Sugar Loaf Resort - Cleveland Township MI

Address: Sugar Loaf Mountain Rd
City: Cleveland Township
State: MI
Zip:
County: Leelanau
Number of visits to this page: 234
Disclaimer:

Please note that location entries may feature older photos or post card views that may not represent the current appearance or features of the attraction. This site is intended to be a historical as well as current record of various attractions but it is not always possible to have up-to-date information due to the vast number of locations featured here. We ask you consult the propietor for current information.

General Information:

The first iteration of Sugar Loaf was opened in December of 1946 by the Sugar Loaf Ski Club. You could buy a membership for $5 per season. Lift tickets were $1.50 for ½ day, and $2.50 for a full day. Governor Sigler dedicated the facility in January of 1947. Hans (Peppi) Teichner, a famous German skier, was the designer, trainer and supervisor of the slopes.

A ski jump was set up and tested by professionals in 1948. In 1949, the first Peppi Teichner open competition was held at the resort. By the 1960’s, expansion was occurring at the resort, the majority of which was opened in 1964. That was the time James Ganter of Indianapolis took over. There were 10 ski runs with a 500 foot vertical drop. 2 chair lifts were installed and j-bars for the other hills. Snow-making equipment was added as well. An 18,000 sq. ft lodge was constructed with full equipment rental. Rec rooms, lounges, a cafeteria, and an enclosed sun deck were some of the other amenities available.

By 1965, “Teen Dances” were added to the agenda with live performances. There was Thursday night buffet with a smorgasbord of available food items. Much of this was an effort to maintain a year-round business. Anderson’s Country Store was built to sell ski equipment and the like. Developers were adding housing around the Sugar Loaf site during this time as well. At some point even an air strip was added. A golf course was constructed as well. A sporting goods outlet, Wilhelm’s, built a store on the grounds of Sugar Loaf in the early 1970’s.

I think the trouble began in the 70’s and 80’s when there were all kinds of other resorts (big and small) being built around the state. Some of them were quite nice and were destination spots like Sugar Loaf while others offered a day of basic skiing in local communities. The Metro Detroit Area had several and still does. Many of those started in the 60’s and 70’s. The advent of snow machines probably hurt Sugar Loaf as areas in lower Michigan could compete with their fake snow.

Sugar Loaf got more elaborate, but with that comes more costs and overhead. Meanwhile they had increased competition. By the 1980’s, some of the original structures were probably needing maintenance and remodeling. More costs. In the 1980’s Bavarian Village opened an outlet at the resort. Most Michiganders would be familiar with that chain.

In 1983, the resort changed hands when Detroit-area investors John Sills and James Schenden took over. By this time the “Ski Report” in the newspapers listed dozens of ski facilities around the state. From what I read, the 1980’s were pretty good for Sugar Loaf. By the 1990’s, financial difficulties began to take a toll. By the late 1990s, things were very bleak and the resort was forced to declare bankruptcy. It was put for sale in 1999 for $8.5 million.

There have been several owners since that time who had ideas about re-developing the property but as of 2022, none of it has come to fruition. I would imagine the cost of re-creating what it was would be enormous and the return on the investment wouldn’t be there. One look at the photos tells you most of the place is too far gone to renovate. So, it sits in ruins.

