When Jen and Jarred Drown bought the Terrace Bay Hotel in 2016, it had a storied, almost 100-year history, but it was looking rather tired. They were determined to restore the popularity of the restaurant and banquet hall, and then upgrade the hotel into something approaching a luxury resort. They created an aesthetic that complements rustic elements of stone and reclaimed barn-wood with cool modern furniture and pure white coffered ceilings.
Located in Gladstone, MI near the northern tip of Lake Michigan, it had been a gathering place for dining and dancing since it opened as the Terrace Gardens dance hall in 1922. It was destroyed by fire and rebuilt twice, and added a small hotel in the 1950’s that expanded in the 70’s, when it became the Terrace Motor Inn. Along with additions and expansion, the 61-guestroom facility had been renovated numerous times, but it was ready for another one.
The Drowns started with the restaurant. They knew it was underperforming, and thought that an updated look could jump-start it. “We wanted a cool, modern look for the restaurant, a modern gastropub kind of feel, with a few rustic elements; we didn’t want to turn into an all-out rustic tavern. We did a reclaimed barn wood look on the walls, with custom-made reclaimed barn wood tables, and the Ceilume ceiling tiles to help give us more of that modern look.”
They found Ceilume’s thermoformed, three-dimensional ceiling products through extensive searching online, and were surprised by the range of available styles. They selected white Madison style panels, a coffer pattern with deep relief, and added borders of white Cambridge panels, a complementary square pattern with less relief. “A lot of people go for the plain black tile look,” Jared Drown comments, “trying to make their dropped ceiling disappear. But I saw a few different styles and I said, ‘Man, that actually adds something. That’s not like, ‘that room would be nice except it has a dropped ceiling.’ This is actually a preferred look over a standard ceiling.”
The restaurant renovation was a success, bringing new business and increased attention to the property. The Drowns are continuing with their long-term plan to remodel the entire resort and have redone about 20% of the guest rooms. They opened the exterior walls, adding glass for almost the full width and height of the room. They added ledgestone accent walls, accent lighting, hard floors, and contemporary furniture. They replaced the conventional ceiling with Ceilume thermoformed panels, which Jared Drown describes as “a bright white coffered ceiling, giving the room more height,” again using Ceilume white Madison and Cambridge panels in the existing ceiling suspension grid. They refinished the grid itself by applying slide-on grid covers to match the new panels. The effect is welcoming and warm, with a kind of livable elegance.
The renovated hallway also benefits from the upgraded three-dimensional ceiling. The added eye-relief eliminates the oppressiveness often seen in long, straight corridors.
The Drowns plan to continue renovating all the rooms and corridors. Their goal is to make the rooms, “something worthy of a luxury 4-star or 5-star resort,” says Jared. “That’s what we’re working towards.”