Cottage, 3 Bedrooms, 1.5 Baths, 13 Sleeps
About Kate Burns
The photo above is of Harriet Jane (Kipp) Gardner in 1939 on the Brandywine Beach next to the cottage. The cottage was originally purchased by her parents, but has been in her name since 1978. She recently passed away in Boca Raton, Florida, May 2014 at the age of 91. Myself, Kate Burns, am Jane's 4th grandchild and have been acting as the rental manager of the family cottage since 2012, when we decided to get with the times and list it online rather than just word of mouth. The extended Kipp/Gardner family is spread out across the country, mostly concentrated in Southern Florida where Granny & Grandpa Gardner moved to be close to her parents after they relocated from the Chicago area. I live in St. Paul, Minnesota with my significant other plus our two miniature dachshunds and make the 8 hour drive to the cottage as many times as possible in the summer. Once a year we have a family reunion where we cram as much family as possible in the Piccadilly Circus and our cousins' cottage up the hill, the Sunset. It is something everyone looks forward to all year; spending days at the beach and evenings on the front porch playing mah jongg and Settlers of Catan. While the cottage is not completely handicap accessible, I have Multiple Sclerosis and found the safety railings plus shower chair in the main bath to be very helpful. The walkways in the cottage are also wide enough to fit a walker which made it Granny friendly as she got older.
Kate Burns purchased this Cottage in 1937
Why Kate Burns chose Covert
This cottage has been in the family for seven generations now - it was purchased by Harrison and Clara Kipp in 1937 after many years of the family renting cottages in South Haven/PPCC. Granny (Jane Kipp) and Grandpa (Jack Gardner) met on the front porch at the white wooden table (still there) while Granny was writing a letter to another suitor at college. By the time Grandpa and his parents were done with their visit, he had charmed Granny into writing to him at MIT and that was the beginning of their subsequent marriage and six children. After Great-Grandparents Kipp moved to Pompano Beach, Florida; they sold the cottage and it was out of the family for several years until Granny and Grandpa purchased it back from the VanBurens. For decades my grandparents spent the entire summer in Michigan enjoying/studying the nature, landscaping and trying to beautify the park. Grandpa did a lot of documenting and mapping the plants and ecosystem; there are now trails in the park dedicated to him as the 'Jack Gardner Nature Trails'. There are his maps and guide books available in the cottage if you would like to take a nature walk through the woods. We have intentionally left the cottage much the same as it was in the 1930's to enjoy the simplicity that today's busy lifestyle has lost. We love spending time together as a family and enjoy listening to the waves and crickets while playing a boardgame rather than watching tv or wasting time on smartphones. We want to keep this special cottage in our family for years to come and thank-you for renting it and helping to make that possible. :)
What makes this Cottage unique
The view of the lake and sunsets from the front porch is unrivaled and my favorite thing in the world is to sit on the glider couch and watch the boats and birds, listening to the waves, maybe reading a book. Being so close to the beach is fantastic for if you forgot something or need a snack you can just hop back up to the cottage. We also have a tradition of one night making a beach bonfire, roasting hotdogs and marshmallows, and chasing fireflies around the beach.
100% refund if canceled at least 30 days before arrival date. 50% refund if canceled at least 14 days before arrival date.
Chraming Cottage - just perfect!
We went for a long Labor Day Ladies Weekend - it was just perfect! From the huge, breezy porch that faces the lake to the charming furnishings - everything was perfect!
We are definitely planning a return visit for Labor Day 2016 - but we are now going to stay an entire week!
COTTAGE NEEDS TLC AND DOOR THAT CAN LOCK
THE DESCRIPTION WAS NOT ACCURATE. THE OWNER INSISTS THAT THERE WAS A BEACH LAST SUMMER AND WAS JUST COVERED THIS YEAR DUE TO RAIN,, HOWEVER THERE ARE NO STEPS THAT WOULD LEAD DOWN TO THE SUPPOSED BEACH, JUST A SMALL PIER. THE OUTDOOR AREA IS COVERED WITH WEEDS AND THERE IS NOT A GARDEN. IT WAS NOT CLEANED AND I TOOK PICTURES OF BOWEL SPATTER IN THE TOILET AND TOOTHPASTE ON THE SINK AND SENT THEM TO THE OWNER AND CLEANING PERSON. THE SUNROOM RUG WAS NEVER VACUUMED. THERE WAS A LOT OF FURNITURE BUT SOME WAS BROKEN AND NO REALLY ACCEPTABLE TO USE. ONE VERY SHABBY TABLE HAD A TABLE CLOTH WITH A BIG HOLE IN IT. THE BIGGEST PROBLEM WAS THAT THE DOOR DID NOT LOCK. WE COULD NOT LEAVE EVEN TO GO TO DINNER. THE OWNER REFUNDED MOST OF OUR MONEY BUT HELD BACK SOME FOR WASHING LINENS AND "CLEANING". I WOULD NOT RECOMMEND THIS PROPERTY TO ANYONE.
