Since its 1915 opening, this historic elementary school has been a beloved fixture of its Northeast Portland neighborhood. McMenamins renovated the once-abandoned scholastic gem and turned it into Portland’s most unique hotel. Here you’ll find 57 comfy guestrooms with private baths and telephones (some fashioned from former classrooms complete with original chalkboards and cloakrooms – others with an author’s theme), a restaurant, multiple small bars, a movie theater, soaking pool, gift shop and a brewery (just wait until the principal hears about this!). Extensive original artwork and historical photographs cover the walls, ceilings, doorways and hallways.
- Spa / Hot Tub,
- Pet Friendly,
- Family Friendly,
- Restaurant / Lounge,
- Handicap Accessible,
- Air Conditioning,
- Bike Parking,
- Complimentary Water,
- Public Restroom,
Virtual reality is almost as good as being there.
TripAdvisor Ratings & Reviews
Eclectic art and a great place to wander
The unexpected seems to be around every corner. There are lots of nooks an crannies with murals, mosaics, and just odd and interesting things to explore. This was my only visit to the Kennedy School. We wandered and after lunch at the Courtyard Restaurant, we wandered some more. The place is historic and a feast for the eyes. The lunch, however, was disappointing as it was not really worth feasting on. Our lunches, sounded great from the menu. They took a very long time to arrive and were just "o.k." when they did. The cold items were room temperature and the items which should have been hot were tepid.
Great place to visit
To be clear we did not spend the night here, just an hour or so browsing, what a great idea to convert a school into an event center and hotel. We walked around for about 45 minutes and checked out the sites. The soaking tub was amazing and the theater quite large. Gift shop was reasonable and the restaurants and bars were quite busy. We sat and people watched near the back entrance which was enlightening. A little pricey but the rooms are huge and the ability to have everything under one roof is amazing. Next time i will stay here and give you the details as a guest rather than an onlooker
Stayed here two nights November 22 -24, 2019, room #130 -Joe Cotter room. Our room was big, king size bed, table, bathroom (shower only) but honestly too cold. The room had a small space heater available which was way too small to heat the room. We had the heater on 72 degrees the entire length of our stay and the room temperature didn't get above 68 degrees. As well as the rooms, the Boiler Room bar is cold so wear warm clothing or bring blankets with you. The soaking pool looks nice but so full of parents with their small children it appeared less than appealing. Like all McMenamin's classic hotels, they are wonderful but be are aware of both summer and winter months when you book your stay.
Dog Friendly and totally enjoyable.
We drove from San Francisco, and it took 20 hours. Both I-5 and the 101 were shut down for weather blockages, and we had to wait. but it was a welcome arrival at 3:00AM, and the hotel agreed to extend out stay and waive the arrival night. Unfortunately, when we checked out, they reversed the waiver, and even though they acknowledged the agreement, they saiid the manager had over-ruled it. A bummer to what was an otherwise pleasant stay.
GREAT! If you are warm blooded or visiting during warm weather
Important point to this review: It was 28-30 degrees outside the weekend of our stay. The various McMenamins properties tend to be well managed and have a number of unique spaces, bars, etc.. that set them apart in delightful ways. Kennedy School is no exception. I LOVE that the brothers wanted to convert their old school into a hotel. Great idea! Highlights from my wife and I spending a weekend there: Two unique tiny bars with wood burning stoves in them that were themed round "detention" or "honors" and different types of music. They were warm and cozy. We had dinner in the Boiler room bar which had several gaming spaces and a unique decorating design, etc.. Each bar or space had thoughtful touches that set apart from the others. The soaking pool was clearly very warm as it was packed and is a nice perk - although we did not use it. I've held corporate meetings there and seen a movie there on different occasions and always been happy with the experience. We had breakfast delivered to our room and there was no upcharge for this and it was delivered as expected on time. Interesting unique art that was related to the history of the property throughout. We have the McMenamins passport book too and had fun gathering stamps for it, which meant we earned a prize at check out! Cons: McMenamins, I assume in order to save on $ and complexity offers the same menu in almost all of its taverns and bars in the Portland area. If you enjoy going to them it can get a little repetitive. It'd be nice to see even a few unique to that bar specials more often (some DO have this... but many do not.) Biggest issue from our stay:IT WAS FREEZING IN THE HOTEL Every space except the two bars with stoves and the soaking pool was quite chilly. My wife is easily chilled and she had to move around the property bundled up. Even our room only had one smaller space heater to use to warm it. It never got the room above 68, and it took a few hours to get it to that temperature. I would never plan to spend the night there again during the winter due to our experience. I'd happily visit for an evening to use the soaking pool or one of the wood stove bars, with the idea that we'd need to "work" to keep warm.