Thistledowne at Seul Choix
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- Minimum stay:Contact owner
- Pets allowed:No
- Wheel chair accessible:No
Picture Lake Michigan in your head and mark a spot centered at the top equidistant from Escanaba to the west and the Straits of Mackinaw to the east. You have just located Thistledowne at Seul Choix about 12 miles east of Manistique. On a state map you will see prominent Seul Choix Point and Seul Choix Bay. Pronounce it 'Sis-Shwa'. It means 'only choice.'
Previously a B&B, Arrington's Bed & Breakfast Journal's 2004 Book of Lists reported that inngoers have voted Thistledowne at Seul Choix the 'Seventh Most Elegant Inn in North America.' Thistledowne was as good a B&B as I can imagine, and you may want it all for yourself as a magnificently finished family rental home on a perfect beach with unusual privacy and great access off US2 six miles to the north. This lovely place is within a day’s drive for anyone in the Midwest, which is to say 60% of the U.S. population.
The difference between most homes and this one with 4,000 square feet, 4 1/2 baths, four bedrooms, five fireplaces, all magnificently conceived and elegantly finished, is all in the details:
Location: Behind the beach the pines in front of Thistledowne were retained to keep the structure from dominating the natural setting. This bay is as private a stretch of Lake Michigan beach as you will find. No other structure is visible except the 1895 Lighthouse across Seul Choix Bay, but in fact you do have neighbors here in fine homes. You’d have to be in a boat to see them as all are set back from the forested edge. That’s about as 'developed' as this bay will ever be. Two pairs of bald eagles nest on the property. A black bear once walked across the porch, three moose live here and a mountain lion once roamed the property with pictures on the wall to prove it.
Lake Frontage: 660 feet. Acreage: 32 acres +/-, heavily timbered land that includes some magnificent old growth white pine.
Beach: The beach sand, clean and free from stones both on shore and in the water. 300’ from the shore the water is waist deep. The beach is 60 feet or so wide and the swimming is perfect.
Wetlands: There are wetlands behind the sand dunes, which fill with native blue iris and other wetland plants. There is nothing wrong with wetlands unless you try to build in them. They fill with beautiful plants and attract birds such as the indigo bunting and neo-tropical warblers. By agreement with the Corps of Engineers a deed restriction limits any additional development of the 660 foot shoreline.
Lighthouse: Seul Choix Point Lighthouse, the only other structure visible from the property, is a working lighthouse as well as a park and museum.
Layout: The house can be effectively divided into two parts if the grandkids are restless. The double doors that divide the guest bedrooms from the owner’s side are totally soundproof, and so are all the room entry doors. There are gorgeous views of Seul Choix Bay, the Seul Choix Point Lighthouse and Lake Michigan from every room. A central gallery runs the length of the house and arcs the same way the waves do as they approach the shore. All the windows except the kitchen windows and an upstairs bathroom face south to the lake. The total square footage is about 4,000 square feet, with four bedrooms, 4 1/2 baths, 5 gas fireplaces, and a tower room.
Dream kitchen: Brookhaven cherry Shaker style cabinets; chop block center island with hanging pot rack, halogen lighting and a large spice drawer. Commercial 60 inch Viking six burner range with griddle, grill, two convection ovens and an inferred broiler. Viking commercial roof mounted two-fan exhaust system and 60 inch range hood with warming shelves, two heatlamps and florescent lighting. Viking warming drawer with complete set of pans. (The owner says he uses it ever day; it is his favorite kitchen appliance, useful for warming plates, rolls, and keeping foods warm.). Built in stainless Subzero 501 all refrigerator/freezer.
Accommodations: Four master bedroom suites, three with gas fireplaces and one with an attached den. Each insuite bathroom has a glass shower enclosure, heated tile floor, cedar cabinetry, avonite counter tops, imported alabaster sconces, and a whirlpool tub. All bathrooms have Delta brass fixtures. All commodes are serviced by mixed hot/cold water feed so that they do not 'sweat' in humid weather. The Master Bedroom and two guest bedrooms are on the first floor. The third guest bedroom is on the second floor. All have individual, lovely qualities: The upstairs bedroom has a particularly beautiful view of Lake Michigan. When the windows are open you hear the lake. The Blue Room (named for blue accents and a blue bathroom floor) is handicap accessible. The Green Room gets wonderful morning sunshine. Combined Living/Dining Room with gas burning fireplace, clear cedar fireplace wall and a very rare curly cherry fireplace mantel.
The upper bedroom and Tower Room Observatory/Library, reached by a beautiful steel and oak circular stairway especially designed and built in Texas for Thistledowne. The third floor Tower room has a spectacular view of Seul Choix Bay and also serves as a well-stocked library.
Laundry Room: One commercial washer and two commercial dryers. Everything is built in including storage. There is a Sub Zero icemaker (not currently working).
