How to Plan Your Ruttger’s Vacation
An incredible summer vacation awaits you at Ruttger’s Bay Lake Resort!
To ensure you get the most out of your Ruttger’s experience we’ve created The Ultimate Vacation Checklist. Our checklist helps you customize your perfect getaway to create a vacation that you’ll love and always remember.
- Choosing the Best Lodging Accommodations for Your Needs
- Booking the Vacation Package That's Right For You
- Activities to Reserve
- What to Bring and Pack in Your Suitcase
- How to Check-in and Check-out
- Useful Policies to Know
1. Choosing the Best Lodging Accommodations for Your Needs
From a Northwoods lodge experience to luxury cottages and premium villas, you can create the amazing vacation you’ve always been dreaming about.
So whether you’re planning a romantic getaway, traveling solo, or bringing along the whole family, we have the perfect lodging accommodations to meet all your vacation needs.
The Up North Experience
Five Pines Lodge: For the true up north summer vacation experience, book our Five Pines Lodge where our king rooms include a king-size bed, sofa sleeper, and screen porch ideal for watching the sunset, early morning coffees, and late-night board games with the kids.
Be Right in the Action
Main Lodge Rooms: You’ll be sure not to miss out on any activities staying in our Main Lodge Rooms. Conveniently connected to the main lodge, our Lodge rooms provide easy access to our indoor pool, the Bear Pine Bar & Grill, and Ruby’s Dining Room.
North Bay Golf Course Condos: Stay in our scenic North Bay Golf Course Condos complete with a private deck or screened-in porch. Overlooking Alec’s Nine golf course, our North Bay condos make for spectacular views and you’ll have only a short walk to meet your tee time!
Luxury Lake Life
Luxury Lakeside Cottages: You’re on vacation, you should treat yourself! Experience luxury lake living at its finest with our brand new Luxury Lakeside Cottages.
Great for the entire family, our beautiful Lakeside Cottages include 5 bedrooms, 5.5 baths, a large porch, two fireplaces, and a bunk room for all the kids. Plus, you’ll enjoy a private patio with gas grill, full kitchen, screen porch with floor to ceiling lake views and cozy fireplace along with stunning designer custom finishes throughout.
Bay Lake Villas: Our premium Bay Lake Villas make for an unforgettable romantic getaway complete with all the comforts you could want.
Our lower villa features a king bed, jacuzzi tub, fireplace, full kitchen, and patio. The upper level offers two studios both with a wet-bar to wrap up the evenings with a nightcap and deck to cozy up together soaking in the spectacular views over Bay Lake.
Elsie's Cottage: Our other newest rental is Elsie’s Cottage, a beautiful, exclusive upper-level cottage featuring two full bathrooms, two bedrooms, walk-in showers, a full kitchen, living room, dining room, and a private deck.
2. Booking the Vacation Package That's Right for You
We’re excited to offer vacation packages, special promotions, and hot deals designed to let you experience the very best that Ruttger's Bay Lake Resort has to offer!
View all of our Specials & Packages
Whether you love cozy winter getaways sitting by the fire after a day out skiing or you’re all about the sand, sun, and hot summer days, we offer great specials and deals all throughout the year where you could get a free night on us, discounts at our incredible restaurants, and more.
Keep an eye out on our Specials & Packages page and follow us on Facebook and Instagram to make sure you don’t miss any new specials.
3. Activities to Reserve
We’ve got a lot of activities and special events going on during our summer season at Ruttger’s!
To make sure you don’t miss out on any of them, our front desk staff can provide you with an activities schedule and answer any questions on how to sign up or attend events. But, to give you a head start here are our most popular and guest-favorite activities.
Golf on Jack’s 18
Simply a must-play Brainerd Lakes area golf course, Jack’s 18 is one of the most scenic up north courses as golfers play surrounded by thick forests and natural lakes Goose and Bass.
Be sure to reserve your tee time and take advantage of our golf specials and memberships for great discounts!
On the Water
Situated right on beautiful Bay Lake, Ruttger’s offers countless water activities and fun for the whole family.
- Book a kayak or canoe tour
- Reserve your spot for heart-pounding fun water tubing
- Rent a jet-ski or motor boat
- Sign up for a paddleboard lesson.
