The Original All-Inclusive Destination

The ultimate leisure destination for generations of visitors, Saugatuck/Douglas has been celebrating unconventional people and ideas for more than a century. It’s what has shaped the character of our towns—making this a place where everyone is welcome and anything can happen.

An aerial view showing downtown Saugatuck and the Kalamazoo River.

A Welcoming History

Saugatuck/Douglas has a long-standing history of opening our arms to people and ideas considered different from the mainstream. From nonconforming art students in the 1900s to pioneering women in the 1920s and same-sex couples in the 1950s, Saugatuck/Douglas has long been a haven for people from all walks of life. Embracing wave after wave of untraditional individuals and unconventional thinking, this vibrant community has become a place where everyone truly belongs.

A historic image of 1950s cars and people on a beach.

Our creative roots go back over 100 years and have established us as The Art Coast of Michigan

A woman browsing art at Water Street Gallery in Douglas.

A Haven For Creativity

In 1905, art students from The Art Institute of Chicago rebelled against traditional in-studio painting practices and began teaching plein air painting on the east bank of the Kalamazoo River. Today, the resulting Ox-Bow School of the Arts continues to inspire artists with its year-round programs. Here, you’ll also find dozens of working painters, sculptors, ceramicists, and other artists who call this area home.

A black and white photo of two artists drawing a portrait of a woman outside.
A black and white photo of an artist painting on the river.

Recognized as One of America’s Best LGBTQ+ Destinations by Thrillist

A group of people playing in a pool at The Dunes Resort. Some people are relaxing on the poolside while a man rides a float.

Pioneers of Inclusivity

In the 1950s, Saugatuck/Douglas gained recognition as a welcoming getaway destination for same-sex couples. Despite the need for discretion among some visitors, many gay men and women lived openly here with their partners. Home to West Michigan’s first gay bar during the 60s, the Blue Tempo, we are now proud to host The Dunes Resort, one of the largest LGBTQ resorts in the country.

A black and white photo of a man sitting back in a chair on a beach.
A historic image of men on a beach.