Portland, Maine is one of our favorite local vacation destinations, and we especially love staying the quaint Old Port area. I’ve always wanted to stay in the luxurious Portland Harbor Hotel, a charming boutique hotel located right in the heart of Old Port.
Recently, my son and I had the opportunity to spend one night in an executive suite in the hotel, as part of our Amtrak Downeaster trip. Although we tried to spend as much of our limited time as possible exploring the city, we did enjoy some time in our room. I definitely want to stay there again with the whole family on a future trip to Portland. It’s a beautiful hotel and in a great location.
Disclosure: Our stay was complimentary during our trip with the Amtrak Downeaster. All opinions are my own.
Review of the Portland Harbor Hotel With Kids
Location of the Portland Harbor Hotel
If you are visiting Portland, Maine on a family vacation, you will most likely want to stay in the charming Old Port District. This historic district is just a short walk from the Portland Casco Bay waterfront, and is home to dozens of restaurants, shops, and cafes. The Portland Harbor Hotel is located right in Old Port, on Fore Street. There’s so much within walking distance of the hotel.
We arrived via the Portland train station, which is about a ten minute drive away from the hotel. A complimentary car service is offered for registered guests. We had the car reserved for our arrival time at the train station.
When we disembarked the train, I called the hotel and the car was there to pick us up a few minutes later. This car service to downtown restaurants and attraction is offered during your entire stay. While there are lots of places nearby, it’s a great idea to use the shuttle service for rides to places that are a bit further than walking distance. You can ask at the front desk to schedule your ride.
Guests staying at the Portland Harbor Hotel can walk to many Portland attractions including the Portland Science Center, the Portland Museum of Art, and the Casco Bay waterfront. If you are driving, the hotel offers valet parking for an additional fee. Once you park, you probably won’t need your car too often since the downtown area is so walkable and the shuttle is available.
Amenities of the Portland Harbor Hotel
In addition to the car service, the Portland Harbor Hotel offers a number of luxurious amenities that are great for both families and business travelers. In season, you’ll have access to complimentary bike rentals, which are a fun way to explore the city while getting some exercise.
The hotel consists of three separate buildings, including the executive section that our room was it. The main part of the Portland Harbor Hotel offers several beverage stations with complimentary Starbucks coffee. Because these stations are a little further from the executive rooms, free delivery of coffee is offered from room service for those staying in that section. I love having access to coffee throughout the day, because I often need an afternoon pick me up.
The hotel also offers turndown service. My son and I loved the little lobster chocolates we received, and I always appreciate bottles of water. Our guest room had a pull-out sofa, and that was set up for us at turn down for my son to sleep in.
For those looking to exercise during your Portland vacation, a fitness center is available. I didn’t take advantage of it, because we were only there for a day and we did plenty of walking. We didn’t travel with our dog, but the Portland Harbor Hotel is pet-friendly. There’s an added fee of $25 per night per pet. The whole city is very dog-friendly, and we saw plenty of dogs as we walked around Old Port.
Restaurants at the Portland Harbor Hotel
In the lobby of the Portland Harbor Hotel, you’ll find BlueFin North Atlantic Seafood restaurant from executive chef Gil Plaster. This restaurant offers breakfast, lunch, and dinner, as well as a bar menu.
On nice nights, there’s a fire pit outside in the courtyard. It was chilly the night that we were there, but the fire pit was still going. I love seafood but my son doesn’t, so we skipped eating at the restaurant during our stay, unfortunately. It was busy the entire weekend, however.
There are also dozens of restaurants in Portland, many of which are extremely kid-friendly. You won’t need to walk too far, and there are even a few restaurants right downstairs. We ate at Paciarino, and found it to be absolutely delicious. During busy times, you may want to make reservations for dinner if the restaurant accepts them. Many of the restaurants are small and can get busy.
Rooms at the Portland Harbor Hotel
The Portland Harbor Hotel offers several different room categories with room types that will suit any family. The deluxe and garden view rooms have been recently renovated in a coastal, calm decor that perfectly matches the feel of Portland. Those rooms offer flat-screen televisions, large showers, soaking tubs, the signature Portland Harbor Hotel bed (which is extremely comfortable), hardwood floors (with area rugs), a built-in sound system, and complimentary WiFi.
If you need more space, there are also junior suites and jacuzzi suites, which offer separate sitting areas. You probably won’t be spending too much time in your hotel room, because there’s so much to explore in Portland. But, if you are traveling with kids, you may appreciate having this extra space.
Our room was an executive suite, with a more contemporary decor. It had a king bed (the signature Portland Harbor Hotel bed) and a pullout sofa. A wall with a glass fireplace and two flat-screen televisions separate the seating area and the sleeping area.
There’s also a high-top table perfect for eating breakfast, as well as a desk. Complimentary WiFi is offered. I didn’t do too much work during my stay, but I did like having that dedicated space for my computer. This room type would be great for a family looking for a little extra space.
The executive suite also had a large bathroom with a huge shower and a soaking tub. There were also two sinks, and a tray full of deluxe toiletries including shampoo, conditioner, soap, mouthwash, face wipes, cotton balls, cotton swabs, and moisturizer
The executive suites also have a closet with robes, a mini refrigerator, plenty of drawers for clothes, and a coffee table. If you have a larger group, there’s the option to book two suites together to create a larger suite.
Other room types at the hotel include deluxe rooms, garden view rooms, junior suites, jacuzzi suites, and two honeymoon suites.
You can find out more information on the Portland Harbor Hotel website.