Romantic Getaways Across Minnesota: Weekend Away
Valentine’s Day is just around the corner and it’s time to start planning a romantic Minnesota getaway. Find relaxation, quiet lodging and fine dining, at these top Minnesota romantic getaways.
Grand View Lodge, Brainerd Lakes
In the heart of the Brainerd Lakes area, Grand View Lodge on Gull Lake is a destination for pampering. Check in to a fireplace suite or cozy cottage, and relax with a couples massage at the Glacial Waters Spa. Enjoy fine dining at the Lodge’s restaurants, including Cru, the newest dining experience set among the resort’s 2,000 bottle wine collection. The resort’s private sommelier will help ensure you have the best wine pairings for each dining experience – or a bottle delivered to your room. Watch for special wine dinners and romance packages featuring champagne and chocolate-dipped strawberries.
With all the on-site options you won’t need to leave the resort. But if you do, try Iven’s on the Bay just a short drive south. The restaurant features a wide-ranging menu of seafood, steaks and chops, and it’s known for its wine and martini bar, featuring 51 different martinis.
Larsmont Cottages, Two Harbors
On the northern end of the MN Hwy 61’s North Shore Scenic Highway and just south of Two Harbors, check into Larsmont Cottages. The suites to three-bedroom cottages include cozy fireplaces and spectacular views of Lake Superior. Select a cottage with a kitchen or dine at the Ledge Rock Grill on site. Offering breakfast, lunch and dinner, Ledge Rock features menu items like steaks, walleye and pasta, with an extensive wine list. After dinner, try a Jay’s Hot Chocolate to warm up.
Nearby, visit restaurants along Hwy. 61’s “Culinary Highway,” the segment of Hwy 61 that’s known for its fine dining options. Favorites including New Scenic Café, a chef-driven restaurant featuring chicken, seafood, lamb, pork and steak entrees that rival top Twin Cities restaurants. Nokomis on the Lake features a frequently changing menu of locally grown foods, with entrees like steak, lamb, ribs and fish. For a more casual option, try Lighthouse at Emily’s, with home-style menu items like meatloaf, plus walleye, shrimp and pasta.
St. James Hotel, Red Wing
Located in historic downtown Red Wing, the St. James Hotel is a quiet escape filled with shopping, dining and recreation. Check in to one of the unique guest rooms. Each is individually designed, with high ceilings and Victorian-style furnishings. For a special treat, book the Boardroom suite, with a large king bed, fireplace and walnut woodwork throughout. For breakfast, dine downstairs at The Veranda, featuring local favorite Sturdiwheat pancakes, as well as many other breakfast favorites. For fine dining, visit The Port in the lower level of the St. James. The menu features imaginative entrees like venison and bison, as well as pork, steak, lamb, chicken and fish. Or head upstairs to Jimmy’s Pub. The English-style pub features live music and menu items like steak, fish & chips and shrimp.
While you’re there, stop at Falconer Vineyards & Winery, a local vineyard and winery close to downtown. Open weekends during the winter months, enjoy a tasting and don’t miss the award winning Frontenac Port, which is also served at the St. James.
Grand Superior Lodge, Two Harbors
Head north and stay along the shores of Lake Superior at Grand Superior Lodge, near Two Harbors. Lodge rooms feature queen or king beds, fireplaces and whirlpool tubs. Or choose a log cabin with studio to two bedrooms and enjoy a wood-burning stove, or a lake home with studio to four bedrooms, including a full kitchen and fireplace.
On site, dine at Splashing Rock Restaurant, which overlooks Lake Superior, and enjoy an in-room massage to complete your relaxing getaway. While you’re there, visit the Lodge’s ice bar, Blu, open now through the end of February. The full bar features icy drinks and an oyster and sushi menu.
Nicollet Island Inn, Minneapolis
In the heart of the twin cities, spend a cozy night at the Nicollet Island Inn, just north of downtown Minneapolis on the Mississippi River. The building that is now the Inn was originally built in 1893 and became an Inn in the 1970s. Today, the beautifully appointed and charming rooms offer modern amenities, like LCD TVs, Egyptian cotton sheets, premium Aveda products and cozy robes. Downstairs, enjoy dinner at the Inn’s restaurant with views overlooking the Mississippi River and cobblestone streets around the Inn. The restaurant is also known for its five-course champagne brunch. After dinner, catch a horse-drawn carriage ride around the neighborhood.
While you won’t want to leave your cozy room or the large fireplace at the center of the Inn, if you do head out you’ll be close to theater, music and dining nearby in Downtown Minneapolis. Plan ahead for your stay and reserve a romance package, offering a floral arrangement in your room, a five-course dinner for two, champagne, bath salts and breakfast in bed.
Naniboujou Lodge, Grand Marais
North of Grand Marais, Naniboujou Lodge offers a quiet stay on the shores of Lake Superior. This historic 1920s lodge still has many of its original features and décor, including the brilliantly decorated dining room that’s painted in a Cree Indian style. Enjoy dining next to the dining room’s large stone fireplace – the largest native stone fireplace in the state. During the day, you’ll find easy access to state parks and a short drive to Grand Marais’ restaurants and galleries.
While the lodge is officially closed for the winter, it opens for several winter weekends, including weekends in February. The fixed-price-per-person package includes meals Friday evening through Sunday morning. Remember, the Lodge does not serve alcohol; if you’d like to enjoy a drink you’ll need to bring your own.
St. Paul Hotel, St. Paul
In downtown St. Paul, the St. Paul Hotel is a luxurious sanctuary in the city. Across from the quaint Rice Park, the hotel’s beautifully appointed rooms overlook the park, Landmark Center or downtown. Four-poster beds, Italian-made showers, Turkish Towel Company towels and luxurious robes are just a few of the in-room amenities. Plan early to book reservations downstairs at the award-winning St. Paul Grill. The classic menu features steaks, seafood, poultry and chops.
In February, reserve tickets to the Saint Paul Chamber Orchestra, performing across the park at the Ordway Theatre. Or if you can convince your significant other, the Wild will be playing a home game the Saturday before Valentine’s Day at the nearby Xcel Energy Center.
Giants Ridge, Biwabik
Add winter adventure to your romantic getaway at Giants Ridge in Biwabik, MN. The ski-in, ski-out log-style lodge features one to four bedroom condos, with full kitchens, fireplaces, and whirlpool tubs. Within the lodge, visit the Aveda concept spa for a relaxing massage. Dine at the Mountainside Bar and Grill.
While you’re there, you’ll find just about every winter activity you can imagine. Alpine and Nordic skiing, snowshoeing, tubing and snowmobiling are available at the resort, with full equipment rental available. Numerous ice fishing spots are nearby.
Lutsen Resort, Lutsen
Minnesota’s largest downhill ski area is also one of the state’s best romantic getaway destinations. Lutsen Resort offers multiple lodging options nearby the Lusten Mountains ski area. Snuggle up to the fire at Lutsen Lodge, a classic northwoods lodge with 32 rooms, a dining room overlooking the lake, a more casual pub-style restaurant, and an indoor whirlpool and sauna. Steps from the Lake Superior Shore, the Sea Villa Townhomes have large wood-burning fireplaces and full kitchens. Or, choose a lakeside log cabin rental or a more wooded Poplar River condo rental. Relax with a massage at the WatersMeet Spa.
If you decide to head out for dinner, try Cascade Lodge Restaurant for steak, fish, poultry or pasta. Head to Moguls Grille & Tap room at Caribou Highlands Lodge for a casual American menu. Look for ski and stay packages available all winter long and make sure to enjoy a day on the slopes during your weekend away.
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