Rustic Comfort with Million Dollar View
This cottage is just as it is depicted in the photos. Many of the furnishings are older; however, we found everything to be obviously well-loved and in excellent condition. We were also impressed with the amount of hot water, even when 7 people showered in a row. As noted in the description, there is no dishwasher. Also, it had not occurred to me to ask ahead of time, but please note that there is no laundry on-site. I was informed that there is a laundromat in town that will wash and fold for you if needed; however, we were able to stretch our wardrobes and did not need that service.
The "master" bedroom was a bit on the small side, but the storage was very good and it was nice to have a second half-bath, albeit tiny (as depicted in the photo provided). The other two bedrooms were larger. We very much enjoyed the water-view dining porch, where we observed hummingbirds at the feeder every single day. The large screen porch on the lake-side of the house was absolutely wonderful, with comfortable seating for everyone. The views were wide open and serene. Because of a blessed outcropping at Brandywine Beach, the nearby power plant is not visible from the house. From the screen porch, we observed gorgeous sunsets as well as an exciting lightning storm.
Unfortunately, the water levels were very high during our stay, eliminating the beach right at the house. However, luckily, the house is located just a short hop and a skip from Brandywine Beach (where Brandywine Creek intersects with the Lake). The beach is very child-friendly with lots of sand and shallow-water play area. Speaking of which, the cottage supplies loads of beach toys, beach towels, etc., so there is no need to bring your own!
One disappointment for us was that the development in which the cottage is located does not permit bicycling. My guess is that this is for safety reasons, as the roads are narrow and twisty. (Again, this is not something I had asked ahead of time, or else I am sure I would have gotten a straight answer from Kate, the very kind and honest manager of this property). We did take our bikes to the Kal-Haven Rail Trail one day, which was a great place to ride.
We also took a long walk one day through the (surprisingly large!) development, and especially enjoyed the boardwalk trail between the "soda bar" area and the south beach.
We appreciated that our dog was welcome at this cottage. She certainly enjoyed her long snoozes out on the screen porch.
Best vacation Ever!
Thank you for the best vacation ever! We just LOVED your cottage. It's style and comfort just fit our family perfectly. Nothing could beat the lovely porch and its view. We all had our favorite spots and would sit, read, and watch the view for hours! Your cottage is what Palisades is all about. Every room was comfortable, plenty of space for us to hangout, play cards, and the TV was a plus to watch the World Soccer games! Thank You, Thank You, Thank You! We want to get our name in for next year! - The Mooney's
Please save your vacation-rent elsewhere!
Owner is a really nice lady on the phone. She told us about this "magical" cottage, we rented it w/excitement! She has many memories of this place (which is wonderful)but this is NOT a vacation rental! We arrived to find out we could only bring back 1 car at a time & we had to park the rest of the cars outside the gated community. Issues we had:
1.We arrived at 4:20pm (after check in time, it was not ready for our arrival. Said they needed another 30-45 minutes to CLEAN.
2.Cleaning lady told my sister & I not to put the blankets in the dirty wash as they were washed last week (yuck!)
3.Fridge was leaking(cleaning lady pointed out it was leaking and she didn't think it was working told us to tell Paul). It was broke, we had about $400 worth of food to load back in to coolers & hope it didn't spoil!
4.After cleaning lady left we realized she didn't clean the shower, the old dirty washcloths were still in there!
5.Toilet in small bathroom was rocking & felt like it was going to fall through the floor.
6.Both sets of bunkbeds were unstable, so old they "rocked/leaned" back & forth. No way would I sleep under & top bunks had absolutely no safety rails & w/the leaning was afraid to let any of my kids (ages 9 & 12 sleep on them)
7.Arrived to find an old musty smelling rollaway bed/mattress on the "majestic" view porch! Wow, great way to view the lake w/that nasty old thing sitting there! I wouldn't let my dog on that thing. House was so small there was no place to move it either.
8.Chairs in the front room were broke & left there! Again the cleaning lady told us to "tell Paul".
9. The ANTS-infested all over the kitchen/dishes. We were left w/ant traps & bug spray on the counter for our "use". The kitchen was a tiny little galley kitchen not good for cooking for 4 let alone 12 as the house lists! They were even crawling on me as I stood in kitchen!
