I'm aiming to head to the northern reaches of either Michigan or Minnesota (or even Wisconsin)next spring. My wife and I would like to find a quiet (no kids or 20-somethings)and luxurious retreat in a 'wilderness' lodge or B & B on or near a lake for a week or two. Spectacular scenery and scruptious food would be a bonus. Any information would be welcome.
Grand Geneva Resort & Spa, Lake Geneva, Wisconsin comes to mind. LL currently has a Best Buy package available for 4 nights good till March 31, 07. Check it out.
At one point of our lifes we lived in Milwaukee, WI but there wasn't all that much out there. We went on a Boundary Water canoe trip near Deluth, MN. The lakes and wilderness out there are spectacular. We had a great time camping, canoeing and fishing, but these days are over. Now I like my comfort, no more waking up to a leaky tent and wet sleeping bags.
I'm with you re. the camping bit. Been there. Done that. Never again. Now, it's strictly 5-star hotels, villas and B&Bs for us. Sounds like the Upper peninsula of Michigan has a lot of beauty and unspoilt wilderness to offer. Will look into your tip. Thanx.
PS You sure do get around! I thought I was widely-traveled...but I think you get the cake.
You got it right, lots of unspoiled wilderness, but very thin in the luxury department for Minnesota. Yes, we get around, but living out there in Milwaukee, WI was a struggle. We spent all our money flying out of Milwaukee, any excuse would do... but that was along time ago.
I know what you mean, but to me as someone used to living in a huge, bustling city, there's a sense that having an unspoilt wilderness available is the real luxury. For this reason, I would forego the usual trappings of civilization in order to be able to wander quietly and alone amongst the tall trees, rushing waters and unique wildlife. Am now more determined than ever to journey to the wilds of Wisconsin, Minnesota or northern Michigan.
Yes, it is nice to get away from it all, but do it in comfort and in luxury. Where I come from, we have Lake George and the glorious Addarondaks in upstate NY which have been declared forever wild. You pack it in and you pack it out.... just like the Minnesota wilderness... Give me the Alpes any day... I love the comfort of hiking those wonderfully kept alpine trails with mountain goats and ibexes to share my path, few humans on the trails and a nice hut with a warm meal (and a bed if you wish) at the end of the trail. We found the most wonderful small luxury hotel, a relais&chateaux property in the Grand Paradisio National Park in Coigne, Italy, called the Hotel Bellevue. The Grand Paradisio National Park is located just behind the Mount Blanc on the Italian side and Val d'Isere on the French side. The hotel is located on an expansive meadow ringed by a cirque of snow-capped mountains. The hotel boast a 2-star Michelin Restaurant, a state of the art spa, wonderful accommodations all individually furnished with beautiful antiques. We auctioned the 4-day package which includes breakfast and 1 dinner at LL, but we also bought two 3-night packages with the Best-Buy auction. Check out the LL auction under Bellevue, Italy, I think they have auctions going now.
These days, I'm totally with you on the luxury form of travel (did the camping and roughing it with the kids years ago and decided in the 199s NEVER to do that again!). I had seen the Belleview on the Ll auction or 'buy now' pages just this past summer. It looked amazing then, and now that you've told me how terrific it actually is, I will keep my eyes open for it again. Coincidentally, the location of this luxury resort hotel matches quite closely the location of much of the action in the historic adventure/romance novel (my first so far) that I'm just finishing after over five years of research and writing. I was inspired by by the 1991 find of the Iceman high in the Alps near the present-day border between Italy and Austria (not far north of the city of Bolzano on the Adege River in far northern Italy). Found the whole thing fascinating, read all I could find about the astounding discovery (turned out the Iceman was over 5,000 years old and the best-preserved human ever found intact anywhere in the world from that ancient era). Every article and TV documentary I saw always ended with the enigmatic questions: why was the Iceman up in the highest reaches of the Alps, where no one lived then and still does not today? AND how did he die (buried in avalanche and froze to death or killed by a wild animal or perhaps by someone else??? So, I set out to develop a plausible fictitious story that could explain these riddles. of course, to make it more interesting and exciting, I've thrown in the usual pot-boiler ingredients of greed, lust, hate, and love. am now in the process of finalizing the noveland will send my manuscript to a professional editor in January for fine-tuning by an expert before approaching publishers.
First of all let me say, do go to the Bellevue Hotel in Coigne, you won't be disappointed.
Secondly, what a fascinating person you are to turn your travel adventures in to a novel. I wish you luck to get it published, and if so, I would love to read it.
I know the story of the Oetzi Man quite well since I have followed most of the news on this. My husband and I have climbed the "Wildspitz" in the Oetztal in our younger days. It is the highest mountain in Tirol. These days, we still ski in Hochsoelden in the Oetztal on the glacier near where the Oetzi Man was found.
Amazing! You're the first & only person I've ever talked to about my novel that has actually been anywhere near where Oetzi was found in '91!!! WOW! Also, relatively few folks have followed the news on oetzi over the past 15 years. i am thrilled.!
To think, you and your husband may have actually skiied over the same remote and lonely patch of snowy glacier that was the Iceman's last resting place.
Now that the first book's just about finished, I'm turning to other parts of the world and other fascinating historical mysteries for fodder for my next novel (and the 15-20 other similarly-themed stories I plan to write). Right now, I'm teetering between a book on Leif Eriksson and the Vikings' possible voyages of exploration into the wilds of North America (i.e. Minnesota) via Hudson's Bay. This is based on the discovery about 100 years ago of the Kensington Rune Stone in a farmer's field quite a way nw of Minneaplolis-St.Paul. Or,I may write about the fascinating though little-know exploits of the Czech "Lost Legion", after the Bolshevik Revolution, through Siberia in their heroic quest to reach Vladivostok on the Pacific and from there east across North America nd the Atlantic back home to Europe. the mystery here is what happened to the 26 train cars fully loaded with the Czars gold bullion and the Romanoffs'Crown jewels being smuggled east along the Trans-Siberian Railroad(to keep them out of lenin's hands). The Czech legion's known to have taken over the operation of the fabled railway AND the Czar's train!!!! What would be your choice?
Your Oetzi man was discoverd by a mountain climber high up on the Wildspitz, just on the Austrian/Italian border. Nobody skies that high up, it is much too steep. Skiing on the Rettenbach Glacier is quite a tame affair, but we were quite close to the site where he was discovered when we did climb the Wildspitz in the mid-60ies. I am quite sure, you are aware about the "curse" that has befallen most of the people that have handled the Oetzi man. The fellow that discovered him was lost himself in the mountains and died. One of the Italian researcher died mysteriously, and there apparently were a number of others that came to harm after coming into contact with the Oetzi man. Quite a story...
As to your new topics, I think both scenarios you describe would be most interesting. You have a good knowledge and keen interest in the history of the Vikings and the Rune stones and I am sure Leif Erikson is one of your Scandinavian heroes, yourself haling from Helsinki. I am sure you could spin a good yard on that topic. On the other hand, the quest for finding the 26 train cars with the Czar's gold bullion and the Romanoffs' Crown jewels which disappeared after the Bolshevik Revolution and the Czech "Lost Legion's" involvement in the take-over of the Trans-Siberian Railroad and disappearance of that train would also make an excellent historical mystery novel. I would say, go with the subject you know the most about it. From a readers' point of view, I would say I would like to learn more about the Czar's train and the disappearnace of the Romanoffs' Crown jewels.