Named in honor of early French explorer Pierre François Xavier de Charlevoix, the city fronts Lake Michigan, Round Lake, and Lake Charlevoix. A navigable channel connects Lake Michigan to Round Lake, which serves as an inland harbor for pleasure boats. After the Pine River was dredged in 1876 to form the channel, Charlevoix's economy developed around the landlocked port. Lumber sawed at mills on the shore of Lake Charlevoix and pig iron, fish, and cordwood for fueling lake steamers were shipped from docks at Charlevoix. The resort industry flowered in the 1870s as resort associations were established on terraces above the lake. Their picturesque cottages, clubhouses, and boathouses remain. Today condominiums and cottages occupy choice frontage on Lake Michigan and line Round Lake. In 2009 the American Planning Association selected lakefront East Park (2007–2008, Richard Hitz Consulting and Design, landscape architect, and Mark Buday, architect), a greenbelt next to the Round Lake Yacht Basin, a “Great Public Space.” Its limestone Odmark Performing Pavilion and the Harbormaster Building were inspired by the work of Earl A. Young (see CX3).
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