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“Gracious and comfortable”
Review of Benson Hotel

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Benson Hotel
Ranked #17 of 140 Hotels in Portland
Certificate of Excellence
Illinois
Level Contributor
7 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
“Gracious and comfortable”
Reviewed 12 July 2011

A grand hotel, perfect in demeanor, always friendly, the Queen Mother of hotels. A lobby that really is a lobby---half jazz bar, half gentleman's club reading room--with grand sofas and huge old chandeliers and mirrors and a little leather-topped desk tucked in a corner in case you need to dash off a note to someone. Service is outstanding, friendly without being familiar, and intelligent. Well placed for a perfect morning: breakfast at Fuller's Coffee Shop on 9th Street, then up a couple of blocks to Powell's City of Books. Shuttle from airport was fast and friendly.

  • Stayed July 2011, travelled solo
    • Value
    • Sleep Quality
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Momster66
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Rating summary
  • Location
  • Sleep Quality
  • Rooms
  • Service
  • Value
  • Cleanliness
Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (435)
Date | Rating
  • Chinese (Traditional) first
  • Chinese (Simplified) first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Japanese first
  • Portuguese first
  • Russian first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
San Diego, California
Level Contributor
82 reviews
9 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 71 helpful votes
Reviewed 7 July 2011

Being from out-of-town and never having visited Portland before, we were made aware of this hotel on the advice of the Portland Japanese Garden. We were pleasantly surprised at the quality of this traditional hotel and the very resonable prices. This hotel has a rich history, and still has the original woodwork. The rare wood used in the paneling and decorations was purchased from the Czar of Russia. Take a close look while you are sipping a drink in the bar and listening to the jazz combo. The lobby is of museum quality.

The staff was friendly and helpful. We had a nice talk with the bellhop, who gave us a mini-tour of the lobby. The location downtown is super, and allows you to walk to many attractions. In addition, Portland has excellent public transportation. We decided that we did not need to rent a car (good choice). The room was comfortable and larger than many modern hotels that we have stayed in. It was quiet and good sleeping.

The restaurant was good, but very expensive.

Note: this is not your modern hotel-with-disco-and-pool experience. This is an old-fashioned hotel experience that is a real treat, and one that is becoming more and more rare.

  • Stayed May 2011, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Sleep Quality
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank pontevecchio56
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Level Contributor
18 reviews
10 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 13 helpful votes
Reviewed 30 June 2011

I was excited to visit this hotel but my expectations were not met! I would say its an easy 3 star but not 4 that a lot of websites claim!

When we arrived, we had to wait 5 minutes in the car for valet to approach us. They actually took the car that arrived after me, first. The valet guy did not have welcoming attitude. Just a guy doing his job I guess.

We checked in and went to our room. It was still being worked on by house cleaning. Headed back downstairs and was sent to another room. Did not even offer us free breakfast for the inconvenience! When we did finally get our 2nd room, the shower was clogged. I had to take a shower with my feet dipped in like 5 inches of water. Called front desk for another room and upgrade. Told the rooms were all booked and still did not offer us anything for inconvenience!

There is also no movie ordering on the tv. Even motel 6 offers movies you can buy! Would not heat our sake due to health regulation codes!!! I'm so fed up just writing this! Don't staff ever take ownership anymore?!

Good stuff : el gaucho restaurant.
Fast elevators.
Morning valet crew, as opposed to evening.

When I mentioned my experience at check out, the front desk did comp my valet so I feel a little better. Would I return? Probably not.

  • Stayed June 2011
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank txeinsi
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Nashville, Tennessee
Level Contributor
10 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
Reviewed 24 June 2011

Staying here now.

i booked through Hotwire, and reading the reviews on multiple sites, I was expecting a rundown vestige of yesteryear. I was pleasantly surprised.

The bed and room are clean and very spacious and comfortable. I put it on par with a Westin probably a bit better. The lobby and the lobby bar are beautiful. Lots of beautiful wood and brass that does indeed hearken back to a earlier era.

