Vacationing millennials love Portland and here’s why

Don't expect a millennial to bring you a souvenir!

Hotel Vintage game room
A game room at Hotel Vintage, part of a recent renovation geared toward millennials (KOIN)

PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) — Travel Portland is constantly marketing the city to entice visitors, but how they entice millennials is changing the marketing game.

“They’re looking for experiences, absolutely, people are collecting experiences instead of things,” says Courtney Reis with Travel Portland. “They want to have their own custom-created itinerary of their own making when they come to town.”

Sandy Burkett with Hotel Vintage (KOIN)
Sandy Burkett with Hotel Vintage (KOIN)

That means more digital travel guides instead of the paper ones.

“It means that we have to have a mobile responsive website. It means we have to rely on imagery to get across the story of Portland.”

The unique experiences millennials seek include where they stay. For example, Hotel Vintage recently put $14 million into a renovation geared towards younger travelers. It includes a bicycle station, a game room, custom art, a wine bar, free wi-fi and extra charging outlets.

“We wanted to create a canvas for the millennials and other guests to be able to write their own story, of what their experience in Portland was like,” says Sandy Burkett with Hotel Vintage. And with social media, Burkett says, everyone will know if they had a good time or not. “The millennials talk, they have a voice.”

All that marketing worked on Dan and Ashley Martini, a couple visiting from Nashville.

Dan and Ashley Martini visit Portland from Nashville (KOIN)
Dan and Ashley Martini visit Portland from Nashville (KOIN)

“We first talked about having an adventure together somewhere that we’ve never been, and we’ve always loved the idea of Portland,” said Ashley.

“A lot of research tapping on my iPhone, your iPhone too,” said Dan. “Really, there’s, like, everything here I think that you’d ever want to do.”

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