Fall Asleep in Class!
An historic elementary school turned unique hotel, located in Northeast Portland.

Entertainment Weekly magazine named our Theater one of the "Top 10 Theaters Doing it Right."

Bike Friendly Pet Friendly Wi-Fi

About Kennedy School

Fall Asleep in Class!

Remember when the worst thing you could imagine was being kept after class? My, how things have changed! At Kennedy School, you'll never want to leave. Here you can have a pint in a classroom, enjoy an aged whiskey and a cigar in detention, enjoy a movie in the old auditorium.... The possibilities here are endless. (Just don't run in the hallways, please. You might spill your beer.)

Since its 1915 opening, this historic elementary school has been a beloved fixture of its Northeast Portland neighborhood. McMenamins renovated the once-abandoned scholastic gem and turned it into Portland's most unique hotel. Here you'll find 57 comfy guestrooms with private baths and telephones (some fashioned from former classrooms complete with original chalkboards and cloakrooms – others with an author's theme), a restaurant, multiple small bars, a movie theater, soaking pool, gift shop and a brewery (just wait until the principal hears about this!). Extensive original artwork and historical photographs cover the walls, ceilings, doorways and hallways.

For neighborhood residents, out-of-town guests and business travelers, Kennedy School is a memorable and comfortable place to gather. The hotel is located minutes from Portland International Airport as well as to shopping in downtown Portland.

Kennedy School allows pets at the tables in front of the hotel, served by the Courtyard Restaurant, and in hotel rooms for a $15 fee.

Kennedy School Guest Rooms

Check-in is at 3 p.m.; check-out is at 11 a.m.
Same day reservations must be made by calling the hotel.
*The Soaking Pool will be closed the first Tuesday of every month for maintenance.

The rooms in the main school building include original chalkboards and cloakrooms. The English Wing is located in the courtyard of the original school and while the rooms are not old classrooms, the rooms have literature-inspired themes. All overnight guests receive complimentary use of the soaking pool and free admission to the movie theater.

Kennedy School Lodging Packages

Check-in is at 3 p.m.; check-out is at 11 a.m.
Same day reservations must be made by calling the hotel.

McMenamins Frequent Guest Program

Every one of your overnight visits at our ten hotels count toward a free stay!  And you can accrue as many points for reward nights as you are able - there are no limits.

Please note: We are unable to issue points for reservations made through Expedia and Booking.com. For best results, book directly through mcmenamins.com or by calling our hotels.

How does it work?

  • First, create or update your profile in our online reservations system and follow the prompts to join the Frequent Guest Program; you'll receive monthly email reminders about the program.
  • Stay with us! Points are automatically rewarded 72 hours after check out - you'll receive 100 points per night in rooms with a common bath and 150 points per night in rooms with a private bath.  Your accrued points can be viewed at any time in your online profile. Please note: points accrued during your stay are not available for immediate redemption.
  • When you've accrued 600 points or more, availability search results on our online system will include a "600 point" rate for rooms with a common or shared bath (based on availability). Choose this rate to redeem your points. Add-ons, like our Romance Packages will still be available at regular prices.
  • When you've accrued 900 points or more, availability search results on our online system will include a "900 point" rate for rooms with a private bath (based on availability.  Please note some of our hotel properties only have private bath options).  Choose this rate to redeem your points. Add-ons, like our Romance Packages will still be available at regular prices.
  • You may also book redemption nights by phone or in person for future stays.


  • This offer is for individual bookings only; the offer does not apply to contracted groups or conferences.
  • All of your qualifying nights must be booked under the same guest profile for points to accrue correctly.
  • Only 1 room per night is accruable.
  • You must be a member of the Frequent Guest Program to accrue points and redeem your complimentary stays.
  • Qualifying nights begin the day you sign up!
  • The free room is based on a queen-size room.  Family Rooms at Edgefield and the Parish House at Old. St. Francis do not apply.
  • Based on availability; blackout dates may apply. No credit for "no-shows."
  • Hostel stays, reward nights and free or sponsored promotional stays are excluded from earning points in the program.
  • After 5 years of inactivity, your profile points and any reward nights are lost.

Any questions can be sent to loyalty@mcmenamins.com.
Please note: All rules are subject to change.

Parking & Policies


Limited onsite parking is available for all Kennedy School guests at no charge. All parking is first come first served and may be used by both overnight guests and day visitors alike in the main parking lot. 

Hotel Guests:
A portion of the parking lot is dedicated to overnight guests only. A parking pass is required and will be issued at check-in. The pass will need to be visible on the dashboard. These spaces are limited and will be available on a first come first served basis.

We recommend unloading in the parking lot which is on the East side of the building. We have luggage carts available at the front desk by request.

Additional parking options:
Street parking is free and available on NE 33rd, NE Simpson, NE Jarrett, and NE Jessup without time limitations.


  • Room and package rates are the same for single or double occupancy.
  • A credit card for authorization purposes and ID are required at check-in.
  • Debit cards are accepted, however McMenamins is not responsible for overdrafts caused by holds on your account.
  • Add $15 per person after double occupancy.
  • Children age six and under stay free.
  • For ADA rooms, please contact the hotel directly.
  • Add $15 per pet, per day. Please read our Pet Policy page.
  • Rollaways are available for some rooms in the main school building guest rooms only. They are not available in the English Wing.
  • Add 15.3% state and county lodging tax to all room rates and overnight packages.
  • Cancellations made less than 48 hours before arrival time are subject to penalty.
  • All overnight packages are subject to availability and are excluded from major holidays.
  • Rates are subject to change.
  • Stay with us often? Join our Frequent Guest Program and earn a night on us!