The location simply can't be beat - close to premium shopping and The Pearl

So why only 4 stars?

I ding it for the following reasons:

1. The woman we met when we first tried to check in (her name tag had Missula, MT on it) was extremely rude. She couldn't check us in because our room wasn't ready - which I understand, but her delivery was terrible - so snooty. Then she told us that we were booked in to a double queen. I asked her politely "well can you see if..." She interrupted "No we're sold out." I then tried again politely "Can you at least look to see if there's a king available." She made no attempt to even budge: "we're sold out" The words and lack of effort was bad enough... the snooty, snobby delivery made it 5x worse.

--- I should note that when our room was ready a couple of hours later we checked in with a lady whose name tag said Washington D.C. on it. She was very nice and when I asked her if there was a King available went to work busily with her keyboard and a couple of minutes later whispered... I found a King for you. Voila - was that so hard? Her effort was much appreciated.

So what else dings the Benson:

2. Only 2 towels in the bathroom - and the towels were a bit thin.

3. Parking is outrageous at $29.00/night

Overall, though a great experience.

Room Tip: Don't talk to the lady from Missoula, MT.
See more room tips
  • Stayed June 2011, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Sleep Quality
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank JoWall22
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Salem, Oregon
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed 23 June 2011

Between the unbelievably loud alarm system which went off in the middle of the night for at least a 1/2 hour, the repeated notifications it was a false alarm and no need to exit, and the extremely loud, obnoxious guests in the hallway, sleep at this hotel was, needless to say, elusive. No apologies from the front desk the following day was the icing on the cake. Will never stay here again.

  • Stayed July 2010, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Sleep Quality
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank pwang17
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Kirkland, Washington
Level Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed 20 June 2011

We were very impressed with the Benson Hotel and thought it should have a slightly higher rating. Great location, helpful staff and very elegant lobby. It's an old restored hotel so the rooms are expectedly a bit cramped but not so much that it was annoying, and they were very well equipped. The only gripe as with all downtown hotels was the only parking was valet at $29 per night plus tip. I would come back here again. Oh, we loved the beds. Very comfortable.

  • Stayed June 2011, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Sleep Quality
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank johnMeyr
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Salem, Oregon
Level Contributor
79 reviews
22 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 83 helpful votes
Reviewed 15 June 2011

My husband and I did an impromptu overnight at the Benson Hotel, scoring a great deal on a Junior Suite that included valet parking and a credit at their restaurant. It was the off season (think rain) for Portland, hence the special package. I haven't stayed at the Benson for over 10 years, and at that time I remember it feeling aged, and lacking that special flare. So, we had low expectations going in and were just excited to spend a night in the city.

I was very satisfied with our room. The Junior Suite is quite spacious and has a complete living area, a very comfortable bed and adequate bathroom. I love the vintage ceilings, moulding and double-hung windows at the Benson. Our room had a fresh coat of paint (as evidenced by a piece of masking tape that had been left behind), vintage fixtures, plush furniture and bed coverings. The bathroom is old and on the small side, but that's what you get in a hotel from this era. Overall, it was clean and quiet and we had a great time.

We would recommend it to friends and we would go back ourselves...though we love to try new places so we probably won't.

Sadly, I would skip the restaurant downstairs (The London Grill). There's just something funky about a restaurant in the basement with no windows. The food, though lovely and artfully plated, is extremely expensive...and I'm not one to complain about price for a great meal. There's just too many fantastic places to dine within walking distance to settle for just okay.

  • Stayed February 2011, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank dollface-30
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Benson Hotel

Property: Benson Hotel
Address: 309 Southwest Broadway, Portland, OR 97205-3794
Phone Number:
Region: United States > Oregon > Portland > Downtown
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Centre with Internet Access Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Suites Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #17 of 140 Hotels in Portland
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££
Hotel Class:4 star — Benson Hotel 4*
Number of rooms: 287
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Classic Landmark Hotel located in heart of business & financial district. ... more   less 
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