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10 Beautiful Resorts On American Lakes

Book a blowout at the resort salon before heading to an on-site cooking class or wine tasting, or just spend the evening watching the wildlife from your private porch.
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By Laura Carroll,

These gorgeous lakeside retreats are perfect for a fall getaway.

Grand Hotel, Mackinac Island, Michigan
American splendor is an understatement when describing the Grand Hotel—a sprawling, 386-room resort on Michigan's gorgeous Mackinac Island. The brightly colored, tapestry-laden rooms feel like jewel boxes, while the porch (once the longest in the world) is a historical homage to the lost art of doing nothing. (Isn't that what vacation's all about?) Photo Courtesy Grand Hotel
Lake Austin Spa Resort, Austin, Texas
Days spent at Lake Austin Spa Resort are filled with activities such as morning yoga on the dock, paddleboarding on the lake, and maybe a late afternoon cardio class. And it's easy to commit to being so healthy when a hot tub, massage treatments, and two pools await you when it's time to wind down. Book a blowout at the resort salon before heading to an on-site cooking class or wine tasting, or just spend the evening watching the wildlife from your private porch. Photo courtesy Lake Austin Spa Resort
Jenny Lake Lodge, Grand Teton National Park, Wyoming
This lodge, located within Grand Teton National Park, gives mountain life a decidedly luxe feel. The eco-resort is made up of private cabins with pristine views, but the real highlight just might be the food. Seasonal five-course dinners (think grilled watermelon, hickory-smoked trout, and cumin-dusted lamb loin) are served in the lodge's rusting dining room—and included in the booking price. Photo courtesy Jenny Lake Lodge
Emerald Lake Lodge, Field, British Columbia
The Canadian Rockies are an adventurer's paradise no matter the season. In the winter, dog sledding, ice skating, and snowshoeing replace the white water rafting, rock climbing, and hiking of the warmer months. Good thing, then, that guests of Emerald Lake Lodge can indulge in some stick-to-your-ribs fare before turning into their fire-warmed cabins. Photo by Dan Barnes/Getty Images
Greystone Inn, Lake Toxaway, North Carolina
Booking a trip here affords guests sweeping views of the privately held Lake Taxoway. Take a room in the historic mansion for a real throwback, or stay in the more modern Hillmont suites. For families, there are suites close to the lake; another great family activity is gem mining, a North Carolina staple that's hosted by the inn. Photo courtesy Greystone Inn
Mirbeau Inn and Spa, Skaneateles, New York
The French-inspired Mirbeau Inn might seem like the stuff of fairy tales, but the setting is fitting. It's located on Skaneateles Lake, the eastern-most of the Finger Lakes, and it looks like something out of a Monet painting. Shop the historic Genesee Street or lounge in the quaint city park, or just spend all day in the spa before heading to the restaurant for farm-to-table fare and Opus One by the glass. Photo courtesy Mirbeau Inn and Spa
Mill Falls at The Lake, Meredith, New Hampshire
Situated on New Hampshire's Lake Winnipesaukee, Mill Falls is practically a city in itself. Four inns sit among seven restaurants, a marketplace, and a spa, as well as a yoga studio that goes above and beyond typical resort offerings (the offerings include aerial classes and sun salutations on a paddleboard). Photo courtesy Mill Falls at The Lake
Osthoff Resort, Elkhart Lake, Wisconsin
Suites at The Osthoff Resort are large—up to three bedrooms—and offer postcard-worthy views of Elkhart Lake. But if your private balcony views don't suffice, consider renting one of the resort's water crafts (including paddle boats and pontoons). Or simply book a sunset cruise and let the captain do the work for you before heading to a lakeside bonfire—complete with s'mores. Photo courtesy Osthoff Resort
The Ritz-Carlton Lake Tahoe, Truckee, California
You might be in the middle of the Sierra Nevadas, but this is still the Ritz-Carlton, meaning there's access to poolside cabanas, floor-to-ceiling windows, bedside fireplaces, and every outdoor activity imaginable. Luckily, the sweeping magnitude of Lake Tahoe will bring you back down to earth, if only until dinnertime at the resort's Manzanita restaurant. Photo courtesy The Ritz-Carlton
Grand View Lodge, Nisswa, Minnesota
Gull Lake is an easy sell in itself, but the amenities at Grand View Lodge make a trip here all the more enticing. The lodge's historic cabins and main house are rustic, yet still luxurious. Its spa offers a long list of massages, wraps, facials and other treatments. There's also an extensive children's program, allowing parents the free time for dinner at Cru restaurant and wine bar—one of the resort's eight dining venues. Photo courtesy Grand View Lodge

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