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“Can't Wait to Return” 5 of 5 stars
Review of The Sylvan Inn Bed & Breakfast

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The Sylvan Inn Bed & Breakfast
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6680 Western Avenue, P.O. Box 648, Glen Arbor, MI 49636   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #2 of 3 Glen Arbor B&B and Inns
Mahomet, IL
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
“Can't Wait to Return”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 1, 2007

Our stay at the Sylvan Inn rivaled any B&B experience we've ever had. Ralph & Rose are awesome innkeepers. Whenever we asked for ideas for things to do in the area, they always had great suggestions, and they took the time to direct us to things off the beaten path. Within minutes of arriving and finding out about what we might like, Rose directed us to a beach area on Lake Michigan which was virtually private. Their suggestions for places to eat were perfect, and they helped with reservations when needed.

The Treetop Room was wonderful. It's not just a clever name. The room includes a deck that is literally among the treetops. The room was spacious and included a shower skylight. The on-site sauna was the perfect way to relax at the end of a day of hiking and sightseeing.

The Glen Arbor area is beautiful. We quickly filled two days, and then decided to add another!

We'll be going back. Soon!

  • Liked — The setting of the inn and the remarkably helpful and hospitable innkeepers.
  • Disliked — If only it were closer to where we live!
  • Stayed June 2007, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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81 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
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Rating summary
  • Location
    5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (18)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • German first
  • Any
English first
Kansas
Senior Contributor
37 reviews 37 reviews
16 hotel reviews
Reviews in 24 cities Reviews in 24 cities
37 helpful votes 37 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed June 24, 2007

Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore is a beautiful area on the West side of lower Michigan. We went in mid-May, and the weather was excellent. As far as historical touring in Michigan, many things open after or just before Memorial Day, so going this early we found some things closed.

This B&B is above average, with friendly owners and staff. They were ready to help and volunteered with suggestions and reservations. The inn is lovely, with both traditional rooms in the older building and most amenities provided in the new rooms. We had a room in the new addition. The inn is within a block of shops and restaurants in this tiny town. It was, however, the only place I've stayed for years that didn't supply a hair dryer. Bring your own or, as I did, air dry. The inn is two or three blocks to Lake Michigan. Park the car! Small, lovely towns are nearby with much history, shopping. Hiking trails are nearby to magnificent Lake Michigan views.

But I digress from the inn. It's simply a lovely, friendly place to stay and well located for hiking and sightseeing in this area.

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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Chicago, Illinois
Top Contributor
56 reviews 56 reviews
49 hotel reviews
Reviews in 47 cities Reviews in 47 cities
259 helpful votes 259 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 12, 2006

I'm delighted to add my endorsement of this just-about-perfect inn. We spent four nights the weekend following Labor Day, which was quiet and lovely, with a shot of red maple leaves here and there just to let us know Ma' Nature is getting ready for Fall.

Glen Arbor is a lovely, quiet little town bordering Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore. The aptly-named Sylvan Inn is on the edge of town nearest the park, nestled among oaks and fragrant pines, and within easy walking distance of a small number of very good galleries and boutiques (not to mention the Cherry Emporium, with its abundant free tasting samples). We had the Tree Room, a large room on the top floor (terrific for privacy and very quiet, but don't chose it if you have problems with stairs). The decor is old-fashioned, but (and this is such a relief!) not pseudo-Victorian frou-frou: no dusty artifical flower arrangements! No sentimental framed drawings of puppies and kittens! No fragile knick-knacks! No funky potpourri! No saggy old bed! YAY!! The heating, cooling, and plumbing, however, are all new and in perfect working order, and, as if the space were not bright enough, there is a skylight over the bathtub, of all things. The deck is right up in the trees. The inn is perfectly clean too. Note, though, no hair-dryer, bring your own.

The self-serve breakfast consisted of good orange juice, wonderful cut-up fresh fruits (varied from day to day - and yes, the melons were always perfectly ripe!), yoghurt, and a two "carbs" generally one sweet and one not-quite-as-sweet bread or pastry, coffee, tea, or cherry-chocolate cocoa.

The owners, Rose and Ralph, are present and available, kind and cheerful, with helpful suggestions when asked.

The area is full of pleasant things to do. Of course the Sleeping Bear Dunes offer views and more views, a couple of very nice little museums, hiking, fabulous beach-strolling (and I imagine good swimming in season, but NOT in early September). The area towns, including Leeland, Sutton's Bay, and Glen Arbor, offer excellent shoppping, and the restaurants we tried are nice and reasonably priced. Try the Cherry Hut in Beulah, about 20 miles south, for the cherry pie ala mode, and stop at the local wineries for tasting. Just driving around, soaking up the scenery, looking at the attractive summer homes and sparkling inland lakes is most enjoyable.

