Portland = Green Loveliness
We were in Portland for a whirlwind 2 1/2 days. We have heard such wonderful things about Portland over the years, and knew we couldn't pass up the chance to go, even if it was for just a couple of sleeps.
Speaking of sleeps, our fun hotel had a lot to do with our overall happiness with our trip to PDX. We stayed at the very funky Ace Hotel, in the Pearl District. Very cool, but on the right side of not being pretentious about it. Attached to it are 3 yummy food stops, two of which we enjoyed (and were vegan friendly). One was the yummy coffee institution, Stumptown. Fabulous fabulous stuff.
The other things were heard about this fun city were right on - it's progressive, especially with its friendliness to bike-users. It's very vegan-friendly, and the strip mall was a classy place indeed. Also, there is an amazing amount of restaurants and bars that support local and co-op-run places, both for food as well as micro-breweries and wineries. Very cool. Oh, and i do need to mention just how friendly and helpful everyone was. I know i'm generalizing, but wow, what a lovely bunch of folks we met!
Of course, the other fun part of PDX was the shopping. We only got to dabble in a couple of neighbourhoods, but i can honestly say the only chain store i saw was Anthropologie. Everything else shopping was that passed my path were great indie boutiques. A perfect route, if you ask me!
We only got to go to about 5 neighbourhoods or so, but these all left such a great impression on us. Even walking on residential streets was a lovely adventure! I can't tell you a favourite neighbourhood, but the 5 we went to were Pearl District (our hotel and Blossoming Lotus), Lower Burnside (the bike store), Hawthorne (the house of vintage), Mississippi (Flutter), Nob Hill, and whereever Una is. I left being just amazed with the lush greeness in everyone's front yards, loving the quirky and individual styles of everyone, and feeling so fresh and healthy just breathing the air. Good stuff!
Here are some of my food and shopping highlights.
1) Vegan 'strip' mall - Sweet Pea Bakery, Food Fight corner store (also includes Herbivore store and a tattoo parlour).
2) Blossoming Lotus raw food joint - in a yoga studio and all! They had already sold out of the strawberry shortcake, but my meal was wonderful and was topped off with a refreshing glass of lavendar lemonade.
3). Random diner/brunch spots that had vegan options right in with the menu of non-vegan fare. I love when i don't have to request going to a vegan joint to get a good meal! Some are Cup 'n' Saucer, Gravy, Muddy's, for exampleShop
1) Seaplane - one of my 'reasons' for going to Portland, and it didn't disappoint. A great store but on an otherwise non-exciting stretch in 23rd St. Very indie, small scene boutique. The jewellry selection was overwhelming and very exciting, but i was on a budget, so...
2) Una - a gorgeous and expensive boutique, run by a super-friendly woman.
3) Flutter - i felt like i was shopping right out of Amelie or something!
1) Frances May for their great Brooklyn-based necklaces
2) Powell's bookstore - 'nuff said
3) City Bikes Co-op - for their friendly staff
4) House of Vintage - wow! I literally lost an hour there