Moving to Portland: Need Advice

  • nanidesukedo

    Posts: 1036

    Mar 20, 2012 9:06 PM GMT
    So, I was fortunate enough to just land a job in Portland that will be starting in June. Anyways, I only have ever visited there briefly (3 days for the interview and to get a feel of the city).

    I was wondering if anyone had any advice on where in the city to live and any recommendations for possibly specific apartment complexes..etc?

    Also, any must see/must do things for newbies? How's the gay scene? Restaurant recommendations? Anything?

    I'm looking to hopefully live somewhere in the downtown, northwestern, marquam hill, or pearl district areas as those are fairly near where I'll be working.

    Thanks, y'all!
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    Mar 21, 2012 2:33 AM GMT
    Don't.
  • mikeeugene

    Posts: 84

    Mar 21, 2012 2:42 AM GMT
    Welcome to town, man! The locations you mentioned are all good, but different from each other. The Pearl has a Whole Foods and the flagship Powell's Bookstore. The south waterfront might also work well for you.

    You'll need to get to know the nature around here: Mount Saint Helens, Mount Hood, Multnomah Falls, the coast,

    Restaurants and brew pubs are all good. Sometime you'll have to go to Pok Pok - a Thai restaurant in SE.
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    Mar 21, 2012 2:48 AM GMT
    Someday I hope to live in Portland and experience life in the NW. It's the only corner of the lower 48 I've yet to see.
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    Mar 21, 2012 2:59 AM GMT
    It will be a culture shock for you.. but, you should enjoy it. A wee bit cooler and wetter than what you're used to.
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    Mar 21, 2012 3:05 AM GMT
    TropicalMark saidIt will be a culture shock for you.. but, you should enjoy it. A wee bit cooler and wetter than what you're used to.
    I've lived in CO and MA, lol = lived in coma... anyways, I know cold and rain; though it's looking not to be an issue in the US this year... damn solar flare last week. Didn't do anything strange to our weather at all.
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    Mar 21, 2012 3:21 AM GMT
    Portland is extremely liberal, so it's a comfortable place to be gay. As for the gay scene, I can't comment because I'm not active in it but there are a lot of gay bars and stuff, so...

    Things you should do: the zoo here is pretty sweet, both the Japanese Gardens and Chinese Gardens are worth seeing, Powells Books is amazing (more than a whole city block of books), Jake's downtown is great for dinner, Mother's is amazing for breakfast/brunch. I can recommend some awesome places to run if you're into running.
  • nanidesukedo

    Posts: 1036

    Mar 21, 2012 3:23 AM GMT
    TropicalMark saidIt will be a culture shock for you.. but, you should enjoy it. A wee bit cooler and wetter than what you're used to.



    I'm actually looking forward to the cultural shock - it'll be nice to be able to openly date a guy and not worry about getting beaten up in public or yelled at for doing so.

    As far as living goes, I'm ok living anywhere that has easy access to the downtown area (culture etc) as I plan on having a car...I'm finding out rather quickly that living in the pearl and its "Luxury" apartments is quite expensive and may be out of my price range despite having an ok pay check for a single person.
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    Mar 21, 2012 3:25 AM GMT
    thenes saidPortland is extremely liberal, so it's a comfortable place to be gay. As for the gay scene, I can't comment because I'm not active in it but there are a lot of gay bars and stuff, so...

    Things you should do: the zoo here is pretty sweet, both the Japanese Gardens and Chinese Gardens are worth seeing, Powells Books is amazing (more than a whole city block of books), Jake's downtown is great for dinner, Mother's is amazing for breakfast/brunch. I can recommend some awesome places to run if you're into running.
    My goodness, I could dig a place like that!
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    Mar 21, 2012 3:25 AM GMT
    Ewww... I'm trying to get out of this town.. Hate the rain but everything else is good
  • nanidesukedo

    Posts: 1036

    Mar 21, 2012 3:26 AM GMT
    thenes saidPortland is extremely liberal, so it's a comfortable place to be gay. As for the gay scene, I can't comment because I'm not active in it but there are a lot of gay bars and stuff, so...

    Things you should do: the zoo here is pretty sweet, both the Japanese Gardens and Chinese Gardens are worth seeing, Powells Books is amazing (more than a whole city block of books), Jake's downtown is great for dinner, Mother's is amazing for breakfast/brunch. I can recommend some awesome places to run if you're into running.


    I loved Powell's...I was fortunate in that it was right near my hotel where I stayed during the interview days. I'll have to mark those restaurants down..

    As for the person above who mentioned Pok Pok, I really wanted to go, but it was apparently closed temporarily in the early January period for some odd reason? I did get to hit up Voodoo doughnuts, however...but had to miss out on Rogue Brewery due to time limits icon_sad.gif
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    Mar 21, 2012 3:29 AM GMT
    XTC_azn saidEwww... I'm trying to get out of this town.. Hate the rain but everything else is good
    That's the crazy thing! I grew up in the desert and have always loved and tolerated rain. It has little to no effect on my mood, and I know the mountainscapes, beaches and rocky shores up there are beautiful from pictures I've seen.
  • FredMG

    Posts: 988

    Mar 21, 2012 3:36 AM GMT
    Welcome to Portland!

    Get a bike, and have a beer, put on some vintage stuff and bitch about everything and no one will know you aren't a native.

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    Mar 21, 2012 3:41 AM GMT
    FredPDX saidWelcome to Portland!

    Get a bike, and have a beer, put on some vintage stuff and bitch about everything and no one will know you aren't a native.

