Tango Diva : Travel Stories for Women, by Women

by Shelley Seale

As a teenager I was entranced by images of Jean Harlow gliding across the room in a glamorous silk-and-feather dressing gown; by Bette Davis staring down another man who was no match for her over a cigarette; by the impossibly debonair Cary Grant seducing the likes of Katharine Hepburn with only his eyes and his voice. Twenty years later, I am no less enthralled by these legends, and must admit to having seen Casablanca and The Philadelphia Story at least two dozen times. Such is the enduring allure of the Golden Era of Hollywood

Which explains why I felt as if I’d just stepped into a David O. Selznick set when I entered the doors of the Hotel deLuxe in Portland, Oregon. I have stayed in many boutique or theme hotels, and many luxurious hotels — and while the Hotel deLuxe is certainly all of these things, it exudes a certain joi d’vivre all its own, and is sure to whisk any guest back in time to the glam of mid-century movie royalty.

Hotel deLuxe is a contemporary tribute to Old Hollywood that tastefully balances art deco and art moderne styles, for a mix of timeless sophistication and serene comfort. The lobby is understated and elegant, with 1930s modern décor, original gilt moldings and crystal chandeliers. The focal point of the room is a large projected vintage film still that changes daily. All the design and detailing is based on the architectural and decorative arts of the 1920s through the 1940s. The hotel also gives a respectful nod to the filmmakers of the day and a historic stroll for guests: along the corridors of each of the eight floors are about 350 black-and-white photos of film stars, grouped by their legendary directors such as William Wyler, Ingmar Bergman and Frank Capra.

Although the era lends a certain old-fashioned glitz to the vibe of the hotel, it’s anything but stuffy, and rooms have clean contemporary lines and the latest in amenities. With buttery yellow walls, high ceilings, and abundance of windows they are modern and airy. Choose from king or queen deluxe rooms, premier suites, or go all out for the Marlene Dietrich Suite — which boasts the only circular bed in Portland, spanning eight feet across. The attentive but unobtrusive guest services include a “Make It So” button on the phone, from which guests can request anything from their choice of a dozen styles of pillow to their religious book of preference.

Facilities at the deLuxe are no less stunning than the rest of the hotel. In the swanky Driftwood Room bar, it seems entirely plausible that Frank Sinatra or Marilyn Monroe might saunter in while you sip your classic cocktail — I had the “Elizabeth Taylor”, their signature drink of champagne and crème de violette. The place is almost unbearably hip, and popular among Portland locals. Gracie’s Restaurant serves stylishly presented comfort food in an chic setting of white and gold walls, black upholstered seating and crystal chandeliers.

The downtown location is very good, blocks from the Pearl District and trolley and light-rail stations and within easy walking distance of numerous Portland attractions, shops and restaurants.

Features & Amenities:
• One-of-a-kind crystal lamps and original Hollywood photography
• Custom pillow-top mattresses and high thread-count duvets
• Oak work desks with wireless internet access
• Flat-panel televisions with HDTV and iPod docking stations
• 24-hour fitness room, business center and room service
• Meeting & Event rooms

Details:
Hotel deLuxe
729 SW 15th Avenue, Portland, OR
503.219.2094 or 866.895.2094

130 Rooms from $119-309
Pet-friendly rooms available

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