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Trip Report Short Visit to Portland OR

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We had a short (one night) visit to Portland over the weekend. We usually stay with friends, but this time we stayed at the RiverPlace hotel on the Willamette River as our friends were out of town, plus we were there for such a short time.

The RiverPlace was a very nice place to stay. The people who worked there were all very friendly and accommodating. We had registered on the internet and had the chance to put in for an upgrade if one became available. We arrived early (around 1 pm) and were upgraded, for $10, to a "junior suite" with a nice view to the north and west. The north view included the river and Mt. St. Helens in the distance. At night we could see the lovely colored lights on the bridges. The hotel was very tastefully decorated - aimed for a "calm" feeling in the midst of the city.

In the morning, I got to do complimentary yoga on their courtyard overlooking the river (offered on Sat and Sun morning). That was a treat! The location is great. We walked across the Hawthorne Bridge past the OMSI (science museum) to the boat that we were cruising on (Friends had rented it for an anniversary celebration). Lots of people were bicycling and walking around the waterfront. If we'd had time, we could have walked through the watefront park to the Saturday market. The area around the hotel includes a marina and some restaurants and a few shops, plus the waterfront park. The downtown is a little ways off, but one could walk it or take a bus. We were really pleased with our choice -wish we'd had more time.

I was reminded of how great Portland was on our visit - so well planned with lovely parks, water features. I was also reminded, talking to our friends, of why we moved away, which was for DH's work. Oregon has a major problem with unemployment. It has always been a very poor state and the recession has hit very hard. Seattle is also nice (where we live), but I wish Seattle had more public parks along the waterfront. Years ago, Portland actually moved a freeway along the west bank of the Willamette River to make room for public space. Portland is a very liveable, lovely city. I miss it!

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