Crystal Ballroom – The Portland Crystal Ballroom is located in downtown Portland just outside of Old Chinatown . The ballroom was originally built in 1914 and is listed on the US National Register of Historic places. This venue is a one of Portland’s greatest in terms of its great character, history and architecture. The architecture includes high ceilings, balconies, huge chandeliers, murals and floor to ceiling style windows. One of the more interesting things about the ballroom is the floating mechanical dance floor- the only one left in existence in the United States.
The ballroom has played host to some of history’s most iconic entertainers such as James Brown, Marvin Gaye and the Grateful Dead. Now owned and operated by McMenamins, the ballroom is just as lively, and is filled with the same kinds of art and entertainment as it was all those years ago. An array of activities, features and entertainment is available at the Crystal, and the venue is still a popular host to many live acts and events today.
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Parliament Funkadelic at the Crystal Ballroom in Portland, Oregon
Crystal Ballroom: Venues
The beautiful ballroom is home to some amazing features and facilities. A whole host of artwork is on display at the ballroom, reminiscent of the days when the ballroom was used a studio for artists and bohemians during the mid 1990s. Art plays a large role in the atmosphere created at the ballroom, and helps to keep the rich cultural history alive today.
On the second floor of the ballroom is a purpose built McMenamins brewery. The brewery offers up an ever changing range of drinks for the several bars of the ballroom and also supplies other McMenamins establishments. In keeping with the artsy atmosphere of the ballroom, the brewery honors the ballrooms history as depicted on their fermentation tanks. Apart from the lively entertainment, shows, concerts and celebrations held at the ballroom, dance lessons are still offered to this day.
Attached to the ballroom is the Ringler’s Pub, which boasts more than 100 different whiskeys. Another feature is the Ringler’s Annex, a small bistro that’s perfectly placed to watch the traffic and pedestrians float by on the busy Burnside street. Lola’s room is considered the little sister of the Crystal, and is located on the second floor. The small venue plays host to DJ dance events, and local musical showcases.
Crystal Ballroom: Events Galore! The array of events at this huge and beautiful venue are incredible. The ballroom facilitates all manner of different social and private events. One of the main attractions of the ballroom is the live music and dance/club nights they offer. Live music artists from around the world are booked to play throughout the week at the Crystal Ballroom and, in keeping with it’s history, a wide variety of genres is on offer. From rock to jazz to acoustic, there’s something for everyone. Big name artists still frequent the ballroom to this day, and most sell out quickly, so get in while you can!
As well as live music acts, the ballroom hosts club nights, and not just any club night. The ballroom hosts an 80’s inspired video dance attack event where the VJ entertains with great music and music videos to the delight of the packed crowds in attendance. The ballroom is also a great place to host events and functions. The sheer size and facilities available make it perfect for weddings, birthday celebrations and even business or corporate events.
The rich cultural and innovative history, is still honored to this day, making the Portland Crystal Ballroom a special place for any event. The architecture alone gives the ballroom something which many event venues today can’t offer. It really is the jewel in the crown of Portland’s incredible nightlife and entertainment industry. In the spirit of it’s history, the Crystal Ballroom remains innovative and driven by the art and entertainment industry to this day.