PORTLAND, OREGON – Home to the unparalleled natural beauty of The Seven Wonders of Oregon, this West Coast state knows just how to embrace its unique landscape and local charm year-round. From authentic boutique hotels to off-the-beaten path craft breweries and unexpected hidden gems, there’s no better time to discover the magic of a place that is resoundingly unapologetic about living life to the beat of its own drum.
HOTELS AND RESORTS
The Society Hotel: Recently opened in Old Town Chinatown, The Society Hotel brings affordable accommodation to downtown in an experience brimming with character, history and local lore. The 36-room boutique hotel restores an 1881 building to its original purpose as a lodging house, and comfortable bunk rooms, private rooms and suites are geared to a range of budgets. A street-level café brings local colour to the fore, while city views from the rooftop terrace are breathtaking day and night.
Hi-Lo Hotel: The latest in Marriott’s Autograph Collection, which is distinguished by each property’s striking individuality. The 120-room boutique hotel occupies the historic Oregon Pioneer Building, retaining Huber’s Café (the city’s oldest restaurant, on the National Register of Historic Places) and introducing a new eatery. Modern organic furnishings and locally handcrafted amenities are featured throughout.
Hampton Inn & Suites Hood River: Opened in September 2016, this is Hood River’s first new hotel since 1997. Located at Nichols Basin, a cove on the Columbia River, the four-story hotel is within easy walking distance of both downtown Hood River and the vibrant waterfront area. It features 88 rooms, including river-view suites. Amenities include a pool and fitness center, plus complimentary breakfast.
The Suttle Lodge & Boathouse: A year-round rustic resort on the shore of Suttle Lake in the Deschutes National Forest near Sisters, Oregon. The 15.5-acre property is comprised of a large timber lodge with guest rooms and cocktail bar, fully equipped lakeside cabins, rustic camping cabins, and The Boathouse with a restaurant, small grocery store, souvenir shop, watercraft rental shop and beer garden. Versions of this resort have been in continuous operation since the 1930s. Its newest incarnation (re-opened in August 2016) has been reimagined by hospitality project The Mighty Union from the folks behind the Ace Hotel Portland. The style is a subversive embrace of the Pacific Northwest campground — a relaxed Cascadian forest lodge as imagined by a gently debauched scout troop. The focus is on public social spaces: convivial gathering places grounded in the bounty of Oregon food and drink and geared towards the activities and beauty of a forest lake.
Pine Street Market: Portland’s first food hall has opened up in the historic Carriage and Baggage building, featuring 9 of Portland’s best chefs and food and beverage purveyors. The 10,000 square feet of renovated space includes communal seating allowing patrons to enjoy fare from multiple establishments in one visit.
Public Coast Brewing Co: A lifelong dream of founder Ryan Snyder, the brewery features pub fare with a coastal twist. Enjoy craft brews alongside the McCall burger (a salute to Oregon’s Governor in 1967 who made sure that all 363 miles of the state’s majestic coastline were free and open to the public), fish ‘n’ chips, clam chowder and homemade brats. Taste from limited edition kegs on “Fermented Fridays,” and keep younger visitors happy with homemade root beer brewed on site.
Clearwater Restaurant: A brand new seafood restaurant located right on the water in Newport that is already receiving rave reviews. The owners bring 40 years combined experience as head chefs in some of California’s top 4- and 5-star restaurants. Step out onto the pier to be serenaded by the local sea lion population as they lounge on floating docks in the harbour.
The Paddled Pub: Climate City Brewing in Grants Pass is redefining rafting. Float the Rogue River – rapids included – while enjoying a cold one around a pub-style bar on a custom-built raft. Meet at the brewery to purchase craft beers for an afternoon or sunset journey, then kick back and soak up the scenery (and a little splashing) on the seven-mile excursion navigated by a skilled oarsman. No paddling necessary!
Caravan Coffee: Located in Newberg, Caravan Coffee is a local, quality coffee roaster that sources ethically grown beans from all over the world. You can visit the tasting room, learn about the roasting process and take a “coffee cupping” class.
Echo Ridge Cellars: Located in Echo, Oregon, Echo Ridge Cellars opened its tasting room in April and offers live music on Saturday nights. It’s a beautiful building and a quick stop off the highway on the way to Pendleton.
BIKETOWN: Portland has teamed up with homegrown powerhouse Nike to expand their fledgling bike share program. Bikes designed in eye-popping orange will be available 24/7 from bike racks all over the city. It’s poised to be “the most accessible, flexible and sustainable bike share system in the world.”
Pendleton Bronze Trail: Home to the 100-year-old Pendleton Round-Up, this beautiful city has a new way to discover the region’s Wild West history. An interactive map and tour optimized for mobile and tablet devices will take you on a tour of 20 (soon to be 22) bronze statues around town, complete with audio and written commentary as well as directions. Legendary tribal figures, lawmen, cowboys, cowgirls, community leaders, educators, artists and more provide windows into the region’s rich western heritage
Punchbowl Falls Nature Park: The Columbia River Gorge has welcomed this new park to its arsenal of jaw-dropping scenic locales. Located at the base of Mt. Hood in Hood River County and currently accessed by a logging road, the more than 100-acre wilderness area offers plentiful hiking and fishing – try catching a glimpse of salmon, steelhead and trout in the pristine basin. Established trails and facilities are in the works.
Christmas in the Garden (Silverton, November 25 – January 1, 2017): Get in the festive spirit with this award-winning event featuring a traditional artisan Christmas market, snowless tubing, ice skating, and a magical light “forest” in the Oregon Garden. This historic small town is a wonderful example of Oregon’s local charm.
Oregon Truffle Festival (throughout Oregon, January 2017): Indulge in 10 days of truffle tasting, dog-led truffle hunting, mouthwatering seminars, cooking demos and hands-on fun at this highly anticipated annual festival. The festival brings together James Beard winning chefs, experts and truffle lovers to celebrate this unique, diverse ingredient. You can even enjoy truffle-infused cocktails and beers!
Chocolate Fest (Portland, January 20-22, 2017): Visitors can learn about the tropical cacao tree and how chocolate is made from bean to bar while sampling chocolate from local producers. In line with Portland’s eco-friendly ethos, Chocolate Fest is a fundraiser for the World Forestry Center intended to educate people about the world’s forests, trees and environmental sustainability. It sees about 10,000 visitors a year.
Portland Jazz Festival (February 16-26, 2017): The Portland Jazz Festival is recognized as one of the most important jazz festivals in the country and one of the biggest events of the year for Oregon. The festival features internationally recognized and local artists performing a wide range of jazz styles at a variety of venues across Portland.
Newport Seafood & Wine Festival (February 23-26, 2017): It wouldn’t be winter on the coast without this festival. Showcasing over 150 premier Northwest wines, culinary professionals and regional artisans, the Newport Seafood & Wine Festival draws nearly 25,000 visitors each year.
Rare total solar eclipse set to cross Oregon in 2017 (August 21, 2017): This total solar eclipse will be the first in the contiguous United States since 1979. It will make its way across the state on August 21, 2017. The Oregon Museum of Science and Industry will host a viewing event at the Oregon State Fairgrounds in Salem on the morning of the eclipse.
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