ABC’s Good Morning America picks the “Most Beautiful Place in America”

August 18, 2011

GLEN ARBOR, MI – After viewer votes were tabulated, roughly 4 million watched last Wednesday when ABC’s top morning show, Good Morning America, crowned the Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore “The Most Beautiful Place in America.”

“To be singled out is an incredible honor, especially when you consider the competition,” says Sleeping Bear Dunes Visitor’s Bureau spokesperson Jamie Jewell.

In the days leading up to the announcement, a shortlist of destinations – among them, Cape Cod, Mass.; Aspen, Colo.; Sedona, Ariz.; Lanikai Beach, Hawaii; and Grand Teton National Park, Wyo. – inspired over 100,000 people to cast votes.

Northport summer resident Mario Batali – an international celebrity chef, frequent guest, and friend of Good Morning America – reportedly gave the region a powerful endorsement. This was followed by a surprise visit from an ABC producer who enjoyed a ranger-led tour of Sleeping Bear plus insider recommendations from the sales and editorial team at TRAVERSE: Northern Michigan Magazine on the region’s best accommodations.

“We were tipped off by our friends at TRAVERSE who told the GMA folks, “If you want to experience the Sleeping Bear Dunes, you’ve got to stay at The Homestead, which is in the heart of the park,” says Jewell.

During her stay at The Inn, The Homestead’s historic hotel located on the shores of Lake Michigan, Jewell says ABC producer Sabrina Parise’s schedule was packed with activities that included hiking a number of trails in the park, a daytrip to South Manitou Island, filming along Sleeping Bear’s Pierce Stocking scenic drive, time at The Homestead sampling local Leelanau Peninsula wines, and surveying the incredible shopping and outdoor activities available to lakeshore visitors in the charming coastal town of Glen Arbor. “In the short time I was able to spend with her, ” says Jewell, “it was evident she enjoyed the area, the region and the people. But in the end the winner of this contest was decided by tens of thousands of viewers who, themselves, have been so touched and inspired by their own memories of this spectacular destination that they took the time to write.”

About The Homestead

The Homestead is a destination resort that is located on the shore of Lake Michigan within the confines of the Sleeping Bear Dunes National Lakeshore, the place the viewers of ABC’s Good Morning America chose as the “Most Beautiful Place in America.” It features a mile of beach on what Dr. Beach and others have ranked as the “Best Beach on the Great Lakes” and offers guests resort hotels, restaurants, shops, golf, tennis, skiing, meeting facilities and wedding venues. Among the awards and accolades it has received were 2010 and 2011 picks as “Best of Weddings” by the knot.

Visit at and

An affiliated company owns and operates the Manitou Passage Golf Club, a course designed by Arnold Palmer. Under its current ownership the course was redesigned by Arnold Palmer and rebuilt by Wadsworth Golf Construction Company. In 2010 and 2011 it was chosen as one of “Golfweek’s Best New Courses.”

Visit at

For more information, please contact:
Bob Kuras at 231.620.8200 or
Jamie Jewell at 231.334.5245 or