Portland has developed a well-earned reputation as a great town to listen to live music, whether your choice be blue grass, country and western, jazz, rock, hard rock, vocals, classical or chamber.
Right in the neighborhood of The Fulton House — within easy walking distance — there are two restaurant/lounges that feature live music, mostly blue grass and rock.
The first is the venerable Buffalo Gap, which has been around for 30+ years. The other is the Macadam Street Grill, relatively new in the neighborhood, only about two years old. Both are packed on weekends with locals and tourists alike, who come to listen to terrific live music and to be part of the music scene.
Stay at The Fulton House and you can enjoy a few drinks while you toe tap to the beat. Since you walk to both places, there’s no danger of a breathalyzer and a DUI on the way home. And, since we’re located in an ultra-safe neighborhood where crimes against persons are not even on the screen (more properly, not even on the blotter), you can walk home with your significant other without a care.
If you had one beer too many the night before, plan on relaxing in our large outdoor hot tub in the morning. As long as you use one of our plastic glasses, you can intake some “hair of the dog” while you soak and sigh.
We’ll even hold breakfast with plenty of freshly-brewed, strong coffee for you until 9:30 a.m.!
Summer has come to Oregon in a rush. Temperatures here in Portland are in the high 80’s, the sun is shining brightly and the sky is perfectly clear with not a cloud in sight. But, like almost always, there is a cooling breeze that keeps us from over-heating.
The weather is perfect for the Portland Rose Festival (see my blog entitled “Portland Rose Festival” dated April 2) and the City expects an influx of thousands to watch the parades, visit the Waterfront Village, take a tour of one of the U.S. Navy ships, and generally join in all the festivities. The Grand Floral Parade draws some 500,000 spectators and is the largest single-day event in the Pacific Northwest. I believe the Junior Parade is still the largest children’s parade in the world, with up to 10,000 kids participating every year.
Portland is not overloaded with bed & breakfasts like some cities, so if you’re planning on a visit, now is the time to book a room. Not tomorrow or the next day, but right now so you won’t be disappointed.
The Fulton House has a few dates still open, and I imagine our bed & breakfast cohorts in and around Portland still have a few openings also. Call us at
503-892-5781….if we’re booked when you plan to visit, we’ll help you find an opening.
But please act now. Everyone is filling up fast.
Gasoline is outrageously priced here in the Pacific Northwest — about $3.45 per gallon in mid-May — and all indications are that prices will not be going down during the summer.
So, do we have a deal for you any time in June, July or August. When you check in, give us your car keys and we’ll give you a bottle of chilled Chardonnay or Cabernet Sauvignon for free. And we’ll give you another bottle every day of your stay as long as we keep your car keys.
Will this limit your travel in Portland? No, not all. The Fulton House is located a half-block from a bus stop (and buses will take you just about anywhere in Portland or the suburbs), two blocks from a trolley stop, and minutes away from the OHSU tram by bus (be sure to ask the bus driver for a transfer for the tram). For those of you who welcome a walk, most of it along the Willamette River on the magnificent Willamette Greenway, we’re two blocks from the Greenway and about two miles from the tram.
Think of it. A free bottle of wine while saving all sorts of money by not driving and thus not paying for expensive gasoline and downtown parking. And you’ll never be stopped for a DUI after you enjoy your wine if you’re not driving!
By the way, there are plenty of good restaurants for lunch or dinner within easy walking distance of The Fulton House, including Thai, Japanese, Hawaiian, Chinese, Mexican, steaks and seafood, standard American, smoked meats and fish, pizza and a fried fish place. There are also a Post Office, gift shop, dry cleaner, beauty shop, barber, U.S. and Wells Fargo bank branches, and gourmet grocery store in our neighborhood. So going without a car should be no problem.
Save money on gas and get a good bottle of red or white wine every day of your stay at The Fulton House. Such a deal….! One more thing, make your reservations now, since our rooms for the summer months are filling up quite quickly.
Hope to see you this summer.
Are you a biker, either serious or just for fun? Then the place to spend a few days this summer is in Portland (OR). Drive or fly here, loading your bike on the top of your vehicle or shipping it. The fun begins not far from The Fulton House.
Here are just two upcoming events for the serious biker. First, on June 2 is the Pioneer Century Classic, beginning in Canby, less than 20 miles south of us. You have three distances to choose from: 45, 55 or 100 miles, and you bike through the beautiful foothills of the North Willamette Valley, where Oregon Trail pioneers headed more than 150 years ago to farm in the fertile land.
