Dec 23, 2009

New Years Eve Packages Still available!

Still deciding what to do New Years Eve??  We still have packages available!  Join us for a night of fun, and then plan on sleeping  in on New Years Day!  Make your reservations NOW!new years

Dec 22, 2009

Something to Brag About-Recent Guest Reviews at The Grand Hotel Salem!

Pardon us for bragging, but we are so proud of our staff and the work they do.  Our goal is to work together as a team to provide downtown Salem, Oregon visitors the very best accommodations possible by pledging to give our best customer service to each guest.  One of our methods to maintaining good customer service is listening to our guests and responding by making every reasonable improvement possible.  Your feedback is very important to us and we invite you to please share your thoughts on your stay with us…here is a sample of recent comments.  You can also read more reviews and leave your own in social networking sites like Trip Advisor.  As you can imagine, we were thrilled to receive this positive feedback- and wanted to brag a little (if you don’t mind):

From Cathy, last month!

We had a very nice stay at the Phoenix Grand Hotel. It was my second stay and I looked forward to staying at your beautiful hotel. It is my first choice of places to stay in Salem. I was very appreciative to find, after a long and tiring day of traveling through stormy weather and heavy traffic, that the manager upgraded us to suite for our stay. It was a wonderful treat. Also, I appreciated the mini-store off the lobby, the underground parking, the nice wine selection, and delicious breakfast. Next time I will look forward to trying Bentley’s for a meal. Thanks again for the lovely accommodations. By the way, I was in Salem with my daughter who was attending a campus day at Willamette University.

Indoor Pool  Rating:Excel  Score:10
Fitness Center and Spa  Rating:Good  Score:7
Complimentary Continental Breakfast  Rating:Excel  Score:10
Check In  Rating:Excel  Score:10
Check Out  Rating:Excel  Score:10
Staff Politeness  Rating:Excel  Score:10
Staff Efficiency  Rating:Excel  Score:10
Furnishings  Rating:Excel  Score:10
Condition  Rating:Excel  Score:10
Cleanliness  Rating:Excel  Score:10
Housekeeping Services  Rating:Excel  Score:10

Here is another review from Elizabeth who stayed with us recently:

I stayed as a casual guest (non-business) for one night. Totally impressed with the friendliness of the staff as well as the amenties of the hotel. If I am ever in the area again, you are my #1 choice for hotel. And I am recommending to everyone I know. Thanks for the excellent experience! Dave in your restaurant on Friday night was exceptional. :-)

Front Desk and Guest Services:

Check In  Rating:Excel  Score:10
Check Out  Rating:Excel  Score:10
Staff Politeness  Rating:Excel  Score:10
Staff Efficiency  Rating:Excel  Score:10
Furnishings  Rating:Excel  Score:10
Condition  Rating:Excel  Score:10
Cleanliness  Rating:Excel  Score:10
Housekeeping Services  Rating:Excel  Score:10

Restaurant and Beverage: Bentley’s Grill
Restaurant Service  Rating:Excel  Score:10
Beverage Quality  Rating:Excel  Score:10
Food Quality  Rating:Excel  Score:10
Complimentary Continental Breakfast  Rating:Excel  Score:10

Dec 17, 2009

Celebrate the New Year Grand Style in Downtown Salem, Oregon

happy-new-year-hat-4Want to Ring in 2010 in style in downtown Salem, Oregon?  We have the perfect package for you.   Start your day off with an early check-in of 12 noon.

Party Favors, New Years Hats and Champagne or Cider will be delivered shortly after your arrival.

You will receive a $20 gift card to Enjoy an outstanding dinner New Years Eve Dinner at Bentley’s Grill. Chef Derek Ridgway and his culinary team are preparing a very special New Years Eve Menu by bringing back old favorites and creating new dishes just for this evening…. Due to high demand, we advise that you make a reservation as soon as possible to ensure availability for your party.  To get a sneak peak at the menu, Download PDF of New Years Eve Menu and Join the New Years Eve Dinner Facebook Event Page!

