McMenamins Kennedy School
This historic Portland, Oregon-area former elementary school dispenses with arithmetic and reading, endeavoring instead to educate its guests about beer, food and how to have a good time. Built in 1912, the once-abandoned building was renovated to create a cool, laid-back environment in keeping with the region it's located in.
This pet-friendly establishment offers a movie theater and several on-site restaurants and bars to quench the thirsts of whisky and craft beer enthusiasts. It even hosts Concordia Brewery, situated in the part of the school that used to function as the girls lavatory. The school also fancies itself an art gallery of sorts, featuring many modern and historic pieces throughout the hallways. The rooms in the main building still have the original chalkboards.
None of this would have been possible, had orders to demolish the previously condemned property been followed. Fortunately, the building was saved in the 11nth hour and has since been retooled and preserved for the enjoyment of visitors and locals alike [source: McMenamins]. Any "school" that produces kegs on-site gets an A-plus in my grade book!
Author's Note: 10 Strange Buildings Where You Can Spend the Night
I appreciate the amenities and comforts that many standard hotel chains have to offer. That said, I once had the opportunity to spend several nights in a small British castle, and I certainly remember much more about that experience than any other basic hotel stay.
- Quiz: Are you brave enough to face these haunted hotels?
- World's 10 Craziest Hotels
- How an Ice Hotel Works
- Top 10 Hotels That Will Scare the Daylights Out of You
- Pet-friendly Hotels Guide
More Great Links
- Arnold, Helen. "15 Romantic European Castle Hotels." CNN. Sept. 19, 2011 (June 18, 2015) http://www.cnn.com/2011/09/16/travel/romantic-castles/
- Doyle, Rachel B. "Three Years Ago, This Posh Hotel Was a Notorious Strip Club." Curbed. Nov. 24, 2014 (June 17, 2015) http://curbed.com/archives/2014/11/24/the-dean-hotel-before-and-after.php
- Grundhauser, Eric. "Hotel Casanus." 2015 (June 17, 2015) http://www.atlasobscura.com/places/hotel-casanus
- Hotel Arena. "Hotel Arena." 2015 (June 18, 2015) http://www.hotelarena.nl/en
- Liberty Hotel. "Boston Hotel." 2015 (June 17, 2015) http://www.libertyhotel.com/index.html
- Lighthouse Restorations. "Execution Rocks Lighthouse." 2015 (June 17, 2015) http://lighthouserestorations.org/Home.php
- McCulloch, Adam. "Seaventures Rig Resort, Pulau Mabul, Malaysia." Travel and Leisure. March 30, 2012 (June 17, 2015) http://www.travelandleisure.com/slideshows/worlds-most-unusual-hotels/15
- McMenamins. "Kennedy School." 2015 (June 18, 2015) http://www.mcmenamins.com/427-kennedy-school-home
- Parador. "Parador de Santo Estevo." 2015 (June 18, 2015) http://www.parador.es/en/paradores/parador-de-santo-estevo
- Roadtrippers. "Execution Rocks Lighthouse." 2015 (June 17, 2015) https://roadtrippers.com/us/sands-point-ny/points-of-interest/execution-rocks-lighthouse?lat=40.80972&lng=-96.67528&z=5
- Ruthin Castle. "Ruthin Castle – A Short History." 2015 (June 18, 2015) http://www.ruthincastle.co.uk/history/
- Savoia, Stephen. "Boston jail transforms into luxury hotel with restaurant called 'Clink.'" USA Today. Nov. 8, 2007 (June 17, 2015) http://usatoday30.usatoday.com/travel/destinations/2007-11-08-boston-jail-hotel_N.htm
- Seaventures Dive. "About the Rig." 2015 (June 17, 2015) http://seaventuresdive.com/about-seaventures-dive-rig/
- Syz, Francesca. "Hotels in former monasteries: four of the best." Travel. 2015 (June 18, 2015) http://www.telegraph.co.uk/travel/hotels/6016523/Four-of-the-best-hotels-in-former-monasteries.html
- The Dean Hotel. "The Dean Hotel." 2015 (June 17, 2015) https://thedeanhotel.com/
- United States Coast Guard. "Execution Rocks Lighthouse." 2015 (June 17, 2015) http://www.uscg.mil/d1/antNewYork/lighthouses/ExecutionRocks.asp
- Unusual Hotels of the World. "About Casanus." 2015 (June 17, 2015) http://www.unusualhotelsoftheworld.com/casanus
- Villisca Ax Murder House. "The Official Website for the Villisca Ax Murder House." 2015 (June 16, 2015) http://www.villiscaiowa.com/index.php
- World Wildlife. "Coral Triangle." 2015 (June 17, 2015) https://www.worldwildlife.org/places/coral-triangle
HowStuffWorks visits Machu Picchu to find out the story behind this fabled abandoned city and how Hiram Bingham introduced it to a wider world.