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Make a Day of It: Staying at the Ashland Hills Hotel & Suites

Run Oregon loves running – that’s no surprise. But we also love the Pacific Northwest and all that it has to offer. Running is a part of us, but it does not fully define us. In our new “Make a Day of It” feature, we aim to showcase some great local non-running events and highlight where to run and how to make the most of your experience!

The next installment of this series is the Ashland Hills Hotel & Suites.

As we have mentioned previously, here are a few local races to check out for your next run-cation:

We also recommend checking out Rogue Valley Runners, Ashland’s premier running store (and right downtown on Main Street). They have women’s runs at 530p on Mondays and group runs at 530p on Wednesdays. And while you are downtown, you are just steps away from as many trails as you could want in Lithia Park and beyond. Ashland Hills Hotel & Suites is actually a perfect basecamp for getting in some miles on the PCT – only about 35 miles from your hotel doorstep! If you don’t have that much desire for driving, the 4.8 mile Grizzly Peak Trail loop (which raises up 1000 feet) is a perfect spot and only about a 25 minute drive.

In my post about the Oregon Shakespeare Festival, I highlighted how awesome a vacation it was to travel to run and take in a play. Here are some details for planning your next runcation:

The Oregon Shakespeare Festival has been something that I have always wanted to attend. I am far from a Shakespeare buff, but I love live theater and know that this is a big deal in Ashland and the entire state as a whole. The 2017 season (essentially February through October) is in full swing and features some great and well-known tales, including but not limited to:

  • Julius Caesar
  • Shakespeare in Love
  • Henry IV
  • The Odyssey
  • The Merry Wives of Windsor
  • Beauty of the Beast

If this summer and fall are already packed to the gills, a sneak peek at the 2018 season is showing the following:

  • Othello
  • Sense and Sensibility
  • Oklahoma!
  • Henry V
  • Romeo and Juliet

The Oregon Chocolate Festival is coming to Ashland and inside the Ashland Hills Hotel & Suites in early-March 2018 as well.

Our Experience:

When people think of lodging in the city of Ashland, their mind probably jumps to the Ashland Springs hotel, which towers over the small Main Street of the small Southern Oregon town. This hotel has a look and feel that it was plucked from the 20’s – a hybrid of gothic and beaux-arts architectureThe Ashland Hills Hotel & Suites (which is owned by the same Neuman Group), has a different location, vibe, and feel to it…and it’s excellent nonetheless.

Ashland Hills is just off exit 14 along I-5 (a pretty straight 8-10 minute drive into downtown Ashland, and, maybe more importantly, a 5-minute walk from Caldera Brewing). While Ashland Springs may be bringing on the Roarin’-20’s vibe, Ashland Hills has modernized a little bit of the 70’s – a combo of retro features with a modernized and updated twist. The original hotel was built in the late-70’s and was completely refurbished just a few years ago. There are actually original tiles, wooden beams, and globe lighting from that era, sprinkled in as an homage to the previous location. The outside, while clean and inviting, looks very simple. I will admit that the bright orange trim around the area gave me some pause as we pulled up. But as we entered the lobby – bam! Blown away (see first picture). Don’t judge a book by its cover.

The Ashland Hills Hotel and Suites offers over 100 rooms and 70 suites with amenities that runners may want. There is free breakfast (standard faire, but I really appreciated the fresh fruit and yogurt options), a pool and hot tub for pre- or post-race relaxing, and a laundry room (who wants to drive home with nasty running- “fumes” taking over the inside). The beds are super comfortable and the rooms surprisingly spacious. The 70’s retro-modern vibe definitely shone through with a brilliant white tulip table and globe swag lamp. The artwork on the walls (which, in our room, we hypothesized were pizza slices – we must have been hungry) definitely has that disco nostalgia.

The Luna Cafe is also a prime spot for runners as well, as they feature an “Oregon-Centric, farm-focused scratch kitchen”. Much Like the hotel, they have some 7o’s food options (rotisserie chicken and meats, pizzas, and burgers), though everything is made from scratch, as well as offering great vegetarian options and artisan coffee and cocktails. Add in their photo booth ($5), outdoor desk with awesome views, solid collection of local wines and beers, and the “picnic provision” (or as I may call – trail running provision), and you have an ideal spot to stop in – regardless of if you are staying here or just stocking out before heading out into the hills for hiking or running.

While Ashland is just ripe for exploring, the hotel is so cozy it can actually be hard to leave. As we sat around, I got to thinking just how beautiful a backdrop this would be for a romantic getaway, yet at the same time is a perfect spot to stay as a basecamp for exploring Ashland’s trails, before a local race, or just to make a day of it and treat yourself to some relaxing “me-time” in a great and welcoming spot.

There are a variety of specials and packages so we strongly recommend checking in on your next Southern Oregon runcation. You won’t regret it.

*More about the Ashland Hills Hotel:

Just a few short years ago, Doug and Becky Neuman, together with a local partner, purchased Ashland Hills Hotel and Suites, formerly known as Ashland Hills Inn and Windmill Inns of America. The Neumans are local residents who have invested extensively in the Ashland community and are owners of several other properties and businesses in the area, including Ashland Springs Hotel, Larks Restaurant, Waterstone Spa, Lithia Springs Resort, and the Inn at the Commons.

The Neumans, along with general manager Don Anyway and the team at Neuman Hotel Group, took on Ashland Hills Hotel and Suites as an exciting new project to renovate a classic property and bring a boost of vitality and life to the south side of Ashland. Their ultimate aim was to provide the great benefits of a renovated hotel for Southern Oregon residents and guests alike.

Its convenient location at exit 14 along Interstate 5—close to Ashland’s downtown, theaters, lakes, wineries, and other Southern Oregon attractions—is a huge driving force in bringing many individuals and organized groups to this part of the state. Acquisition of the property gave the Neumans an opportunity to offer a different product from their historic Ashland Springs Hotel and spa-like Lithia Springs Resort.

*”More About” information taken from the company’s website. We like to let their own stories speak for themselves, because we review companies that have real personality and passion about what they do.

Here are some pictures from our stay:

Many thanks to the Ashland Hills Hotel for allowing us to check out their property! Please read our transparency page for info on how we do our reviews.

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About Matt Rasmussen (993 Articles)
Matt Rasmussen lives in Keizer, Ore. with his wife and three daughters. He enjoys watching the Olympics, sampling craft beers, and all things Canada (he was born there). Matt was raised as a baseball player and officially transitioned over to running in 2010. Matt joined the Run Oregon team in October 2011, and since then he has spearheaded the blog’s efforts to cover product reviews, news about businesses related to running, and running events in the Willamette Valley.

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