suitable for kids).
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Old Jul 12, 10, 6:16 pm
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We are also looking for a place to go after a family wedding in Chicago next summer (3 generations; 4-5 couples; kids).

Specifically, dining, pools and children's activities are important for us (age from toddler to teen). Golf is not a draw at all.

Also, what it the maximum time that one would want to spend at any resort hotel referenced in this thread?
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Old Jul 14, 10, 7:51 am
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IMO Kohler is not suitable for kids. It's more of a spa and foodie experience.

One possibility which is somewhat unique but a long drive is Macinac (spelling?) Island. It has a restored grand old hotel, no cars (think horse and buggy), sense of history, etc. However, I'm not sure how good it would be for modern recreational facilities like one would find in a big new resort.

Another unique experience would be to check out the facilities associated with some of the preserved Frank Lloyd Wright buildings. At least one of these in the midwest has been expanded into a small resort, but I don't remember where or any details. Of course, with children, you wouldn't expect to actually sleep in a FLW building, but rather some upscale lodge or newly-built "villa" on the grounds.

Someone suggested Pennsylvania. The Seven Springs Resort has greatly expanded since I was there many years ago, but it now claims to be luxury level. It might be worth checking.

Along the shore in MN north of Duluth, most of the resorts seem like tacky but there are a few that look nice. Sorry that I can't remember names. Probably about eleven hours from Chicago, so long drive, especially with kids in the car.

ADDED: Canoe Bay also is not suitable for children.

Last edited by MSPeconomist; Jul 15, 10 at 12:57 pm
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