Posted March 2, 2011

Seattle and Portland General Managers Like to Bike

Kimpton Buzz

Vroooom. That’s the sound of two of our Pacific Northwest hotel General Managers taking off on their Harleys.

And if you’re a biker, you can motor along with them.

Sandy Burkett, GM at Seattle’s Vintage Park; and Jeri Riggs, the GM at Portland’s Vintage Plaza have been riding for several years and bonded over their love of motorcycles. Naturally, the women advise biking hotel guests about the best places to cruise in their cities. If a guest is really geared up, they’ll actually ride around with them and show off sights along the way.

But don’t just take it from us. Here’s what Jeri and Sandy have to say about their passion.

Rev up, Sandy!

When and how did you get into biking?

Sandy: I learned how to ride on my nephew’s Honda 50 when I was about 12 and picked it up again more than 30 years later.
My first ride was in 2003. I had never been on a motorcycle prior as either a passenger or a rider. I had mentioned at a Kimpton GM meeting that in my next life I’d like to come back as a Harley rider – wind-in-my-hair thing and just ride. I thought that if one had a desire to do something in another life, why wait for another life? Just do it.  Two months later I had my Harley. Bought the bike before I had ever ridden, started taking group classes, and the rest was history. I rode about 50,000 miles in a little over two years. I had no idea that I’d love it as much as I did. I rode because I could.  It was a sense of accomplishment and great therapy to get on the bike and ride. My two daughters thought I was nuts.

Tell us about your most memorable biking adventure?

Sandy: Always my latest ride, which was my one-day round trip to Portland and back (I am not much of an adventurer) to see Craig for his 20th anniversary. (That’s Craig Thompson, GM of the Hotel Monaco Portland.)
I have taken trips to Vancouver and Whistler, BC; Montana, Wyoming, Vegas, Idaho, Reno, San Francisco, and traveled all over Washington and Oregon.  Most riders will say that it’s not about the destination; it’s about the ride. And most of my rides have been by myself, so that I can stop when and where I want. No pre-planned itineraries except for those where Harley bike shows are concerned.  I have escorted guests in and out of Oregon and to San Francisco. The best and most memorable is the ride across Golden Gate Bridge amidst the fog.

When you welcome a biker to the hotel, what’s the one place in the area you tell them they must go see by bike?

Sandy: I recommend getting off the freeways. A great trip is ferry across to Bainbridge, go up and around the Peninsula, down 16 across to Tacoma, and back up 509 – Hwy 99 and the viaduct. Over Stevens Pass is also amazing … a quick fun trip to Leavenworth and back.
Oregon Coast and/or Multnomah Falls-Columbia Gorge area.

Revved up? Find out more about biking with Jeri and Sandy by calling Seattle’s Vintage Park at 206-624-8000 or Portland’s Vintage Plaza at 503-228-1212.



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  1. […] Seattle and Portland General Managers Like to Bike | Kimpton … Mar 2, 2011 … Naturally, the women advise biking hotel guests about the best … Two months later I had my Harley. … […]