Meet the Staff

Team Third Coast Vacations

At Third Coast Vacations, we are a small team of Property Managers and Business Associates along with some great reliable outside sources who are passionate about the area, our homes, and our guests.  Once you are here in Harbor Country with us, we thrive off of meeting you and getting to know you.  Until then, here are some quick introductions to who we are and how we got to this shoreline community along with some of our favorite places and activities.
 
Dan Saunders:  Owner

Hometown:  I was born in Libertyville, IL and spent the first 12 years there.  We moved to Elkhart, IN and this is where I actually got my first experiences with Harbor Country.  We used to come to the lake and Warren Dunes as teenagers - even Redamak’s.  After college at Indiana University, it was Wrigleyville for 15 years before settling here for the past 13 years.

Life Prior to Third Coast:  Past experience running a sales call center for a cable company in Chicago, co-owned a Audio Visual company which supported Pharmaceutical companies and previous owner of another vacation rental company here in Harbor Country.

Why Harbor Country:  My wife and I got married in New Buffalo, found our first investment property here, created a business here and finally made the move to raise our 3 kids and multiple dogs (Rhodesian Ridgebacks) here for the past 12 years.  Close enough to see Chicago from the shore but far enough away to feel the slower pace of life.

Favorite Places to Eat?  Of course everyone will say the Stray Dog and it’s great for the whole family.  Bridges in Michigan city:  sitting on the channel, huge outdoor seating.  Sunny day, fish wrap and cold beer.  Fantastic.  Terrace Room - outstanding food and marina seating.  You can find my wife and I there most Thursday’s for date night.  Hesston’s.  A supper club tucked away just over the border in the country in Indiana.  Prime Rib melts in your mouth.

Favorite Activity:  Kayaking with the kids along the Galien River,

What’s the one hidden gem in the area?  Did you know the Marina Grand has a rooftop deck?Grab some food / drink at Bentwood Tavern, and ask how to get to the roof.  It overlooks the marina, views of the lake and amazing sunsets.  Not many people know of it.
 
Mary Lambert:  A Concierge like no other….

Hometown:  Born and raised in the Boston area, moved to FL and then finally to Chicago.  My husband and I bought a second home in Harbor Country 26 years ago and decided to make it our permanent home 5 years ago.

Life prior to concierge: I was a representative for several high end Tabletop companies calling on major retailers in the midwest.  I eventually added Housewares products to my repertoire and still keep my hand in the business.

Why Harbor Country:  Why not?  It is the most desirable location for a vacation feel.  You have the beaches, the breweries and wineries, the orchards and of course, THE Lake Michigan.

Top 3-4 eats?  Luisa's in Harbert for a fabulous breakfast, Brewster's Italian Cafe for lunch or dinner and of course, the incomparable Stray Dog for incredible lake views from their rooftop. 

Favorite Activity: Going out on the lake for a sunset cruise with great friends

What's the one hidden gem in the area?  The Warren Dunes State Park:  best for hiking, x-country skiing, sledding and communing with nature.
 
Talia Edwards (Escape the Ordinary Cleaning Services)
 
Hometown: New Buffalo, MI

Prior Life: I was born and raised in New Buffalo, MI. I ventured to South Bend to attend St. Mary's College, Notre Dame, where I graduated with a B.A. in Humanistic Studies and History.  After getting married and having children we came back to New Buffalo to raise our family and to give our kids the experience to grow up in Harbor Country!

Why Harbor Country:  Living in Harbor Country is honestly like living a vacation 24/7.  The beaches, the quiet, and the quaintness of small town living are all why we chose to raise our family here.

Top 3-4 eats:  1.  Brewster's Italian Cafe--amazing made fresh everyday italian foods with a relaxing outdoor garden patio. 2.  Rio's Mexican Grill-- A walk-up mexican food restaurant featuring fresh authentic mexican options.  It's seriously one of the best around.  Order the shelless burrito (not on the menu) to get a burrito bowl that I tout as better than Chipotle.  3.  Dooley's Lakehouse Pub-- With classic hoagie sandwiches and an ever changing menu with fresh new options it's sure to please anyone.  Try a hometown favorite sandwich the KYKY.

Favorite Activity:  I absolutely love walking the trails at Warren Dunes State Park.  Incredible views of Lake Michigan you will be wowed.  Make sure though to choose the right path for your comfort level.  Some are long and some are short distances all are worth it!

What's the one hidden gem in the area:  Twisted Frozen Yogurt shop located on Whittaker St in downtown New Buffalo.  With daily frozen yogurt flavorsand endless toppings you will not regret grabbing a cup for yourself and the kids!