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Happy National Puzzle Day!

Happy National Puzzle Day!

Are you a puzzle person?

It was a surprise to us when we discovered, we are puzzle people too.

We bought our first puzzle on a lark and enjoyed it so much, we’ve had one going ever since!

Our current puzzle is especially challenging. It’s all in black and white!


When you stay at Suite Retreat Holland, you are welcome to use the puzzles, games, DVDs and books in the Suite’s family room.

We want you to feel at home away from home.


Enjoy a Suite Retreat in Holland and tour Michigan like a local.

Book your stay today at Suite Retreat Holland.

Guest Review – Kathleen

“Remember that happiness is a way of travel – not a destination.” Roy M. Goodman 🌷

2019 01-28 kathleenA recent study showed that one of the primary reasons people travel is to spend time with loved ones and to create memories. 🌷

Our goal as hosts is to offer our guests a sparkling clean retreat in which to prepare for each day, a comfortable place to rest between family events, and a bed that guarantees a great night’s sleep. 🌷

Of course, always-included extra amenities like a Keurig coffee maker, and a robe and slippers have been known to increase our guests’ happiness factor a wee bit. 😉

Academics & Authors & Artists, Oh My!

20181230_151518It was time to update the Suite’s family room.

A cheery white entertainment cabinet waited eagerly to replace the wooden brown office desk originally in the room.

It made us wonder.

Do our guests actually want a desk in the Suite? Had our mostly leisure travelers required the use of such a business-like item?

Then the guest book caught my eye. Our guests have left lovely notes written between its covers. Where did they sit while writing in the book? Or jotting notes for themselves? Or stamping postcards to send home?

Hmm. Yes, a desk would definitely be enjoyed in the Suite.

But if not in the Suite’s family room, then where? The west guest room is the largest bedroom, so it would make sense to put a desk there. With large sliding doors and a south-facing window, this bright and sunny bedroom would be a lovely place to jot notes or check messages.

Our heavy brown office desk would be out of place in this light and airy room, so the search was on. We were thrilled to find a one-of-a-kind piece created by a local craftsperson and scooped it up immediately.

The very day we welcomed this beautiful piece into our home, an author booked the Suite for a work retreat away from home. The next day an artist booked the Suite. Followed by a foursome of teachers.

Did this magical desk inspire them during their stays? Time will tell!

Do you use a desk when you travel? Let us know in the comments below!



Heinz Waterfront Walkway

Year round walking, running and biking is easy to do in west Michigan.

The extensive list of trails that appears on the West Michigan Trails & Greenways Coalition verifies an impressive number of trails and includes more than 1100 original photos, directions to trail locations and detailed descriptions of the terrain and area covered. I encourage you to spend some time exploring their web site. As a hiker and biker, I found it very inspiring!


A small portion (1800 feet) of the trail system in West Michigan runs along the south shoreline of Lake Macatawa and is called the Heinz Waterfront Walkway.


Donated by the Heinz Company,  the walkway reciprocated land given to Heinz by Holland in 1896 for the building of a pickle factory.

The entrance to the Heinz Waterfront Walkway is on the west end of Kollen Park.

The trail winds along the waterfront near a large Heinz building.

Despite low temperatures the day we visited, there were many people out enjoying the area; strolling, walking their dogs and even, as you can see in the photo above, kayaking on Lake Macatawa!

20181226_150153We parked near the entrance and walked along the lakefront. Plaques describing the boardwalk and its history are posted on remnants of a large pickle barrel.

One said, “In 1896, representatives of the H.J. Heinz Company toured several cities in western Michigan looking for an ideal location for a new pickle processing factory. In December of 1896, Heinz committed to building a pickle factory in Holland if local farmers would pledge 300 acres of cucumbers for Heinz and if the City of Holland would donate a building site with water shipping access and a rail siding.

20181226_143817Local citizens and farmers pledged more than 500 acres of cucumbers, and the City of Holland purchased two acres of land for $800 on the present day site.

This site provided a rail siding and water access for shipping.

Groundbreaking for the new pickle factory occurred on April 19, 1897 and the original building was dedicated on June 1, 1897. The 16,000 square foot building cost $2100. Today the Heinz facility includes 17 buildings covering 29 acres.”

20181226_143533The boardwalk ends at 16th Street and we followed the sidewalk along the street back to Kollen Park Drive and into Kollen Park.

