Duluth Hotels’ “Claims to Fame”

Old photo of Park Point Marina Inn. Image courtesy of St. Louis County Historical Society
Park Point Marina Inn. Image courtesy of St. Louis County Historical Society

When choosing lodging for a trip, most people consider a few factors: price, location, amenities – but how about its claim to fame? In Duluth, there is no shortage of hotels with stories to tell. Learn more about some special facts and pieces of history from spots all over town.

Beacon Pointe – Beacon Point is Duluth’s only condo-hotel overlooking Lake Superior. It offers guests the ability to stay close to the bustle of Duluth while still enjoying the peace of the lake. One of the best-loved features at Beacon Pointe is that the lake walk runs behind the building instead of in front of it. That makes Beacon Pointe the only lakeside hotel with an unimpeded view of the lake. Additionally, their penthouse units have rooftop balconies which everyone that stays loves. There’s no better place for lake watching!

Canal Park LodgeCanal Park Lodge is a cozy, spacious, independent lodge right on the shores of Lake Superior. It is the only hotel in Duluth with a Northwoods Lodge atmosphere. While the ambiance is relaxing, the team at Canal Park Lodge is used to the hustle and bustle, too – they opened their doors in June 2007, the same weekend as Grandma’s Marathon.

Enger Lofts – Once home to several furniture stores, this historical building that’s thought to have been constructed in 1893 is now home to trendy lofts. These sun-filled rentals offer travelers a prime location, situated in the heart of the Lincoln Park neighborhood, which is full of exciting breweries, cideries, coffee, food, shopping and more. The first floor of this building now is a modern yet cozy coffee shop.

A historical bell from Fitger's Inn

Fitger’s Inn – Located right on the shores of great Lake Superior, this former brewery was built in the 1880s and still has historic features and images from the original building that are seen throughout the complex in every corner. Step back in time with an arrival into their grand lobby which was the shipping and receiving office for the brewery during its 100-year existence. In addition to these relics of days gone by, exposed brick and the incredible lake views make it a one-of-a-kind hotel living its best second life. The entire complex is an inclusive offering of locally owned retail shops, three restaurants and a spectacular outdoor courtyard facing Lake Superior from an elevated one-of-a-kind view in Duluth.

Holiday Inn & Suites Downtown Duluth – The Holiday Inn & Suites Duluth-Downtown is the city’s largest full-service hotel and event center located in the heart of downtown. The hotel boasts close proximity to the Duluth Entertainment Convention Center (DECC) and Canal Park via the downtown skyway as well as free parking and on-site restaurants.

The Inn on Lake Superior – The Inn on Lake Superior is a 2020 Property of the Year Award winner. Most rooms and suites have private lakeview balconies and the hotel even has an outdoor heated rooftop pool with views of Canal Park!

Lift Bridge Lodge – The Lift Bridge Lodge offers several suites to choose from, ranging from a single city-view king, to a spacious family suite with a separate bedroom.  Come experience a breathtaking view of the largest freshwater lake in the world from a balcony lake-view suites, unwind in one of bubbling jacuzzies, and enjoy a delicious breakfast in the morning.  All of this right next to the historical Aerial Lift Bridge.

The Oliver Inn – This boutique hotel in downtown was once home to Duluth’s original City Hall, constructed in 1889 by renowned architect Oliver Green Traphagen. The hotel features 13 rooms across three floors, each commemorating a Duluth historical figure. The building’s basement is also home to a modern speakeasy, the Rathskeller.

Park Point Marina Inn – The hotel sits on the site of the legendary Duluth Boat Club, the largest water club in North America during the early 1900s. The Coast Guard has operated a station on Park Point since the late 1800s, and the Coast Guard ship docks behind the Inn to this day! The inside of the hotel embraces its historical past. The interior was designed from pictures from 1909 of the boat club’s dining and pool areas, and 100-year-old remnants of wood logs from the St. Louis River are used in the Harbor Cove Lounge. Inside the lounge, you’ll also find a historic mural of the boat club as it looked in 1909. Park Point Marina Inn partners with the St. Louis County Historical Society and Minnesota Historical Society to preserve its heritage and showcase it to its guests.

Pier B Resort Hotel – During the late 1800’s, the Duluth waterfront was comprised of floating bogs that extended approximately 300 feet north of the Pier B site. Because of the rapid expansion of the mining and timber industries on the Iron Range, the harbor shoreline was transformed. Built to facilitate the storage of limestone, Kelley Island Lime and Transport Company constructed Pier B, as it was called, in 1890. By 1892, more than 10 piers had been constructed along the harbor front. These piers are now the sites of the Duluth Entertainment and Convention Center, Great Lakes Aquarium, Bayfront Festival Park, and of course, Pier B Resort. Be sure to also check out the Sundew, a decommissioned Coast Guard cutter that is docked at Pier B!

Radisson Hotel Duluth – Harborview –  A popular dining location for locals and travelers alike, the Radisson Hotel Duluth-Harborview is known for its 16th floor restaurant, Harbor 360, one of only about two dozen revolving restaurants still open to the public in the United States. Guests can dine while enjoying panoramic views of Duluth, Lake Superior, and all of its attractions.

A smiling reception desk worker greets a guest at the Sheraton Downtown Duluth

Sheraton DuluthLocated in downtown Duluth, many A-list celebrities have stayed here, including George Clooney, Renee Zellweger, and former President of Finland Tarja Halonen. It is also located by skyway to the Essentia Health campus, and the drink names at Restaurant 301 have a local twist, including the Gin-Sheen and the Zenith Cosmopolitan.

South Pier Inn – In April of 2001, the Sola family broke ground on what is now the South Pier Inn. Longtime residents of Duluth, the Sola family had a vision for the Inn that eventually turned into the “Small Hotel of the Year”, awarded by the Minnesota Lodging Association in 2013. The family-owned boutique lodging also features 20 waterfront suites.

Suites Hotel at Waterfront Plaza – Nestled in Canal Park right in Duluth’s harbor, this hotel sits in the 1889 building that was formerly the headquarters and warehouses of Marshall-Wells, a hardware and grocery firm. With the unique waterside location, ships could moor right alongside the building. Then, they would load the goods right into railcars inside the building before sending them off on their next journey. Now, this building also houses a brewery and restaurants, in addition to the hotel. 

Tru by Hilton – Located just two miles from Miller Hill Mall, two miles from Canal Park and three miles from UMD/St. Scholastica, the Tru by Hilton is one of the most centrally located hotels in Duluth. It features a free hot breakfast, indoor heated pool, 24/7 fitness center and streaming options on each guest room television. The Tru by Hilton is also proud to be pet friendly and excited to welcome your furry friends!

Posted on March 18, 2024