Please note: Thistledowne is currently for sale so it may become necessary to show the property to potential buyers during your visit. We appreciate your consideration of this potential inconvenience. If you have reserved future dates but the property sells before your scheduled visit we will notify you as soon as possible and we will send you a full refund of the amount you have paid.
Keywords: Family Retreat, Lakefront Home
- Vacation Rental
- Limited Accessibility
- Non Smoking Only
Bedrooms: 4 Bedrooms, Sleeps 10, Beds for 8-10
Bathrooms: 4 Bathrooms, 1 Half Bathrooms
Kitchen & Dining
- Cooking Utensils
- Ice Maker
- Parking For RV/Boat/Trailer
- Linens Provided
- Washing Machine
- Clothes Dryer
- Video Library:
- DVD Player
- CD Player
- Outdoor Grill
- Deck / Patio
- Jet Skiing
- Water Skiing
- Mountain Biking
- Wildlife Viewing
- Miniature Golf
- Cross Country Skiing
- Sight Seeing
ReviewsWrite a review
Private Lake Michigan Bay
Private Lake Michigan Bay
HIghly recommended. The pictures online make clear the property and home are beautiful, but this rental still offered so much more than expected. Huge beach with beautiful bay views, including a lighthousee. Within minutes of arrival the kids were racing along the beach and onto the shallow sandbars in the lake. Pure joy and shallow enough for very young kids. It felt like we had the whole bay to ourselves and spent the week building sandcastles, group surfing waves on a blow-up bed, flying kites and frisbees, exploring and naming the "sandbar islands", and watching the big ships on the horizon. The home was large enough to host our family reuninion kitchen and the kitchen sufficiently spacious to accomodate group cooking activities. The privacy offered by this rental is unique -- we saw one other person on the bay the week we rented! Some of our party camped on the beach under the stars (highly recommended). We took day trips to Mackinaw Island and Pictured Rock (both highly recommended) but would have been happy never leaving the property. A perfect place for a small family reunion or gathering of friends. My twenty-something nieces and nephews kept saying it was "the best vacation ever" and I had to agree. It was relaxing but never boring. The property managers were very helpful before and after arrival. You will NOT be disappointed renting this property but it may spoil you so that other rentals will forever fall short of expectations.
- Guest Bonnie
- Date of stay 08/18/12
- Review Submitted 02/01/13
Recommended for: Girls getaway, families with young children, families with teenagers, people with disabilities, age 55+.
Fantastic vacation rental!
Fantastic vacation rental!
We spent a week at this property at the end of the summer. It was a wonderful way to relax before the start of the busy school year. The property is very secluded, so we had plenty of privacy. It is also nicely located with many things to do within perfect distance for day trips. We had actually planned several day trips, but liked the property so much that we opted to spend more time there instead and take fewer day trips. The kitchen is fabulous and we thoroughly enjoyed cooking family meals, as well as hanging out there for midnight snacks. The bedrooms are all delightful, each with their own lovely view, as well as their own jetted tubs, which were especially nice after getting chilled outside on some cold rainy days. The views from each room are breathtaking, and we enjoyed watching the ships coming to and from the nearby quarry. We also enjoyed a visit to the Seul Choix Point Lighthouse that can be seen from the property. There is a nice gazebo overlooking the beach, and we spent a lot of time there, both day and evening, just soaking up the gorgeous view and listening to the relaxing sound of the waves on the beach. Our children loved exploring the beach and swimming. We also spent a lot of family time just relaxing together, chatting, playing games, and exploring the beach. The kids spent a week without TV or video games, and didn't mention it once, they so thoroughly enjoyed their time at Thistledowne, both inside and outside. The owners were very congenial and very helpful with anything we needed or any questions we had, and our experience with them was terrific. This was by far the nicest property we have ever rented for a vacation, and we would absolutely love to return and vacation here again in the future. In a word - FABULOUS!
- Guest Wendy
- Date of stay 08/29/10
- Review Submitted 10/13/10
Recommended for: Romantic getaway, girls getaway, families with young children, families with teenagers, adventure seekers, age 55+, sightseeing.
Open for rental from May 22 thru October 4 in 2013 In June and September rates are: 2 nights $700, 3 nights $950, 4 nights $1200, 5 nights $1400, 6 nights $1600, additional nights $175 In July and August rates are: 2 nights $1100, 3 nights $1550, 4 nights $2100 5 nights $2400, 6 nights $2700, additional nights $300 No specific day of the week requirement for check-in or check-out
Note: Until confirmed, rates are subject to change without notice.
This owner accepts: Credit cards.
Call the owner directly to confirm reservation details and pay with an approved method (credit card, check, or bank transfer), to protect your payment up to $1,000.
Iriquois Room, sitting/reading room facing the Lake
Picture from Lake Michigan
Looking out from the house at the Lake
Lighthouse just down the beach..
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This listing was first published here in 2010.
Date last modified - Friday, May 24, 2013