Grand Hotel unveils Laura Bush Suite

One of the sure signs of spring in Michigan is the reopening of the Grand Hotel.

The stately Mackinac Island hotel opened for its 125th season last weekend and debuted its newest suite, named after former First Lady Laura Bush. It’s the hotel’s seventh First Lady Suite; the others are named after Jacqueline Kennedy, Lady Bird Johnson, Betty Ford, Rosalynn Carter, Nancy Reagan and Barbara Bush (Where’s Hillary Clinton?). Five of the first ladies were consulted in the design of their respective suites.

Designed by Carleton Varney, the interior decorator of the Carter White House, the Laura Bush Suite features French vanilla custom wallpaper, custom jade and soft cream carpet, custom fabrics, rugs and antiques. The suite also contains a replica of the official White House portrait of the first lady. A brass plate over the door contains the first lady’s signature.

“The Laura Bush Suite, in contrast to other First Lady Suites, will reflect simplicity in styling that is characteristic of the manner house look,” Varney said. “The colors for the suite have been adapted from those in the background of her official first lady portrait that hangs in the White House.”

The First Lady Suites debuted in 1988 and are among 35 named rooms in the 385-room hotel.

For information, visit Grand Hotel.

Greg Tasker
Greg Tasker is Detroit News Arts and Entertainment Editor and has been writing about travel for more than a decade. His travel stories have appeared in AAA Living, Frommer's Budget Travel, Scouting, AMC Outdoors, Vermont Life and Island Life.