We’ve got the winter blues and desperately need to get away for a little rest and relaxation. Sadly, our piggy banks can’t accommodate a beachy vacay at the moment, so a mini-break is what we’re looking for – any getaway will be a welcome distraction from the drizzle.
One of our all-time favourite weekend escapes is Seattle. An easy drive down the I-5, the journey takes approximately three hours or less, depending on the border crossing. If you don’t want to drive, just hop aboard the Quick Shuttle bus or the Amtrak train.
Seattle has exceptional food, awesome art, dynamite shopping, and plenty more. We’ve outlined a few reasons why you should pack a weekender bag, passport and head slightly south to discover this city for yourself…
When we plan a trip to Seattle, we try to stay at the centrally-located, quirky boutique Hotel Monaco. Recognized by Fodor’s as a Top 100 Hotel in the World, their top-notch customer experience, unique services (like a yoga mat in every room), and vibrant style is what sets them apart from other hotels in the Pacific Northwest. This hotel welcomes pets with open arms, without size or weight restrictions and for no extra charge. As pet owners, we’re delighted.
If you want to be in the heart of the action, your accommodation best bet is the fabulous Inn at the Market. Located directly in the world-famous Pike Place Market, this first-class property offers Pacific Northwest style and comfort surrounded by downtown Seattle’s most acclaimed restaurants and iconic landmarks. After exploring the Market, head up (with a glass of local wine in hand) to the hotel’s rooftop deck to kick back and admire the outstanding view of downtown Seattle and Elliott Bay.
Breakfast is the most important meal of the day, so start your day off right by visiting Tom Douglas’ Lola’s. Choose from house made granola with Greek yogurt and fresh fruit, or a stack of golden brown pancakes topped with vanilla mascarpone and maple syrup, and a side of pork-maple sausage. Lola’s is also a great place to enjoy lunch or dinner, too. Make sure to add it to your dining list.
Since the early ‘90s, Wild Ginger has been receiving high praise for their delectable bites and holds the esteemed title of the most popular restaurant in the Pacific Northwest Region for 11 consecutive years by Zagat. Very impressive. Start off your meal with a refreshing Mango Mojito, followed by the Green Papaya Salad with aromatic Southeast Asian Herbs. The house specialty is their Wild Ginger Fragrant Duck (the succulent duck is spiced with cinnamon and star anise and served with steamed buns), and it’s a must-have.
If you’re visiting Seattle for the first time, you’ve got to check out Pike Place Market. Created more than a century ago to connect the city’s citizens and farmers, Pike Place Market is a beloved Seattle treasure. Encompassing nine acres, the Market’s dozens of fishmongers (watch out for the “flying fish!”), butchers, fresh produce stands and craft stalls, in addition to the historic arcade, winding alleys, stairways and lower levels, offer a multisensory experience of sights, sounds, and tastes. If you have time, the one-hour historical tour filled with intriguing tales is definitely worth taking.
The Experience Music Project is a one-of-a-kind museum and a total must-see. Explore some of the most significant moments in rock music, science fiction, and contemporary popular culture within the funky walls of this visually stunning Frank Gehry-designed building. One of our favourite interactive exhibits is The Stage, where you’re momentarily a rock star. Grab your travel companions and become your dream band, playing to the EMP virtual audience. Don’t worry if you’re not a skilled guitar or keyboard player, with programmed instruments even novice players can hit the right notes!
Dale Chihuly is a phenomenon. One of the most talented artists of the 21st century (and from Puget Sound), his chosen medium is hand-blown glass. If you’re an art lover like us, we recommend that you spend a few hours at the Chihuly Garden and Glass. Situated at the Seattle Center, this exhibition showcases the most comprehensive collection of Chihuly’s artwork ever assembled. We guarantee that the works displayed will blow your mind!
Seattle Skyline and Pike Place Market images courtesy of Visit Seattle/Howard Frisk.
Planning a weekend getaway to Seattle? Let us know in the comments below or tweet us @ViewTheVibe.