• The only 24/7, always-on Basque short film festival you can watch naked.

    November 22nd, 2015 by Michal



    From Hubert Le Blonen azken hegaldia

    It’s late. You checked in to the Modern and made your way to your room. After you’ve entered the room, flipped on the light, dropped your bags on the floor, and fallen back on the bed, your hand flops around the nightstand to conjure up the TV remote. Turning it on on you see what seems like a strange transmission in a strange language, complete with subtitles. If you can resist the urge to switch to late-night talk, you’re about to catch a glimpse of a rare, cinematic treat—Basque Short Films.


    From Oiartzun

    The latest installment of 39 Rooms Film Festival Films, the Modern Hotel & Bar’s ongoing, in-room film festival is featuring Basque Short Films. Launched this summer in honor of Jaialdi 2015, the recurring festival that celebrates Boise culture’s deep Basque connections, these short films span a range of comedy, drama, poetic, and animation that bring to life modern takes on Basque life.

    Screen Shot 2015-11-12 at 3.13.05 PM

    From Democracia

    Here’s a list of what you just might be watching. So make yourself comfortable and enjoy.

    Soroa: Directed by Asier Altuna

    A stunning visual poem of sun, wind, arid soil, and prayers for rain.

    Democracia: Directed by Borja Cobeaga

    Black comedy about a daring plan for keeping the workers’ morale high.

    Abuztua: Directed by Pello Gutierrez

    A tale about a boy taking care of his comatose Grandmother that skillfully navigates the border between love and horror.

    Hubert Le Blonen azken hegaldia: Directed by Koldo Amandoz

    Animated documentary about the life and death of an early 20th century Icarus.


    Colera: Directed by Aritz Moreno

    “Colera” is based on “Terminated,” a comic story about an unaccepting village.

    Oiartzun: Directed by Julen Agirre Egibar

    Offbeat animation about a woman and a gramophone—and fire.

    Forgotten Times: Directed by Alberto Catenacci

    First-person accounts that evoke the diversity and complexity of of Basque migration and the return to Euskadi.

    Elkartea (The Society): Directed by Kote Camacho

    A group of old friends get together for dinner, discovering one of them is now down on his luck. Dinner won’t be as comfortable as expected.

    Una Hora, Un Paso: Directed by Bernat Gual and Aitor Iturriza

    A team of reporters enters a prison where Juan has been held for 17 years. Something terrible is about to happen.

    Zela Trovke: Directed by Asier Altuna

    A documentary about Basque musicians performing an old Slovak ‘moritat’, a type of ballad that narrates the events surrounding a murder.

    Arconada: Directed by Asier Urbieta

    An evocative coming-of-age film about a color blind boy who hopes to become a great football goalie.

    A Loving Neighbor: Directed by Pello Varela

    A playwright hopes to enlist the help of an actorScreen Shot 2015-11-12 at 2.16.23 PM for a historical work set during the inquisition.

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  • Writing Contest

    October 6th, 2015 by Michal

    creepy hallway imageJoin us for the final 2015 installment of Modern Campfire Stories. Why? Because Alan Heathcock and Christian Winn will be reading seriously creepy fiction. Because there will be a kick-ass scary hotel-based micro-fiction contest. Because if you come in costume you receive happy hour prices all during the event. And because there will be crazy-freaky-writerly antics taking place all night. 7pm – 9pm on The Modern patio.

    Micro-fiction contest guidelines: Write a frightening short story integrating a HOTEL.
    The story MUST be NO LONGER than 390 words.
    Your title does NOT count in the word-count.
    You MUST use this first line: “There had been an argument down the hall.”
    You are ENCOURAGED to use this image as a springboard for your setting.
    There are many scary hotel stories and films (think Psycho, The Shining, that one with John Cusack, etc.), so work hard to avoid cliche’s.
    Originality, great characters, engaging plot, language, and the intangible creep-factor will all be rewarded. Be strange. Surprise us. Freak us out.
    NO ENTRY FEE. Deadline for entry is midnight, October 25th.
    Judged by Mary Shelly, Bram Stoker, Edgar Allen Poe.

    First Place: A one night stay at The Modern Hotel and $25 Modern gift card.

    Second Place: $35 Modern gift card.

    Third Place: $20 Modern gift card.

    Email entries to info@themodernhotel.com. Stories should appear in the body of the email, and will be read by the judges anonymously.


