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Grand Hotel Features First Lady Suites

Grand Hotel’s 397 guest rooms include seven suites that were decorated in honor of our country’s former first ladies. In preparation for the 1998 season, Lady Bird Johnson, Betty Ford, Rosalynn Carter, Nancy Reagan, and Barbara Bush were all consulted on the décor for the apartment which bears their individual name on the third and fourth floors on the West End of the Hotel, overlooking the Mackinac Bridge. The Jacqueline Kennedy Suite replaced the former Summer Place theme room on the east side of the front of the hotel in 2002. The Laura Bush Suite was added for the 2011 season.

“We are very proud that all seven of these distinguished women would allow us to name the suites after them” said Dan Musser, III, Chairman of Grand Hotel. “These suites add to the unique, historic nature of Grand Hotel.”

As we designed the suites, we wanted to reflect American history, just as the Hotel has reflected American history since it opened in 1887. The memorabilia and special colors used in each suite reflect the individual tastes of each lady.

Each of the suites include:

  • A replica of the official White House portrait of the first lady after whom it is named
  • A brass plate over the door with the first lady’s signature
  • Autographed books from each first lady
  • Fabric covering the walls
  • Chandeliers
  • Custom made carpets
  • Antiques purchased to fit in the room

The suites are decorated using the following themes:

  • Laura Bush – Caramel walls, carpet in aquas, pale blues, and cream, and a white fireplace (for looks only).
  • Jacqueline Kennedy – Navy blue carpeting with gold Presidential eagles and walls painted gold. The Armoire and canopy-style bed are powder blue trimmed in 24kt gold leaf.
  • Lady Bird Johnson – Lemon yellow damask covered walls, accented with blues and golds reflecting the Texas style.
  • Betty Ford – Mint and celadon green damask with cream and a dash of red.
  • Rosalynn Carter – China which was designed for the Carter White House and a primary color of Georgia peach.
  • Nancy Reagan – A primary color of Mrs. Reagan’s signature red.
  • Barbara Bush – Pale blue and pearlized cream.
    Carleton Varney was the interior decorator for the Carter White House. In her letter to Varney, Mrs. Carter said, “to have a special Rosalynn Carter Suite at the beautiful and historic Grand Hotel on Mackinac Island, Michigan, is a tribute to our friendship and shared history.”

She concluded: “I hope someday to bring my grandchildren to “The Grand” to enjoy a time of tranquility and beauty on Mackinac Island.”


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