The second event (July 14-15) is a 200-mile route from the University of Washington in Seattle to Lloyd Center in Portland, just 10 minutes from The Fulton House. The ride is designed to be completed by riders in one to two days. In past years, the event has drawn up to 9,000 participants, ranging from 13 months to 85 years-old. The way to plan this event is to drive or fly to Portland, leave your luggage at The Fulton House (no charge) and then take Amtrak to Seattle with your bicycle; from the station to the race site beginning is easily bikeable, and you can spend the night before the race in a local motel. When you end in Portland, bike back to The Fulton House or catch a ride from a local. Then, plan on a long soak in our hot tub with a glass of wine from our complimentary bottle.
If you bike but don’t wish to participate in a planned event, there’s plenty of lonely roads to ride and explore around Portland. An example is Sauvie Island, located just north of the city, which you can bike around in just a few hours, joining the dozens of local bikers who spend their weekends here. For mountain bikers, there are unparalleled trails in either the Cascade Mountains or the Coast Range, both within easy driving distance from The Fulton House.
So, this summer come to Portland and enyoy a biking adventure.
Wine lovers please note!
Not only are there dozens of wineries to visit within an easy drive of The Fulton House but there are also loads of wine events each and every week during the Spring and Summer months.
Beginning last week (Wed.-Tues. 5/16-5/22), there are at least 28 events in and around Portland for you to enjoy. This is a typical week, so next week and the week after that will offer just as many fine wine events and happenings. To get details, check the “Wine Events: Our Picks of the Week” column every Wednesday in the Food section of The Oregonian. Or, even easier, visit www.oregonlive.com and type in the keywords Wine Events.
But just to give you an idea of what to expect during any given week….
There’s a 3-course dinner featuring Domaine Meriwether wines in Carlton and a Pork ‘n’ Pinot dinner in Dundee. There’s a wine, plant and book sale at the Pittock Mansion in Portland, and a spring plant and wine sale in Oregon City. There’s a class on wines taught by winemakers from Eola Hills Winery in a downtown Portland hotel and a basic wine education class in the northwest part of the City. Also in Portland are an early evening “drop-in” tasting at a restaurant, a tasting of wines from Maryhill Winery (Washington State), a “just for ladies” event appropriately called “Hip Chicks Do Wine,” and a Port wine sampling.
Remember, events like these take place every week during the Spring and Summer. And none are farther than about 45-minutes from The Fulton House, while most are only minutes away. If they’re in Portland or surrounding suburbs, you can take inexpensive and reliable public transportation, so there’s no need to worry about parking or getting hit with a DUI on the way home. Best of all, you can pick up a bus a half-block from The Fulton House.
I almost forgot to mention that a mere two blocks from us there’s a gourmet grocery store that offers free tastings of several fine wines and cheeses every Friday and Saturday.
Let’s look at some of the interesting and exciting things that are available to The Fulton House guests within two hours driving time.
First of all, it’s the only place in the country where you can ski and surf any day of the year. Summer skiing and snowboarding is on one of Mt. Hood’s glaciers and, on a warm day, many of the young ladies ski in bikinis and the men in bathing suits. The Mt. Hood Lodge, which was constructed during the Great Depression years by the W.P.A. and the C.C.C., helpfully provides a telescope in their great room so you can easily observe the downhill skiers.
You’ll need a shortie wet suit to surf any day of the year in the chilly Pacific, but at several places along Oregon’s north coast the waves are super. Dozens flock to these prime spots to catch the “big ones.”
Oregon’s most popular natural attraction is only about 25 miles east of The Fulton House. It’s 620 foot-high Multnomah Falls, one of more than 6 dozen waterfalls along the Columbia Gorge Scenic Drive.
Every County within 2 hours of Portland contains a Historical Museum, and don’t forget that Lewis & Clark traveled their historic route just north of the City, much of it on rafts in the West’s greatest river, the mighty Columbia. Today, you can rent kayaks or canoes at several marinas and explore some of the many sloughs and creeks and wetlands that the two explorers who surveyed the Louisiana Purchase for President Thomas Jefferson passed by or through. For those who prefer not to get their feet wet, there are numerous state parks on both the Oregon and Washington sides of the river, places to just wander and remember the past.
Maya Lin, architect of the incredibly moving Vietnam Veterans Memorial in Washington D.C., is just now finishing what Sunset Magazine calls “an astonishing new work that pays tribute to the human spirit.” It’s called the Confluence Project, and it stretches some 470 miles along the Columbia all the way to the Pacific. This amazing attraction is far too detailed and complex for me to properly describe here, but you can get further information at www.confluenceproject.org
Portlanders can also be zany and creative, and many of the City’s multiple attractions to out-of-towners are offbeat. For example, there’s the Hat Museum, diplaying some 700 pieces of headwear from across the globe of every conceivable size, shape and origin. Then, on Friday and Saturday, there’s the walking tour of the City’s Pearl District, which offers tastes of freshly baked artisan breads, hand roasted nuts, unusual soups, special mustards and preserves and, because this is Portland, tastes of at least 30 local wines and microbrews.