I'm already thinking of when we might have an opportunity to spend another long weekend at this excceptional place.

  • Liked — Classy but relaxed atmosphere
  • Disliked — Nothing!
  • Tips/Secrets — BYOHD (bring your own hair dryer)
  • Stayed September 2006, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Washington state
1 review
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 27, 2006

In mid July, I spent three nights at the Sylvan Inn, located in charming Glen Arbor, Michigan. What a total delight and surprise for me! This bed & breakfast in a multi level "Inn" was so restful, enjoyable, and way beyond my hopes or expectations. The rooms are lovely, cozy, a touch of elegance yet very easy to settle into. The couple who run the Inn (the Gladfelter's) are so heartfelt in their welcoming, they respected my privacy completely, yet were warm, caring, and very available when or if I needed anything. Very friendly folks! The Inn boasts a delicious breakfast spread, a hot tub, sauna, and all this only a couple blocks from the most delightful little town of Glen Arbor. I could walk everywhere in town, tons of GREAT shops, galleries, book stores, Cherry food and goodie stores, etc! Glen Arbor is nestled RIGHT next to Lake Michigan, easy walking distance also from The Sylvan Inn.

I can easily envision making a stay over at this B& B an annual tradition. Sweet memories of my little get-away there will stay with me for the rest of the winter and year.

Thank you to the owners for hosting such a great place.
Oh, and it's a very affordable place to stay!!

Sincerely, Julie (from Washington state)

Stayed June 2006
Was this review helpful? Yes 5
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
East Lansing Michigan
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
22 helpful votes 22 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 22, 2005

I and two friends stayed at the SYLVAN INN the first few days in June. Our stay was warm and welcome. No request seemed too difficult for Rose and Ralph to grant. When we arrived late after a night at the casino, we easily entered our rooms and fell asleep in the newly made and very comfortable beds. We awoke to a good breakfast of fruit, coffeee, and sweet breads. Sittitng in the parlor was almost as comfortable as sitting at home except we had the friendly company of the owners. Hugs all around were given the day of our departure. If you are visiting the beautiful northwestern tip of the lower peninsula, you will not find a better place to stay than at the SYLVAN INN.

  • Stayed June 2005
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 5
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
A TripAdvisor Member
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 13, 2005

My wife and I flew in to Frankfort airport (30 minutes south of Glen Arbor) in our private airplane. Rose and Ralf at the Sylvan Inn made arrangements to get us to the Inn in Glen Arbor. We had a wonderful 3 day stay in one of the beautifully redecorated, Victorian styled rooms, with fresh fruits, breads and local delicacies for breakfast every morning. All the guests seemed happy to be there and why not? The Inn is very clean, bright, sunny and perfectly placed in town; near the edge, so it's quiet at night yet an easy walk to anywhere in town for dinner or a late ice cream.

We will go again and highly recommend the Sylvan Inn as a great base from which to explore the Leelenau Peninsula.

  • Stayed May 2005
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 6
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
A TripAdvisor Member
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 26, 2005

The innkeepers at the Sylvan Inn make you feel like family from the moment you walk in the door. From the delicious breakfasts of fresh fruits, pastries, and local favorites like cherry hot chocolate to the expert advice on where to see the most romantic sunset and which kayak trip provides the best views, Rose and Ralph can't be beat. They even made dinner reservations for us at a cozy little Italian restaurant that had the best food and wine this side of Italy. The location of the inn is walking distance from some of the best boutique shopping and restaurants in Glen Arbor and a short hike from the water. If you are looking for a relaxing vacation that you won't soon forget, the Sylvan Inn is the place to go.

Was this review helpful? Yes 5
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about The Sylvan Inn Bed & Breakfast

Address: 6680 Western Avenue, P.O. Box 648, Glen Arbor, MI 49636
Location: United States > Michigan > Leelanau County > Glen Arbor
Amenities:
Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Spa
Hotel Style:
Ranked #2 of 3 B&Bs / Inns in Glen Arbor
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Number of rooms: 14
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Beautiful historic 14 room Inn in the heart of the Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore Park. Walk to charming downtown Glen Arbor for boutique shopping, art galleries, restaurants and more. 2 Blocks to beach! ... more   less 
Also Known As:
The Sylvan Inn Bed And Breakfast
The Sylvan Hotel Glen Arbor
The Sylvan Inn Bed & Breakfast Michigan/Glen Arbor

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