You’ll also enjoy complimentary downtown parking, a fun atmosphere, and a late check out of 12pm or for an additional $50 for any room type and checkout as late as 5pm. To take advantage of the New Years Package at The Salem Grand Hotel (Phoenix Grand Hotel)- visit the Special Packages page.  Happy New Year!

Dec 15, 2009

Holiday Magic at The Mission Mill Museum

If you are planning to visit Salem this month, be sure to plan a visit to the Mission Mill Museum.  This historical gem interprets the history of the Thomas Kay Woolen Mill – designated an American Treasure by the National Park Service – which produced wool products from 1889 to 1962 and represents one of Oregon’s earliest and strongest industries.  Don’t miss the following events happening this month!

Big Band Dance Friday, December 18th
Dance Lesson at 7:30 p.m. Dance: 8 p.m. – 10 p.m.
Members – $5 Non-members – $10
Dance to the sounds of the Salem Big Band -pre-Magic Light Show included.

Magic at the Mill
Saturday through Wednesday, December 19th – 23rd
5:30 p.m. – 8 p.m.
Members Free $5 – Adults (13 and up)
$3 – youth (4-12) Ages 3 and under free

Come, get lost in the Magic. This holiday festival will put you in good cheer with thousands of twinkling holiday lights and entertainment for all. Bring your children, friends and family to Mission Mill Museum’s Magic at the Mill and celebrate the season.

Magic at the Mill is generously sponsored by PGE, Pioneer Trust Bank, Northside Electric and Westcare Management.

Watch this video about The Mission Mill Museum for more information-

Dec 14, 2009

2010 Mid-Willamette Valley Green Awards Nominations!



Please take just a few minutes and nominate The Phoenix Grand Hotel for Earthwise Certified Business of the year!  Our team at the hotel has worked very hard over the past year to get us as “green” as we are, and we would love the nomination! 

The Friends of Straub Environmental Learning Center, Marion County Public Works Environmental Services, and Garten Services, Inc. are seeking nominations for the first-ever annual Mid-Willamette Valley Green Awards.  Nominations are being sought for individuals, businesses, and organizations located in Marion County and the greater Salem area.    

 Green Award categories include:

*     RECYCLER OF THE YEAR:  with separate opportunities for Individual/Family, Educator, Business

*     SUSTAINABLE BUSINESS OF THE YEAR:  separate opportunities for Small Business, Large Business, Non-Profit




Nomination forms and category descriptions are available online at www.fselc.org , or you may call (503) 391-4145 to request a copy be mailed to you.  

Completed nomination forms should be sent to:

 2o10 Mid-Willamette Valley Green Awards Selection Committee Friends of Straub Environmental Learning Center

765 14th Street NE

Salem, Oregon 97301


Or nomination forms can be submitted electronically to:  fselc@fselc.org  .

THANK YOU FOR YOUR SUPPORT!  We look forward to expanding our sustainable efforts into the new year!

Dec 13, 2009

Reduced Christmas Rates at the Grand Hotel Salem

The Grand Hotel in Salem is pleased to offer rates starting at $109 plus tax in a King or Double Queen Deluxe (two-night minimum applies to all reservations). Complimentary Hot Breakfast Buffet is served each morning to all guests. Pool, spa, fitness room and internet are also available, complimentary, to all guests. Reserve your rooms now and receive a late check out of 1pm. Rates Valid — December 20th – December 31st, 2009


Book Now

Dec 10, 2009

Partnership between Travel Salem and Willamette Valley Vineyards Brings Tasting Room and Retail Outlet to the Travel Cafe

Travel Salem President and CEO Angie Morris with Willamette Valley Vineyards Founder and President Jim Bernau.

Travel Salem President and CEO Angie Morris with Willamette Valley Vineyards Founder and President Jim Bernau.

