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“Perfect Northern MI Getaway!” 4 of 5 bubbles
Review of Empire Lakeshore Inn

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Empire Lakeshore Inn
Ranked #1 of 3 Hotels in Empire
Certificate of Excellence
Plymouth, Michigan
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
“Perfect Northern MI Getaway!”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 12 May 2014

This is my 3rd consecutive year staying at The Empire Lakeshore Inn. I enjoy everything about staying here. Not only is the location of the Inn perfect, but the new owners Megan and Pete are incredibly friendly and personable with a cute young growing family of their own. I love visiting and seeing the new updates to the Inn and to their family :) My reservation for July is booked and I cannot wait!!

  • Stayed July 2013, travelled with friends
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Maggie L
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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254 reviews from our community

Traveller rating
    119
    99
    23
    11
    2
See reviews for
115
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Rating summary
  • Location
    5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (40)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Any
English first
Villanova, Pennsylvania
Level Contributor
99 reviews
21 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 76 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 10 May 2014

I stayed at this property in early May 2014 with my wife and my elderly parents. I ended up booking two rooms at this property via email communication with Megan for $59/ room/ night.

As such we had a pleasant stay here. Although the formal check-in time was between 3 to 7 p.m., I arranged with Megan to come in later during the evening at 9 p.m. One of the rooms we stayed in had a microwave that we made use of for dinner on the evening we drove in. The location of the hotel was excellent (that was the prime reason for having chosen it in the first place) and was literally a stone's throw from the Philip Hart Visitor Center to the Sleeping Bear Dunes.

The place was not without its drawbacks however. The hotel does not provide a breakfast and so isn't quite a B&B. But neither is it a hotel with a front desk that is staffed through most of the day. This being the lean season, there was no one on the property for the 16 hours or so we were here. A number of toiletries were absent from our room and we ended up sharing some toiletries with our parents who were in an adjoining room. I also noticed that the phone in my parents' room wasn't working and when I tried checking whether it was plugged into the outlet or not, I found the area behind the desk where the phone was placed to be pretty pretty dirty :( Sadly, that wasn't the only thing which was dirty. The toilet in our room was also not perfectly clean and I found a stain on one of the towels in our room. I also agree with the comments that were left by some of the other reviewers who noted that as this hotel is located right at the intersection of two arteries (M-22 and M-72), it could get fairly noisy during the summer. The parking space at this property is also quite limited and if the place is completely full, then it may be difficult getting a parking space during the peak summer season.

Would I stay here again? Well, after having stayed in Empire, one of the things that I would say is that one doesn't have to stay in Empire or Glen Arbor to get a feel for the Sleeping Bear Dunes Lakeshore. Unlike other national parks where I have been, staying in Empire or Glen Arbor isn't quite the same as staying within a national park surrounded by dense green foliage. Staying at Traverse City and driving for 45 minutes to get to the Pierce Stocking Scenic Drive would not distract from enjoying the wonderful beauty of the Sleeping Bear Dunes and if I were making another trip to the Sleeping Bear Dunes, I would certainly consider staying in Traverse City rather than being hung up about staying in Empire or Glen Arbor. But if it turned out that prices at hotels in Traverse City were comparable with prices at the Lakeshore Inn, I would consider staying here again.

  • Stayed May 2014, travelled with family
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 2 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
Helpful?
4 Thank desimba
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Allen Park, Michigan
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 19 March 2014

My girlfriend and I had a two night stay in early March. Wonderful location in town. The beach, restaurants, and stores are all close by.

Things in winter are a lot slower in Empire than the summer months, but that has it's advantages. We must have seen 20 deer just walking around town at night, which doesn't even happen at home (the Detroit area). A short travel north and we got to see the majestic ice caves on a fully frozen Lake Michigan. We also got to head by Empire beach for a great sunset.

The room was nicely decorated, very comfortable beds, and very clean. I was surprised to see a flat screen tv in the room. Honestly, it was not something I'd even expect to see in a smaller hotel. Also Lakeshore Inn had great offseason rates!

If you ever want to take a trip to a small northern Michigan town with a great beach, I'd suggest going to Empire, any time of year. If you do make the trip to Empire, stay at Lakeshore Inn.

  • Stayed March 2014, travelled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
3 Thank MikeMcNair
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Chattanooga, Tennessee
Level Contributor
198 reviews
95 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 123 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 2 October 2013

We booked two nights at the Lakeshore Inn in Empire. It is located just down the street from the Sleeping Bear National Lakeshore Visitor Center. We requested a room with a kitchenette which is located upstairs. It was a perfect solution for a long trip. There was a small sink, countertop area, refrigerator and microwave. The room was clean and comfortable. Wifi was available.

There is a small city park not far from the hotel. It was a perfect spot to have a picnic and watch the sun set over Lake Michigan.

Room Tip: Request a kitchenette if you plan on doing your own meals.
See more room tips
  • Stayed September 2013, travelled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
2 Thank Marilyn B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Vero Beach, Florida
Level Contributor
206 reviews
52 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 77 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 17 September 2013

This Inn is older, but under new ownership and they are fixing things up. They provide solid accommodations near the Sleeping Bear Dunes. The rooms were clean and comfortable with everything in working order. Those closest to the office have screaming internet. The service was friendly and accommodating. We had one minor noise problem (thin walls) which was handled quickly and professionally.

Room Tip: Get close to the office for good internet
See more room tips
  • Stayed September 2013, travelled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
3 Thank lga311
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Plainfield, Illinois
Level Contributor
22 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 3 September 2013

Great service and very accommodating. Great base to set up camp to all the attractions nearby in Sleeping Bear Dunes. They also rent fold out beds if you have an extra guest or a couple of kids like we did. I would say the two best beaches we visited were North Bar Lake & Platte river, can't beat these two.

Room Tip: Call ahead and reserve one with a kitchenette if you need a microwave and/or fridge
See more room tips
  • Stayed September 2013, travelled with family
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Cey97pgt
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Detroit MI
Level Contributor
5 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 13 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 29 August 2013

Had a wonderful experience at this cozy inn in Empire, MI. Megan at the front desk was so sweet and helpful in every way. And if your so lucky you get to meet Polly her daughter who is such a cutie. Megan directed us up to Glen Arbor for the day which is another hidden gem of a city here in Michigan. As for the hotel it was clean, reasonably priced for the season, and check in and check out was a breeze. I highly recommend this hotel to anyone passing through the area, because Empire beach is one of the funnest and nicest beaches I have ever been to. They have a great beach front, nice play ground equipment for kids, full basketball court, and very very nice sand volleyball court. Not to mention the sunset is out of this world.

  • Stayed August 2013, travelled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
3 Thank jqlslawn
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Empire Lakeshore Inn

Property: Empire Lakeshore Inn
Address: 11730 S Lacore Rd, Empire, MI 49630-9403 (Formerly Lakeshore Inn Motel)
Phone Number:
Region: United States > Michigan > Leelanau County > Empire
Amenities:
Beach Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Kitchenette Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 3 Hotels in Empire
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): £
Hotel Class:2.5 star — Empire Lakeshore Inn 2.5*
Number of rooms: 12
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Just Under Went a 12 Room Makeover! Empire Lakeshore Inn is the only hotel located in the quaint little village of Empire, Michigan. Walking distance to shops, restaurants, grocery stores and the famous Empire Beach. We are nestled in the heart of the Sleeping Bear Dunes, with close access to hiking trails, fishing, kayaking and much, much more. Come stay with us in one of our our 12 unique rooms. This old fashion Mom and Pop hotel has undergone many fresh updates but still holds true to that good small town nostalgic feeling. ... more   less 
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