Monday, April 7, 2014

A Stay at the Kimpton Hotel in Portland

When we travel as a family, our focus is generally on culture, fun and food.  We try to spend as little as we can on accommodations so that more money can be spent on goodies and treats rather than splurging on a fancy place to sleep.

During the last month, we have been doing a lot of travelling with the kids.  We have actually stayed at 8 different hotels during the last 4 weeks!

We waited a long time to go to Portland, so when we finally got there this past weekend we decided we were going to experience it in two different segments:

1.  Downtown Portland
2.  Portlandia Portland (ha!)

This meant staying downtown for two nights, and in a hostel for 2 nights.

We really struggled to choose our accommodations for those first few nights. We wanted something that wouldn't completely break the bank, but would be comfortable, and maybe a teeny bit fancy.  Crappy hotels are ok every once in a while for frequent travelling but every once in a while it's nice to stay somewhere that's awesome.

In our search, we came across the Kimpton Hotel.  Would you believe that I've done quite a bit of traveling in North America, but I had never heard of a Kimpton Hotel before this? I was tempted to stick to something more familiar like the Marriott, but the reviews for the Kimpton Hotel Vintage Plaza were excellent and intriguing so we decided to take a chance on something new.

The staff were really friendly at the front desk when we made our booking, and they even gave Aias a tiny stuffed bird and really delicious chocolate dipped all-butter shortbread cookies to snack on while they made up our room.

Anyhow, the Kimpton Hotel was freaking rad, and here are some pictures to prove it: 

Quite a lovely bathroom.  Stocked with full-sized products.
We had been in the car for many, many hours to get to Portland, and Aias was THRILLED to take off his little boots. 
A nice little desk
This dog was a bit of a dramatic experience, but I'll talk more about that below.
I really liked this mirror.
You can buy these but you can also wear them during your stay for free. 

Check out this amazing view!
Azi liked it, I swear! (see below)
 Probably the most adorable and wonderful part of all was this:

I like to call this picture "Draw me like your French Girls"

The hotel was really family friendly, and luxurious at the same time.  The lobby was beautiful and it had a treasure box where kids could pick up some goodies.  It was perfect because Aias was able to pick out a few small toys.  

While we didn't take advantage of it, there were beautiful bikes you could use for free as well.  Portland is a great city for biking.

What a lobby!
There was also free wine and beer during happy our in the lobby, which we enjoyed with some food truck take-out we brought back to our room:

The beds were very comfortable.  We chose to opt out of room service, and as a "prize" we were given $5 to the cafe downstairs, where I had the best raspberry mocha I've ever had.

The only complaint I would have about the Kimpton hotel which may impact your family, is that there is a pretty extensive {and expensive) mini-bar full of things your kid is going to want:

Those are not bottles of water, my friend!
Luckily I was quick to spot these, and promptly locked the mini-bar fridge (thumbs up that this was possible) and hid the tray of goodies on the top shelf of the closet, out of 4-year-old sight.

Unfortunately, the little stuffed dog you see pictured above caused some sadness.  We saw it on the bed when we got there and assumed it was something they put for the kids as a treat (as we had been given complimentary treats while we waited for our room).  Well, Aias bonded with the dog and then we realized it wasn't free after all, it was actually $35.  I would be hard pressed to spend $35 on a stuffed dog, and thought he would quickly forget about it, so we left it behind to avoid the charge.  He's still sad about leaving it behind.  We were annoyed for a few days thinking it was a pretty dirty trick of them to market that dog to us by leaving it on the bed and our kid seeing it first, but I guess that's just the biz.

I actually told him I would be writing a letter to the dog, to see how he's doing at the hotel.  Poor kid.

We will definitely be returning to the Kimpton Vintage Plaza Hotel and I would definitely favour a Kimpton hotel on future trips over a boring old Marriott.

But next time I think we will make sure we are there for this:

Aias really did not want to leave this place:

And finally, I don't think this post would be complete without this photo:

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