Earlier this Fall,  Willamette Valley Vineyards (WVV) and Travel Salem’s award-winning Travel Café Visitors Center launched a partnership to benefit Salem residents and visitors.  Travel Cafe now offers visitors and local consumers the opportunity to taste the “Fruit of the Vine” by creating a tasting room and retail outlet for their high-quality, sustainable wines at the Travel Café. In addition, Travel Salem’s conference room has been named the “Willamette Room” sponsored by WVV.

This unique partnership between a winery/vineyard and a tourism agency will allow visitors to experience wine from one of Oregon’s oldest and most sustainable wineries, and pique their interest to learn more about WVV and the region’s rich wine country. This new
concept will ultimately lead to an increased regional economic impact from tourism. “Willamette Valley Vineyards is proud to be partnering with Travel Salem’s revolutionary Travel Café,” says Jim Bernau, founder and president of WVV. “This new downtown
facility is one of the major touch points for visitors to the Salem area. Offering tastes of wine at this location will grow visitor interest in the Oregon wine industry — one of our region’s most valuable assets — and help make lifelong Salem area customers of some of
these visitors.”

“Part of the original vision for the Travel Café, this innovative partnership provides yet another reason for visitors to make the Salem area a stop on their journey,” explained Travel Salem President and CEO Angie Morris. “By serving as a mini-attraction, the Travel Café seeks to give visitors a taste of what the region has to offer. We wanted a partner that exemplified the best of the tourism industry – innovation, sustainability and an internationally recognized brand. We got all of that and more with Willamette Valley Vineyards.

This partnership expands on Travel Salem’s commitment to reinvent the way a community connects with visitors and local consumers. The Travel Café offers Garmin GPS units preprogrammed with Salem area tours, AbsolutelyTix ticketing network, Wi-Fi access, plasma screens with ads and scrolling events, and now wine-tasting with WVV. The Travel Café is becoming an attraction in and of itself!

Wine-tasting will be available Monday-Saturday, 11:00 a.m. – 4:30 p.m. at the Travel Café located at 181 High St. NE, Salem. Eight distinctive wines will be featured; offering something for every palate. The wines will be served using a state-of-the-art Enomatic
wine serving system. Visitors and local consumers can purchase four tastes for $6.00, which will include a one-of-a-kind Riedel wine glass. Bottles of WVV wines are also available for purchase.

Dec 07, 2009

Follow These Tips for Smooth & Enjoyable Holiday Travel


Photo by dnkbdotcom

Traveling during the holiday season is not something that most people find themselves looking forward to.  How unfortunate! November-December travel has always been known to be a little tricky, but add the economic cutbacks the airlines are making- not to mention the overload of fees and overbooked flights- it is no wonder travelers are left with holiday headaches.

Remember, you are not alone.  Most of us are simply trying to get to a destination to see loved ones and with patience and strategic planning- the travel experience does not have to be as awful as you may fear.  In fact, it is possible to actually enjoy the experience if you can remain flexible and patient.  Follow these wise tips I found on Independent Travel.com for a smoother and more enjoyable ride- by plane or automobile:

Avoid peak travel dates.
If you are looking for a deal, you won’t find one on the peak travel days. Travel off-peak whenever possible. Christmas and New Year’s Day fall on Fridays this year — fly on the holiday itself if possible, and avoid Sunday evening at the end of the long weekend.

Book early.
Haven’t booked your holiday travel yet? It’s time to stop waiting and start booking. Fares are only rising so those who hold out in hopes of a late-breaking sale are likely to get left out in the cold or pay a very steep price for their procrastination.  Book sooner rather than later, particularly if you require very specific travel dates or times. With the current state of the airline industry, it is never too early to book your holiday travel flights. While many of the best deals are probably already gone, keep an eye on our holiday travel deals for any last-minute bargains. Be prepared to be flexible with dates and flight times.

