I had a wonderful stay at the Palace Hotel, which I chose primarily for its historic-ness but also its great location in the heart of downtown Port Townsend, and attractive exterior. From the moment I arrived, I was so happy with my choice. When I pulled into a spot in the free private parking behind the building, the view through my windshield was a steep grassy hill covered in wildflowers!
The desk clerk was kind, easygoing, and helpful, and offered to carry my luggage up the (very steep) stairs. I declined, thinking the exercise was good for me and not wanting to make him do it, but next time I might say yes! Those are some serious stairs (at least one flight to all rooms; two flights to my room on the third floor) and there is no elevator. So unfortunately it doesn't seem like this hotel would work for disabled guests.
I booked quite last minute so was very lucky they had a couple of rooms left: I chose the value-priced "Miss Mona" on the third floor. It was not en-suite but I had exclusive use of a private bathroom down the hall, which opened with my room key. Since I regularly stay in historic hotels, I'm used to this and don't mind the slight inconvenience (especially since it usually means a much cheaper rate).
My room was extremely clean and had some of the highest ceilings I've seen in a hotel, making an already spacious room feel huge. It had a side view, which overlooked another beautiful historic building, the heart of Water Street, and the sea across the road. A desk was set up right next to the window and it was such a pleasant place to work - if a little distracting, since I kept gazing out the window!
The decor in the lobby and common areas was lovely and preserved the historic atmosphere - the stained-glass skylight above the stairs on the third floor is a particular highlight. My room had exposed brick on the outer wall, which I love. I was pleasantly surprised to find that my room had a mini-fridge, which was completely empty so I had room for some cold drinks, as well as a microwave. Those were great perks. Both were fairly outdated, though, so not as attractive, quiet, or energy-efficient as they could be. The rest of the furnishings in my room were period-appropriate and lovely.
As is common in historic hotels, the walls were somewhat thin and the solid doors a bit loud, but it wasn't enough to be bothersome at all. I noticed no street noise, despite having the window open. There is no air-conditioning, but the window opens and a fan is provided, so I was comfortable despite the warm night. But on very hot nights, I might miss the A/C - I really like it cool while sleeping.
All the staff was great. The housekeepers I came across were cheerful and friendly, and the owner, Gary, was clearly proud and appreciative of the amazing building he is responsible for. I met with him and had a really interesting chat about the hotel's history and staff. He was interested in my website, and also showed me the blog of some previous guests that he keeps up with.
The Palace Hotel will definitely be my first choice when I return to Port Townsend. This was my first visit to the city and I really fell in love with it - can't wait to return!
Note: I was provided a free room for one night in return for media coverage on my website, Go Historic. I did not promise a positive review, nor was I asked for one, and the above reflects my honest opinion.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- This beautifully restored Victorian hotel is in the heart of historic Port Townsend. A former bordello with most rooms named after former working girls including Madame Maries suite and Miss Kittys room, this Magnuson Hotels affiliate is located one block from the ferry dock in the center of many fine art galleries, restaurants, theaters, antique stores, and unique gift shops. ... more less
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