Thursday, November 1, 2012

What type of tour are you looking for?

Bites By Bike

This is a fun tour hosted by Pedal Bike Tours.  It runs from November 2, 2012- February 14, 2013.  The ride begins at 9:00 am and ends at 12:30 pm, with the cost ranging between $18.00-$69.00.  Highlights of this 3 1/2 hour tour include touring a coffee roaster, sampling artisan cheeses and fresh made bread, mouth-watering cookies made with seasonal ingredients, house made soda made with local berries, pizza with seasonal toppings and a celebrated chocolate shop.  All of this done in true Portland fashion by bicycle. For more information contact-

Pedal Bike Tours
133 SW 2nd Ave
Portland, Oregon 97204

Portland Walking Tours-Daily!

Grab those walking shoes, while discovering Portland's amazing culinary scene.  Taste the foods, sip the drinks and meet the artisans and vendors in their shops.

On the "Epicurean Excursion," experience first hand how Portland's locavore philosophy is driving the city's exciting food scene.

Foodie's explode when you hit "Flavor Street" where you can sip nibble, and taste your way through the local food cart scene.  Portlanders swarm the 400+ tasting trucks dotting the cityscape, offering flavors temptations from African to Venezuelan and Maine to Malibu.

Indulge in the diversity of chocolate on the "Chocolate Decadence" tour: beans, bars, whipped, truffles, cocktails, melted, served as a drink, and some great surprises.
For more information go to-

Food Carts Portland

Locals from various places and committed food loving tourists from all over know that some of the best food to be had in any city is to be had at small street stands, carts, and other non-restaurant restaurants.

Portland has a proliferation of Food Carts and they seem to be growing in numbers and locations all over the city.  They are lunch wagon, taco trucks & snack shakes, they are a Portland phenomenon.  The offerings you find will make you feel like you just did the amazing race.  This is global dining at it's simplest. 
For more information formation go to- 

Monday, September 10, 2012

What's Your Ride?

Celebrating 25 Years Cycle Oregon 2012  

This years Anniversary ride will live up to the occasion.  A paradise ride for the cyclist.  They will begin in far off Bly, Oregon riding two days through a country side that is wide open, beautiful and has more birds then cars.  The ride will climb to the rim of majestic Crater Lake.  Traverse Southern Oregon's high country past alpine lakes, pine forests and lush meadows.  Dropping down into Ashland, home to the famous Shakespearean Festival where they will relax for a couple of days and enjoy the culture of this charming town.  Then off to the Klamath Basin full of wildlife and photo opportunities.  The ride will finish where it began in Bly.  A fun loving mix of back-road riding and two-wheeled tent revival moving from town to town with 2000 riders.  The best way to sum up Cycle Oregon might be through the honorary title riders have bestowed upon it:
The Best Ride in America.


Vespa Portland

Paul and Maggy Henry are proud to be the owners of Portland's largest scooter dealership.  They invite you to feel like a kid again.  Get on your scooter and ride.  I own a Vespa ET2 which I have ridden for eight years.  Last Friday Maggy invited me to join them and twenty-five of their scooter clients and friends for a group ride.  I had never done a ride like this so I accepted.  On Sunday I found myself zooming through the West Hills of Portland in a caravan of colorful scooters both old & new.  We even had a darling couple in a green side-car.  Off we traveled out Skyline Blvd into the country side.  We dropped down onto Sauvies Island and snaked our way around the island, through corn fields and cows.  I was beginning to feel like I was on vacation.  We stopped at a farm stand for a bite of lunch.  Then back on our scooters into the hills and back down to NW 23rd.  It was a perfect ride, a vacation without getting on a plane.  All I can say is  get on your scooter and ride.  If you need one please go visit Maggy & Paul my friends at Vespa Portland.
Call 503-222-3779 for all your scooter questions

The Pendleton Round-Up

This is one of the largest and well know Rodeos in North America.  The entire town gets involved in this annual four-day competition and pageant.  This years 102nd Rodeo begins September 9th when more than 50,000 rodeo enthusiasts flood this small community.  The colorfully painted stadium has plenty room for locals and visitors.  About 700 cowboys and hundreds of animals compete in the annual rodeo.  The Umatilla tribes play an important role in the annual Round-Up.  They have been known to set up over 300 tepees directly behind the stadium beside the Umatilla River.  The competitions range from saddle and bareback brone riding, calf roping, team roping, steer roping and wrestling, bull riding and barrel racing.  There are also parades, parties, banquets and musical performances.
So grab your boots and Cowboy up.

Sunday, February 12, 2012

The Heart Stopping Columbia Gorge

The Skamania Lodge

Noted as one of the most popular resorts in the region, Skamania Lodge is nestled in the midst of a year-round recreational area, the Columbia River Gorge National Scenic Area.  The Gorge stretches about 90 miles in length across the many Cascade Range Volcanoes.  It is encompassed by such famous volcanoes as Mt. Adams, towering at 12,276', Mt St Helens at 8,364' and Oregon's tallest volvano, Mt Hood at 11,239'.

