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Northwest Traveler

Travel news, consumer advice and trip reports for the Northwest and beyond.

Topic: Hotels

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May 7, 2013 at 9:08 AM

Portland, Victoria hotels help guests stay in shape

  

Bicyclists cross Victoria's Selkirk Bridge on the Galloping Goose trail, a former railway line converted into a 34-mile biking and walking route in the city and suburbs. (Kristin Jackson photo / Seattle Times)

Bicyclists cross Victoria’s Selkirk Bridge on the Galloping Goose trail, a former railway line converted into a 34-mile biking and walking route in the city and suburbs. (Kristin Jackson photo / Seattle Times)

  On a vacation or business trip it’s way too easy to indulge in unhealthy foods and abandon a fitness routine.

 The solution: Find a hotel with a decent fitness center or pool big enough so you actually can swim lengths. Or pack your running shoes and hit the streets.

 Some hotels in the Pacific Northwest and B.C.  this spring are starting to help guests stay in shape with free guided runs and bikes to use.

At the luxurious  Heathman Hotel in Portland, the general manager, Chris Erickson, will lead guests on a run through downtown every Tuesday morning at 7 a.m., starting May 14. Erickson is a marathon runner, but he won’t set a punishing pace or length: runs will be about four miles.

    Anyone staying at the Heathman can join the run, but those buying

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Comments | More in Northwest | Topics: fitness on the road, Hotels, portland

February 10, 2013 at 6:30 AM

Getting a real ocean view at Hawaii hotels, condos

The first time I went to Hawaii I was all excited about the “ocean-view” condo I had booked on the Big Island. I couldn’t wait to  watch  the waves and gaze at the setting sun with a Mai Tai in hand.

Reality bit when I arrived. The condo was ocean view if  I stood in one sliver of  living room and stared through a narrow gap between two other buildings in front.

This view, from my room at Kiahuna Plantation Resort on Kauai, is classified as partial ocean view. Well, yes, you can see the ocean beyond the trees. But if you want the real ocean  view in a Hawaii hotel or condo, ask for (and pay more) for an oceanfront room. (Photo by Kristin Jackson / Seattle Times.)

I soon learned, when booking hotel rooms or condos in Hawaii, that the descriptive words really matter.  “Ocean-front” is what you want for the real, close-up view of the waves. If it’s touted as “ocean view” or “partial ocean view” figure out what that really means.  Phone the hotel directly (don’t rely on the reservations staff at the  toll-free phone numbers) and ask how far back from the ocean the  room is, and what’s between the room  and the view. Try to find an online map of the resort, if it has multiple buildings, and figure out where your room would be.

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Comments | More in Hawaii | Topics: condos, Hawaii, Hotels

January 24, 2013 at 7:00 AM

Northwest hotels come up as winners

Some hotels in Seattle and around the Pacific Northwest have come up as winners on TripAdvisor’s  annual  “Travelers Choice” awards.  The favorites for 2013, based on travelers’ reviews on the uber-popular travel website, include: Four Seasons Hotel, Seattle: #4 in the top 25 U.S. hotels. (The winner was the Four Seasons…

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Comments | More in Northwest | Topics: Four Seasons, Hotels, Seattle hotels