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“helpful staff and great location”
Review of Crystal Hotel

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Crystal Hotel
Ranked #41 of 141 Hotels in Portland
Certificate of Excellence
Northern California
Level 2 Contributor
6 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
“helpful staff and great location”
Reviewed June 30, 2011

We have stayed at other McMenamins hotels and ,even though this wasn't the biggest of their facilities , it provided a great place to stay in Portland. The location is great, within walking distance or public transportation of most of the major sights in Portland. The rooms are small, but cozy, fun and clean. We enjoyed the soaking pool and the complimentary coffee and paper in the morning. But we were especially impressed when one of the staff called ( very soon after checkout) to tell us that we had left our phone charger and some jewelry there. We were very thankful and appreciative of this quick notice.

  • Stayed June 2011, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Sleep Quality
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Thank Sebasto
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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San Francisco, CA
Level 4 Contributor
33 reviews
30 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 135 helpful votes
Reviewed June 28, 2011

Here was our experience: Friendly staff, small (but nice) room. We stayed three nights mid-week and couldn't get a room with private bath. So, the bath down the hall was always clean and tidy and only had difficulty with it being occupied once.


1) Parking. They offer a limited number of spaces at $25 a day at a garage a block away. The selling point is that you get in/out privileges. Here's the down side: the spaces are very close together and (from what I experienced) spaced unevenly. We came back one night to find one space left. A space so tight that my side mirrors cleared the side mirrors of the cars on either side by 2 INCHES! How did I get out of the car? I had to go to circus school and then make an attempt. I was very careful, but discovered the next day that the hotel guest parked on our right was not so kind and we ended up with a fairly severe ding/notch of paint missing. I would recommend avoiding this garage. Parking in the area seems to be relatively inexpensive at $6-$8 a day. Try the lot kitty-corner from the garage. Tell the lot employee you're a hotel guest and try to work out a deal. At worst, if you move your car, you'll have to pay $16! And you'll save hundreds in body work.

2) The floor of the room above us had two spots that made ungodly creaking noises. I'm a heavy sleeper, but not when this noise is combined with 4am. I was awakened each night by the creaking and wondered why a better construction job hadn't been done when this building had been converted into a hotel.

3) Finally, the last morning of our stay I pulled the covers off and noticed the largest dust cloud I've ever seen in my life! This place hadn't been open two months when we stayed and I can only imagine the covers hadn't been washed during that period. I'm rarely skeeved out, but this unsettled me and can only hope that this was an anomaly. Either way, that is pretty gross...

Again, a decent place with a few things to be aware of. Hope our experience can make yours better.

  • Stayed June 2011, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Sleep Quality
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
1 Thank cyberdouglas
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Washington State
Level 6 Contributor
78 reviews
51 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 242 helpful votes
Reviewed June 9, 2011

I've stayed at most of the McMenamins hotels in their chain, many of them more than several times. I couldn't wait till the Crystal opened downtown Portland on 12th! Gotta say I loved this new addition to their line-up.

It is so close to everything downtown Pearl district, including Powell's City of Books, (yay!) Whole Foods is right across the street and the Max train line is right there too! One of my favorite places is right down the street too, Living Room Theatre, where you can enjoy dinner and drinks while you watch independent films. If you like to shop there were tons of small shops and the Nordstrom store within a block or two. A few more blocks and there is a Galleria Shopping mall and also a small High School Pharmacy if you need a prescription filled. Someone also told me Pita Pit was a great place for lunch, right down the street, but I haven't tried it.

I love that they kept to the theme of the McMenamins, with their traditional historic restoration style, murals, various antiques, wood and brass detailed railings, moldings and bar. They have the exposed pipes all painted in the dark European colors as the rest of the hotel chain. This was originally a 100 year old bath house, and they kept to a lot of the historic pieces, photos, etc. during the remodel into a hotel. Very nice detailed decor.

They used the same theme in the rooms, with painted murals above the beds, and the mural writings they put in all their rooms. The one we were in had bar music notes from a famous composer circling the walls in the room.

We had a queen bed, very comfortable with nice linens, the white terry bathrobes are supplied so you can head down to the bathroom across the hall any time of the night. Very nicely done in the mattress, linens, and small details. Because it is new, it is actually nicer than most of their hotels which stick to basics. (No tv in these rooms, but there is a clock radio that looked updated.) I happen to like the boutique style of McMenamins hotels. Loved this one. We got a free newspaper in front of our door in the morning too. The only downside was the new hvac system which was difficult to figure out and I had a fan running blowing air across my face all night. I would ask for a tutorial in how to get the temps, fan and air the way you want it. This is actually an improvement over the other hotels that usually have pretty ancient heating/cooling systems in the ceilings.