For the outdoor enthusiast, the area offers hiking, climbing, biking, whitewater rafting, windsurfing, kayaking and salmon, steelhead and sturgeon fishing. 

Other activities include: scenic drives on the Columbia Gorge Scenic Highway.  One of my personal favorites is to travel up the Oregon side to Hood River take the toll bridge across to the Washington side and head west where you will find the Skamania Lodge.

It is the perfect weekend getaway, pack a small bag and go.  The Lodge is very romantic, with beautiful rooms, fine dining, great spa & golf course.  It will refresh your spirit and enlighten your soul.

El Rio Texicantina

One of my favorite restaurants in the heart of Stevenson, Washington next to the Skamania County Courthouse.  The cuisine has the flavors of Texas, New Mexico and Northern Mexico.  Rich sauces, house smoked meats, everything made from scratch.  Whether it's the Seafood Enchiladas (yum), Smoked Pork Chili Verde or Handmade Fresh Chili Rellenos, their menu has something creative and delicious for every taste.  The Bar is inspired guessed it..Tequila with 36 different labels.

Next Stop Dog Mountain

Get ready for a work out, because this is a streuous hike.  Dog Mountain trail is located in the scenic Columbia Gorge, near Bingen Washington.  The trailhead is on the north side of Washington State Highway 14 at milepost 53.  Twelve miles east from Bridge of the Gods.  This popular trail provides two options for hikers.  The trail forks, giving hikers the option of heading north on the more direct route to the summit, but very steep.  The other option is to head right (east) which provides sweeping views and a more gradual climb.  You will see wildflowers, views of both Mt Hood and Mt St Helens, and the personal satisfaction that you made it to the top of 2,984 ft. Dog Mountain.  Be cautious of poison oak and rattlesnakes.

Saturday, November 5, 2011

Portland's Holiday Scene

Here are a few classic Holiday Happenings not to be missed.

The Christmas Ship Parade

The 2011 Christmas Ship Parade is in it's 57th year.  The Christmas Ship fleet averages about 55 to 60 boats between the two Columbia and Willamette fleets.  Both fleets will be out every night for two weeks beginning December 8, 2011 and running nightly through December 20, 2011.  The fleet will do a special performance in Camas, Washington on December 3, 2011.  As this is a volunteer organization not all boats make it out every night.  If you haven't seen the parade it is a delight, so bundle up grab some friends and pick a river.  This has always been a part of my Holiday Traditions.

16th Annual Holiday Ale Festival

This year's event will be Wednesday, November 30 - Sunday, December 4, 2011.
The winter season holds many gifts for beer lovers in the form of big, bold ales designed to fend off the cold chill of a long winter's night.  Each year, the Holiday Ale Festival annually gathers up dozens of these winter warmers for a joyous five-day celebration.  As a result, this quintessential Portland event has earned a reputation as the premier winter beer tasting venue on the West Coast.

Held in the heart of downtown Portland. the Holiday Ale Festival keeps attendees warm and dry under a large clear top tent that covers Pioneer Courthouse Square while allowing for views of the city lights.  Gas heaters create a cozy ambiance under the boughs of the regions largest decorated Christmas trees.

More than 40 plus breweries will be featured at this year's event, all of which are created specifically to bring warmth and cheer to the holiday season.  These aren't beers you'll find in the supermarket- these brewers have put together special recipes just for the Holiday Ale Festival.  From Belgians and Barley wines to Porters and Stouts, these beers are rich, robust and full of complex flavors.  There will be 12 plus special tapping's in celebration of the festivals 16th anniversary.

Come hoist a pint and toast to the spirits of the season.

The Tree Lighting Ceremony

On the day after Thanksgiving Portlanders will gather at Pioneer Courthouse Square to celebrate the official start of the season by lighting the spectacular 75 foot Tree provided by Stimson Lumber Company.  This years event will feature a holiday sing-a-long featuring  my favorite Pink Martini, members of the Oregon Symphony, and the Pacific Youth Choir.  With a big tree, lots of lights and a great community sing-a-long this is an event you won't want to miss.  We all have a little Who-ville in us so grab your mittens.

Saturday, July 16, 2011

The Pearl District

Grab your comfortable shoes and head to The Pearl.

First Stop..............the 10 year Celebration of The Portland Streetcar. 
August 12,2011
Jamison Square
There will be local vendors, things for the kid's, entertainment & food.  It should be a fun celebration of one of Portland's popular rides. 

For All the Foodies Out There
Stop by my favorite cooking school and delight in all that you will see.  In Good Taste located in the Pearl was there long before it became such a chic neighborhood.  You can sign up for Cooking Classes or just browse the collection of cookbooks & hand-selected Northwest Wines.  On July 22, 2011 12:00PM-July 23, 2011 6:00PM  Eat Your Berries!-The Oregon Berry Festival will have all of their yummy goodies in the Ecotrust Building at NW 10th & Johnson.


