Romantic Getaways: Summer in Minnesota
Archer House River Inn, Northfield
Nestled between the Cannon River and Northfield’s historic Division Street, the Archer House River Inn in Northfield, MN mixes historic charm and modern elegance. Newly renovated rooms each offer unique designs, and the hotel’s convenient location means you’re just steps from shopping, dining and recreation. Every Saturday from June through October, enjoy the Riverwalk Market Fair, an arts and crafts fair and farmer’s market along the river. In the afternoon, take a short drive to the Cannon River Winery to enjoy a tasting and live music. Finish your evening at one of Northfield’s many restaurants, like
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 a meal in the lodge’s large central dining room, featuring 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. Remember, the Lodge does not serve alcohol; if you’d like to enjoy a drink you’ll need to bring your own.
Grand View Lodge, Brainerd Lakes
In the heart of the Brainerd Lakes area, Grand View Lodge is a destination for pampering. Check into a cozy cottage or one of the rooms in the main lodge, 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. A sommelier will help ensure you have the best wine matches for each dining experience – or a bottle delivered to your room. Throughout the summer, watch for special wine dinners and romance packages. At the lodge, enjoy the best of Minnesota’s lakeside summer activities, including boating and fishing on Gull Lake, championship golf at the resort’s four award-winning courses, plus swimming and roaring campfires in the evening.
Larsmont Cottages, Two Harbors
On the northern end of Hwy 61’s Scenic Highway and just south of Two Harbors, check into Larsmont Cottages. The suites to three-bedroom cottages offer 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, enjoy a glass of wine overlooking the lake.
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 in Red Wing, MN 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 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.
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, 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.
Saint Paul Hotel, St. Paul
In downtown St. Paul, the Saint 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. During your stay, reserve tickets to a show at the Ordway, or a concert at the nearby Xcel Energy Center.
Lutsen Resort, Lutsen
In the heart of the North Shore, Lutsen is a getaway destination even in the summer. Lutsen Resort offers multiple lodging options. Relax 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.
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