After finding it difficult to book two nights in the same hotel in the Charlevoix/Petoskey area during a busy tourist weekend we decided to try this motel, sight unseen, based on a few positive online reviews and the fact that pets are welcome (with some caveats).
The motel turned out to be tucked between a gas station and a restaurant at the non-scenic "burger row" south end of the city of Charlevoix, and across from the municipal airport. We passed it once, actually, trying to find it. But then after being thumped by our GPS for missing it, we turned around and spotted the sign. Ugh, I thought -- I made a mistake.
But we were pleasantly surprised by this place. First of all, it's very nicely landscaped with flowers and tasteful garden art, so it doesn't really feel like it belongs in its surroundings. (There's also a nice grassy buffer behind the motel that our dogs appreciated.)
The rooms are also very nice -- they've all been recently redone, so unlike a lot of independent motels everything is new and in in excellent repair. We were a little to find a rather spendy, fashionable comforter on the bed and matching cloth shower curtain in the bathrom; again, a step up from our expectations. The bed and pillows were comfortable. Everything was spanking clean. The TV is relatively small...but seriously, when you're in Charlevoix you're not going to be spending much time watching TV in a hotel room.
Other nice amenities for travelers include free wi-fi access and access to a nice breakfast/lunch spot (Juilleret's) right across the parking lot. Oh...and homemade cookies in the motel office. The owners are friendly and helpful.
Caveats: Pets are welcome but not allowed on the beds (considering the bedding, this makes sense) -- so if your dog can't abide by that rule you'll want to bring a crate. The rooms are small, by today's chain-motel standards.
The only thing we really disliked about the motel were the fundamentalist religious tracts placed conspicuously in the bathroom and the open Bible placed on the bedstand. We're Christian -- I'm a commissioned lay minister, actually -- but we found this pointed display rather pushy and intrusive, and we kept waiting for one of the owners to approach us and try to "close the deal," so to speak; so that anxiety detracted from our enjoyment of the motel and even kept us from being friendlier with the owners than we usually are with people with whom we lodge; we just didn't want to have that dreaded conversation.
Would we recommend this motel? If you're single or a couple, and want to spend your money sightseeing/recreating in "up north" Michigan rather than spending it on lodging -- and if you can tolerate the religious hard-sell -- the Maple Leaf is a good deal, and is convenient to downtown Charlevoix and surrounds. If you want your lodging to be part of the recreation factor of your vacation, you may prefer a chain hotel, B and B or one of the downtown/mainstreet Charlevoix lodging options.
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.