So come and enjoy Portland this summer, when the weather is warm and wet days are few, and the hospitality at The Fulton House is in full swing.
Why not do something wildly spontaneous and completely out of the box for an upcoming weekend. Without telling your wife or girlfriend, make reservations at The Fulton Hiouse Bed & Breakfast for Friday and Saturday nights.
After you check in on Friday afternoon, walk down to our local microbrewery pub and have a hand-crafted beer with your lady. I bet it’s been a long time since the two of you have done that! From there, take a short walk — perhaps holding hands — to any one of a dozen neighborhood restaurants that offer terrific food at very reasonable prices. You have your choice of Thai, Japanese, Chinese, Hawaiian, a steak & seafood grill, a fried fish house, pizza or a standard American meal.
After dinner, come home and just kick back and relax. Maybe you’ll choose watching one of the shows on cable TV (including all the premium channels), or maybe you’ll pick up a book from our extensive in-house library. Or maybe you’ll even purchase a fine bottle of wine from our wine cellar for just the two of you to share.
Next day is Saturday, so sleep in, since we offer our wonderful breakfasts until 10:30 a.m. No need to eat in our dining room….if the weather is fine, eat on our outdoor patio, where you can enjoy our waterfall, 30-foot stream and koi pond, together with our large garden area. Or, if you prefer, load up your plates and eat in perfect privacy in your room.
After breakfast, take a bus downtown. You get it a half-block from The Fulton House and avoid all the hassles and expense of inner-city parking. Buses are cheap and fast and, remember, you can ride all the buses and light rail free throughout central Portland in “Fareless Square.” Spend the day shopping (absolutely no sales tax for any purchase!) or at the Art Museum or maybe at the Oregon Historical Society.
After a tiring day, you probably don’t want to go far for dinner, so plan on Italian or Mexican within a 5-minute drive away. When you return, relax in our large hot tub (open to 9:30 p.m.) and sleep in again the Sunday morning. When you’re ready, come to our special Sunday breakfast, featuring The Fulton House egg & potato quiche, perhaps while you read The Sunday Oregonian. Check-out is at 1100 a.m., but you can leave your bags with us and wander two blocks down to Willamette Park for a stroll along the Willamette River on the renowned River Greenway, which runs for up to two uninterrupted miles here.
Finally, drive home or to the airport with a sense of calm and serenity you both haven’t experienced for a long time.
Try it, you’ll love it….and so will she!
How often have you finished the paperback book you were reading and still had a few days of vacation left? It’s happened to everyone, so that’s why we created our “Take One, Leave One” exchange library. Just take a new book and leave your old one. Or when you’ve finished your book and are leaving, just leave it for another guest’s reading pleasure.
There’s about 70 pocket books in The Fulton House guest library now, mostly novels, including adventure, romance, historical, thriller, mystery, etc. Something for every taste.
Our library also contains about 500 hard cover books for your enjoyment, but only during your stay at The Fulton House. We have a very extensive collection of travel books, cook books, hiking and trail books, political books, old high school and college text books and yearbooks, and a complete set of “Great Books of the Western World.” We also have some valuable very old books like several “Radio Boys,” “Rover Boys,” and “Tom Swift” adventures, some “Baedeker Travel Guides” to London, Paris and Italy, a complete set of the 1947 edition of the “Book of Knowledge,” a couple of “Uncle Wiggily” books and even some textbooks from the late 19th century.
Our old book collection is fun to page through but we ask that you not remove any of the books from the library or living room area.
On display in the room are some interesting old items and oddities like two cash register/banks and a microscope, both for youngsters, an upright Underwood typewriter, two old Kodaks, as well as some antique mirrors from a women’s sitting room, and several 1930 era fly rods made from reeds, probably from China.
Have you ever seen or played an original wind-up RCA Victor Victrola? We have one and we own a collection of very old — and very breakable, so please be very careful! — records, including vocals and instrumentals (classical, dance and pop from the 30’s and 40’s).
Or have you ever played an old upright grand piano? There’s one in our living room, together with some songbooks and old sheet music.
As you can imagine, your hosts, John and Wendy, make every effort to ensure that The Fulton House will become your relaxation place away from home.