I've been meaning to post some photos of a great hotel we stayed in last weekend in Portland, Oregon. The Ace Hotel is a small chain that started in Seattle about a decade ago. They have hotels in NYC and Palm Springs now, too.
I don't normally go around taking photos of hotel lobbies and bathrooms. This place is different, though. There was inspiration around every corner.
The Ace does a fabulous job repurposing old stuff, like using vintage locker baskets to hold towels and wallpapering its guest rooms with the pages from antique books. (My friend Celeste here in Spokane did something similar in the foyer of her restaurant recently and gave me the following instructions:
Step 1--apply wallpaper paste to wall. Step 2--apply book pages to paste and allow to dry. Step 3--cover with Mod Podge.)
The Ace is green on so many levels. Besides rescuing unwanted crap from the landfills, they offer bicycle rentals and post gentle reminders about conserving energy, like this kitschy stitchery that hangs in the elevator:
Besides, the place is just plain fun. I felt like I was living in my old Portland apartment again, complete with claw-foot tub, ever-so-slightly musty smell in the hallways and a fantastic coffee shop attached. Two other features not to miss: an amazing New York-style deli up the block (I'm still dreaming about the lox I ate there) and an old-school photo booth in the hotel lobby.
I wrote more about the Ace on my other blog if you want more details, but here is a visual of what now is the only place I'll stay when I visit Portland. Is my review too glowing? It might also have to do with the fact that the two junior members of our family were 300 miles away at their Nana and Papa's house. Sort of clouds my judgment. (No, actually, it sort of cleared away the fog that's been hovering over my brain for the last four years.)
Bicycle for rent in the lobby:
Pages of a vintage book used as wallpaper behind the bed, with a deer and bird painting on top:
This is the back of a plastic molded chair:
Every detail was thought out, down to the dry-cleaning sack and order slip:
Wool blankets (which are used on the guest-room beds) and bathrobes for sale in the lobby:
Check-in desk. They use real keys, by the way.
Oops. Lobby. I almost wrote "Bobby." I have no idea whether that dude on the left (who is looking at me like, Quit taking pictures, freaky lady!!) is named Bobby or not: