PORTLAND, Ore. -- Portland is a must-see city for many tourists. The boost in tourism is also giving a boost to a hostel in Northwest Portland.
"We heard Portland was pretty weird, so we decided to head down," said Aaron Alexandre.
Alexandre is one of many people who have made seeing Portland a priority. He's visiting from Canada and has only been here two days and already he said he doesn't want to leave.
He's staying at the Northwest Portland International Hostel.
Outside the building is a construction site, but by summer or fall, a new building will stand at the corner of Northwest 18th Avenue and Glisan Street. The construction comes as the hostel tries to keep up with the booming tourism in the Rose City.
"Portland does have this growing reputation for being a really kind of cool, hip place to be for young people," said Anna Zhou, who was visiting from Vancouver, British Columbia.
Staff at the hostel said they turn away thousands of people every single year because they're just so packed. Many times that's during the peak season in the summer months. But even during the low season, when it's raining and cold out, they said they're still at 60-80 percent capacity.
Over the last 10 years, staff said the number of U.S. and international guests has probably doubled.
"Met a bunch of people from the Netherlands, Kenya and stuff. There's people from all over here," said Alexandre.
One of those people is Stephanie Coyne. She's visiting from Australia.
"Portland was just one of the places I wanted to hit. There are like three or four cities I really wanted to check out just with a lot of culture that I've heard about and nature," explained Coyne.
Culture, nature, and a unique feel are all things people notice about Portland.
"I think that's a really cool part of Portland, is that there's so many neighborhoods that have its own kind of character," said Zhou.
One thing is clear, Portland is a special place and the world is starting to figure it out.
"I definitely need to come back," said Alexandre.
The hostel already has about 75 dorm beds. The new building will add between 75-90 more beds.
Top local headlines:
Follow us on Facebook for the latest breaking news updates
Get news, weather & traffic updates on the go with the KGW News app