    The only things that get me up in arms are Gay Rights, Education and Health Insurance... I got the rest pretty much set.
  • ohioguy12

    Posts: 2024

    Mar 21, 2012 3:58 AM GMT
    Voodoo doughnuts!!
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    Mar 21, 2012 4:18 AM GMT
    FredPDX saidWelcome to Portland!

    Get a bike, and have a beer, put on some vintage stuff and bitch about everything and no one will know you aren't a native.



    Um... no... if you do all of that stuff, we natives will KNOW you're not native. I'm pretty sure 90% of the hipster douches in Portland are non-natives because I know a lot of Portland hipsters and NONE of them are actually from here, yet all of my fellow native friends are nothing like that at all.
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    Mar 21, 2012 4:24 AM GMT
    nanidesukedo saidAs far as living goes, I'm ok living anywhere that has easy access to the downtown area (culture etc) as I plan on having a car...I'm finding out rather quickly that living in the pearl and its "Luxury" apartments is quite expensive and may be out of my price range despite having an ok pay check for a single person.


    You honestly don't even need a car if you live in Portland. It has one of the best ranked public transport systems in the country. The light rail system can get you almost everywhere downtown, and the huge amount of super frequent buses can get you everywhere else. And if you have a bike, you'll notice that Portland has a HUGE bike culture, and a lot of people bike to work and such.

    As far as neighborhoods... it depends on your style. The Pearl isn't my cup of tea, too... preppy, I guess, for me. I prefer inner SE Portland. There's a huge art scene in the Alberta Crafts area up in North Portland lately. But if you want to live downtown, the Pearl is the best place for it. There are some decently priced apartments, but you have to hunt for them.
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    Mar 21, 2012 4:46 AM GMT
    Having been born and grew up there, I can testify. It's very, VERY liberal. Definitely the kind of city you can be comfortably out in publicly. Though you may be surprised to find far more lesbians than gay men.

    Powells is nice. It can be pretty rainy, but you'll get a nice, dry and sunny stretch all summer long. Be sure to visit the farmer's market for some good eats. The local foods are really quite good. Trader Joe's are plentiful, too, so get excited at that prospect.
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    Mar 21, 2012 5:04 AM GMT
    I am spending waaaay too much time all cooped up in north Seattle..
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    Mar 21, 2012 5:31 AM GMT
    I lived in Portland for 2 years. Short version: Everything is wonderful, except the weather. The weather, on the other hand, was so atrocious that the arrival of the first winter storm sent me packing.

    Pluses: people are really genuine and friendly. Nature is awesome! The summers are gorgeous. The city is very liberal and lets you be who you are. Employers are generous and fair. There is lots to do. Did I mention the officially legally nude beaches???

    Minuses: the weather. Months of driving around with the headlights on because even at noon it's too dark. Gloom and doom.

    Summary: there is no place like PDX if you can stand the weather. I would move back in a flash if the climate changed just a little...
  • joxguy

    Posts: 236

    Mar 21, 2012 5:57 AM GMT
    Watch out for all the GRIM characters that live among you-Lots of great beer lounges. Love the resturants that are converted school house.
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    Mar 21, 2012 6:30 AM GMT
    Watch Portlandia, it is satirically true of the kind of people you will meet and see there.
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    Mar 21, 2012 7:06 AM GMT
    SkittleGangsta saidWatch Portlandia, it is satirically true of the kind of people you will meet and see there.


    Oh come on. Portlandia is pretty funny, but it's not Portland. icon_razz.gif Well, it's as much Portland as Friends was Seattle (not at all).
  • mtnjock

    Posts: 104

    Mar 21, 2012 2:01 PM GMT
    Portland is not the great city everyone thinks it is. Having lived in CO, Phoenix, DC, and Pittsburgh, Portland is my least favorite simply because of the weather. It rains a lot in Pitts during the winter, but at least there is sun. The lack of sunlight on Portland can be very hard on people- including me. That being said, people in Portland are some of the flakiest/hardest people to know. I think there is a depression most people suffer without really recognizing it. Which leads to the gay scene: there's a reason Portland is never mentioned as a gay destination. The "scene" and the men are nothing to write home about (hate me if you want, but you know it's true). However, the culture in PDX can be great: amazing food, beer and coffee, cool shops, and awesome live music (SE Hawthorne is a great place to live). So for 3 weeks in summer, when the weather is great, the sun is out, and people are happy, it's a great place to be. But like the OP said- he was fortunate enough to visit, but living here is a much different story.
  • nanidesukedo

    Posts: 1036

    Mar 21, 2012 9:37 PM GMT
    mtnjock saidPortland is not the great city everyone thinks it is. Having lived in CO, Phoenix, DC, and Pittsburgh, Portland is my least favorite simply because of the weather. It rains a lot in Pitts during the winter, but at least there is sun. The lack of sunlight on Portland can be very hard on people- including me. That being said, people in Portland are some of the flakiest/hardest people to know. I think there is a depression most people suffer without really recognizing it. Which leads to the gay scene: there's a reason Portland is never mentioned as a gay destination. The "scene" and the men are nothing to write home about (hate me if you want, but you know it's true). However, the culture in PDX can be great: amazing food, beer and coffee, cool shops, and awesome live music (SE Hawthorne is a great place to live). So for 3 weeks in summer, when the weather is great, the sun is out, and people are happy, it's a great place to be. But like the OP said- he was fortunate enough to visit, but living here is a much different story.


    Hey, hey! Don't piss in my proverbial coffee!! lol. I understand the weather isn't the greatest, but I'm fully aware of that and don't mind (not like I'll be spending much time outside of my job, honestly).

    Plus, I'm coming from the bible belt and an area high in crime - I can't really go much but up haha...I'm looking forward to the cultural scene, the food, the arts, the hiking, etc..