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  • Arriving is Departing

    September 21st, 2015 by Michal

    Just why do we love to travel? It’s an age-old question and one potential answer is that we love to travel because we can’t—and maybe we shouldn’t—answer that question. Travel can be all things to all people because it is completely what each of us make of it. Travel is life.
    Try this. Pick up an in-flight magazine and you’ll find all kinds of force-fed messages trying put you in a tiny, demographic box. Are you an adventurer, spa-enthusiast, road warrior, foodie, or sight-seer? Yes, no, and all the above. Contrary to the mass marketing gloss, we are always seeking new experiences. Our journey isn’t about who we are, but more about who we are becoming.
    This is why those who love travel are more than happy with ambiguities and even contradictions. We love living “in-between,” not being here or there. This is where the magic is. Where the personal becomes mythical. You’ll find this tension in literature, film, and television. From Homer’s odyssey through Kerouac’s On The Road to David Lynch’s Wild At Heart and Anthony Bourdain’s Parts Unknown, it truly is the journey and not the destination.
    Case in point, this excessively detailed literary road map  of America. Here’s to those that keep going for the sake of going. Happy going.

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  • Ten Reasons to Cheer for Beer!

    June 8th, 2015 by Michal

    I can’t think of a better spring pastime than drinking local beer. If that’s your idea of fun, too, come and visit the Modern, where you can ride a bike to some of the


    Idaho Beer

    best local breweries in the west. Need additional encouragement? Here are ten of my reasons to check out our local beer scene:

    1. Beer isn’t expensive.
    2. Beer has no pretense.
    3. Beer is communal, uniting hippies, yuggies (young urban granola), granolas or business types. A taco truck and a beer could make friends of us all.
    4. If you happen to spill it on your shoes or shirt, good beer doesn’t smell that bad the next day.
    5. The west makes the best beer in the country.
    6. If you walk or ride your bike to each location in Boise with great beer, the exercise will balance out the added calories you’ll consume, resulting in a zero weight gain.
    7. Beer isn’t fussy (and please, let’s try not to make it that way.) My palate loves a beer with flavor. Personally, I like my beer on the hoppy side, but I also love a good porter or a stout. [I don’t want to say it has good legs, unless you can
    8. Even gluten-free beer can taste good.
    9. My grandpa drank cheap beer, and like so many of us, he knew that even bad beer tastes good when you’re with someone you love.
    10. Beer pairs well with many of the Modern Hotel’s appetizers and dinners. Charcuterie and beer? I say yes! Mushroom empanada and a Payette Brewing North Fork? Oui. Lamb Birria and beer? You betcha! Ginger Pork Bánh Mi? No problem!

    Some local breweries to check out:

    • Woodland Empire
    • Boise Brewing Co
    • Highlands Hollow
    • Payette Brewing CO.
    • Sockeye Brewing
    • Crooked Fence Brewing


    Comment | Filed under DRINK, EAT | ShareThis

  • Negroni Week – Drinking for a Cause

    June 2nd, 2015 by Michal


    Drink with a purpose this week – and we’re not talking about just getting a buzz. June 1-7 is Negroni Week, brought to you by Imbibe Magazine. Nationwide, bars are donating a portion of the proceeds from each Negroni cocktail purchased, with funds going to charities of their choice.

    The Modern Hotel and Bar’s pick is Interfaith Sanctuary, an organization we consider vital to Boise. From their website: “Interfaith Sanctuary Housing Services is a collaboration of people of faith and people of conscience who have joined together to shelter and serve individuals experiencing homelessness. Sanctuary provides overnight shelter for men, women, and children and provides supportive services that promote greater self-sufficiency, improved well-being, and permanent housing acquisition.”

    Now, that’s a cause we can all raise a glass to!

    So come, on down, and let’s do good while we drink this week. To quote the wise singer –song-writer John Prine, “Hey, it ain’t such a long drop, don’t stammer don’t stutter, from the diamonds in the sidewalk to the dirt in the gutter.”

    Cheers to living and taking care of each other.

    Traditional Negroni

    Classic Negroni
    1.50oz Tanqueray
    0.75oz Carpano Antica
    0.75oz Campari
    Flamed orange

    Negroni Sbagliato

    Negroni Sbagliato
    0.75oz Campari
    0.75oz Carpano Antica
    Orange twist


    1.50oz Bulleit Rye
    0.75oz Carpano Antica
    0.75oz Campari
    Flamed orange

    Tahona Negroni

    Tahona Negroni
    1.50oz Fortaleza blanco Tequila
    1oz Dolin dry vermouth
    1oz Cynar

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