Of all the towns on the Oregon coast, Astoria smacks with sea-salt history, the community built around the fishing industry. Still today, it’s just as common to spot a rubber boot-clad fisherman browsing the stacks at the longstanding Godfather’s Books as it is to find a Portlander escaping the city for the weekend.
The Commodore Hotel pays tribute to the past and present, melding minimalist modern decor with a touch of old world seafaring style. Set in a 1925-structure in the heart of the Astoria Downtown Historic District, the building was originally designed as a hotel by John E. Wicks, Astoria’s most notable architect.
The hotel operated from 1925 until 1968, first as the Barton Inn Hotel and then as the Commodore, until it was mysteriously abandoned and boarded up for 40 years. Following a $1.5 million renovation, the Commodore Hotel reopened in 2009. The modish-styled guest rooms are available as suites (shared bathroom facilities) or cabins, which include a full private bathroom and lounging area.
Cherry red accents by way of coffee tables or slipper chairs pop against a backdrop of neutral tones. The original windows peek out to views of downtown, or the rippling Columbia River. All rooms come with a flat screen LCD/DVD combo, an iPhone docking station, radiant heat, and feather-filled down comforters to cozy up chilly nights.
In the lobby, a wall of vintage books (including a collection of cloth-bound Charles Dickens) mixes with artfully stacked fishing floats and rolled nautical charts—the overall appeal reminiscent of objet trouvé or found art. Many of the eclectic pieces on display surfaced during the extensive renovation.
Come sunrise, the lobby is an ideal spot to ease into the day. It’s shared with Street 14 Coffee, the best spot in town to sip an expertly pulled shot of Stumptown espresso. Pair it with the thick-cut French toast made with egg bread from Astoria’s Home Baking Co. and set off to explore.
From the hotel, art galleries, restaurants, museums and the Astoria Riverwalk are just a block away. Not-to-miss for craft beer fans is the nearby Fort George Brewery. As for later in the evening, plan for a platter of oysters on the half-shell at Albatross, the sister restaurant to Thistle in McMinnville—it’s conveniently located across the street from the Commodore.
Commodore Hotel || 258 14th St, Astoria, OR || (503) 325-4747 || commodorehotel.com
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