When you visit a too-cool-for-school city like Portland—you know, full of hipster artists and musicians who spend their days sipping artisan espresso, brewing craft beer, and going for long bike rides through postcard-worthy terrain—the important thing is to find out where all the cool kids are hanging out. Well, stay at the Jupiter Hotel, and you’ll find you’re already there. In 1994, two local creatives took over a classic 1960s motor lodge in the East Burnside neighborhood (that is, just across the river from downtown) and transformed it into a hipster-chic boutique hotel and one of the city’s hottest nightlife venues, with a local brews- and spirits-focused bar and an intimate concert venue with live shows seven nights a week. Rooms are decorated with original murals by local artists, and the lobby doubles as a (very popular) art gallery. Thanks to the old motel layout, all rooms are oriented around two courtyards, and guests often leave their doors open for ventilation. Which is just to say that it should come as no surprise that, not only is the scene at Jupiter a lively one, but parties are welcome, and the atmosphere is festive until the wee hours of the morning. In other words: yes, this is where all the cool kids are.
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Across the Willamette River from downtown Portland, in the artsy, up-and-coming neighborhood of East Burnside, the Jupiter Hotel finds itself at the heart of a trendy local scene that only savvy out-of-towners venture to visit. Within just a short walk, drive, or bike ride from the hotel are myriad hip bars, cafés, shops, and eateries, from the izakaya-style Biwa to motorcycle shop-cum-café See See Motorcycles to the taproom at Base Camp Brewing. Sure, it’s just a quick trip across the Burnside Bridge to downtown, but there’s so much happening around here that you’d better have a reason to leave.
Need to Know
Rooms: 81 rooms, one suite. From $189. Check-in: 4 p.m.; check-out: 11 a.m. Dining options: With a midcentury-styled log cabin aesthetic inspired by the woods of the Pacific Northwest, the Doug Fir Lounge & Restaurant is home to one of Portland’s hottest nightlife scenes, from its trendy bar to its underground music venue, with shows seven nights a week. The restaurant itself serves Western comfort classics for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. Guests staying longer can also book one of the Kitchenette rooms which, true to the name, have a kitchenette, for a self-catering stay. Spa and gym details: The hotel has neither a gym nor a spa, but it does offer discounted guest passes to a nearby gym and has bicycles available to rent.
Who's it best for: Musicians, concertgoers, and hipsters on a budget. Our favorite rooms: “Chill side” rooms—in other words, those facing the quiet courtyard as opposed to the Doug Fir Lounge patio—are more likely to offer a better night’s sleep, but those travelers looking to be in the center of the action until the wee hours of the morning might prefer the “bar side.” In-house highlight: The hotel’s lobby doubles as Gallery @ the Jupiter, a 24/7 art gallery featuring the works of emerging Pacific Northwest artists. Free-to-the-public openings are held the first Friday of every month, with local distilleries, wineries, and food purveyors providing drinks and snacks. The gallery also hosts numerous art events throughout the year.