Salem has a handful of B&Bs, but its lodgings are largely mid-priced chain hotels clustered east of I-5 at Exit 252 south of downtown.
The choice spot to stay is the downtown Phoenix Grand Hotel (201 Liberty St. SE, 503/540-7800 or 877/540-7800, www.phoenixgrandhotel.com, $149 and up), an elegant hotel and conference center with large, nicely furnished guest rooms and a good restaurant.
Don’t confuse this with the Phoenix Inn (4370 Commercial St., 503/588-9220, www.phoenixinnsuites.com, $109 and up) near I-5, which is also an OK place to stay, with “mini-suites” with microwaves and refrigerators as well as access to exercise and spa facilities.
Also reasonable is the Best Western Mill Creek Inn (3125 Ryan Dr. SE, 503/585-3332 or 800/346-9659, www.bestwestern.com/millcreekinn, $121 and up), with large rooms and a range of amenities comparable to those found at the Phoenix Inn, plus a free shuttle service to the Salem Airport and Amtrak as well as an included breakfast at a nearby Denny’s.
If you don’t mind staying a little ways north of town, the Hopewell House B&B (22350 Hopewell Rd. NW, 503/868-7848, www.hopewellbb.com, $145 and up) is a good place to relax in a newer B&B with lodging in cottages with kitchens, hot tubs, and a rural setting.
If you’re looking for more modestly priced accommodations, try the Travelodge (1555 State St., 503/581-2466, $62 and up). It’s nothing fancy, but it is very clean and convenient.
by Judy Jewell and W. C. McRae from Moon Oregon, 8th Edition, © Elizabeth & Mark Morris and Avalon Travel