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“A charming turn of the century lumber magnate's Adirondak style lodge on a quiet island”

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Stout's Island Lodge
Ranked #1 of 3 Birchwood B&B and Inns
Certificate of Excellence
Vermillion, SD
Level Contributor
65 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 60 helpful votes
“A charming turn of the century lumber magnate's Adirondak style lodge on a quiet island”
Reviewed 9 June 2012 via mobile

We've been coming here for many years and always find it beautiful and deeply relaxing. This is not a traditional hotel with perfect service. You leave your car behind and board a water taxi for the quick trip to the island. Charming Rooms are available in the main lodge and in cottages spread around the island. many have fireplaces and screened porches. None have phones, though there are a few with tv sets. There's a bonfire with s'mores every night, canoes and kayaks are free for guests, and the Lodge has quite a nice restaurant specializing in locally sourced food ( local bison, fresh caught trout, veggies in season). An old iron bridge leads to nature trails and a bird watching cabin on an adjoining island. Swimming is fabulous in the cold clear lake , though you will be dive bombed by the osprey if you swim too close to her nest. A vast lawn is devoted to croquet and lots of games are available in the main lodge and the boathouse in case it rains.

Don't come here to be pampered but to enjoy an older graciousness and an incredibly beautiful space.

  • Stayed June 2012
    • Value
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Helpful?
4 Thank etsmith
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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242 reviews from our community

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    5
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Rating summary
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  • Sleep Quality
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Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (101)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Any
English first
Hudson, Wisconsin
Level Contributor
56 reviews
10 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 25 helpful votes
Reviewed 6 June 2012

My Husband and I went to stout island to celebrate our 10th anniversary. We thought it would be neat to spend a weekend without TV and internet and just be together. We stayed in the lodge, room 5. It was a nice room with a king bed and fireplace. We used the fire place both nights and enjoyed spending time and sleeping with a fire going. The room while large was in need of some updates. The bathroom was from the 70's and the windows did not keep the cool air out so when it gets hotter in wisconsin I can only imagine the heat.

When we arrived the employees who work the ferry to island did not have our name even though I confirmed the reservation that day. They do not allow anyone to the island unless there is a reservation. They had to call the island to allow us on the boat. Once we got the okay we had a small tour of the main buliding and were shown to our room. The employees running the boat did bring our bags to our room which was nice. Other than that we really did not see any staff unless we searched them out. We did have dinner the first night there and it was pretty good considering we could see a younger guy as the main guy cooking in the kitchen. They were to have a fire going that night where you could roast marshmellows so we forwent with dessert and wanted to do that but when we got to the fire there was no staff there and no marshmellows. We went back into ask and were told it cost two dollars to roast the marshmellows...It was not a big deal but a bit annoying as we were spending a lot of money for the weekend stay.

The next day we went on the water bikes and had a great time exploring the island. Overall we enjoyed ourselves but would have liked to see more people around to do a better tour and learn about the history of the place. If you want to know when you stay here ask the bartender he knew a ton and it was a fun conversation. Ps they do not have a lot of speciality liquor and by speciality they did not have armaretto...

We would go again probably not however we would recommend it because it is a very interesting place that we get say we went to once.

Room Tip: Get a room with a fireplace and if possible a small kitchen
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  • Stayed May 2012, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
4 Thank Jamie K
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Denver, Colorado
Level Contributor
106 reviews
40 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 62 helpful votes
Reviewed 27 May 2012

We got to know Stout's Island Lodge through a Crowd Cut promotion. We paid $154 for 2-nights which included a $30 voucher for the dining room.
- When we arrived, we were told we bought a weekday package ... Not a weekend package ... So they uncharged us $10 ... Not a big deal, but they could have told us that when we made our reservation. The office staff did not handle the situation graciously.
- Old and historic does not have to equal poorly maintained. There is great history here - which is well promoted. However, they could do a better job of preserving and updating what they have. The boat house appears to be on the verge of falling in the water, the stairs to the lake on the south side need to be replaced, our roof was tar paper and some of the rooms hadH rain water leaking in, and the last time the bathroom in Garden 23 was painted, they didn't bother using masking tape on the fixtures.
- Garden house is loud, walls are thin ... We could hear our neighbors as if the bedroom doors were open. The sound echoed throughout the house anytime someone came up the stairs. Whenever anyone came in or out, the screen door slammed. Sleeping in or taking a nap is out of the question.
- Dinner in the dining room was good ... but limited and expensive. We had one dinner on the island, and one in Birchwood at the Pizza Den (highly recommend the pizza den). Bring your own snacks and beverages to get your through the day.
- Continental breakfast was sad ... Cold cereal, green bananas, instant oatmeal, hard boiled eggs, and watery yogurt. Certainly not the breakfast of champions.

