Elkhart Lake and Madison
For the ultimate lake resort vacation this winter, head straight to Elkhart Lake – a lively lakeside community for leisure and hospitality, located in the heart of Wisconsin’s Kettle Moraine State Forest.
Stay at The Osthoff Resort – This luxurious all-suite historic hotel boasts a four Diamond rating from AAA. The resort is also home to Aspira Spa, L’ecole de la Maison cooking school, Otto’s Restaurant and Lola’s on the Lake, The Osthoff’s signature restaurant where you can also enjoy one of their exquisite garden dinners. Experience a traditional European Christmas Market starting December 1, reminiscent of the centuries-old German Christkindlesmarkt.
While the resort offers options aplenty to dine in, take a stroll to one of these neighborhood gems for bountiful local fare:
- Lake Street Café – Creative bistro style fare with perhaps Elkhart Lake’s largest bar selection, a variety of specialty beers and the state’s third largest wine list.
- Paddock Club – Located in a fully restored historic building, named after an infamous local gambling spot, combines seasonal ingredients with European culinary tradition.
- Back Porch Bistro – Once a speakeasy during the Prohibition, now serves a seasonal menu and delicious desserts, by the fireplace or outdoors for views of the lake.
Enjoy some of these fun-filled activities with family and friends either at the resort or away:
- L’ecole de la Maison Cooking School—Experience the Wisconsin Roots cooking class with The Osthoff’s expert chef guiding you through the ropes.
- Aspira Spa – Meaning infused with spirit, the space is thoughtfully designed, embracing the wisdom of Feng Shui and the elements of wood, fire, earth, metal and water. One of the Midwest’s premier spas, they embrace the healing wisdom of indigenous peoples for a holistic, organic approach.
- Road America – Situated on 640 grassy acres in rolling, wooded hills, this internationally known motorsports complex has one of the country’s longest road racing circuits (four-mile, 14-turn track).
- Quit Qui Oc Golf Club – Partake the pleasurable yet competitive 27 holes spread over 250 acres. Amenities include a learning and practice facility, and pro shop. Also, perfect for your winter snow- shoeing escapade.
Feeling like a road trip? The capital Madison is only a short 2-hour drive away, and a great destination to visit.
Dine at these local favorites:
- Sujeo – Fusing locally sourced ingredients with Asian techniques and flavors to create a menu intended to be sampled and shared.
- Johnny Delmonico’s Steakhouse – Classy, big-city steak house with crisp white linens, gorgeous mahogany bar, and dark wood paneling with Art Deco-inspired metallic trim.
- Gail Ambrosius – Deliciously exotic, handcrafted fine chocolates inspired by the freshest ingredients. The truffles, caramels and seasonal chocolates are divine.
- Bos Meadery – Owner Colleen Bos makes a number of different meads, many available all year round, using local and regionally sourced ingredients whenever possible.
Art and Architecture
- Frank Lloyd Wright’s Taliesin in Spring Green – A testament to the architect’s international claim as the father of modern architecture. Also visit Monona Terrace – his originally proposed design for a dream civic center featuring his signature organic design.
- Olbrich Botanical Gardens – Stroll 16 acres of outdoor gardens, including the only Thai Pavilion in the continental U.S. Also enjoy GLEAM, Art in a New Light, an annual exhibition featuring illuminated art installations.
- House on the Rock – The 14-room house is the original structure of what is now a complex of many buildings with highlights such as the world’s largest indoor carousel with more than 20,000 lights, 182 chandeliers and 269 handcrafted carousel animals, a gigantic manmade sea creature longer than the statue of liberty is tall, the world’s greatest collection of animated, automated music machines, towering pipe organs, and more.
Planning on staying longer? Edgewater in downtown Madison sits right on the shores of beautiful Lake Mendota, the preserved façade of the old hotel combined with entirely new interiors. For a truly local experience, enjoy a bluegrass performance with some local beer and a good old-fashioned Wisconsin fish fry.