We enjoyed the soaking pool, which is a very pretty and warm salt water pool. I loved the Tiki theme on the walls. We missed our chance to have it to ourselves, but lots of room for more than just us. It was great, with a stand up shower to rinse off. They allow drinks from the bar in there if you put them into plastic cups. It was nice to sip and soak and relax.

Check in was great, the staff are so friendly (one front desk woman even walked me outside and down the block to point to where to find the Smart Park is on 10th and Yamhill which was only a couple blocks up and over and much cheaper than the lot the Crystal offered at 25 a night.) It cost me only 13 to park overnight in a covered garage from 3:30 pm to 8:30 am. You cannot beat that in any other big city, or even anywhere else in Portland at a hotel parking garage.

I paid 95.00 a night plus the hotel taxes. Very reasonable for downtown Portland. You can pay more for a King room and I guess a couple of rooms have a private bath if you prefer that. Their hall bathrooms were immaculate with gorgeous walk in showers and nice glass doors. You can lock the doors and the bathroom is yours until you are ready to come out. I was on the 4th floor with a lovely view of the cityscape. There is a creaky old elevator that was very charming but very very small. To me, that was part of the charm. Very old school.

I'll do a separate review for Zeus Cafe Interlude Menu (we ate in the Al's Diner downstairs as it was quieter but they share the same menu). It was great and I highly recommend it for dinner or lunch. For breakfast I walked across the street at 7 am and got breakfast items at Whole Foods hot breakfast bar. $8.40 and I walked out with hot potatoes, biscuits, milk, orange juice, yogurt and a slab of cornbread.

I will happily stay here many times and can highly recommend the Crystal Hotel to anyone staying in the Portland downtown area.

  • Stayed June 2011, traveled with friends
    • Value
    • Sleep Quality
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
13 Thank flwrgrdn
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Dametris, Manager at Crystal Hotel, responded to this review, September 11, 2013
Thank you for your review... We're a little late with our TripAdvisor responses, but we're just getting hip to this. Thanks!!
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Walla Walla, Washington
Level 6 Contributor
613 reviews
60 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 149 helpful votes
Reviewed June 2, 2011

This hotel just opened a couple of weeks before we stayed here. The check-in process was quick and easy. The front desk staff was friendly.

We had a King room with a bathroom. It could use more lighting. It's quite dark in the room. And the heater-a/c needed some front desk help to get it to work right.

I loved the soaking pool and I was the only one there both times I used it.

I wasn't impressed with the Zeus Cafe restaurant. What is a McMenamin's w/out some McMenamin's fries?

I also didn't enjoy the fact that you have to find your own parking. We found one 24 hour lot about 5 blocks away. We carried our bags from there. I recommend they figure something out. When you call, they just tell you they have no parking. The nearest Max/Streetcar is several blocks away as well.

Overall, I enjoyed my stay. It was nice to sit at the table in the room and watch all the crazy people outside. There were many nearby restaurants to check out. But it was more expensive than their other hotels, although probably due to the downtown Portland location.

  • Stayed May 2011, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Sleep Quality
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
1 Thank plaidbagel
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Crystal Hotel

Property: Crystal Hotel
Address: 303 SW 12th Ave, Portland, OR 97205-2302
Location: United States > Oregon > Portland > Downtown
Bar / Lounge Beverage Selection Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Suites Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #41 of 141 Hotels in Portland
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:2.5 star — Crystal Hotel 2.5*
Number of rooms: 51
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Located just across the street from the legendary Crystal Ballroom, the Crystal Hotel has 51 comfortable guestrooms, each inspired by a song or performance from the Crystal Ballroom's past 100 years. Colorfully painted panels and headboards anchor the rooms, while deeply-hued walls, black velvet drapery and animal print upholstery lend a rock ‘n’ roll vibe. Large windows afford views of the city from all angles. Room rates include admission to the soaking pool and the opportunity to purchase tickets to the Crystal Ballroom show. With the inclusion of the Zeus Café and free live music at Al’s Den, this downtown hotel combines dining, relaxation and rock and roll history in the heart of the city. ... more   less 
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