After enjoying a very nice breakfast at the Seattle Marriott Waterfront, we took a taxi to the King Street Station where we were to catch our train, the Coast Starlight, for the 4 1/2 hour trip to Portland. I made our reservations well in advance and was glad I did because this train, as well as all the others from Seattle to Portland on the day before Thanksgiving, were sold out well in advance. We were about 45 minutes late leaving because they discovered that the toilets in the staff car did not work and a new car had to be added to the train. We had very comfortable seats on the upper level. By the time they got to our car (where all passengers were getting off in Portland), there were no dining car reservations available. We ventured down to the "café" which was really just a snack bar and decided that the snacks we had with us would hold us over until we got to Portland. We took a taxi from Union Station to the Portland Marriott Downtown Waterfront. We were warmly greeted by Matt who upgraded us to a river view room. We were greeted with Thanksgiving themed cookies and chocolate basketballs (in honor of the PK80 tournament).
We enjoyed the cookies and our view! We decided to activate our Tri-Met Max 7-day passes and make a dry run to the Moda Center, one of the arenas in the Rose Quarter, where the Razorbacks would be playing their first tournament game against the University of Oklahoma on Thanksgiving Day. I qualified for the "Honored Citizen" pass (for those on Medicare) and my pass for 7 days only cost $7.50! A regular priced 7-day pass was only $26 and even though we only used the pass for 6 days, it still saved bikinchris a few dollars. It was about 1/3 of a mile to the red-line Max stop where we caught the train for the 7-8 minute ride to the Rose Quarter. When we returned to the hotel, we visited the M Lounge which was open 24/7. They served a variety of appetizers and individual stainless steel skillets of 2 entrees--chicken over mashed potatoes and an elk Bolognese. The appetizers remained the same throughout our stay (salad, roasted vegetables, raw vegetables, hummus, baked brie, cheese, crackers, rosemary potato bread, etc.);however, the entrée skillets changed each night. The lounge was quite busy, but appeared to handle the crowds without a problem.
The hotel was beautifully decorated and made me think more of a Renaissance property. The wall-hanging above our bed really appealed to us, as did a decorative assortment of bicycle wheels on a wall in the M Lounge.
We enjoyed a nice breakfast in the M Lounge on Thanksgiving morning before leaving for the Moda Center. Arkansas played the 2nd game, but we decided to attend the first game also. Each session ticket was for 2 games. We played North Carolina on Friday in the Veterans Memorial Arena, then returned to the Moda Center for our final game against UConn on Sunday.
We had a wonderful view of Mt. Hood one afternoon from our room.
In between basketball games, we rode the entire Pink Loop of the Portland Streetcar that took us on both sides of the river including crossing on the Tillikum Crossing Bridge that does not allow cars or trucks. We also went to the University of Portland Saturday Market.
We also went to lunch at Jake's Famous Crawfish, a McCormick and Schmicks restaurant, that was recommended to us by a friend. We tend to avoid a restaurant that thinks it can do justice to Cajun food; however, we decided to try Jake's since it was part of the McCormick and Schmicks chain and not a Cajun restaurant per se. I enjoyed blackened salmon.
We visited Powell's Books and could have spent the entire afternoon; however, we decided to return to the hotel and rest for a while so we could return to Pioneer Courthouse Square for the Christmas tree lighting. We decided to delay our departure until after the lighting because we thought the crowd would probably have dwindled. That was a wise decision.
We took Max to the airport on Monday morning. It was about a 35-minute ride. A truck had overturned on I-5 and was creating a traffic mess, so we were glad we could avoid that.
Our flight to Seattle was less than an hour. We were fortunate to be able to see the tops of Mt. Hood and Mt. St. Helens and would have seen the top of Mt. Ranier if we had been on the other side of the plane as we landed.
We stayed at the Seattle Airport Marriott on our last night. It is a property that is
receiving a much-needed renovation. The lounge is currently in temporary quarters
near the indoor pool area. We were told that one of the newly renovated floors should be opening in the next couple of weeks. Our check-in with Bella Rose was fine. In addition to the 500 arrival points we chose, she also gave us a $10 f&b credit which we used in the lounge where we split a sandwich. They also had snacks out on a table in the lobby along with warm apple cider. This should be a very nice property when the renovation is complete and very convenient to the airport where you also catch the Link train.
As you can tell, we had a wonderful Thanksgiving trip. If you have any particular questions about Seattle or Portland, I'd be happy to try to answer them.