Info Updates:
No Updates Found
 Photos:60
Sugar Loaf Resort - From Web Listing
From Web Listing
Sugar Loaf Resort - From Web Listing
From Web Listing
Sugar Loaf Resort - From Web Listing
From Web Listing
Sugar Loaf Resort - From Web Listing
From Web Listing
Sugar Loaf Resort - From Web Listing
From Web Listing
Sugar Loaf Resort - From Web Listing
From Web Listing
Sugar Loaf Resort - From Web Listing
From Web Listing
Sugar Loaf Resort - From Web Listing
From Web Listing
Sugar Loaf Resort - From Web Listing
From Web Listing
Sugar Loaf Resort - From Web Listing
From Web Listing
Sugar Loaf Resort - From Web Listing
From Web Listing
Sugar Loaf Resort - From Web Listing
From Web Listing
Sugar Loaf Resort - From Web Listing
From Web Listing
Sugar Loaf Resort - From Web Listing
From Web Listing
Sugar Loaf Resort - From Web Listing
From Web Listing
Sugar Loaf Resort - From Web Listing
From Web Listing
Sugar Loaf Resort - From Web Listing
From Web Listing
Sugar Loaf Resort - From Web Listing
From Web Listing
Sugar Loaf Resort - From Web Listing
From Web Listing
Sugar Loaf Resort - From Web Listing
From Web Listing
Sugar Loaf Resort - Dec 30 1946 Opening
Dec 30 1946 Opening
Sugar Loaf Resort - Feb 1948 Ski Jump Tested
Feb 1948 Ski Jump Tested
Sugar Loaf Resort - Jan 1947 Governor Dedicating
Jan 1947 Governor Dedicating
Sugar Loaf Resort - Feb 1948 Ski Jump
Feb 1948 Ski Jump
Sugar Loaf Resort - Feb 1948 Ski Jump Photo
Feb 1948 Ski Jump Photo
Sugar Loaf Resort - Dec 1964 Opening Day For New Resort
Dec 1964 Opening Day For New Resort
Sugar Loaf Resort - Jan 15 Ad
Jan 15 Ad
Sugar Loaf Resort - Jan 1965 Article
Jan 1965 Article
Sugar Loaf Resort - Mar 1959 Peppi Teichner Open
Mar 1959 Peppi Teichner Open
Sugar Loaf Resort - 1965 Teen Dance
1965 Teen Dance
Sugar Loaf Resort - Dec 1964 Opening
Dec 1964 Opening
Sugar Loaf Resort - Oct 1964 Major Expansion
Oct 1964 Major Expansion
Sugar Loaf Resort - Jun 1965 Thurs Night Buffet
Jun 1965 Thurs Night Buffet
Sugar Loaf Resort - Jul 1965 July 4Th
Jul 1965 July 4Th
Sugar Loaf Resort - Jul 1965 Sky Rides
Jul 1965 Sky Rides
Sugar Loaf Resort - Oct 14 1964 Carl Baber Manager
Oct 14 1964 Carl Baber Manager
Sugar Loaf Resort - Nov 2016 Article On Possible Re-Development
Nov 2016 Article On Possible Re-Development
Sugar Loaf Resort - Oct 1965 Sunday Breakfast
Oct 1965 Sunday Breakfast
Sugar Loaf Resort - Nov 1966 Andersons
Nov 1966 Andersons
Sugar Loaf Resort - 1967 Teen Club
1967 Teen Club
Sugar Loaf Resort - Jun 1967 Sugar Bar
Jun 1967 Sugar Bar
Sugar Loaf Resort - Feb 25 1969 Ad
Feb 25 1969 Ad
Sugar Loaf Resort - Sep 1971 Wilhelms
Sep 1971 Wilhelms
Sugar Loaf Resort - Nov 1982 Fire Destroys Condos
Nov 1982 Fire Destroys Condos
Sugar Loaf Resort - Oct 1980 Bavarian Village
Oct 1980 Bavarian Village
Sugar Loaf Resort - Fri Dec 22 1989 Article
Fri Dec 22 1989 Article
Sugar Loaf Resort - Aug 1999 For Sale
Aug 1999 For Sale
Sugar Loaf Resort - Oct 12 1999 Bankruptcy
Oct 12 1999 Bankruptcy
Sugar Loaf Resort - Jan 2000 Auction
Jan 2000 Auction
Sugar Loaf Resort - Nov 2016 New Owner
Nov 2016 New Owner
Sugar Loaf Resort - Jul 2002 Auction On Hold
Jul 2002 Auction On Hold
Sugar Loaf Resort - Nov 2016 Historical Photo
Nov 2016 Historical Photo
Sugar Loaf Resort - Nov 2016 New Owner
Nov 2016 New Owner
Sugar Loaf Resort - Nov 2016 New Owner
Nov 2016 New Owner
Sugar Loaf Resort - Nov 2017 Trespassers
Nov 2017 Trespassers
Sugar Loaf Resort - Dec 2020 Sold Again
Dec 2020 Sold Again
Sugar Loaf Resort - Old Photo From 2000
Old Photo From 2000
Sugar Loaf Resort - Dec 2020 Sold
Dec 2020 Sold
Sugar Loaf Resort - 1957 Aerial
1957 Aerial
Sugar Loaf Resort - Aerial Photo
Aerial Photo
WaterWinterWonderland.com © 2023 Over 62,836,713 Served