Just returned from an enjoyable 3 night stay at the Courtyard Portland City Center in downtown Portland, OR. We arrived at 12:30 PM Friday (took light rail from the airport and walked 6 blocks to the Courtyard from the rail stop) and I was told that my room on the 16th (top) floor was not ready, but there was another one on the 16th floor that was ready. When we stepped off the elevator at the 16th floor there was coffee in the elevator lobby. When we left our room after unpacking, the coffee was gone and replaced with a basket of fresh apples. It did not appear that this was being done at any of the other floors. In the morning there was coffee in the lobby. I was going to ask about the coffee when I was checking out, but forgot to. Attached to the Courtyard was a bar/restaurant that operated from 6:30 AM to 4 AM. (Apparently, downtown Portland has quite a night life) Over the weekend there wasn't any coffee on the 16th floor, but it was in the lobby. This morning there was again coffee along with granola bars and fresh apples. We also had a USA Today at our door. The bar restaurant was not part of the Courtyard, but we were able to charge back to our room.
This was my first trip to Portland and I was amazed at how much it reminded me of Boston, MA. A very compact and vibrant city center with a large university in the heart of the city, outstanding public transportation (light rail, street cars and buses) an abundance of restaurants, a large river running through the town and a great walking town. Local history claims that the town was named Portland, instead of Boston, based on a coin toss. In addition to all the restaurants, they have dozens of food trailers gathered together in downtown parking lots. We had some great Korean BBQ tacos from one food trailer. We also tried the maple bar with bacon strips from Vodoo donuts and the glazed donut with bacon crumbles from Blue Star donuts, all within walking distance of the Courtyard. (Really, I split things like this with my wife and we keep on walking.) For all you bibliophiles, there is the original Powell's Books, (a full city block and 4 stories of books, with an annex across the street for technical books) again, within walking distance of the Courtyard. For the lovers of the hops, there is no shortage of local brewers to sample. If you prefer the fermented grape, Oregon also has a very active wine industry.
If you are looking for an interesting town on the west coast and have had your fill of San Francisco and Seattle, you should check out Portland, OR. June is when they have their Rose Festival and the weather is great. It was definitely coat weather this last week end, but, still a great time.