During my trip to Detroit I was fortunate enough to spend a night at the beautiful Inn at 97 Winder.
While there are plenty of options for accommodation in Detroit you’ll be hard pressed to find something as unique and memorable as what the Inn at 97 Winder has to offer.
- Check out my review of the Trumbull and Porter Hotel in Detroit
Many of the hotels provide a completely whitewashed experience where everything looks the same and you can’t even tell one property of the same chain or brand from the next. This is where 97 Winder differs from all the rest.
The Inn boasts a completely unique style and it’s more of a boutique B&B rather than just your standard hotel. Just in 2017 the property became under management of a global hospitality firm, Access Hotels and Resorts, that places more of a focus on providing a luxury experience for guests.
This is evident the moment you walk through the front door and all of the interior elegance makes it seem like you’re stepping into a palace rather than somewhere that you’re going to spend the night.
All of your worries are left behind as your eyes pass over intricate and exquisite interior design, soft and warming color palettes, and period relevant furniture and artwork that plays into the overarching historic theme of the property.
Each of the guest bedrooms has their own unique design so you’re truly able to revel in the fact that you’re enjoying a one-of-a-kind experience when you spend the night at the Inn at 97 Winder.
Not only do all of the rooms have their own personal touch but the interior of the inn itself has seemingly been painstakingly designed with every piece of furniture, tapestry, carpet, artwork, and all of the other features appearing to have been specific chosen to give off a historic yet welcoming feel.
The interior of the Inn at 97 Winder is truly a sanctuary from the busy life and hustle of the city streets outside in urban Detroit and the stylish European elegance makes you feel right at home regardless of where you’re visiting from.
I was lucky enough to spend a night at this property and in this post I want to share with you some of the details of the inn as well as the experience that I had so you can get a better idea of what you can expect if you’re planning to stay here.
In my opinion, there’s nowhere else in Detroit that I’d recommend staying if you’re looking for a stylishly designed, culturally relevant, and historic boutique hotel in the heart of the city.
My Stay at the Inn at 97 Winder in Detroit
During my visit to the Inn at 97 Winder I stayed in the Premium Loft King Suite on the top floor of the home.
I was definitely spoiled with the room and immediately after walking through the door I began to admire all of the small details as well as grandiose features that the room had to offer.
The first thing I noticed was the 14-foot ceiling towering up above me and this combined with the large windows letting in plenty of natural light helped make the room feel enormous, airy, and bright.
I have stayed in similar-sized rooms at other hotels, such as my visit to the Hotel Post in Zermatt where I stayed in a top floor family suite, though the room here at 97 Winder was gigantic and one of the largest that I’ve stayed in despite being suited for just two people.
Having so much space for two people really makes it relaxing, peaceful, and both my girlfriend and I could enjoy ourselves in different parts of the room without bumping into one another.
The other feature that stood out the most was the large spiral staircase right in the very center that leads up to a cozy loft with an incredible view of the Comerica Stadium and the downtown Detroit skyline.
The imposing wrought iron staircase is something you’re very unlikely to find in the majority of overnight accommodation and it helped to continue to play into the historic vibe of the property.
The staircase along with all of the other tastefully chosen and classical features such as the wooden bed, intricately designed carpet, antique armoire and desk, antique tables, the artwork on the walls, and the furniture chosen in the seating area made it feel like I was stepping back into a luxurious history and after just a few minutes in the room I didn’t want to leave.
Of course I had to head out to explore some of downtown Detroit before it got too late in the day, although I really would have loved to spend the entire afternoon in the room just lounging and revel in its charming setting.
It was impossible for me to find out but I felt that everything in the room had a story to tell and I really would have loved to learn a lot more about the history of the room and where all of the different pieces came from.
This thought process of mine is something that has never occurred before even though I’ve stayed at other historic properties around the world, so the room I had here at the 97 Winder as well as the rest of the property truly left a memorable impact on my trip to Detroit.
I was a little nervous that the bathroom in the room would follow a similar classical layout and design as the rest of the hotel, which in my mind made me think that it would be outdated and shabby.
Thankfully, this wasn’t the case at all and the bathroom featured a simple and minimalist design with a few unique touches.
Right away I noticed of the beautiful light fixture in the bathroom that cast a warm glow over the space with a blue tint. For some reason this put my mind at ease when I was in the bathroom and the space itself offer a nice contrast of modern style compared to the historic design of the rest of the property.
Although the bathroom area was painted white there was a beautiful painting on the wall that added a splash of color to the space.
All of the basic essentials you would need are provided such as soft towels, a cozy bathrobe, comfortable little slippers, and your typical bathroom amenities.
I hadn’t heard of them before but the amenities were from “Essential Elements” which I believe is a San Francisco company and there was shampoo, conditioner, lotion, and body wash so you had everything you needed if you’re not traveling with your own amenities or just in case you happened to forget something at home.
