Since 1969, restaurant, hotel, travel & other witty reviews by a handpicked, worldwide team of discerning professionals—and your views, too.

Hotel Lucia, A Provenance Hotel

Portland, OR - Hotel Review

Big City Style with a Northwest Smile

by Blair Mastbaum

The lobby of Hotel Lucia, A Provenance Hotel in Portland, Oregon
The lobby of Hotel Lucia, A Provenance Hotel in Portland, Oregon

You know you've arrived in the Pacific Northwest when you're serenaded by the soulful strumming of Nirvana and a gentle rain upon check-in to Portland's chic, boutique Hotel Lucia, A Provenance Hotel. This is a sophisticated and minimally decorated property that feels as if it belongs in a much bigger, more urban city. Yet as valets greet guests, using umbrellas to guide them inside, there's a distinct (and comforting) feeling that this isn't just another large, impersonal American hotel.

Located on downtown's bustling Broadway just two blocks from Pioneer Square and the hip Pearl District, this unique property makes it possible to stay without a car; you can walk almost everywhere, or use the city's impressive system of buses, light-rail trains and streetcars that originate in the European-flavored downtown. The hotel even offers the occasional weekend bicycle package, where guests are provided with bicycles and are encouraged to "bike the city and find themselves."

The spacious lobby, staffed by a stylish and low-key group never short of smiles or advice, features a gallery of local, museum-quality, contemporary art, and furnishings with clean lines, minimal form and pleasing earth tones. If you're lucky, you'll spot the hotel's resident busybody, "Betty," the property's own socializing diva who's rumored to have checked in and never checked out. With large windows and a continually roaring fire, the lobby's cozy sitting area affords a view of rain-gear-clad pedestrians strolling to local restaurants, including the hotel's own Restobar, which features an impressive bar, as well as a Portland twist on traditional American favorites for every meal of the day.

A guest room at Hotel Lucia, A Provenance Hotel in Portland The Monterosso special events room at Hotel Lucia, A Provenance Hotel in Portland
A guest room
The Monterosso Room

Hide away from the rain by exploring this impressive hotel. Follow the art show down the stairs into the light and bright basement level to find a generous business center with free high-speed Internet connections and printers, a squeaky-clean, fully equipped gym and a modest-sized meeting room adorned with yet more adventurous contemporary art, sure to leave an impression on the design-oriented clients that frequent this interior-design-award-winning property.

Ascend up one of the two shiny elevators, adorned with black-and-white photographs of Hollywood and American political elite (all shot by Portland native David Hume Kennerly, who made his name capturing American presidents on film), and you'll find the stylish, cozy guestrooms. Because of the historical nature of the building, they're on the small side. But what they lack in square footage, they make up for in sophistication, with features like leather headboards, which make reading in bed a pleasure. They also have impeccable linens with some of the fluffiest down duvets we've ever seen, sleek yet tiny bathrooms with see-through glass vanities, high-tech Sony CD players, and metropolitan views of downtown "Stumptown" (Portland's nickname) with pine-studded hills beyond. For picky sleepers, a "pillow menu" offers nearly ten styles of pillow, from the softest goose down to high-tech foam. For those traveling with their four-legged friends, the hotel is very dog friendly, with an entire floor (the fourth) dedicated to canines and their loyal owners.

The hotel feels like an art gallery, and the lobby and guestrooms inspire the guests to feel as if they're in a living museum. But the most notable aspect of this property is that everyone you encounter—from the bellhop to the maid staff — is incredibly friendly, always willing to joke about the weather, inform you about a day trip to the Columbia River Gorge, or recommend a new restaurant in this city that is enjoying a wonderful coming of age. Like Portland, the Hotel Lucia, A Provenance Hotel seems to be at that seminal moment of transition — it doesn't yet know it's the coolest digs in town, but it's about to figure it out... so hurry.

Hotel Lucia, A Provenance Hotel
400 SW Broadway
Portland, OR 97205
Phone: 503-225-1717, 877-225-1717
Fax: 503-225-1919
Visit the Hotel Lucia, A Provenance Hotel official website


Sip your way through wine country with GAYOT's list of charming inns and resorts, featuring vineyards from Napa Valley to Long Island, New York.
Go off the beaten path and explore GAYOT's Top 10 Extreme Hotels, which feature one-of-a-kind accommodations for a truly unforgettable experience.