Motels in North Portland, Oregon

by Nikki Jardin
The Willamette River divides the city of Portland.

The Willamette River divides the city of Portland.

Bridges image by photosfromoregon from Fotolia.com

Portland, Oregon, is divvied up into quadrants of north to south and east to west, with the Willamette River separating the east and west quads, and Burnside Street dividing north and south. Visitors looking to find inexpensive lodgings in the north part of the city find motels close to downtown right off Burnside, up in the outer northeast near the airport, or in North Portland proper along a strip that leads up to the Washington State border.

Jantzen Beach Area

Travelers looking to take advantage of Oregon’s lack of a state tax one more time may find themselves stopping for the night at a motel just off Interstate 5 before crossing over to Washington State. Nearby Jantzen Beach offers several big box retail outlets and family-friendly restaurants just shy of the Interstate Bridge for a day of shopping before you get back on the road. This area is also home to several golf courses; the Columbia Children’s Arboretum; and Marine Drive, which whisks motorists past the airport, out to Troutdale and straight up into the Columbia River Gorge. Standard chain motels include a Motel 6, Days Inn and an EconoLodge – but a few independents such as the Viking Motel, Union Avenue Motel and the Holiday Motel exist as well.

Airport Motels

Portland International Airport, located in outer northeast Portland, is small, easy to navigate and centrally located to both the scenic Columbia River Gorge and Mount Hood National Park. Surrounded by a dozen motels of both the chain and independent variety, travelers have plenty of lodgings to choose from when they step off the plane. Brand-name lodgings include a Super 8, Travelodge, Howard Johnson and Thriftlodge, along with independents that include the Nordic Inn, Courtesy Inn and The Cameo Motel. This latter is also within walking distance of one of Portland’s best-known attractions, The Grotto, a 62-acre botanical garden and Roman Catholic shrine.

Interstate Avenue

In the heart of North Portland along a once vibrant thoroughfare, several motels, some with the remaining vestiges of classic signage, line up along Interstate Avenue. The Palms Motel, Sixth Avenue Motel and the Monticello Motel compete for budget business along with the Economy Inn, Shilo Inn and the Super Value Lodge. This area is convenient for out-of-towners due to access to the MAX line, Portland’s light rail system, which can take passengers into downtown, up to sights such as Washington Park, out to the airport or up to the Portland International Raceway and Expo Center. Interstate Avenue also has several supermarkets, convenience stores and restaurants within walking distance.

Downtown Portland

Inexpensive lodgings less than a mile from downtown Portland are centered in the Rose Quarter with a Motel 6 and two motels located on East Burnside: the Executive Lodge and the Thriftlodge. These East Burnside motels center around the up-and-coming “East Burn” neighborhood, popular for local music at the Doug Fir Lounge, as well as excellent food and wine at the Noble Rot bistro. From here it's just a short walk over the Burnside Bridge to the Old Town/Chinatown neighborhood with multiple nightclubs and bars. The Motel 6 in the Rose Quarter is on the MAX line heading into either downtown or the airport; it's also a short walk from both the Oregon Convention Center and the Rose Garden, home of the Portland Blazers and arena concerts and events. Nearby as well are the Lloyd Center shopping mall and two multi-screen theaters.

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