Portland Travel Guide

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Toast a Fond Farewell to Portland's Iconic Airport Carpet with Its Own Beer

February 18, 2015 at 2:54 PM | by | Comments (0)

The saga of the "PDX carpet" continues this week, with good news and bad news for the many worldwide fans of the flooring at Portland, Oregon's airport. The beloved carpet—a design based on the airport's runways and Pacific Northwest heritage—was originally installed in the 1980s and, this week, is being torn out and replaced.

Since our last update only little more than a month ago, the number of Instagrams tagged with #PDXcarpet has grown from 26,000 to 35,000.

The bad news is that the carpet is still saying sayonara, and the removal hit full speed at the end of January. The good news is the Portland Port Authority has finally figured out a way to get squares of the classic design to the adoring public, via a lottery system. KOIN has all the details, including how to subscribe to email updates on every step of the carpet's removal and repurposing process. Intense!

That's not all. There's also a PDX carpet beer!

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If You Can't Fly to Portland to Be Spanked, Maybe a 'Grey' Pillow Will Help

February 9, 2015 at 5:02 PM | by | Comments (0)

The other week we learned about armpit travel, now there's arm pillow travel.

Well, tie us up and spank us rosy. With the film adaptation of “Fifty Shades of Grey” opening in theaters this weekend, spurring plenty of lustful fantasies over Jamie Dornan’s hot bod, one hotel is taking advantage of the mommy porn novel’s rabid following.

Raise your riding crop and salute the clever marketing minds at The Heathman Hotel in Portland, Oregon, the property that is described in luscious detail as a sexy rendezvous spot throughout the novel. The Heathman is now hawking a Shades of Grey Square Throw Pillow for $129 + $40 shipping: a grey (obvs), silky, embroidered number that is sort of like a regular pillow — except it talks dirty in your ear when you lay down on it. (Just kidding, although it really should for the amount that it costs.)

But we just love/hate how the hotel is using the pillow as an out for not actually making a trip to Portland.“Can’t make it quite yet to visit us, but still want a piece of the Heathman?” poses the hotel’s website, to which sexually frustrated women everywhere nod in assent.

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Where the 'Wild' Boots Are (Hint: In Portland)

February 2, 2015 at 5:31 PM | by | Comment (1)

Unless you’ve been living under a rock the past few years, you’ve probably heard of, read or seen the film adaptation of Cheryl Strayed’s bestselling memoir, Wild.

If you haven’t, here’s the quick and skinny: The book chronicles Strayed’s 1,100 mile solo hiking trip along the Pacific Crest Trail as she tried to make peace with drug abuse, divorce and her mother’s death. In other words, a whole lot of big life sh*t.

Perhaps the most striking symbol of Strayed’s three-month journey is a pair of Danner boots and its distinct red laces that she wore. They grace the cover of the book and are chucked off a cliff by an f-bomb dropping Reese Witherspoon (who portrays Strayed) in the opening scene of the film.

On Friday, we got to swing by Danner’s factory in Portland, Oregon to get a behind-the-scenes look at the making of the ‘Wild’ boot. (Portland is also Strayed’s hometown.) The full-grain leather beauties have been called “the greatest backpacking boot of all time.”

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People are Freaking Out Over the Final Departure of Portland's Airport Carpet

January 9, 2015 at 11:54 AM | by | Comments (0)

Fun fact: There are over 26,000 Instagams tagged #PDXcarpet.

Not-so-fun fact: The cult-favorite carpet inspiring such photo documentation is making its final departure this month, as Portland International Airport in Oregon lays down a fresh rug with an updated design.

The APEX blog discovered that the new look, due to be installed mid-January, doesn't stray far from the original scheme of the beloved original design. That original, installed in the 1980s, was an "abstract representation of the airport’s runways and aircraft"; the newer design expands upon this, to evoke “organic and man-made shapes found within the surrounding areas of PDX, including airplane wings, runways, leaves, trails, and waterways.”

So what will happen to the 13 acres of graphic funkiness that is the famous PDX carpet? The NY Times hints that actual squares of the rug will be given away:

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'Portlandia' is Back! Here's The Jaunted Guide to America's Favorite Weird City

January 8, 2015 at 3:18 PM | by | Comments (0)

After a few years of taking the hits on their city's strange culture, and laughing about it too, the actual people who inhabit Portland, Oregon may be totally done with the "Portlandia" sketch show starring Fred Armisen and Carrie Brown (and occasionally, Kyle Maclachlan.)