The island itself was beautiful. However, I would recommend going elsewhere ... Especially if you are paying full price (Grandview Lodge would be a better option.)

  • Stayed May 2012, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
3 Thank Chris0329
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Eau Claire, Wisconsin
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed 18 May 2012

I cannot say enough good things about Stout's Island Lodge. I am enchanted by the main lodge and the Stout's children's smaller cabins, the boat house, the iron bridge, the small cottage out on the point. If you love history and have an imagination the photo album in the lounge will spark your fascination with how this home served its famous Wisconsin family. This is the Adirondack experience more often associated with New England brought to Wisconsin by the Stout family. Life is slow here, thank goodness. "Island Time." The swallows nest in the eves, the fires in the fireplaces crackle, the hammock beckons readers. The gardens are natural and colorful. Dining is delicious and, of course, all the while I am imagining this privileged family gathering together here all those years, growing up together, laughing together, learning what it means to be family in ways we have forgotten with all our technology and individualism. Its age just gives it character. Love the old plumbing fixtures, the screen porches, the rag rugs. Reminds me of the summers I spent in Vermont. The Island of Happy Days is entirely charming.

  • Stayed June 2011, travelled with family
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Helpful?
1 Thank Seekingthehistoric
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Wisconsin
Level Contributor
7 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
Reviewed 29 November 2011

My husband of nearly 4 years and I were engaged here, while floating one of the beautiful wood-stripped rowboats. I am so honored to have Stout's as a part of our life history. We love our native Wisconsin, and thought this was the most quintessential experience of all time. Our friends spent their honeymoon here and continue to profusely thank us for the recommendation.
We loved Clara's Cabin #25. I remember we were originally assigned a different cabin and checking in while a family with two loud toddlers were arriving next door. The staff sensed our hesitation and immediately helped us transfer to Clara's, which probably secured our eventual engagement and subsequent marriage!
Because we are grazers more than 3-meal-per-day types, we were thrilled we brought food and drink to prepare in the kitchen. We did have a great meal in the lodge, and took the boat to Tagalong one night, where we danced to a live blues band. We also had a rainy day, and played board games in the lodge with kids.
I so very highly recommend this place. We call it the "island with no rules" since we could just walk around and go out on a boat, no questions asked, or hang out by the bonfire and swim whenever we wanted. So, for people who think it's understaffed, grab a boat and a life preserver and just start! It's so great to have lived such a free island life for a few days.

  • Stayed July 2011, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
3 Thank Aleen T
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Bemidji, Minnesota
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
Reviewed 5 November 2011

We had such a wonderful stay. The receptionist Kim was so happy to inform us of the property. You could really tell that she enjoys her job. The boat driver was very informative about the island. The room had a special charm. The Lodge was very relazing and comfortable. Meals were simple amazing. We will return and plan on telling all of your friends.

  • Stayed October 2011, travelled as a couple
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Helpful?
3 Thank Ann M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
muskego
Level Contributor
3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
Reviewed 19 October 2011

This place is amazing and I can't imagine people saying anything otherwise. The staff was incredible the food was incredible, the cabin was incredible. Secret places to discover in every corner-the staff sets the stage (fires lit, music playing, etc.) and are then no where to be found in order for you to enjoy the serenity. A truly beautiful place.

  • Stayed October 2011, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank julieh305
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Stout's Island Lodge

Property: Stout's Island Lodge
Address: 2799 27th Street, Birchwood, WI 54817-9242
Region: United States > Wisconsin > Birchwood
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Kitchenette Restaurant Suites
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 3 B&Bs / Inns in Birchwood
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££
Number of rooms: 43
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Stout’s Island Lodge sits proudly in the center of Red Cedar Lake – an 1800-acre lake in northeastern Barron County, Wisconsin. There are two island connected by a 100 ft. walking bridge (given to Frank Stout by Andrew Carneige). The two islands have a combined acreage of 18 acres. All lodging is located on the western of the two islands; the East Island has walking trails as well as a small picnic cabin on the northern tip. Red Cedar Lake is known for its water quality, its fishery and for its relative quietude. ... more   less 
Also Known As:
Stout`s Island Hotel Mikana
Stout Island

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