Here we viewed the Immigrant Statue, a gift from the people of Drenthe in the Netherlands.

According to Wikipedia, “Drenthe has been populated for 150,000 years. The region has subsequently been part of the Episcopal principality of Utrecht, Habsburg Netherlands, Dutch Republic, Batavian Republic, Kingdom of Holland and Kingdom of the Netherlands.

20181226_143640Drenthe is an official province since 1796. The capital and seat of the provincial government is Assen.

The King’s Commissioner of Drenthe is Jetta Klijnsma. The Labour Party (PvdA) is the largest party in the States-Provincial, followed by the People’s Party for Freedom and Democracy (VVD) and the Christian Democratic Appeal (CDA).”

Kollen Park has a large group picnic shelter, a band shelter, a gazebo, playground, boat launch ramps, limited docking facilities, parking, and several hundred feet of Lake Macatawa frontage with boardwalks and fishing decks.

American Legion concerts are held at Kollen Park every Tuesday from June 11 to August 13. The Summer Concert Series takes place on Fridays from June 14 to August 23.


What’s Up Weekend? (Jan 18-20)

2019 01-17 kareni on pixabay tulips-3251607_640

“A flower does not think of competing with the flower next to it. It just blooms.” Zen Shin 📸 kareni on Pixabay

There are so many fun things to do in Holland Michigan this weekend; the biggest challenge will be narrowing down our choices!

We could taste and buy some amazing Italian wines at amazing prices during an open house at Butch’s Dry Dock from 5-7pm Friday. They’ll be showcasing a plethora of wines and providing canapes for just $15 a person.

Between the Covers Bookshop is hosting a Family Game Night from 6-11pm Friday. Play favorites like Scrabble and Apple to Apples or learn a new designer game. Snacks will be available for purchase. Games are first come first played.

The 5 Browns are delivering on their dream to wake up classical music by introducing it to the widest, largest, and most excited audience they can find Friday from 7:30-10pm at the Hope College Jack H Miller Center for Musical Arts.

Contra Dance is happening at the Holland Area Arts Council from 7-10pm Friday.

Hurray for the 3rd Saturday of January; time for Indoor Winter Market at the Holland Civic Center! Shop for winter and greenhouse grown produce, bread and other baked goods, sweet treats, honey and maple syrup, jams, coffee, bottled juices, meat and seafood, quiche, cheese and so much more from 9am-12pm

Frosty Fun Day, a fundraiser that begins with snowball throwing contests, guided explorations on snowshoes and live Irish music will be held at DeGraaf Nature Center Saturday from 11am-3pm.

Set a line for Family Ice Fishing during a catch-and-release ice fishing day at the Outdoor Discovery Center Pond Saturday from 11am-1pm. All materials are provided including fishing poles, tackle, and bait for just $5.

Women will gather at 12pm Saturday at Centennial Park to rally and be inspired before the Women’s March which ends at the Arts Council with coffee, hot chocolate and a chance to network and discuss next steps.

From 1-5pm Saturday, Fenn Valley Vineyards will host their 20th annual Chili Cook-off and “Wine Lovers Potluck.” Last year’s cook-off was sold out to attendees who loved sharing great wines, chilies and other delicious potluck items.

We could experience the nip of cold on our noses, the hoot of owls in our ears and the crunch of snow under our feet while exploring Hemlock Crossing by the light of the moon from 7-8:30 pm. We could bring our own snowshoes or rent them at the Nature Center for $6.

Park Theatre‘s Winter Legends Series will present The Eliminator Band, a tribute to ZZ Top on Saturday. Doors open at 7pm, show starts at 8pm. Tickets are $18 in advance or $25 at the door.

Sunday is yoga day in the CityVū event space in CityFlatsHotel. Chelsea Fox will lead a yoga flow practice from 2-4pm. Stay after for drinks from Big Lake Brewing, hors d’oeuvres by CityFlatsHotel and a variety of health and wellness vendors.

If we decide to stay up late Sunday, we could view a Total Lunar Eclipse of a Super Wolf Blood over Lake Michigan from 9:30pm-2:48am.

There’s even more ideas at Holland Michigan’s event calendar.

Want to explore further out? Grand Rapids is a hop, skip and a jump away. There’s lots to do there too!

Enjoy a sweet retreat in Holland while you tour Michigan like a local. Book your stay today at Suite Retreat Holland.