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I’ve said it before and I will say it again, “Travel is the best education for the curious spirit, so let’s take it TO THE HOOD to find out what’s GOOD!

 Have you heard of Hood River, Oregon? I admit I had not and while today’s travel looks a bit different with delays and shortcomings of flight staff and crew we are back at it seeing the world in the pursuit of absorbing culture, art, style and cuisine. While I’ve visited Portland on several occasions, I am appalled that I consider myself a global liaison for travel and was unaware of this quaint city. So, given the opportunity to visit during the city’s inaugural pride celebration I pounced with PRIDE. Nothing moves me than an outward celebration of diversity, inclusion, and LOVE. Furthermore, I  pride myself on taking the opportunity to discover the unknown! Discovering the unknown during solo travel forces one to meet new experiences and people with an open heart of discovery and intrigue. I’ve said it before and I say it again, “Travel is the best education for the curious spirit.” So, step into the adventure! Here are your 5 Stops to Adventure in Hood River, Oregon. 


Breakfast in The Hood

Breakfast at Broder Øst (East) is the way to go especially if you follow my lead with hotel accommodation. Just beyond the hotel check-in of the Hood River Hotel is  a side entrance to the yummiest morning experience. Copied verbatim from the menu I strongly suggest:

The  Baked Egg Skillet with ham , smoked Gouda, caramelized onions and tarragon cream
The Danish Pancakes (AEBLESKIVER) served with lingonberry jam, house lemon curd with pure maple syrup
The sautéed spinach and Applewood smoke bacon sides



Finding a Frock in The Hood

Obviously, one must find a healthy way to spend time while visiting a cool new spot. Sourcing the community for a cool resale & vintage shop is never boring. Most recently I have been craving the idea of replicating Diane Keaton’s effortless and timeless looks with distressed oversized jeans. Specifically, I have been on the hunt for classic Levi 501’s. Thanks to Precious Drab Vintage I’ve quenched my thirst for this fundamental wardrobe frock! A brand-new store that is elegantly appointed for the avid shopper I left with 2 pairs of jeans that can tell a short of their own.


5 Stops to Adventure in Hood River Oregon

Lunch in The Hood

15 years and running Ground Expresso Bar and Café’s owner Carin Agren radiates a sweet and down to heart presence that makes you want to return to her establishments, in downtown Hood River, to simply talk. Carin a native of Sweden, is a former flight attendant turned barista putting in the work to churn the community’s best coffee shop.  Hard work and customer focused attention are contributing factors for Carin’s second community hotspot Doppio in Hood River. Do yourself a favor, and order the ham & cheese sandwich which included ham of course, house made aioli mustard Swiss cheese tomatoes pressed to perfection like a panini.

Dinner in The Hood

Celilo Restaurant and Bar with its industrial exposed ceiling and wood railing reeks of warmth and charm. Be sure to reserve your seating at the threshold of sliding glass doors to enjoy the fresh air with the restaurant’s unique ambiance. Ending my day with the restaurant’s menu starters was a splendid awakening for my palate. Not to be redundant while attempting to make your ordering seamless, copied verbatim from the menu I strongly suggest:

▪ The homemade pickles
▪ The cauliflower croquettes with romesco and creamy cauliflower sauce
▪ The beef skewers with scallion ginger dipping sauce

Sipping in The Hood

To be frank you can sip all day in Hood River. Unbeknownst to me there are dozens of wineries. A favorite pastime for many, which makes me feel good about wine consumption , I pride myself in being a skilled sipper at wine tasting. Upsidedown Wine made the wine tasting journey flirty, fun, and filled with floral paired with their stylishly minimalist sipping room. Be sure to sip the 2021 Konnowac Viognier. The taste is simply divine!


Where to Stay in The Hood

The historic Hood River Hotel is your command central. A community staple since 1912 and centrally located this hotel sits on the city’s main drag with bountiful options in walking distance. From the oversized lobby fireplace, the hotel welcomes guests with a cozy feel.  On the National Register of Historic Places, the vintage yet hip hotel offers oversized room stays with a turntable to spark musical joy. Allow this landmark to be your gateway to exploration to the wineries and shopping that make the journey fascinating. You can opt to  lay back in the hotel’s period style furnishings to  enjoy an afternoon siesta or peaceful nights rest.  

Patrick T Cooper
Patrick T Cooper
From wardrobe stylist to CEO, Patrick T. Cooper’s career encompasses over 20 years in design. His prowess for defining creative strategies to fuel brands is what continually ignites Patrick. Innate artistic aptitude makes him a highly sought-after partner for Fortune 500 companies looking to garner consumer brand loyalty. Patrick’s diverse body of work includes corporate partners like Masonite as well as entertainment clients Fantasia Barrino, American Idol season 3 winner, rock band 3 Doors Down, and legendary mogul Sean Combs. Patrick T. Cooper’s cutting-edge sense of style and genius allows him to envision beyond the predictable to create thought-provoking content that positively impacts diverse audiences globally. As an African-American man and LGBTQ advocate, Patrick is the epitome of the convergence of eclectic style, art, culture and people. As the official Chief Encouragement Officer, he’s committed to living authentically and celebrating originality. Patrick’s mantra, “Being a trailblazer isn’t enough if we don’t encourage others to find and live in their purpose!

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