The bathroom wasn’t as oversized as the rest of the room but the space was used effectively and for just one or two people it was well-equipped and perfectly designed for a short-term stay.
As you could probably tell from my introduction of the inn at the beginning of this post, the property at 97 Winder is impressive with tasteful and historically relevant interior design.
The inn takes advantage of a boutique style of accommodation making it a much more unique experience that you’re bound to remember long after you’ve left.
Checking in was straightforward and after a short sit down with the young receptionist underneath an enormous chandelier we were sent on our way to our room up on the third floor.
There really isn’t a traditional lobby because the property is located inside of a historic home so when you walk inside the inn you actually feel like you’re walking into an old friend’s house rather than just another typical hotel.
Right away I felt completely welcome and totally comfortable thanks to the cozy interior with all of the carpets, tapestry, artwork, and tastefully chosen furniture that played right into the historic vibe of the home.
Each of the rooms on the main floor featured a large seating area so after a long day of exploring the city or traveling you could return to the inn and relax with a book or a cold drink before heading back up to your room.
In the main entryway there was a jar of ice cold water for refreshment whether you’re coming or going and in the back part of the main level is a large self-serve kitchen where you could prepare your own snacks and meals, grab a drink from the fridge, and also make something quick for breakfast.
There was a small backyard with some outdoor seating as well so if you’re visiting during the warmer summer months you could spend time in the peaceful backyard while enjoying the serene natural setting out back.
All of the public areas had something unique about them whether it was the antique furniture, interesting artwork exhibits, or the impressive chandeliers hanging from the ceiling.
The inn has an amazing location especially if you’re hoping to explore downtown Detroit on foot or if you’re visiting for a sporting event.
Both of the main stadiums downtown are easily accessible on foot and it’s possible to reach them in less than 15 minutes if you’re walking.
The downtown area is also easily accessible and you can get just about anywhere you need to be downtown in less than 20 minutes on foot.
Getting to the waterfront takes a little bit less than 30 minutes and you can reach a wide range of different restaurants, small shops, cafes, and shopping areas in between 20 and 30 minutes walking.
There really isn’t any reason to drive if you’re heading into downtown Detroit so you can leave your car at the inn.
For those of you that don’t feel like walking you can simply call an Uber to the inn and you should be able to get downtown for between $7 and $10 depending on traffic and where you want to go.
I found the area around the inn to be completely safe and I had no problem leaving my car parked outside on the street overnight.
My girlfriend and I were walking around the inn at different times throughout the day and night and there wasn’t any time when I felt unsafe or worried about my surroundings.
97 Winder is in a great area right between the downtown core and the more suburban neighborhoods on the outside of the city center so it’s a completely safe location and you shouldn’t experience any problems as long as you use common sense when you’re walking around.
Helpful Tips for Visiting
At the property you have two options for parking.
You can park out front on the street for free overnight or you can park in a secured lot on-site for a fee.
I left my car out on the street without any problems although if you’re driving a high-end luxury vehicle you might want to consider parking in the private lot as car break-ins and theft are quite common in downtown Detroit.
I believe that the inn should include parking in the rate as the parking lot is located right on the same property but if you’re hoping to save some money then you’ll be fine parking on the street right out front of the inn.
Like I mentioned up above it’s really easy to reach the downtown area and the stadiums on foot so you shouldn’t need to use your car once you park it if you’re planning on heading downtown.
Alternatively, you can order an Uber if you don’t feel like walking and I would recommend ordering one as opposed to driving your own vehicle and having to find somewhere to park downtown.
Once you’re in the downtown area you can use public transportation, such as the People Mover, to get around more quickly or just walk everywhere as the city center area is very walkable.
There are plenty of amazing restaurants in Detroit that are easily accessible on foot from the inn or you could drive into the suburban areas on the outside edge of downtown if you’re looking for a chain restaurant.
I recommend heading to TripAdvisor and looking for somewhere to eat depending on what you’re in the mood for.
You can also head down to the Greektown neighborhood in the city center and you’ll find a wide range of different restaurants and other places to eat in this area.
Of course, don’t forget to get a famous Coney Dog that the city is known for.
I found downtown Detroit and the area surrounding the inn to be completely safe and there wasn’t any time that I felt unsafe or in danger.
You can easily drive into some of the more unsafe areas of the city although you’ll be able to tell from the abandoned houses and lack of traffic that you might be entering somewhere that you shouldn’t be driving into.
As long as you aren’t looking for any trouble and you stick to the busier areas of the city you shouldn’t run into any problems at all.
One more thing I want to mention is that everyone I spoke to in the city told me that Detroit is completely safe for tourists and I definitely found that this was the case during my visit.
- Visit the hotel website
- Read more guest reviews on TripAdvisor
- More information about Detroit
- Check out my other hotel reviews