The designer of the original Arthur Hotel was John V Bennes, a Portland architect who designed many famous buildings in the early 1900's over twenty of which are on the National Register of Historic Places. The hotel first began welcoming guests in 1912. In an except from "Frozen Music: A History of Portland Architecture", the authors, Gideon Bosker + Lena Lencek, write this about The Arthur: "A versatile and hard-to-pin down stylist, Bennes shifted gears again with his designs for The Arthur Hotel (1912), the Hamilton Hotel (1913), and Kidder Hall (1917) at OSU in Corvallis... With Tuscan columns flanking the entrance, crisp yellow brickwork, and terra cotta panels decorated with wreaths, cartouches and pineapple motifs, The Arthur Hotel was a restrained, carefully embellished addition to the city's growing collection of buildings designed in a classical style."
Between 1905 and 1913 a massive construction boom was taking place in Portland. A combination of the Lewis & Clark Exposition in 1905 and the completion of the great northern railroad brought many new visitors to Portland. The Arthur Hotel was one of the brand new establishments built to welcome the influx. Now, over a hundred years later, many of its original charms remain intact.
In the renovation process we were careful to retain much of the original charm of the building while bringing some of the hidden features to life by exposing brick walls, sturdy wood beams, and hardwood floors. Faded paint was updated with new vibrant colors while keeping the transom windows above the doors. We got rid of the old fashioned communal bathrooms in favor of a newly added private bathroom for each unit. In addition, each unit has new design and lighting elements from fixtures to elegant hideaway beds that incorporate storage, a table, and a comfy bed all in one compact piece of furniture.
We kept the all the plaster detail work in the lobby and added two other communal lounges as well as a huge communal kitchen, that includes dual ovens and refrigerators.
The original streetcar system in Portland centered on a loop which circled around Washington and Morrison streets helping to define the area as the major commercial hub of the day. The Arthur Hotel was strategically located within this loop thereby ensuring easy access for any traveler of the day. Today's modern streetcar line has a stop just outside The Arthur's front door, continuing the tradition of easy access to the city's transportation system. To further encourage eco-friendly transportation, we created bike parking for 50 bikes with a lighted bicycle entrance and bicycle fix-it station.
The Pineapple motif on The Arthur's facade was originally intended as a symbol of warm, welcoming hospitality. Come meet our professional management team and see how we make a point of carrying forward this tradition.