10.FIRE HAZARD! Electric extension cords stapled to walls for the electricity in rooms. Extremely old lamps + bad wiring makes for a FIRE HAZARD!
11.Old "junk" sitting around, dirty/mildew & musty smells!
12.The doors really didn't have any "locks" they had little hooks on the screen doors, fans were running which means cords were everywhere & the fronts of the fans were tied on w/bread ties & safety pins. So HOT in the cottage!
13.DISH TV but the service not working-no TV either!
We left 15hrs into our arrival, hopefully this posts saves your vacation!
The Piccadilly Circus is exactly as portrayed in the photos and description, a non-pretentious, turn of the 20th century beach cottage right on the shore of Lake Michigan with amazing views. Some unfortunate timing of events happened during this renter's time with some non-realistic expectations. Since we really do care that you have a great vacation, we tried to resolve all issues immediately. However, they did not consider this an option so we gave them a full refund of their rent, deposit & cleaning fee the day they left.
I would like to confirm there are 2 parking spots assigned to it as listed, if someone is parking in your spots, please let us know so we can have that car removed.
The previous renters left the cottage in a terrible state including broken furniture and an old rollaway bed on the porch. The cleaning crew has 5 hours to clean from one renter to the next & did not plan on it being such a big job. This is not normal or acceptable & have spoke w/the cleaning staff who are committed to getting the cottage completely clean before your arrival at 4pm so this does not happen again.
As done in most hotels, the top comforter is not washed after every renter but the sheets & other linens are always freshly cleaned ones, just for you. The bunkbeds are safe to use and do have a ladder/safety-rail sitting directly behind the headboards.
There are not extension cords tacked to the walls - the cottage is up to code with a circuit breaker and no frayed wires or cords to any lamps or appliances to cause a fire hazard.
Unfortunately, the fridge did decide to die & the moisture leaking from its icemaker attracted ants which compounded the situation. Once the defunct fridge was removed & leak cleaned we had an exterminator out who gave it the all clear. There have been no more complaints of ants & there is a brand new fridge w/icemaker for you to use. The kitchen has full-sized appliances including a range w/2 ovens & enough pots/pans & equipment to cook meals for more than 12.
A massive storm on 6/19 blew our dish and many others out of alignment, but it has since be re-aligned and all channels restored.
The screened porches have only hooks for the door 'locks' but the next doors in have actual locks.
If you have any other questions about the cottage or this review before you rent, please contact me and I'll give you honest answers. We get repeat renters because most people do have a wonderful vacation at our cottage in Palisades.
quintessential, magical lakeside retreat
Piccadilly Circus cottage is a real treasure- the atmosphere celebrates the elegant simplicity of yesterday, though it is also very comfortable and features modern conveniences. The 2 large screened in porches create an enchanting feeling of being at home amidst the beauties of nature, with greenery flourishing all around the cottage and the waves of lake Michigan breaking on the beach nearby. The striped fabric of the window shades and the classic white woodwork combine with the sound of the waves to make it feel almost like you could be adventuring on a boat when you're on the lakeside porch, while the living room is perfectly cozy with tasteful, comfortable furniture and a fireplace to keep warm on a chilly night.
It is really special to be so close to the lake and able to easily walk down to the beach to enjoy sunny afternoons and beautiful sunsets. The 5 minute walk to the soda fountain for an ice cream cone or a hamburger is also a treat. There are trails to explore in the surrounding forest and dunes, tennis courts nearby and activities for kids at the "club house," so there is no shortage of things to do. However, the cottage is such a wonderful place to read a book, spend time with family or wander down to the lake shore we only rarely ventured to take advantage of these other activities.
Some practical notes: the water pressure in the shower is good, the kitchen has all the pots and utensils you need to cook large, delicious meals and the bedrooms are charming and cozy, with bunkbeds in two of the bedrooms.
Altogether a wonderful place, especially if you have a taste for shabby chic, or a romantic fantasy of a turn of the century lakeside getaway. Truly one of the most special places I've been!
I am so happy that other people have the same experiences and enjoy the simplistic beauty of Palisades like me. And I love making big family meals in the kitchen too! The double oven really helps multi-task I think, you can bake blueberry muffins (or a pizza for picky eater cousin) at the same time as you bake dinner. Thanks for sharing! :)
At the park: Private beaches - Swimming - Boogie boarding - Kayaking - Canoeing - Sailing - Tennis - Hiking - Fishing - Sand dunes
Nearby: Golf - Wine tasting - Jet skiing - Water skiing - Tubing - Horseback riding - Shopping - Antiquing - Dining - Berry picking - Petting zoo/Deer Forest - Fideland Fun Park/minigolf, bumper boats