We also offer guided fishing trips with professional fishing guide Lynn Harker who knows all the good spots. Spend a half-day, 3/4-day, or full-day out fishing to hopefully reel in the big one.
If you’d rather stay relatively dry, you can reserve one of our newly-purchased pontoons for a relaxing lunch out with the family or a romantic sunset cruise.
See our marina rentals and rates.
It’s not summer unless you’ve sat around a campfire eating gooey s’mores at least once. Sign up for our bonfire and s’mores nights for classic summer fun and on select Tuesday’s, musician and Ruttger’s staple Ted Feyder plays guitar, putting on a great show for guests.
Our most popular family activity is without a doubt bingo. Sign up in advance for our bingo games and yes, there is a bit of friendly competition! Also great for the whole family is our creative crafts where the kids can create several masterpieces and creative art projects.
With so much activity, you’ll likely want to capture these great moments and make this vacation one to remember. Schedule time with our professional resort photographer Kim and take home memories that will last a lifetime.
Relax. You’re on vacation after all! Take some time for yourself and book a hot stone or full-body massage, facial, or manicure at The Fine Line Salon & Spa. Without a doubt, the spa will quickly become one of your favorite things to do at Ruttger’s.
Get more self-care by signing up for our yoga class. A combination of slow-flow and power yoga, both beginners and experienced yogis will feel challenged and empowered.
Then, wrap up the day with the best treat of all, a wine tasting or craft spirit tasting. Sign up to challenge your palate and taste-test delicious wines and craft spirits.
4. What to Bring and Pack in Your Suitcase
Whether you’re a minimalist who likes to wear the same vacation outfit everyday like a cartoon character or you’re the family fashionista who needs multiple daily outfits and accessories to match, there’s a few Rutttger’s essentials everyone in your crew will want to pack!
- Sunscreen/Sun Hat/Sunglasses.
- Bug Spray/Citronella candles. There’s a reason mosquitos are the unofficial Minnesota state bird.
- Swimsuit/Beach & Pool Coverup/Goggles
- Sandals for the beach & pools plus a good pair of walking/running shoes for the golf course, courts, and countless Ruttger’s activities!
- Show off your best summer outfits great for out on the pontoon, perusing Ruttger’s shops, stopping for ice cream at Auntie M’s, enjoying our onsite Fine Line spa, or dining out at our three restaurants!
- Active Wear. You’ll be ready for a tennis match, a yoga session, or a brisk stroll along Bay Lake.
- Something cozy. Minnesota summer evenings can get chilly. So whether you’re enjoying cocktails at the Bear Pine Bar or sitting around our bonfire, you might want something to keep warm. Also again, mosquitos.
- Rain Gear. Just in case!
5. How to Check-in and Check-out
We know your check-in and check-out experience should be the least eventful part of your vacation. We’ve designed the check-in and check-out process to be seamless and painless.
Regular Season Check in/out times (May-October): Check-in after 5:00pm and Check-out 11:00am.
Once you book your Ruttger’s vacation online or directly with our reservations team by phone, we’ll have all your reservation information and any additional needs/requests ready to go for when you arrive so you can start enjoying your vacation right away!
Our check-in and check-out times vary throughout the year as we move between offseason and peak season, so be sure to check here or call us directly for details.
6. Useful Policies to Know
One of the most frequently asked questions we get is if guests can bring along their pup. Yes! We know leaving behind your dog is like leaving behind a member of your family. Dogs need a vacation too. That’s why we have four pet-friendly cabins! Be sure to book early as our pet-friendly cabins go quick.
Call our reservations team and they’ll get you all set up so you and your furry family members will be ready for a great vacation together.
We understand things happen and you unfortunately might need to cancel and reschedule your vacation. Since you’re already having to postpone your Ruttger’s fun, to avoid any additional hassle or stress we do offer deposit refunds with a small cancellation fee.
Offseason reservations typically require a 72-hour notice before you lose your deposit and are charged for your entire stay. During peak season, you’ll need to give a 14-day notice otherwise you’ll be charged for your stay and lose your deposit.
View all of our Resort Policies & FAQs
Congratulations! You are now officially prepared for your soon-to-be favorite vacation! We can’t wait to see you here at Ruttger’s!