Wednesday, November 4, 2009

A Closing Event

Grand Hotel held a special closing event this year, giving a small bit of insight of what it takes to put the hotel to rest for the winter. It's an old wooden building, one of the last of it's kind and it's closed up for six months of the year, but yet still exposed to the cold and winds off the lake. The off season is a time for renewal, a time to repair the stresses of time and use and weather.
Staying at Grand is not just a place to spend the night, it's an entire experience, a chance to break away from the daily routine, to be transported to a different time and attitude toward life.

During the summer, the porch is lined with white rockers, a perfect place to relax and enjoy the view of the lake and passing ships.

Those rockers all have to go elsewhere for the winter, thus the "Running of the Rockers"...

where they spend a peaceful winter in the Terrace Room - do they hear echos of the orchestra that plays each summer evening?

In years past, a bell was rung up and down all the halls of the Hotel, to let the staff know that all the guests had left the house. This year the last guests of the season were allowed to share that experience before it was time for us to leave.

Then it was time to finish closing up, make lists of items to be repaired or replaced, cover the furniture...

The flower boxes are emptied, the awnings come down...

It's always sad the first evening I bike past and all the lights are dark, but the tulips have been planted for next spring and I know that many people are already hard at work, planning to make next year an even better experience for all the varied visitors to this true "Grand Dame".

1 comment:

  1. I *love* the Grand Hotel. I've never stayed, although I have had the pleasure of lunching there a couple of times. (Somehow "lunch" is too light a word for that scrumptious buffet.)

    It's an amazing place, truly.