AC Hotel Portland, Maine.
As a Portland native, I am often asked where to stay in the city. It’s almost expected I could confidentially answer this question, however, many people don’t think consider that I’ve actually never needed a place to stay as I live here. I could go on and on about the food scene or things to do, so I was thrilled with the opportunity to stay at the newly built AC Hotel to experience one of Portland’s spectacular hotel options.
I’ll start by saying that I was particularly drawn to the location of the hotel. Just across the street from the working waterfront and ferry terminal, the AC Hotel offer unobstructed views of Casco Bay. Step outside and you are surrounded by award winning restaurants, shops, museums, and music venues. If you are looking to burn off some energy from the amazing food and coffee you have consumed, then cross the street and jump on the Portland Eastern Prom trail which will lead you to the east end beach, park, boat launch and opportunity to bike or kayak with rentals at your fingertips.
Enough about the Old Port neighborhood, I’ll save that for another blog! Upon walking in to AC, I was grateful for the valet parking offered. It might seem like a staple that most hotels offer, but in most situations, Portland hotels can only offer street parking or garage parking, so having this service goes a long way. You’ll want to park and leave your car anyways because you will find yourself in walking distance of all attractions with where the AC Hotel is located. A few steps and I walked through the front doors of the hotel and immediately was drawn to the high ceilings and open space. The decor was a mix of modern details and comfort tones & furnishing. I was greeted by a very friendly staff member who gave my the rundown of the property and my room.
The key card was handed over the counter to me and off I was.
A few floors up and walk down a very clean modern hallway with a watering station I was soon at my door. As soon as I walked in I was in awe of the waterfront views my room welcomed me with. Drawn to the window I immediate paired out to see the narrow gage railroad in full swing with a working train that took its guest on a Polar Express ride down the Eastern Prom Trail. The sun was beginning to fall as it casted gold lights over the Portland Head Light in the distance. Looking immediately down I was able to just how close I was to the ferry terminal and working waterfront.
This location was perfect.
The room was of modern aesthetic with neutral colors and minimal details. If you are looking for history and warmth you will not find it here. I found its interior to be perfect for those not needing or wanting to spend a ton of time actually living in the room. With that being said, you are in the perfect place to get out and explore! My particular room was the perfect setting to work from with limited distractions and a desk equipped with all the outlets I needed to be efficient. Despite being located in a busier section of town I found it to be extremely quiet leaving you feeling detached from the hustle and bustle. Time to test the bed! With a view I would be waking up to, it certainly wouldn’t matter the night of sleep I had, however this bed was actually quite comfortable! Now was not the time to sleep. I had invited local friends to join me for dinner downstairs in the lounge. But first, explore.
I grabbed my camera and headed back downstairs. Just off of the elevator was the gym. Hotel gyms often lack nice equipment or a variety of equipment to work out with. This gym had it all and I could definitely see myself using it. Down the hall was a mini convenient shop. this would be a good time to tell you that the AC Hotel does not offer room service, so I suggest stalking up at the mini convenient store for your nighttime cravings. Just past the store you will find a library to work from, the breakfast stations across from it and the anticipated lounge straight ahead. The decor in the lounge was stunning. Simple, clean, modern and European. I was anxious to try a craft cocktail and share tapas style dishes with my friends!
Soon enough my friends and I were seated and we noticed a black box on the table with buttons. We all love to push buttons right? We thought it might be a good idea to ask first before pushing through! The waitress told us it was her call button. Should we be in need of anything more, or just the check we could push the button to receive her attention. Personally I'm not sure I’m a fan of this, being a former waitress, but completely understand its use should it get busy or one friend seems to be drinking way quicker then the others and needs service more often. The lounge was semi busy, offered tv’s to catch the game and space to either sit at a table or in a comfortable chair. Cocktails were delicious and the shareable plates were devoured rather quickly! I would definitely come back for the lounge atmosphere and cocktails. Overall enjoyable experience with a lovely server.
I won’t bore you with how I slept and all the details of it. So in summary my stay with the AC Hotel was enjoyable. I would recommend this hotel for business class or visitors that do not intend to stay and live in the room.
Portland is the perfect place to be outdoors, active and exploring so the AC Hotel is a nice addition to the city offering modern amenities with a minimalist flare. The staff were above and beyond friendly and knowledgeable always offering help and guidance. Reasonably priced, new, downtown location and views of Casco Bay the AC Hotel is definitely a stay to worth looking into!