One of the coolest building exteriors in the Pacific Northwest is Tacoma's Stadium High School. Built as a "French chateau"-style hotel in the 1890s, it never opened; instead, it was sold to the Tacoma school board who converted it to the facility we see today. Students get to enjoy not only the beautiful, funky Victorian building, but also spectacular views of the Pugent Sound. Famous alumni include Dale Chihuly, whose photo hangs in the main entrance. And movies like 10 Things I Hate About You have been filmed here.
Tacoma, Day 2: Five-Mile Drive in Point Defiance, July 2016
For Travel Tacoma and Visit Rainier, five of us bloggers/instagrammers took part in an "instafam" tour of the greater Tacoma and Mt. Rainier areas in July 2016. Here is the first of several blog posts about the trip. One of the true must-sees when you're in Tacoma is the Five-Mile Drive through Point Defiance Park. You'll find hiking and biking trails through lush forest; you'll relax on serene Owen Beach with wonderful views of Pugent Sound and Mt. Rainier alike; you'll see thriving wildlife... particularly raccoons (one of my favorite animals).
Tacoma: Day One of the "Instafam" Tour
For Travel Tacoma and Visit Rainier, five of us bloggers/instagrammers took part in an "instafam" tour of the greater Tacoma and Mt. Rainier areas in July 2016. Here is a look at the first day, which includes flying there, checking into the hotel, walking around Tacoma (including a stop at the lovely little Tacoma Art Museum), and having a nice group dinner together at the Hub.
Tacoma, Day 2: Gig Harbor Gondolier
The second day of the July 2016 Travel Tacoma and Visit Rainier "instafam" tour was packed. The first thing (after breakfast at the Hotel Murano and checking out) in the morning we went to Gig Harbor, Washington, and met John "Cinque" Synco and his authentic Venetian gondola, Nelly. He runs Gig Harbor Gondola. John rowed us around the tranquil harbor, singing us Venetian songs and giving us a detailed history of gondoliers in America. Pretty great stuff! And the weather was truly perfect, as I think you can see from my photos below.
Tacoma Day 2: Heritage Distilling Company
In between singing gondola rides and a tour of the Gig Harbor Museum, it was a very busy morning for our "instafam" tour, but we managed to squeeze in a tour and tasting at the Heritage Distilling Company, It is, in their own words, "the most awarded craft distillery in North American by the American Distilling Institute 3 years in a row (2014, 2015 and 2016)." Read more about them on their press page. Pretty cool stuff! Anyway, it is quite an impressive operation there at the distillery, and their spirits are smooth and flavorful, leaning toward the sweet side, which is just the way I like it. We tasted most of their spirits, and my favorite is the award-winning brown sugar bourbon. Definitely check it out sometime.