Surrounding Attractions

Feel like getting out and about during your stay at Kennedy School? Portland is an amazing city, with lots to do — these are just a very few suggestions....


  • Head to nearby Alberta Arts District for a variety of locally-owned businesses, from clothing and shoe boutiques to art galleries to coffee shops and much more. 
  • If you’re seeking a more traditional shopping experience, drive or hop a bus downtown to visit the Pioneer Place MallPearl District and other fine shopping areas. The Lloyd Center Mall in northeast Portland is also good for some retail therapy, and features an indoor skating rink!
  • Open March through December, the Portland Saturday Market is definitely worth a visit. Pick up an Oregon-produced handicraft from one of hundreds of vendors and artisans


Outdoor Recreation

  • There are many golf courses located throughout the city; the nearest to Kennedy School is Broadmoor Golf Course, set on the banks of the mighty Columbia River.
  • Portland is just an hour’s drive from Mount Hood, on which skiers, snowboarders and shoeshoers can find snow year-round! Check out the historic Timberline Lodge or Mount Hood Meadows for ski conditions.
  • Like to bike? You’re in good company. Portland has bike routes mapped out across the city, making it easy, safe and manageable to get around on bikes. Hop a bus downtown and rent a bike to wheel around town in style.
  • If you’re in the mood to do a little hiking, head twenty minutes east of Portland into the Columbia River Gorge Scenic Area for amazing vistas, well-kept trails and more. Stop by McMenamins Edgefield on the way back to the Kennedy School for a beer!

Sports & Events

  • Portland’s Rose Quarter is home to the NBA’s Trail Blazers, the Winterhawks hockey team and the Portland Steel Arena Football team. It also features national concerts, performances and other big events.

Looking for something more? Go to travelportland.com for up-to-the-minute suggestions on what to do, where to go and how to get there.

Plan Your Trip to Kennedy School

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Festivals & Events


You'll be amazed by the abundance of art spanning the hallways and offering a glimpse into the past. Paintings, historical photos, mosaic scrolls, Indonesian wood panels and more create a virtual art gallery within the building.

For an in-depth explanation of the school's history as told through the artwork, a self-guided tour pamphlet is available at the Kennedy School front desk (or the old Principal's office, as some may remember it).

  • The Boiler Doors

    The Boiler Doors
  • The Phoenix

    The Phoenix
  • The Art of Teaching

    The Art of Teaching
  • The Freak Mountain Ramblers

    The Freak Mountain Ramblers
  • Hot Tub at the Kennedy School

    Hot Tub at the Kennedy School


Still a community center

The Kennedy School has been a center of lively activity for the Northeast Portland neighborhood since opening in 1915. Over the years, thousands of kids congregated here to decipher the three Rs, eat mac and cheese on Mondays and climb hand over hand up the gym rope to ring the bell.

When built, Kennedy Elementary School's location was rather remote; it stood three blocks beyond the end of the nearest streetcar line. And that line, which came out Northeast Alberta Street, passed through some pretty sparse country, judging from an ordinance that outlawed the shooting of rabbits from the streetcar.

Also, the school was just eight blocks from the city line, then set at Northeast 42nd Ave. — and in those early years, the numerous Kennedy students residing beyond that boundary lived without electricity, water, sewer or telephones.

Actually, the first elementary school classes were held on the school grounds in portable, one-room buildings in 1913, two years before the present-day school building was built and opened. Just 29 children attended that first year.

As decades passed, the school took on additional civic roles, further endearing it to its neighbors. When school was not in session, "Kennedy" served the community as a public meeting hall, polling place, Red Cross blood drawing center, collection site for paper and tin can drives, weekend playground and even flood-relief shelter.

It was a sad day indeed when at the end of the 1974-75 school year, faced with declining enrollment throughout the district, school officials closed Kennedy, declaring it too old and crumbling to repair.

Scrambling to ward off several demolition orders, a coalition of neighbors, former students, past PTA presidents and the Portland Development Commission fought successfully to save the building.

Mike and Brian McMenamin presented just one of several proposals for reviving the condemned property. Other ideas ranged from a retirement home to an indoor soccer facility. After receiving the approval of the city and the support of the neighborhood, McMenamins launched its renovation in the spring of 1997, infusing the 80-year-old structure with new life. In particular, a river of artwork was inspired by the stories of generations of Kennedy's students and teachers.

On October 22, 1997, the original principal's bell was rung on the front steps at 7 a.m. sharp to herald the old school's new beginning as McMenamins Kennedy School. Offering a unique and fun lodging, dining and meeting experience, Kennedy remains a lively gathering spot for neighbors and newcomers alike.

Hold your Private Event at Kennedy School

Weddings  Meetings  Social Events

Imagine the fun you and your guests will have at the Kennedy School, a 1911 building that was lauded by Ladies' Home Journal for its innovative one-story architecture, back in the day. Today, visitors stay overnight in classrooms-turned-guestrooms (complete with original chalkboards), have a bite to eat in the old cafeteria (now our Courtyard Restaurant) and grab a drink in either the Honors Bar or the Detention bar, depending on your mood. And that's just the beginning.

We have several event spaces, both indoors and out, from which you can choose, accommodating up to 200 guests. It is a wedding venue unlike any other — and no one will be sent to the principal's office, we promise. (Just don't start a food fight at the reception.) 

Anderson School