Portland, Oregon (aka Rose City)

Portland—Hot Scene, Cool Summers

We’re crazy about this town. Rose City. The spectacular location, climate (OK, especially June to October), and city design is sublime. Bikes galore. Food is insanely good. Wine is world class. So is the beer. All experienced with a quirky, inventive, active vibe.

Shopping is amazing—especially for locally produced finds. And there’s no sales tax. NO SALES TAX. Let that sink in.

View Travel Portland’s video for a peek at what makes Portland the darling of every media outlet, blogger, foodie and travel junkie. The city is dynamic. Mt. Hood, the Columbia River Gorge, wine regions and the Pacific Ocean coast are within a two-hour drive. 

Portland at night

Pacific NW Pilates Education (we’re the Pacific NW licensed training center for top-drawer STOTT PILATES® courses and PNWP Owner Melanie Byford-Young’s therapeutic Pilates workshops) is a magnet for Pilates instructors—and exercise professionals and physical therapists—who want to learn to incorporate movement in their clinical assessments and manual therapies. We attract students from around the world, but never more than in June to September. Summer in Portland is a naturally air-conditioned series of outdoor beauty, sports, pleasures and festivals. 

Getting Around

Portland’s award-winning mass transit system—TriMet—is extensive and much-imitated in the U.S. The system includes buses, streetcars, historic trolleys and the MAX, our urban light rail line, that runs from the airport to downtown and far into the exurbs. You can access any of these from Portland’s downtown transit mall.

The closest MAX station to Pacific NW Pilates’ studio is the Washington Park MAX station at the Oregon Zoo. It’s about a mile to the studio from the station.


There is always something to do in downtown Portland and it’s generally a safe city for hanging out after hours. Performing arts offerings include ballet, Shakespeare, Broadway musicals, modern dance, the Oregon Symphony, jazz clubs and plenty of opportunities to soak up the Pacific Northwest’s famed indie rock scene.

First Thursday in downtown’s Pearl District (and beyond) is when the galleries stay open late. It’s a great opportunity to see the work of many local and international artists. The sidewalks are often jammed with pedestrians on warm nights, so it’s also a great place for people watching. The Last Thursday art walk on Portland’s up-and-coming Alberta Street (NE Portland) is a similar event with a more bohemian vibe.

Oregon Zoo concerts are a summer treat, with local and national acts occupying the big stage—not too far from our famous elephants. Washington Park—chock full of the roses that give the city its nickname—also hosts a series of free summer concerts.

Food and Drink

Portland has the second highest number of restaurants per capita in the U.S. Its vibrant culinary scene is dominated by independent, yet nationally renowned restaurants and chefs, with many offering locally grown and/or organic ingredients on their menus. Of course, Portland is also the unofficial microbrew capital of the world and you’ll find an espresso bar on every corner in town.

Prices in Portland are lower than many large metropolitan areas, and some of the best places are concentrated in downtown, the Pearl District, and “trendy” Northwest Portland – all of which are easy to reach on foot from the downtown area.


Downtown is a shopping destination, with familiar retailers such as Nordstrom, Macy’s, etc., luxury brands (Louis Vuitton), the glassiest Apple store in its system, and plenty of sidewalk culture to punctuate the experience. The Pearl District (a short walk or street car ride from the city center) is home to galleries, lifestyle and outdoor adventure shops, and includes smaller stores by national retailers (Adidas, Lucy, Anthropologie, Jack Spade, Jonathon Adler, etc.) in addition to unique local retailers. Northwest Portland is dominated by independent specialty boutiques. Venture into some of the other neighborhood’s main streets that are wowing travel and food writers: Mississippi in NE Portland, Division (home base for Pok Pok), and Hawthorne.

Portland is home to one of the world’s largest independent bookstores: Powell’s City of Books. Occupying an entire city block downtown, it is a haven for literati, students, slackers, business professionals, the perennially curious, and tourists.

No Sales Tax. More Money to Spend on YOU.

That’s right. There is no sales tax in Oregon. That means no tax on shopping or restaurants. The price you see is what you pay. Note: You will pay tax on lodging and car rentals.

Places to Stay

Lodging in or near downtown Portland will offer you the most convenience to Pacific NW Pilates and the best options for enjoying your stay here. We’ve compiled a short list of lodging options and you can find many more via online travel sites.