Know your airports.
Checking alternate airports is a pretty standard tactic, but at this time of year it can really make a difference. At no time can the alternate airport gambit pay off better than during the holiday crush. You can score on almost every front — parking, rental cars, traffic to and from, nearby hotels — and save both time and money.

For example, a recent flight to Hanscom airport outside Boston dropped me right into Thoreau and Minuteman country near the peak foliage season, offering a very different experience than flying into Logan. Upon my return, the car rental agent informed me that my flight might be running late and let me hold onto the car keys until we were sure that the flight would take off, with no additional fee. Only at a small airport can you get that kind of treatment. Also, keep in mind that smaller airports see fewer flights and, typically, fewer delays — not a small consideration during the busy holiday travel season.

Plot connections carefully.
When booking flights, check your search results carefully for sufficient time during layovers, and build in some time for flight delays and weather woes. Particularly during the winter months, peak travel times often bring peak travel delays, and your connection is more likely to be jeopardized. Avoiding really tight connections may save you a sprint through the terminal at least, and a really nasty stranding at worst. Also, it is best if you can muscle your flight path into position so that connections are in places less likely to experience delays — specifically, airports in warmer climates.

Leave early.
During peak travel times, much of the trouble you’ll face lies on this side of the security check-in, from traffic jams and full parking lots to absent shuttles and long lines. Rather than striving to “arrive at the airport early,” you may want to try to “leave for the airport early” to anticipate all the peripheral delays you may encounter.

Pack wisely.

In the past, you may have been able to fit everything into your carry-on without having to check any baggage — a strategy we still recommend. However, the TSA rules about liquids and gels make this a trickier proposition. For the record, you may bring liquids and gels in three-ounce or smaller containers, packed within a single, quart-size, zip-top, clear plastic bag. You’re also allowed to bring any liquids (such as coffee or water) or gels purchased after you go through a security checkpoint onto your plane with you. If you want to bring more than the three-ounce amounts, you’ll have to pack the items in your checked luggage.

When packing, keep in mind that most airlines are now charging travelers a fee for checking a second — or even a first — bag on domestic flights.
Use the Web for more than just booking.
The latest self-service developments in online travel can be tremendous time-savers during peak travel times. Whenever possible, print your boarding passes at home or use check-in kiosks. These services are no longer restricted to the airport, and can be found in hotels and other places in increasing numbers.

Think about doing your holiday shopping online and having your gifts shipped to your destination. This will cut down on luggage and the risk of them getting lost.

Travel early or late in the day.
As a rule, airports are least congested at times when normal human beings would rather be at home or even asleep. Delays are far less likely for morning flights, and airports usually unclog as the afternoon and evening peak passes.

A couple of caveats: Staffing can be spotty for really early flights, so although your flight is highly likely to be ready to leave on time, check-in may take a while, along with other personnel-dependent steps like riding shuttle buses.

Consider package deals.
Peak travel periods can be the best time to buy package deals, even for folks who would never buy one, as the bundled pricing offered by packages can be very competitive, even (or especially) at times of high demand.

Be prepared for more than the usual slowdowns at security. Even though the TSA’s liquid and gel rules have been around for a few years now, infrequent fliers may still be caught off guard.

Gas up the night before you travel
; no one leaves enough time for buying gas on the way to the airport.

Investigate your frequent flier options to get better (and better guaranteed) seats.

Bring diversions. Take along work, books, magazines, a CD player, some healthy snacks — whatever you need to get through delays. This goes double when traveling with kids.

Keep your cool. Airline employees have considerable power over your well-being. Unfortunately many enjoy wielding it against you, and few respond well to anger.

Have phone numbers for everything:
your hotel, your car rental agency, your airline, friends at your destination. Directory assistance is expensive, whether from your cell, from a phone booth or from home.

Check flight status repeatedly. Know your airline’s 800 number as well as your flight numbers and exact times.

When traveling on an E-ticket, carry a printout of your itinerary from your airline or booking site.

