The Splimm Team is spread out all over the country, and we’ve got family all over the world. This means lots of travel during the month of December. Making sure everyone’s calendar is in sync so we can reunite for a few days and then scatter. Making sure everyone’s gifts arrive safely, in one piece. Making sure we’ve got plenty of wine and weed to assist in holiday merriment.
The luckiest among us will spend December surrounded not just by loved ones, but by legal cannabis too. For first timers, Splimm has compiled a short travel guide to help you navigate through the end of prohibition and the beginning of a new favorite holiday tradition!
Home is wherever…
Where you stay is almost as important as where you go. There are three states right now where anyone over 21 with a valid ID can purchase some weed, and none of them have an abundance of cannabis friendly hotels. We’d suggest Airbnb. Most places will be up front about their 420-friendliness, and if your name is Chad or you’re traveling with a Chad, it will be extremely easy to rent any Airbnb listed.
Folks fortunate to be visiting Portland should check out The Blue Dream Room in Alberta Arts. It’s run by Bill Stewart, amazing cannabis chef and human being, and is steps from a few shops and some awesome tacos. Bill will make you Chemex coffee in the morning, and he’ll get you some clean smoking materials as well.
Those traveling with young children who don’t want the 420 experience should consider booking a hotel suite or even two separate but connected rooms. Stick to low dose edibles (that you know you can handle) or a simple vaporizer. No one wants to be huddled in the corner of the bathroom like a sick cat, and certainly no one wants to have to deal with hotel security for setting off a smoke detector. Even if they don’t kick you out of the hotel immediately, they will add a few hundred dollars to the bill. Or so we’ve heard.
Play some games
While it can be challenging to find a place to smoke, every legal market is overflowing with things to do that pair well with cannabis. Quarter World in Portland is old school fun for the whole family, and because the place is stocked with games from generations past, older parents will have an advantage over their children, earning not only points and tickets but also some self-esteem at the kids’ expense.
In Seattle we always head for The Chihuly Museum. At $20 at ticket, it’s a little pricey for a smaller space, but the work inside is breathtaking. We could spend days there, just looking at one piece. Because it’s steps from the Monorail, it’s easy to get downtown, and to ride a monorail, which everyone should do at least one time after having consumed a little cannabis.
Denver is in the unique position of having voted to allow public consumption of cannabis in some business (although none that already serve alcohol). There’s nothing in this category currently operating, and there won’t be open until the New Year at the earliest. But it’s a great sign of things to come in the industry. Soon we’ll all be able to pass the vape pen and play some Ping-Pong.
Until then, tourists looking for convenient places to partake might want to consider booking a bus. Colorado Cannabis Tours has been showing people the good life for a while now, and they’re currently expanding to all other legal markets.
Find some alone time
Of course, none of this really matters if you can’t break away from the little ones for long enough to head to a cannabis boutique. Maybe there are family members who can watch the offspring. Or you and your partner can take turns staying in while the other goes out on a supply run.
But that’s not ideal. Cannabis is best enjoyed with your special someone, and we all deserve break from those little monsters. If you’re new to a city and don’t have any other options, check out Urban Sitter. You’ll find some pretty detailed descriptions of the people in your area, many of whom have already passed background checks.
Really, we owe it to ourselves to try and find some time away from our families this holiday season.
Notes on cannabis retailers in each state:
Because cannabis regulations change state by state, the shopping experience varies as well. This is something we’ve tackled in depth elsewhere, but here’s a quick primer to get your prepared, with links to official information.
Colorado: The first place to open recreational cannabis dispensaries, they are arguably the farthest along. Denver shops certainly offer the most variety right now. At one point the businesses in Colorado had to be vertically integrated, and many places still sell flower grown in-house, which gives the budtenders a better understanding of what is on the shelves. Be careful with the edibles. They can be on the strong side, so start low and go slow.
Washington: Washington eliminated all its established medical cannabis dispensaries to make way for adult use, and no place that sells cannabis is allowed to grow it. This gives some of the Washington establishments a pawnshop kind of feel that can be overwhelming for new buyers. Don’t be afraid to ask questions and don’t feel bad about leaving if the answers aren’t satisfactory. There are plenty of great options in the state. No need to settle for sub-par service or knowledge.
Oregon: Oregon has the most variety, in terms of aesthetics, we’ve seen in the industry. Each shop is a little different, and it’s easy to find people who feel a strong connection to the plant they’re selling. However, Oregon has gotten itself into a bit of a regulatory mess right now, which has left shelves bare and prices high. You’ll still find some of the best cannabis in the world in Oregon, but you’ll pay a little more for it. Here’s to hoping this is all cleared up soon.