Hotel Monaco in Portland, OR

March 8, 2012

Kimpton properties are tops on my list even though I was recently booted out of the inner circle (which apparently requires 45 nights in Kimpton properties during the year!!). As it turns out, I changed too many variables on this trip to Portland. I forsook the Kennedy School for the Monaco and I did not go to Powell’s (horrors!!). I need to get back to basics next time I am in town.

The Monaco put me in room 811 (an automatic upgrade) which was nice. It is supposedly a suite, but the Kimpton types are stretching the truth about that term just like the hotel people in Las Vegas. 811 is really a very long rectangle with a cleverly designed double door that you could, in theory, close.

I am sorry to report that the bathroom, though very spacious, includes a shower with one of those bendy shower curtain rods found in Holiday Inns throughout the land. The quirky paired shower head almost makes up for that major faux pas, but there is not enough water pressure to make it work well. So low marks on the shower front for the Monaco.

So sad to see an obesity friendly bendy shower rod. Alas.

Cool shower head indeed. (But better looking than working.)

The style is all Kimpton and very nice. Plenty of room to work, marred only by big piles of food to buy which appear in drifts throughout the room. Put the food away please…or else we will all be living in a 7-11 soon. Also of rather distressing note is the “do not steal the hangers” kind of hangers. That’s an old pet peeve of mine. I don’t want to steal your dang hangers. Is this a Hilton or something?

Desk area replete with computerized note and a bottle of wine.

Do not steal the hangers hangers. Off putting indeed.

The double doors which purport to define suite-ness.

I guess no more inner circle means computer notes for me maybe?

On the plus side, the staff is ultra friendly and fun. Their suggestions for restaurants and coffee were spot on. Portland is a a great place to visit and Hotel Monaco is right at the heart of the action. Four shower heads for Hotel Monaco.

Superb news on the mixology front. The Teardrop Cocktail Lounge is world class. Excellent mixology: lots of homemade infusions and bitters, skill with the fruit, and a selection of bourbon that would even suit Sammy.

Of particular note, I had a Liberal concocted with TDL’s very own TDL Picon, brewed up as follows:

1 liter everclear
.5 cup gentian
toasted zest of 10 oranges
1 cup bitter orange peel
pinch cinchona (to taste)
5 cups caramelized simple syrup
8 cups distilled water

Steep everclear, orange zest, orange peel + gentian for two weeks. Strain through cheesecloth. Add simple syrup, water and cinchona. Clarify through a Britta filter. Bottle at room temperature. Let cure one month.

I am told that mixology of note can also be found at Kask, the Woodsman, Central, and Clyde Common. We’ll have to see about that. Teardrop is superb enough to go to two nights running.

When I come back I am not skipping Powells and I hope to catch Pink Martini. I think I’ll head back to the Kennedy School as well.

Portland sky from my window.

2 Responses to “Hotel Monaco in Portland, OR”

  1. […] with glass showers? We’ll have to try again and see. All in all the RiverPlace beats the Monaco hands down in my book. Much better quality […]

  2. […] liked the Riverplace way more than the Portland Monaco though. Sadly, for my last stay, the number of hours in room could be counted on less than one […]

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