If you’re like me, the vacation isn’t complete without our dogs. They are members of our family and we are delighted to see them come out and travel with us. If you think taking your dog for a walk is a boring time with substandard housing, think again! These are the seven best places to welcome your puppy and provide top notch fun, rest and relaxation.
1. Wanderlust in the desert
Remotely located in the Wallowa Mountains of eastern Oregon, the Minam River Lodge welcomes dogs with a box of high-quality dog food, pet bowls, and a comfy pet bed in comfortable rooms. luxury cabins dotting the landscape. There are plenty of hiking trails and outdoor activities to keep dogs and humans busy. As there is no access to Wi-Fi or technology and no television in the room, it is an opportunity to disconnect from the outside world and reconnect with nature and the beautiful animals that reside in the Eagle Cap Wilderness.
Foodies will enjoy meals prepared by Chef Sean, who worked at Jean Georges New York and was sous chef to James Beard Award winner Vitaly Paley in Portland. Dinners are a special occasion with guests having deep conversation with each other and music playing in the background as the sun sets on another day. To get to the lodge, guests can opt for an 8.5-mile hike with Fido, charter a plane, or ride a horse.
2. Off the beaten track (Bingen, WA)
The Society Hotel Bingen in Washington State offers visitors a truly off-the-beaten-path experience for dog owners and non-dog owners alike, attracting solo travelers, couples, and families. Nestled in the beautiful Columbia River Gorge National Scenic Area in the Pacific Northwest, the renovated Bingen School was originally built in 1908 and then rebuilt in 1937 by the Civilian Conservation Corps in an effort to maintain its historical preservation.
The cabins at Society Hotel Bingen are ideal for families and couples who wish to prepare their own meals during their trip, with a refrigerator and hot plate in each space. They also offer budget guest rooms in the main school building. The Spa & Bathhouse has a saltwater swimming pool, sauna, hot tub and cold tub, as well as massage rooms and a spa cafe. The open space brings renewal and relaxation for active travelers.
Head to the Ferment Brewing Company in Hood River for a lunch of hearty burgers, fries, and kombucha, which is the specialty of the modern brewery. Designed from a passion for fermentation, the restaurant offers beers and kombuchas using local ingredients whenever possible. Well behaved dogs are allowed in their open dining area overlooking the Columbia River.
Info: fermentbrewing.com; thesocietyhotel.com/bingen.
3. Base camp in Bend
In 2020, Bend, Oregon was named one of the nation’s fastest growing cities. Not only does Bend offer a plethora of outdoor activities, but it’s also very dog friendly. Store owners always leave bowls of water aside for passing dogs.
Stay at the Wall Street Suites, a luxury motel conveniently located near downtown, steps from restaurants, parks and more. Offering 17 spacious and tastefully decorated units, many with their own kitchenettes, the hotel also offers free cruising bikes for guests as well as an on-site dog park for added convenience and socializing. There is a fire pit in the common area that guests can use with several tables and chairs to sit and enjoy a meal or a cup of coffee. In winter, Wall Street offers free snowshoes as well as free cross-country ski rental at Pine Mountain Sports.
Stop by the Bendy Dog for dog treats, leashes, dog food and more. The associates of the store are eager to learn more about your best friend and are always ready with goodies in hand.
Info: bendydog.com; wallstreetsuitesbend.com/suites.
4. Stay at SCP and do good
SCP hotels offer something new to visitors. Not only do all SCP hotels accept dogs, they take pride in what SCP stands for – Soul Community Planet, with core values focused on wellness, kindness, and sustainability.
With five sites (Redmond, Oregon; Gleneden Beach, Oregon; Colorado Springs, Colorado; Hilo, Hawaii and Depoe Bay, Oregon), for every stay, SCP plants a tree in a deforested area through its partnership with One Tree Planted. Some locations have peaceful bedrooms, which provide a space free from technological distractions such as televisions and clocks to enhance a mindful experience.
If you are staying at SCP Redmond, be sure to book for their rooftop gardens. The cozy bar offers plates of local tapas as well as handcrafted cocktails, while enjoying a breathtaking view of the Cascade Mountains. Directly opposite is General Duffy’s Watering Hole, a collection of the best food trucks to satisfy any appetite. On many summer parties there is a fun event or concert going on, so be sure to stop by and bring your best friend – dogs are welcome!
Info: generalduffys.com; scphotel.com.
5. Largest pet-friendly chain hotel
Best Western has over 1,600 pet-friendly hotels in the United States and Canada. Not only does the hotel chain welcome Fido, it’s also family-friendly, offering pools to keep kids active and engaged. The Hood River Best Western Plus is located directly on the banks of the Columbia River and offers accommodations with panoramic river views, water access and a private beach. Don’t miss dinner at the hotel’s popular restaurant, Riverside, offering spectacular views as you dine and dine. After dinner, be sure to take your puppy along the river for a leisurely walk.
6. The sophisticated rover
If you’re thinking of an exotic location, head to Cabo San Lucas. Pamper your dog at Nobu Hotel Los Cabos, founded by Nobu Matsuhisa, Robert De Niro and Meir Teper, with operations on five continents. Nobu, a 200-room property, showcases contemporary Japanese minimalism with locally sourced natural Mexican materials and finishes. Newly opened in 2019 just before the pandemic, this luxury resort sits at the southern end of the Baja Peninsula. There are no weight restrictions for your dog, and included in the $ 150 pet fee, the hotel provides 2 pet bowls, treats, and a “Do Not Disturb” sign.
For parents of fitness-loving puppies, the hotel offers outdoor yoga next to the beach while enjoying wonderful views in the morning. Book a relaxing massage at Esencia, the hotel’s sumptuous spa that offers a full range of treatments to stimulate mind and body.
7. Far West
Take Fido to Sisters, Oregon, named after three peaks that tower above the city. Preserved as a charming 1880s Old West town, there is plenty for dogs and humans to do. While there are plenty of places to set up camp, you’d be remiss if you didn’t stay at the Five Pine Lodge, which offers comfortable cabins with fireplaces and soaking tubs. The hotel has a swimming pool, spa and mountain bikes to borrow for exploring.
Access to the hike is minutes from your front door at Peterson Ridge Trail which is over 20 miles long. Nearby Suttle Lake you can fish and of course there are over 800 acres of skiing at the Hoodoo Ski Area during the winter months. A stroll through downtown will reveal many artist galleries, specialty shops and farm-to-table restaurants.
Info: bendtrails.org/trail/peterson-ridge-trail; fivepinelodge.com.