This is the only motel probably within a 50 mile radius and is conveniently halfway into a short loop through the central Cascades. So it would probably get business even if it was less than nice. But the Darrington Inn is lovely and a wonderful experience, for an incredibly reasonable price. Our room was huge, with a comfortable queen bed with nice bedding, even a handmade quilt, a table with two chairs, a desk, two upholstered chairs, a minifridge, coffeemaker and microwave. I liked that the sink vanity was outside the bath so two people could use the facilities more easily. The room had sliding glass doors leading out to a patio and yard with picnic tables and a view from the bed of a snow capped peak framed against the blue sky. The owner/hostess of the Inn is a very talented painter and the room was decorated with charming designs -- the headboard was a panoramic landscape of people hiking and biking in a mountain meadow and there were floral and hummingbird designs handpainted on the walls.
Shortly after we awoke in the morning, the hostess called our room to invite us to breakfast in the lobby. She served us fresh waffles with homemade rhubarb-strawberry sauce, turkey bacon, toast and juice -- a nice surprise we did not expect. I imagine she can only do this when there are few people staying (I think there were only 3 parties there that night). The little bistro tables in the lobby are also decorated with her wonderful illustrations of the region and numerous framed paintings cover the walls as well. She also has a pair of "life"sized Sasquatch creatures (male and female) painted on the side of the motel that you can take a photo of to "prove" you've spotted the elusive legend.
We stayed as a couple but this would be an excellent option for a family with kids, having such a spacious room and the nice outdoor space for them to blow off steam.
You can walk a few steps to the local grocery store, which was handy to get some snacks for packing hiking lunches. We even made dinner in our room with the microwave, since we checked in too late to find a restaurant open.
It was a great overnight stay -- we would have loved to linger but had to get back to Seattle for our flight home and couldn't stay longer. But we plan to go back to the area next year to explore some more and this would be my first choice for an extended "base camp".