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This landmark estate owned by the University of Michigan has hosted distinguished guests, such as Dr. Jonas Salk, President Gerald and Betty Ford and the Dalai Lama.
Detroit Free Press

Owners of Mackinac Island’s Grand Hotel are in the process of buying the historic Inglis House in Ann Arbor to raise their six children in.

A 90-year-old mansion in Ann Arbor is on track to become home to a family that has plenty of experience with big, old, fancy buildings: The owners of Mackinac Island’s Grand Hotel.

Dan Musser III, the third-generation owner of the historic Grand Hotel, and his wife, Marlee Brown, are in the process of buying the Inglis House from the University of Michigan with plans to raise their six children in it, according to hotel officials.

The four-story, 12-000-square-foot estate will no doubt have plenty of room for the Musser children, though the family has plans to renovate it first before settling in.

As of late Wednesday, Musser was not available for comment.

U-M officials said a sale is in the works, though they would not comment on who the potential buyer is.

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“The university is in conversation with an interested buyer regarding the sale of the property. Due to the contractual nature of the sale, we have agreed to not discuss any details publicly until after the sale,” U-M spokesperson Kim Broekhuizen wrote in an email to the Free Press.

As reported by MLive, U-M originally listed the entire 9.1-acre estate for $5.9 million, but later dropped the price to $2.9 million, which includes only the house and 4.5 acres of property. The other 4.6 acres will remain university property as part of the Arb.

Neighbors press U-M to not sell historic house

The sale of the historic home has been a source of controversy in Ann Arbor, where residents have previously pleaded with university’s Board of Regents not to sell the home, which was built in 1927 for Detroit industrialist James Inglis.

The board voted in March to sell the property. Neighbors in the hilly, upscale neighborhood feared a buyer could tear it down and divide the property into lots and build several homes.

The Inglis House has been university property since 1951, when it was gifted to U-M by the Inglis family as a possible house for the university president. Instead, however, the house been used for university events and to house dignitaries, including U.S. President Gerald Ford and the Dalai Lama.

U-M President Mark Schlissel has previously said that the university can’t afford to keep the property, citing $550,000-a-year upkeep costs and nearly $5 million in renovations.  University officials have also said that any proceeds from the sale would go into a fund for student scholarships.

Free Press reporter David Jesse contributed.

Tresa Baldas can be reached at tbaldas@freepress.com. Follow her on Twitter @Tbaldas.

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