Still, there's no denying that even skits that have nothing to do with Portland (like the Battlestar Galactica marathon) had us wanting to go to there and hang out with some like-minded peeps.

So whether you visit Portland to locate the "Feminist Bookstore", or take an Instagram-worthy shot of the "Keep Portland Weird" sign, or eat your way through the Food Trucks, here are some ideas for your visit.

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Portland Parks Food Trucks Right at the Airport for an Improved Food Court

October 15, 2014 at 9:13 AM | by | Comments (0)

We’re not going to say that we called it, but we’re hardly surprised over the latest addition to the dining options over at Portland International Airport. In a city known for its food trucks and on-the-go eats it only makes sense to bring some of these offerings to the airport, so that’s exactly what airport officials are doing.

Just last week spots like Koi Fusion and Pok Pok opened up food carts at the airport, and it sounds like a few more options are headed into the terminals and concourses before the end of the year. Instead of the usual french fries and a burger, you'll be able to score options like spicy tofu and kalbi short rib tacos along with a side of kimchi—at least that’s just some of what Koi Fusion has to offer.

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What Everyone's Buying in Maine: Do-Not-Disturb Lobsters

August 14, 2014 at 3:31 PM | by | Comments (0)

Welcome to "What Everyone's Buying," a new series on souvenirs, wherein we investigate what tourist trinkets are the hottest selling in hotspots around the world.

Some hotels have a simple "Do Not Disturb" sign. But the Inn By the Sea in Crescent Beach, Maine, has cute red metal lobsters that you can hang on your door when you want to be left alone.

Good news if you're not staying at the hotel, though: these little guys are for sale in the lobby and spa, so if you're stopping in for a meal at the Sea Glass Restaurant, coming in for a massage, or just making a pit stop en route to the Portland Head Light, you can pick up one of these little guys on the way.

It's the perfect gift for the WASPy relative who already has lobster-print clothes, towels, and bed linens, non? We're going to name ours Homer, in honor of Maine artist Winslow.

[Photo: Lilit M.]

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Get Outside for the Last Gasps of Summer in Maine

August 13, 2014 at 1:40 PM | by | Comments (0)

Maine may have a reputation for being cold most of the year, but The Pine Tree State is freakin' beautiful in its short summer. If you're more the stay-in-town type than the rent-a-remote-cabin type, there are several ways to enjoy the beautiful outdoors without venturing too far from civilization. Centering on Portland, we recommend these:

1. The Portland Head Light There are pretty lighthouses, and then there's the Portland Head Lighthouse. This picturesque light in nearby Cape Elizabeth is set among small buildings, including the lighthouse museum, and is basically incapable of being badly photographed. Once you're done with your tour, hang out in Fort Williams Park along the beach, which is doggie-friendly.

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Become a 'Portlandia' Local with IFC's Latest Sweepstakes

August 7, 2014 at 4:01 PM | by | Comments (0)

If you love celery, the '90s, and putting birds on things, then IFC has a new sweepstakes just for you.

The network is giving one fan the chance be a Portlandia local, at least for a few days, with a trip to Portland and a walk on role in the show.

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How to Get Tickets to Portland's MusicFestNW

May 27, 2014 at 4:45 PM | by | Comments (0)

The MusicFestNW isn't as well known as other Northwest music fests, like Sasquatch, but it should be.

After 19 years MusicFestNW knows exactly what the audience wants - an awesome lineup, fewer stages, and cheap tickets.

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New Ferry to Nova Scotia Means More Excuses for Quick Trips to Canada

March 17, 2014 at 3:02 PM | by | Comments (0)

This spring, the Nova Star Ferry will begin service from Portland, Maine, to Yarmouth, Nova Scotia, increasing accessibility for Americans in the northeast to Canada's beautiful maritime province. The ship is currently making its way from Singapore and is scheduled to begin service on May 1st.

We're sure it's a pretty ride across the mouth of the Bay of Fundy, but this ferry will do its best to keep you occupied and spending money onboard with three restaurants, three bars, live entertainment, a movie theater, and a casino. It will also have a fitness center and children’s play area to accompany 163 cabins and the capacity for 1,215 passengers and 336 cars.

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Believe It or Not, Airport Carpets are Inspiring Tattoos and More

March 11, 2014 at 2:32 PM | by | Comments (0)

Last week, we discovered a little something crazy: the popularity of airport carpets on photo sharing app Instagram.

Delving a bit further into this fascination, and that of other similarly quirky funny Instagram travel hashtags, we've found that not only is the carpet of Portland International Airport in Oregon particularly beloved, but that devotees have gone so far as to have the design tattooed!

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