The designation and a new McMenamins hotel/brewpub planned for the Kalama waterfront further position the location as a hotspot for recreation, hospitality


Already known by residents and valued by businesses for its prime location in the heart of the Pacific Northwest, the Port of Kalama’s place as a recreational destination has been enhanced with new developments. The Port was just named a key destination on the Lower Columbia River Scenic Water Trail and McMenamins recently announced a new hotel/brewpub will be constructed in the next year on the Port of Kalama waterfront.

Port of Kalama takes its place as Milemarker 75, a recreational destination on the Columbia River thanks to a recent designation by the US Coast Guard. The Lower Columbia Estuary Partnership, which is committed to the health and vitality of this nationally significant estuary, places the milemarkers on the river to highlight amenities for boaters and kayakers along its course. The Port boasts a boat ramp, marina and recreational facility complete with a scenic boardwalk and waterfront decks along the river’s edge.

In addition, the large eyes atop the Marine Park totem pole, the tallest in the Pacific Northwest, keep watch over Port playgrounds, bike paths, picnic areas, and nearby public beaches. Visitors enjoy river and park recreational amenities all within walking distance from the 222-slip marina and boat ramp. A short walk from the Port, the city of Kalama offers a variety of restaurants, shops and an antique mall.

McMenamins building destination brewpub at Port of Kalama waterfront

In the next year, the Port’s destination draw gets another surge with the development of the McMenamins brewpub and hotel on a portion of the Port’s riverfront. The iconic craft brewer and restaurateur plans to be open for business in Kalama by the end of 2017. The 40-room hotel will include meeting rooms, gift shop, restaurant, brewery, and stunning river views from a riverfront rooftop pub. A smaller pub within walking distance will be built at Port of Kalama’s Ahles Point.

The hotel’s architecture will incorporate Kalama’s Hawaiian heritage into the design of its buildings. John Kalama, for whom the river and city are named, was originally from Kula, Maui and lived in the area as an employee of the Hudson’s Bay Company. Descendants of John Kalama are members of the Nisqually and Warm Springs Tribes.

“This is happy news for Kalama and the entire region as we expect this new establishment to bring jobs and tourism to the area,” says Alan Basso, President, Port of Kalama Board of Commissioners. “This McMenamins location—at a breathtaking spot right on the Columbia River—offers a new destination for travelers and tourists who may have never stopped in Kalama before. We expect an economic boon for the entire community.”

Enhancement of Port of Kalama walking trails underway

Outdoor and walking enthusiasts can expect brighter horizons as well. Next on the Port’s docket is to improve the scenic walking paths at the Port of Kalama’s West Marine Drive. The Trail Improvement Plan consists of clearing new parkway paths to create a continuous loop between waterfront parks at the Port Marina. Also included are improved and upgraded landscaping, updated parking facilities, new tree-lined berms and rain gardens.

“The pathways have become a very popular recreational destination for pedestrians and bicyclists, while the marina is a busy hub for boating and fishing. These improvements will further enhance the safety for all who use the Port’s recreational facilities,” says Mark Wilson, Executive Director, Port of Kalama. “We welcome visitors to the Port to enjoy river activity, our walking paths or a meal at any number of excellent establishments in town.”

River Cam

Sponsored by McMenamins Kalama Harbor Lodge and Port of Kalama
Kalama, WA
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