Choose nonstop flights. The worst, most brutal delays occur in connecting airports, where you have no home, friends or family to retreat to.

With airlines continuing to cut back on service, it’s more important than ever to confirm your flight several days before you leave — that way you’ll have a little leeway to make alternate plans if necessary.

If you know you’ll need long-term airport parking while you’re away, be sure to reserve yourself a spot ahead of time at an off-airport lot so you’re guaranteed a space.

Don’t overpack even checked luggage; overstuffed bags that must be opened for a security check are much harder to repack.

Do not wrap gifts, especially if you intend to carry them on the plane.
Even in checked baggage, there is a strong chance they will be unwrapped for inspection by security personnel. Consider gift bags instead of wrapping paper this holiday season — you can easily remove the items from their bags if required and you don’t have to do a last-minute wrapping job at your destination.

Give your cell phone a full charge, and write down or program the phone number of your airline so you can call easily as your flight time approaches.

If you’re leaving pets at home and you haven’t made kennel reservations, do so right away.

Put It All Together

Travel during the holiday is the time to lay all your travel savvy on the line. For example, if you:

  • purchase a package deal in one click of the mouse
  • print out your boarding pass at home
  • leave early enough not to sweat the small stuff
  • travel light enough not to have to check any bags
  • proceed directly to and through security
  • arrive at the gate on time and at ease
  • and nail your connections …

… you might actually enjoy traveling this season

Dec 01, 2009

Salem, Oregon Brimming With Holiday Spirit and Activity

Holidays at the Oregon Capitol Rotunda

Holidays at the Oregon Capitol Rotunda

Downtown Salem, Oregon is alive and in a flutter now that the holidays are near.  Everywhere you turn there are gorgeous lights, sounds and colors of the season to lift your spirits.  The historic buildings also have wonderful traditional Christmas displays and family events to enjoy.  And just outside of the city, the wineries and cider houses are diligently working to prepare for the holiday parties, open tours, and dinners that come each December.

You can ask anyone who has been here during the holidays- there is truly something very special about the month of December in Salem.  We embrace the weather- rain or shine- and enjoy that higher level of excitement to our community as the shoppers move about the downtown stores in search of unique and special gifts for loved ones; warm up in the many cafes and coffee shops throughout the city; and attend the many seasonal events with their children.
Holiday Visitors may also want to take advantage  of our special seasonal rates- just visit our Holiday Specials section on our site.
Be sure to visit TravelSalem.com to get the latest information on this month’s events:

Salem, Oregon December Events

Salem’s First Wednesday
Downtown Salem

“Something Old Something New” Holiday Bazaar
Portland-Woodburn RV Park, Woodburn

The Greens Show
Oregon State Fairgrounds, Salem
503-585-5023 (Mon.-Fri.)
www.greensshow.com or www.oregonstateexpo.org

Chemeketa Art Gallery Sale
Chemeketa Community College Building #3, Salem

Corban College & Graduate School’s Christmas Concerts
Psalm Performing Arts Center, Salem

Star Trees Lighting
Willamette University, Salem

Home for the Holidays
Cities of Stayton and Sublimity

Champoeg Holiday Gathering
Champoeg Visitor Center, Saint Paul
503-678-1251 x 221

Christmas in Hudson Hall
Willamette University – Hudson Hall, Salem

Candlelight Tour
Old Aurora Colony Museum, Aurora

PGE Festival of Lights Holiday Parade
Downtown Salem
503-581-4325 or 800-874-7012

Silver Falls Christmas Festival
South Falls Lodge – Silver Falls, Sublimity

Salem Saturday Market’s Holiday Gift Market
Oregon State fairgrounds, Salem
www.salemsaturdaymarket.com or www.oregonstateexpo.org

Magic at the Mill
Mission Mill Museum, Salem

New Year’s Eve Family Fun
A.C. Gilbert’s Discovery Village, Salem

Reserve Now!

Please call us toll-free at:
877-540-7800 or use the form below to reserve now!