Too Many Emails & Not Enough Stamps
Doesn't it make you smile when you open the mailbox to a lovely hand written note from a friend.  I try to practice the art of sending simple notes to friends for selfish reasons.  I hope they will send one back.  One of my favorite shops in the Pearl is Oblation Papers & Press, a 19th century print shop designing wedding invitations for the 21st century.  The quality is exceptional and defined by simplicity and style.  You can explore the history and romance of their old-world process in their urban paper mill, letterpress print shop, and retail boutique.  They also have a beautiful collection of writing pens, fine papers, artful cards and ephemera.

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Nob Hill The Place To Be

If you haven't checked out the trendy shops and restaurants on NW 23rd street you are missing out.  This wonderful little stretch is ideal for a little afternoon you time.  I love to ride my vespa down and spend a couple of hours exploring my favorite spots.

The Blush Beauty Bar is at the top of my list.  Owner Deborah Haynes has created a pink paradise of beauty products and treatments.  Unlike most Cosmetic shops here you can dab & spray to your hearts content.  Testers are available on many products with clever little tags saying "try me".  You feel a little like Alice before she leaps down the rabbit hole.  Deborah also has the most wonderful staff ready to help you with any beauty questions you have.
A couple of my favorite treatments-
Shirley Temple for all the girls who want to twirl 30-minute make-up for a special occasion. $30  My daughters love this one.
Fuzzy Navel  Beautiful brows.  Brows styled via wax or threading, tweeze and trim by one of their experts. $20
Sidecar  Anti-aging eye treatment.  Technologically advanced ingredients such as hexapeptides and pentapeptides will help smooth fine lines, de-puff and diminish dark circles. $12
Vita Tonic  MDT5 vitamin infusion for radiant skin.  Patented technology, MDT5 carries 6 highly engineered vitamins deep into the skin's cell receptors.  For any skin type or condition, this treatment will rejuvenate cells, repair damage and deliver dramatic, visible results. $50
Stop by the Blush Bar "where vanity comes to play"

Besaws  A wonderful cafe for breakfast, lunch or dinner.  This Portland favorite has a cozy atmosphere and a delicious menu.  Two of my favorite's The Cobb Salad and The Caesar Salad are healthy and delicious.  If you need some yummy comfort food order the Original Mac- mac and cheese even better than Grandma's.

Zelda's Shoe Bar  A popular upscale womens shoe boutique that features a covet-worthy collection of the latest styles from European shoe designers.  Zelda's has been around since 1994.  Owner Libby Hartung founded Zelda's Shoe Bar, her goal was to find quality shoes that make the women wearing them feel amazing.  She likes shoes that get noticed, shoes that set a woman apart from the crowd.
According to Zelda- A must have for Spring 2011-The Neutral Shoe
Whether you pair them with a crisp white ensemble ala Michael Kors, bright spring florals or your favorite pair of jeans, a neutral shoe adds the perfect finishing touch to your spring wardrobe.  Stop by Zelda's and check out these fabulous neutrals-
Bettye Muller "Katy" Espadrille
Bettye Muller "Sage"
Coclico "Morphos" Flatform

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Stylish Downtown Hotel, Spring Shopping & Sexy, Delicious, Saucebox

If your looking for a wonderful hotel where style and comfort converge, then you need to stay at Hotel Lucia.  A sylish hotel situated in the heart of downtown Portland, the Hotel Lucia offers a unique alternative to all other Portland hotels.  Guests enjoy the personalized  service and lavish hotel amenities that have earned the Hotel Lucia Portland a spot among the world's best hotels.  Inside, experience cutting-edge design and unsurpassed comfort.  Venture outside and be at the epicenter of all Portland has to offer.  Enjoy the Pulitzer-prize winning Photographer David Hume Kennerly's work as you stroll through the corridors and lobby.................The Hotel Lucia is one of my personal Portland favorites.

Feeling a little Playful.......................let's head to Mario's
This spring, fashion's in a good mood at Mario's.  They just celebrated their 50th Anniversary, what a milestone.  If you haven't visited Mario's,  they have an amazing staff.  The 2011 spring collections offer fresh wearable fashion that evokes confidence and makes you happy.  Make sure you stop by and take a peek at Mario's jewelry & watches.  One of my favorite designers Temple St. Clair is there.  Last but certainly not least their fabulous handbags & accessories..................Prada, Lanvin, Brunello Cucinelli, Oliver Peoples Sunglasses and more...................Oh la la, it is Spring at Mario's.

My favorite Portland yummy spot..........Established in 1995, Saucebox has maintained it's reputation in the city as the place for the finest in pan-asian and pacific island cuisine with it's insider vibe and unique presence.  Unforgettable dishes and innovative cocktails have given Saucebox national notoriety in the New York Times, Bon Apetit, Travel & Leisure and The Wall Street Journal-but it's local attention and accoulades like being honored as "Restaurant of the Year" in 1998 that make Saucebox a landmark of the Portland restaurant and lounge scene.