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Green grid: Popping with farmers' markets, locavore restaurants, and organic microbreweries, Portland has become the West Coast hub for the young and sustainability-minded. Much of the city's success is due to thoughtful urban planning that started long before being green was hip (Portland recognized global warming as a threat in 1993). Call it antisprawl, with a dose of contrarianism: Starting in the 1970s, Portland bucked the suburban trend and encouraged density within its city bounds, protected surrounding farmland, and developed one of America's best urban bike-path networks and a web of public transit to keep cars at bay.
Living city: For a slice of what makes Portland such a vital place, put on your walking shoes and get down to the Pearl District. The area's former warehouses have been recycled into bustling art galleries, boutiques like Parallel and Cielo, and plenty of farm-to-table restaurants. Taking it a step further, there is Forest Park's 5,000 acres of Pacific wilderness and the adjacent Washington Park, which encapsulates the city zoo and Rose Garden.
Sustainable stay: The 221-room Hotel Monaco pairs lighthearted decor—a mix of stripes, plaids, and polka dots—with a serious commitment to conserving energy, reducing waste, and using recycled and eco-friendly products throughout the hotel.
506 S.W. Washington
Tel: 503 222 0001