Private Island in Northern Michigan Comes With Intriguing Lore

It might not be in a tropical locale, but this delightful private island is still a dreamy escape in its own right.

Closer to the Canadian border than it is to Detroit, this island in Northern Michigan isn’t exactly daiquiris and toes in the sand. But for a buyer on the hunt for seclusion and natural beauty, this place checks all the boxes.

The forested, 4-acre island near Gaylord, MI, is on the market for $2,500,000. The two-lot property offers more than 2,500 square feet spread across two structures—a four-bedroom main cabin and a large, studio guest cabin with a full bath.

This isolated isle also comes with a bit of unique history.

“Legend has it that the physicist J. Robert Oppenheimer conducted a secret meeting on the island regarding the Manhattan Project,” says listing agent Bill Blaker.

And with a solid offer, a new owner can begin writing another chapter at the seemingly storied cabin.

Despite the many modern comforts of the current setup—including custom kitchen and bath finishes—the origins of this unique home were decidedly more modest.

“We are told that the log home was crafted in the 1930s on an island without electricity,” Blaker says. “The stone siding was mined in a neighboring Northern Michigan town.”

Located in the middle of Big Lake, the home maintains much of its original rugged feel nearly a century later. Built using local Onaway stone, the rustic residence offers vaulted ceilings and a large stone fireplace.

Private island Michigan
4423 Island View Drive
Private island Michigan
Main cabin and guest cabin(

Private island Michigan
Main cabin patio(

Private island Michigan
Lakeside dock(

Private island Michigan
Main bedroom(

Private island Michigan

Private island Michigan

The surrounding natural beauty of the property is almost more alluring than the cabin’s interior, with over 2 acres of forested woodlands and a walking path that offers 1,839 feet of sandy lake frontage.

And the owners have certainly preserved the home’s welcoming feel.

“The bathroom tub and shower is beautifully covered with stone, and the kitchen cabinets have custom birch-bark veneer,” says Blaker. “The most recent updates have been the many hostas and hydrangeas planted throughout the property.”

The home is conveniently located just minutes from I-75, which offers access to numerous trail systems, sparkling inland lakes, and ample golf and skiing options. Each of the island’s two lots has its own dock, which offer quick and easy lake access.

“Northern Michigan is known for its four beautiful seasons and is a getaway destination for the Midwest and beyond,” says Blakers. “Summers offer perfect weather to enjoy the outdoors, and daylight lasts long into the evenings.”

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