Hotel at a Glance: Hotel Planter
At Hotel Planter, a historic inn in La Conner, Washington, most guests gravitate toward the garden courtyard. Adorned with cedar trees, birdbaths, and bubbling water fountains, it’s a charming spot to enjoy a morning cup of coffee or an evening glass of wine. You’ll also find handcrafted sculptures and ornaments strewn throughout, a testament to the town’s love of contemporary art.
- Art galleries, antique stores, and museums are all located within walking distance of the hotel.
- Renovated guest rooms feature handcrafted furnishings and private bathrooms.
- Pasta LaConner, the house specialty at La Conner Seafood & Prime Rib House, is topped with fresh crab and bay shrimp.
- Wine tasting at Hellam’s Vineyard takes place in a Tuscan-themed wine shop with a bar made from wine barrels.
- The North Cascades mountain range offers opportunities for fishing, kayaking, and river rafting in the area.
La Conner, Washington: Historic Waterfront Town with Strong Contemporary-Arts Scene
Situated halfway between Seattle and Vancouver, La Conner is a small waterfront town surrounded by tulip and daffodil farms. It's the oldest town in Skagit County, originally thriving as a fishing village thanks to its location at the tip of the Swinomish Channel, a saltwater slough that connected local fishermen to the Puget Sound. Today, you're more likely to see recreational boaters sailing the channel; the bright-orange Rainbow Bridge offers one of the best views.
Following the Great Depression, La Conner became a haven for writers and artists who found inspiration in the picturesque scenery and quiet lifestyle. By 1970 the town was home to one of the most vibrant artists' communities in the Northwest. You can glimpse this legacy at the Museum of Northwest Art, where exhibits highlight work from the region's many contemporary artists including Walter Isaacs and Morris Graves.
For a living history lesson, check out the 19th-century homes and wood false-front buildings that line the streets of downtown La Conner, which has more than 160 buildings listed on the National Register of Historic Places. Among them, the restored Gaches Mansion houses the La Conner Quilt & Textile Museum. It's one of the few such museums in the country and features three stories of locally made quilts that range from traditional to contemporary.