Portland is loaded with traditional hotel offerings, from five-star downtown digs to handy airport locales. But in the city that likes to “keep it weird,” sometimes only an offbeat overnight will do. Luckily, travelers can take their pick of creative and comfy options, from gorgeous garden cabins to historic rock ‘n’ roll hotels.
McMenamins Historic Hotels
When Mike and Brian McMenamin converted a former Swedish church into a movie theater and pub in 1987, no one suspected they were launching one of the Northwest’s most inimitable empires. At the center of the McMenamins’ constellation of brewpubs, music venues and theater pubs is a stable of historical hotels, each lovingly — and irreverently — restored to commemorate a rich past.
The Kennedy School is in a class of its own. Literally. This repurposed 1915-era elementary school still contains century-old chalkboards and cloakrooms, but don’t be fooled — craft beer and cozy guest rooms replace books and grades in this hotel. Visitors imbibe in Concordia Brewery, chow down in the Courtyard Restaurant, unwind in the saltwater soaking pool and pair pub fare with flicks at the in-house theater.
A rock ‘n’ roll vibe pervades the Crystal Hotel. Set across the street from the celebrated McMenamins Crystal Ballroom music venue, rooms feature musical themes inspired by a century of acts at the Crystal. Guests can grab a bite in the hotel’s Zeus Café before catching a show or heading out on the town, and relax afterward with a drink at Al’s Den and a disco nap in the soaking pool.
White Eagle Saloon
Known as one of the most haunted places in Portland, the White Eagle, a former hub for Polish immigrants, is steeped in stories of spirits, Shanghai Tunnels and rockin’ concerts. The White Eagle shows off its pedigree as one of the city’s oldest live music venues, decorated with painted lyrics and vintage photos of past performances.
Kuza Garden Cabin
Nestled within a gorgeous Japanese garden, the Kuza Garden Cottage re-purposes a remodeled 1922 carriage house. Order up private spa treatments, dinner packages and hot tub and cold plunge tub access. Bonus: Guests are only steps away from an enticing array of popular Northeast eateries, including Texas-style barbeque Podnah’s BBQ.
Hidden away in the eccentric St. Johns neighborhood, home to the iconic St. Johns Bridge, this multi-faceted event space includes two fully furnished, modern apartments available for overnight stays. Adventurous guests at The Colony may also elect to stay in the “Hide Away,” a refurbished vintage travel trailer outfitted with a queen-sized platform bed and built-in breakfast nook for lazy mornings.
With locations in both the Alberta Arts District and on Mississippi Avenue, Shift Rentals offers comfortable rental homes for large and small groups. The Alberta Street duplex contains two luxury apartments, which can be rented either individually or together and can sleep up to 10 and six people respectively. The North Mississippi Avenue location consists of a 1920’s bungalow house in the front and a second eco-house in the back, sleeping up to nine and 11 respectively.
This central area, home to the Oregon Convention Center and attractions, is just minutes from downtown.
Northwest Portland Hotels
A stay in Northwest Portland promises a taste of everything the city has to offer.
Jantzen Beach Hotels
This river district offers easy access to neighborhoods and regional destinations.
Lodging on Mount Hood
For an epic Hood experience, you don’t need crampons and ice axes — or to even leave your room. Here’s a look at some of the mountain’s unique lodging options.
Choose from bunk rooms, private rooms or the Family Room, KEX, an Icelandic-designed, upscale hostel caters to the community-oriented traveler. Offering comfortable places to gather -such as the Gym & Tonic, a subterranean venue featuring local musicians and events; the KEX Library; or Lady of the Mountain, their rooftop “oasis”, you may never want to leave. Though KEX is packed with amenities, its Central Eastside makes it easy to get out and explore.
Trendy hostel, Lolo Pass is the low-key traveler’s dream. With a fully-equipped shared kitchen, laundry room and computer room, in addition to their coffee bar and rooftop bar. Sleek and simple rooms, private or shared, at well-appointed so you can focus on other things, like what you should see and do first.
Northwest Portland Hostel
The Northwest Portland Hostel comprises a quartet of charming historic houses in the heart of Nob Hill. With 24-hour access, walkability to bustling Nob Hill (and the Portland Streetcar) and dorm beds starting at $25, this friendly hostel is ideal for budget-conscious global trekkers.
Built as a hotel for sailors in 1881 in historic Old Town Chinatown, The Society Hotel, is now a boutique hostel that offers private rooms with shared bathrooms, rooms with an en suite bathroom, or a hostel-style bunk room with bathrooms and a shared kitchen -which start at $55.
Slabtown Village in Northwest Portland is comprised of two historic houses and four modern tiny houses. The historic homes, built in 1875 but fully renovated in 2017–’18, both honor famous Portlanders. The Walton House is named for Trail Blazers legend Bill Walton, and includes ’70s Trail Blazers art and nods to Walton’s favorite band, the Grateful Dead, while the Beverly House features tributes to beloved children’s author Beverly Cleary.
In Northeast Portland, Tiny Digs gathers eight distinct tiny houses around a communal “outdoor lounge” with a fire pit, couches and games. The tiny houses all include running water, electric heat and air-conditioning, a cooking area, a flush toilet and a hot shower, and names like Bamboo, Barn, Beach, Cabin, Cottage and Modern reflect their designs.
From cozy garden rooms to historic wine-cellar suites, one of these Portland bed and breakfast spots is sure suit your travel style.
Recess never ends at this stay-and-play hotel and entertainment complex in Northeast Portland.
Vacation rentals offer the chance to experience Portland like a local. For interesting accommodations, consider a stay at one of these exceptional vacation rentals in Portland.
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