Minutes from the shore of Lake Huron, Sawmill Creek combines the amenities of a resort—a championship golf course, two restaurants, a heated saltwater swimming pool, and a spa—with the attention of a seven-suite bed and breakfast. Guests slumber in recently updated suites, which include five deluxe suites, one luxury suite, and a pro-shop suite. After a night dozing on queen-size beds made from sustainably harvested cloud fluff, guests wake up to a continental breakfast to stay nourished for the two days of unlimited golf, including play at the driving range and on the par 71 links-style course, golf cart included. Designed by Rene Muylaert with additions by Doug Carrick, the course integrates challenges such as waterways, bunkers, and an irritable dragon as it stretches up to 6,445 yards from four tee options.
Past and present make a colourful convergence at JMR Art Gallery, where the work of talented modern artists is displayed in a historic studio space that once housed a village blacksmith shop. Instead of admiring works of wrought iron or steel, today's visitors can admire jewellery forged from technicolor glass anchored onto adjustable rings and one-of-a-kind pendants. Custom framing services by Hunter Framing help protect and display treasured artwork or embarrassing pages from a sibling's diary, ensuring they can be passed down from generation to generation. Acrylic paintings inspired by the tranquil shores of Lake Huron hang alongside the intricate stained-glass artwork of Judy Roth, the gallery's resident artist, who undertakes her creative work in an on-site studio. Roth also invites guests to tour the studio, allowing them to witness the stages of her stained-glass creations and perform impromptu Shakespearean monologues from the shop's fully restored juliet balconies.
Imagine that someone combined a restaurant with a concert venue, then dropped the whole thing in the St. Clair River. That's the Duc d'Orleans II. The 84-foot sightseeing vessel can hold about 132 passengers aboard its two decks, and its crew?which includes caterers and bartenders?accommodate most any occasion, such as weddings or National Buoyancy Day. However, a special occasion isn't required to peer out from the ship's top deck.
The Duc d'Orleans II hosts public cruises each day of the week, during which captains cruise the river and crew members narrate the journey. They might point out sights along the banks or describe how the Duc d'Orleans II got its name from an old World War II boat. To turn things into a floating party, the cruises often incorporate buffets, live music, karaoke, and other activities.
Like a dolphin on a mission, a devoted jet-skier won't be slowed down by waves. At Deep Wave Rentals, the lake-lubbers can kit out adventurers with their choice of jet ski or kayak, then send them out to frolic in the freshwater depths. The jet-ski stable is equipped to serve Port Stanley, Port Franks, Grand Bend, Erieau, and Sarnia, and can be delivered to those or other locations for an additional fee. Deep Wave also hosts parties throughout the summer, including beach barbecues, volleyball tournaments, and live concerts.
Widder Station Golf & Country Club's hilltop clubhouse cuts an impressive form on its perch between the first tee and the 18th green. With a deck bordered by white railings and a towering spire that adds a gothic detail to the bucolic space, the building offers a scenic locale from which guests can look out onto the winding streams, dense tree lines, and golf-cart flash mobs that populate the 18-hole, 6,272-yard golf course. The relatively open, par 72 layout challenges golfers with two ponds and a stream that runs from one end of the course to the other, features that come into play on nine holes. The course concludes with dramatic flair at the 18th hole, which has earned a reputation as the hardest hole due to its 502-yard length, a tricky, dogleg-left fairway, and the green's giant airbag that opens erratically as golfers attempt putts.
Inside the clubhouse, a deli and pro shop cater to the needs of guests' depleted stomachs and golf bags. In the winter, Widder Station transforms the course's open terrain into a haven for snowmobiling events, during which guests can glide down the tree-lined trails while doing their best impression of the Ice Age mastodon gangs that once cruised over ancient glaciers.
Course at a Glance:
Sand Hills Golf Resort's 18-hole course rises and falls over 5,536 yards of undulating terrain. Though modest in length, the course tempers aggressive play with seven interconnected ponds that balls must avoid or perform a splash-free dive that will earn them their freedom. After each drive and approach, golfers must contend with Sand Hills' deceptive greens, where undulations yield very few straightforward gimmes.
Course at a Glance: