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Book Online or call HomeAway Booking Assistance 888-640-7927
Book Online or call HomeAway Booking Assistance 888-640-7927

Contemporary, Lake Michigan, Sandy Beach, Great View

Bedrooms 3
Space 2,500 sq ft
Property type house
Minimum Stay 3 - 7 nights


About the property

3 bedrooms, 2 full bathrooms, sleeps 6

An 'Upside Down House', that is, the living space-consisting of a great room, dining and kitchen areas, bath and large deck on top floor-allowing for unbelievable panoramic lake and sunset views. Extremely uncrowded beach as far as eye can see. Wood stove in Great Room. Front, covered porch, looking across at sand dunes and forest, large entry way, hall and three bedrooms, bath, laundry/sand room, screened porch and open deck to hang wet laundry, etc. off master bedroom on next floor down. Beautiful wood floors throughout, marble floors in baths. Garage and basement on ground floor. Cat walk over dune grass to sandy beach-no-rocks on beach or in water, on Lake Michigan's Sturgeon Bay, dead end road that borders Wilderness State Park.

Marlene Ross
Member since: 2011
Speaks: english
Response time:
Within 12 hours
Response rate:
Calendar last updated:
April 14, 2018

About Marlene Ross

The house was designed and built (literally) by my late husband who taught structural engineering at the University of Michigan. The space is a joy and a delight to be in, comfortable and inviting.

Why Marlene Ross chose Harbor Springs

For several summers my family rented a house down the beach. We fell in love with the area as a perfect get away for parents, grandparents, kids and dogs. We were lucky to find this piece of land/sand with no rocks-on beach or in water-just sand. The house was completed about 11 years ago.

What makes this house unique

As I appreciate it when my dog is welcome on my travels, the house welcomes (well behaved) dogs, has a doggy door and a small fenced in area off front porch. The house is maintained in excellent condition-smoke free and shoe free.

Guestbook comments from the owner

Beautiful house, everything was perfect, owners very accommodating and helpful. House is well equipped, everything provided. No rocks on the beach or in the water. Amazing view and sunsets!!
Aug 2017
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Harbor Springs House Accommodation and Amenities

Property Type:
  • house
  • Guests provide their own meals
Floor Area:
  • 2500 sq ft
House Rules:
  • Check-in: 4:00 PM
  • /
  • Check-out: 10:00 AM
  • Max. occupancy: 6
  • Children welcome
  • Parties/events not allowed
  • Pets considered ...
  • Non smoking only
  • No glass on the beach, no littering, pick up after your dog
  • Keep people and dogs from walking on the dunes to reduce erosion. Also, keep dogs from disturbing delicate/endangered wildlife
  • Do not cut directly on wooden counters, be careful not to let water stand on counter next to kitchen sink
Location Type:
  • Beach ...
  • Beach View
  • Beachfront ...
  • Lake ...
  • Lake View
  • Lakefront ...
  • Village ...
  • Water View
  • Waterfront ...
  • Waterfront ...
  • Away From It All
  • Family
  • Alarm Clock
  • Basic Soaps
  • Ceiling Fans
  • Clothes Dryer
  • Firewood
  • Garage
  • Heating
  • Laundry Soap
  • Linens Provided
  • Living Area
  • Living Room
  • Local Activities Guide
  • Local Maps
  • Local Restaurant Guide
  • Paper Towels
  • Parking
  • Parking Off Street
  • Parking On Street
  • Telephone ...
  • Toilet Paper
  • Towels Provided ...
  • Washing Machine
  • Wood Stove
  • Blender
  • Coffee Maker
  • Cooking Utensils
  • Dishes & Utensils
  • Dishwasher
  • Freezer
  • Kitchen ...
  • Oven
  • Pantry Items
  • Refrigerator
  • Stove
  • Stove
  • Toaster
  • Dining Area
  • seating for 8 people
  • 2 Bathrooms
  • Bathroom 1 - toilet , combination tub/shower
    Bathroom 2 - toilet , shower
  • There is an additional toilet and sink in basement.
  • 3 Bedrooms, Sleeps 6
  • Bedroom 1 - 1 double
    Bedroom 2 - 1 double
    Bedroom 3 - 2 twin/ single
  • Two bedrooms on Lake side, one of which has a screened porch with hammock. One bedroom faces dunes and forest.
  • Books ...
  • CD Player
  • DVD Player
  • Games
  • Games for Kids
  • Music Library ...
  • Radio
  • Stereo
  • Television ...
  • Beach Chairs
  • Binoculars
  • Boat
  • Deck / Patio ...
  • Kayak / Canoe ...
  • Outdoor Grill ...
  • Porch / Veranda ...
  • Screen Porch / Veranda
  • Walkway to Water
  • Wood Deck
  • 5 beach chairs
  • wheelchair inaccessible
  • autumn foliage
  • bay/sound
  • churches
  • festivals
  • forests
  • marina
  • restaurants
  • water parks
Leisure Activities:
  • antiquing
  • beachcombing
  • bird watching
  • horseback riding
  • photography
  • scenic drives
  • sight seeing
  • walking
Local Services & Businesses:
  • groceries
Sports & Adventure Activities:
  • cycling
  • fishing
  • fly fishing
  • freshwater fishing
  • golf
  • hiking
  • mountain biking
  • roller blading
  • sailing
  • snorkeling
  • swimming
  • wind-surfing
From driveway or garage, one flight of stairs to front porch/door leading to large entry, 3 bedrooms, full bath, screened porch, laundry/sand room with door leading to walkway to beach. Outside sand room door is a tap for washing off sand from two and four legged beings. Top floor is Great Room, dining area and kitchen and large deck overlooking beach and lake. Contemporary furnishings. From entryway there is a doggy door leading to front porch and small fenced in area. Beautiful hardwood floors throughout thus request that shoes are left in entry or sand room PLEASE.


Exceptional! 5/5 -
(21 traveler reviews)

95% Complete
4% Complete
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Contemporary, Lake Michigan, Sandy Beach, Great View
average rating of 4.952381 based on 22 reviews
Tontogany, Ohio

Return visit just as enticing as our first stay!

  • 5 of 5

This is the second time my family and I have stayed at this home. I sort of figured nothing could top the visit we had a couple years ago but this visit equaled that one, no problem! I still feel a real affinity for this house -- the woodwork, the windows, the artwork, the stairs, the kitchen. The cross breeze is simply not matched by any other house we've ever stayed in and the beach is STILL perfect, still clean, the water still cold and clear. The house was clean when we got there and its one of the few houses I didn't feel a need to pre-clean dishes before we used them. The bathrooms were spotless, including the shower. I feel like we were staying in someone's home, not a rental. And as the first renters this year, we found the fridge stocked with new ketchup, mustard, etc -- a really nice touch! I expect future stays, as long as we don't have a toddler in tow...

  • Submitted: Nov 11, 2016
  • Stayed: June 2016
  • Source: HomeAway
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Orland Park, IL, USA

Peaceful & Perfect

  • 5 of 5

We spent the first week of October at this beach house and everything about the trip was perfect. Since it was off-season we had the beach to ourselves (with our pups..... thank you, Marlene!). Although, my guess is even in-season it would still be quiet and peaceful. Every night we watched the most amazing sunsets. The upper floor with the great room and kitchen is so open and bright. Tons of windows to open and light just floods in. The beach was awesome with a great fire pit. First time for our pups having roasted hot dogs and we all had the time of our lives. Morning coffee overlooking the lake was another awesome experience. Again, my dogs just fell in love laying on the deck and watching the water. We all took a drive down a very country road (one lane, gravel) around a nearby lake and that was just beautiful. We only ran in to see Leggs Inn but that place was awesome! Next time (we're getting ready to book again) we will definitely go there for at least one meal. Such a unique place and their gardens with tables for dining are just gorgeous, and overlooks Lake Michigan. Not too far away is Harbor Springs and that town is so cute, it feels like you go back in time. Big old Victorians with wrap-around porches and the cutest little downtown. We highly recommend stopping at Tom's Mom's Cookies there and make sure you get enough cookies to take home with you. They are the best! The owner, Marlene, is very nice and easy to work with. Thank you, Marlene, for sharing your beautiful home with us!

  • Submitted: Oct 20, 2016
  • Stayed: September 2016
  • Source: HomeAway
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Amazing vacation!

  • 5 of 5

We were very impressed with both the house and the location right from the start. The house was clean, the kitchen was well stocked with both cookware, dinnerware, etc. and condiments (we still brought way more than we needed, and we will know better for next year), and the bedrooms were perfect. We have two little girls and the room with two low twin beds was absolutely perfect for them. They loved having their own room that overlooked the water.

We loved the gorgeous views of Lake Michigan/Sturgeon Bay both from inside the house and out on the back deck. We ate quite a few meals under the sunset, but occasionally the wind kept us inside. The sunsets are amazing.

The walk to the beach was very quick and easy. There were plenty of beach chairs and 2 Kayaks, which we had fun using. Halfway down to the beach was a platform with a hammock to relax in. We walked up and down the beach and the entire area is gorgeous, but Marlene's house seemed to have one of the largest and best sections of beach around. My girls loved that the water was still warm at the end of August and stayed relatively shallow for quite a distance.

Outside of the house, there is the Legs Inn, which we of course had to try. We were able to ride our bikes from the house down to the Inn. The food was great, and the back garden area/views also were very beautiful. We never made it to the new breakfast place, as we enjoyed cooking and eating our breakfasts overlooking the water at the house each morning. Maybe next year. Petoskey and Harbor Springs are also fun towns to visit, and a short distance away. We also took a day trip at Mackinac Island, and the ferries are just a short 30 minute drive away. We spent the majority of our time at the house, however, as we were there to soak up the sun, the beach, and the gorgeous Lake Michigan views. We also really loved that we were able to bring our two dogs with us, as they are a big part of our family.

Marlene is very accommodating and easy to work with. She was prompt in her email/phone responses. We will definitely be making a trip back next year!

  • Submitted: Sep 29, 2016
  • Stayed: August 2016
  • Source: HomeAway
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Ann Arbor, Michigan

Beautiful, relaxing, memorable

  • 5 of 5

Our stay in Marlene’s house was a joy for our multigeneration family of 6. The situation on Lake Michigan was perfect - in the middle of the Sturgeon Bay shoreline. We spent 3 or 4 evenings watching beautiful sunsets. We cooked dinner all nights but one in the well applianced kitchen. The lake and water temperate were welcoming. Initially we had thought we would plan a few day trips but decided instead that we didn’t want to leave the beach and house. We were there during the time of the full moon. One very lovely, soft-air night I went outside about 4:30 am and spent time laying in Marlene’s hammock on the sand dune staring at the sky. It was a memorable vacation. I’m sure we’ll return. Did I mention Marlene’s house is host to many pieces of original art? - has lots of windows that open and comfortable beds? Also, Marlene was very easy to work with. I would definitely recommend this property.

  • Submitted: Aug 28, 2016
  • Stayed: August 2016
  • Source: HomeAway
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Epic spot!

  • 5 of 5

The property was clean and beautiful. The location was incredible with gorgeous views and a lovely soft sandy beach. Wouldn't hesitate to recommend this to anyone who wanted a tranquil spot to get away from electronics and the demands of the modern world.

  • Submitted: Aug 18, 2015
  • Stayed: June 2015
  • Source: HomeAway
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Peaceful Getaway

  • 5 of 5

My husband and I went end of June for our anniversary. Knowing Michigan, the water is still cold at this time but we enjoyed Marlene's kayaks, walking the beach, and our dogs loved running and going for a swim. There's also a nice fenced portion by the house to use as a dog run. The water is shallow, crystal clear, and it seems you can walk out a ways before it gets deeper. I love how the top floor of the house is the living room/kitchen/dining as it has a spectacular view of the lake and distant lighthouses. Although we came at a time when the midge flies were still swarming, Marlene was very accommodating with us, and because the view is so great from the inside, it was still worth the stay! Especially when we saw the Northern Lights!

The location is great as it's only a half hour drive to Mackinaw City and the bridge, as well as a half hour in the other direction to Harbor Springs and Petoskey. It's a secluded location but there are beach houses on either side so you don't feel totally alone. We love Legg's Inn for a meal or drink in Cross Village, the gas station for snacks and ice cream, as well as taking the the Tunnel of Trees scenic drive to Good Hart for the crepe wagon, shops, and General Store (15 min away). Didn't care for the Cross Village Three Pines art studio (they will keep an eagle eye on you at anything you look at- makes for an uncomfortable experience and a great way to drive sales away). But we made sure we weren't gone too long as we wanted to enjoy the house, the views, and the access to the private beach. The house is very clean and there's a small TV for DVDs and a radio to listen to, as well as plenty of books and games to keep your attention. They have a washer/dryer too for laundry. The only detractor is that they didn't have a microwave, but they do have a toaster oven instead.

One note, to no fault of the owner, because this is more remote, if you have Verizon cell service, you will get absolutely no signal in this area unless you drive about 15 min closer to one of the larger towns. So be prepared to be totally cut off, but it does make for a peaceful vacation and we love the area. (Have heard ATT gets a signal though)

We would definitely come back to Marlene's beach house. The transaction and communication before, during, and after was great. She was very accommodating and we love how her beautiful house is also pet-friendly.

  • Submitted: Aug 10, 2015
  • Stayed: June 2015
  • Source: HomeAway
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Nearest Airport
10 Miles
Pellston International Airport
Nearest Barpub
4 Miles
Legs Inn
Nearest Ferry
10 Miles
Mackinaw Island Ferry
Nearest Golf
15 Miles
True North or Boyne Highlands
Nearest Train
25 Miles
Petoskey, Mi.
Nearest Motorway
20 Miles
Interstate 75 exit 326
Nearest Restaurant
4 Miles
Legs Inn
Nearest Ski
15 Miles
Nubs Nob
Car: necessary

Contemporary Lake Michigan Beachfront Home. Decks for viewing breathtaking sunsets, watch eagles fly above, hummingbirds hover near by, loons flying overhead,, Waugochance to Beaver Chain of Islands, three twinkling lighthouses, freighters in the distance. Walk the sandy beach for miles, bird watch, hike dunes and forest just across the (dead end) road or in Wilderness State Park-a five minute beach walk north. Walk out your door for a sunrise jog or yoga on the beach. Cycle back roads and nationally historic 'Tunnel of Trees' scenic road to Harbor Springs. Sleep-in your bed or hammock (on beach-side screened porch)-to soothing sound of waves lapping on the shore. Take a ferry to car free, Mackinaw Island or bridge to the Upper Peninsula, play golf, fish on a close-by inland lake, dine out-all15 minutes away. Sail, kayak, swim in summer, enjoy Spring trillium in bloom, Fall foliage in fall. Take an art/craft class at nearby Studio/Art Gallery

Other Activities: Take a break from building sand castles and take a kayak out (two available) or cross the road and hike in to more dunes, forests, paths. Bike in to the village and enjoy authentic Polish food and/or live music at the Legs Inn. Drive over to Douglas Lake (Pellston) for a fine dinner on the Lake.

Take a ferry from Mackinaw City over to Mackinaw Island, get some fudge, rent a bike and head to the other end of the island and escape the summer island crowds or take a horse and buggy ride (no cars allowed on Island). And, most wonderful of all, sip wine on the deck and watch the beautiful sunsets over the lake.


Rates & Availability

Taxes and fees are additional

Additional information about rental rates

Pet Fee $25
Cleaning fee/week $175
Refundable damage deposit $400

My property generally books up very quickly. If you are interested in a week, once your request is accepted you should submit your deposit to hold your week as soon as possible. Dogs are welcome. We charge $25 per dog, 2 dog maximum please. We ask that you be responsible and clean up after your dog on the beach, also be considerate of others and of endangered wildlife that inhabit the beach area.

Owner's Cancellation Policy

  • 50% refund if canceled at least 14 days before arrival date.
  • 100% refund if canceled at least 30 days before arrival date.
  • Service Fee fully refunded on cancellations that qualify for 100% refund.

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