Portland Entertainment+Nightlife: Crystal Ballroom
The Crystal Ballroom is a renovated dance hall with a floating floor on ball bearings and rockers. Back when it opened in 1914 as the Cotillion Hall, Portlanders could be arrested for dancing the tango. Since then it’s witnessed the likes of Rudolph Valentino, Ike and Tina Turner, Jimi Hendrix, Marvin Gaye, the Family Dog, and the Grateful Dead. The dance hall closed in 1968 and sat empty for 30 years until the McMenamins tackled a major rehabilitation. Now Portlanders are once again enjoying this gracious space with its high-arched windows, curving balcony, rococo paintings, and, above all, that dance floor with a capacity for 1,500. Live bands play throughout the week, and Sunday brings ballroom dance lessons to the public. The dress code ranges from jeans and T-shirt to black cocktail dress or three-piece suit. There are a couple of bars serving microbrews and mixed drinks.