Coyote Crossing Resort nestles into the bordering Manistee National Forest, dusting the landscape with rustic timber dwellings armed with modern amenities. Each two-bedroom unit houses contemporary accouterments such as satellite TV, a full bathroom, and WiFi access, allowing curious kids to learn about nature before dipping their toes into it. Triplicate cooking options keep growling bellies from upsetting the surrounding wildlife, including a fully equipped kitchen, a charcoal grill, and fire rings that yield flame-licked fare. Drawing inspiration from 50 acres of surrounding woodlands, rich wood lines the walls and floors of each cabin. Upon stepping outside, guests will find themselves minutes away from attractions such as the Pine River, Lake Cadillac, and various public beaches.
In 1964, the trio of Joe Balulis, Bill Kater, and Seth Bidwell hung a shingle that read "Marquette Trails Golf Club" amid the dense forest of Manistee National Forest. The nine-hole golf course was their verdant brainchild and source of nutritional fairway grass, but after three years of joint ownership the triumvirate elected to go their separate ways, leaving the family of Joe Balulis to take over. Joe’s sons would go on to oversee the addition of a back nine that opened in 1985, bringing the overall length to 5,847 yards and par to 70. In 1993 a new clubhouse and a restaurant (The View) opened. Today, the Balulis family invites players to venture through the forest groves with clubs in hand, pursuing their golf balls until they’re in the cups and safe from the course's forest-dwelling co-founders.
The northern Michigan town of Prudenville edges one side of the 22,000-acre Houghton Lake. During warmer months, groups flock to the water for jet-skiing and kayaking. Between Houghton Lake and nearby Higgins Lake, there are more than a dozen launch sites for boating; local shops rent out boats for all kinds of trips, whether you want to fish for the lake's abundant bass, brown trout, and walleye fish, or just take a relaxing cruise. The two lakes are also lined with sandy beaches, which have picnic pavilions and waters safe for swimming.About 16 miles north of Springbrook Inn is Marguerite Gahagan Nature Preserve, which is threaded with a network of hiking and biking trails across 60 acres. Signs pop up throughout the trails that tell informative tidbits about the white- and red-pine forest and cedar swamp habitats. A small stream known as Tank Creek also cuts across the preserve, and it's lined with boardwalks and decks that overlook the water. One paved trail is wheelchair accessible.Read the Fine Print for important info on travel dates and other restrictions.
When he first saw the rolling hills and forests at Mistwood, course architect Jerry Matthews was enchanted by its suitability for a golf course. Matthews carved 27 championship holes into this variegated topography, divided among three nine-hole courses that combine for challenging 18-hole rounds or play singly for golfers who need to save time for savoring the taste of victory. Whether playing the red course, blue course, or white course, golfers send their balls soaring over bent-grass fairways and spinning over fast, well-bunkered greens, aiming carefully to avoid the smattering of lakes that await stray orbs.
Adjacent to the final fairway of the white course, an executive course named the Little Nine completes the fairway buffet at Mistwood Golf Course. Here, players hone their short-game skills and strive to take just three strokes at each hole, ideal for three-toed sloths with poor counting skills.
After swinging their way past open fields and dense thickets, players make their way to the clubhouse, where Bogey’s Snack Bar awaits downstairs, and upstairs, Sunset Bar & Grill serves whitefish and ribs as diners lounge on its deck and gaze out over the blue course and the verdant practice range.
Course Combinations at a Glance:
Simply Italian Eatery’s cuisiners craft an extensive menu of made-to-order and preprepared Italian spreads within a casual food haven that fuses the epicurean delectations of a restaurant, bakery, and café. Muffle atonal stomach saxophones with a trip to the Market Stand ($8, $4 with entree), a buffet brimming with soups and salads, before mouth diving into a bowl of traditional pasta, such as the penne primavera ($9) or gnocchi al romano ($10). Feed a table of teenage mutant bon vivants with a cheese pizza ($6+), or with one of many traditional pies such as the margharita or roasted eggplant ($10+). Discerning carnivores can sharpen their incisors on a selection of meaty entrees, including the chicken parmesan or veal scaloppine ($12+), and vegetarians can hang a fang on the canneloni- and basil-covered capresse classico salad ($8).
The casual eatery welcomes the lunch and dinner crowd, as well as those looking to sip or slug a tropical cocktail at the full-service cantina-style bar. Each order from the varied menu is freshly prepared in front of the hungry eyes of diners and the watchful eye of Zeus. All tacos ($2.19–$2.59), burritos ($4.99–$6.99), nachos ($5.99–$6.99), and quesadillas ($4.99–$6.99) are compiled from a mixable-and-matchable array of salsas and fillings, such as guacamole, choluha corn salsa, and jalapeños. The starring role is to be determined by each feaster—and the nominees are: beef, chicken, grilled steak, Russell Crowe, shrimp, veggies, ground beef, or shredded pork. Pirates dying to try out their fork-hand attachment can shiver their timbers on a customizable salad ($5.99–$6.99), and younger feasters can sink whatever teeth they have into a kid's meal served with chips, a cookie, and kid's drink ($3.59). Take the feasting fiesta to go by building a take-home value pack, which feeds four to eight hungry mouths. Simply select a meat, shell, bean, and salsa option, and add on your favorite toppings (prices vary) for a spiced-up family meal, business meeting, or Oktoberfest blowout.
At Luciano’s Ristoranti, native Sicilian Chef Leonardo draws upon his country’s culinary traditions to curate a menu of pizzas, homemade pastas, and meaty sandwiches. Morsels of fried calamari entrance prospectors with their crispy golden crust, and fresh mozzarella stratifies layers of fresh tomatoes and basil. Chefs slather 12-inch crusts with five types of cheese and creamy pesto, and tri-color angel-hair pasta weaves its way through scallops and shrimp. Homemade focaccia bread piled high with capicolla and mortadella tests hand strength like performing Moby Dick with shadow puppets. Between bites, dining companions clink glasses of house wines that include medium-bodied Tuscan chianti and crispy, fruity Sicilian pinot grigio.