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Funky/Arty/Alternative/Hipster Seattle Hotel?

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Funky/Arty/Alternative/Hipster Seattle Hotel?

I am planning on visiting Seattle for a few nights next year and really don't want to stay in a large boring chain hotel. Ideally I would like to be centrally located but want a funky hip arty alternative kind of hotel/guest house. I have heard about the Ace hotel but are there any other options?

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1. Re: Funky/Arty/Alternative/Hipster Seattle Hotel?

Definitely, The Moore.

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2. Re: Funky/Arty/Alternative/Hipster Seattle Hotel?

Depends on your price point. Look at the Andra, the Moore, the Ace, Hotel Max, Hotel Five, City Hostel Seattle, Green Tortoise Hostel.

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3. Re: Funky/Arty/Alternative/Hipster Seattle Hotel?

What about the new place in Ballard? Klsalas would know. He's the Ballard expert.

seattle
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4. Re: Funky/Arty/Alternative/Hipster Seattle Hotel?

The Ballard Hotel? the one with the shared bath? Its a historic hotel for sure.

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5. Re: Funky/Arty/Alternative/Hipster Seattle Hotel?

I would agree with IslandGrl, but would narrow it to the Hotel Max and the Hotel Five..., and between those 2 I would say the Hotel Max.

The Hotel Max was an historic hotel (the Vance) and was remodeled a few years ago with trendy/hip art and a great sushi restaurant (Redfin) that also provides room service. Redfin makes a great bentobox brunch! Do read the reviews though. Since it was an older hotel, the rooms are smaller, so you need to decide if that's a dealbreaker for you.

tripadvisor.com/Hotel_Review-g60878-d100587-…

The Vance/Max is the hotel you always see in that Alan Rudolf 80s neonoir "Trouble in Mind" with Kris Kristofferson as an ex-cop in "Rain City".

The Hotel Five (since it's on 5th st.) was formerly a Ramada Inn and is less splashy on the outside but remodeled to be as hip as they can be on the inside.

tripadvisor.com/Hotel_Review-g60878-d124048-…

Both are downtown, which would meet the criterion of central location. The others (City Hostel and Green Tortoise) are arty, but are, well, hostels, which is a different kind of experience.

-Karl

Edited: 10 July 2012, 02:17
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6. Re: Funky/Arty/Alternative/Hipster Seattle Hotel?

I'd vote for Ace but only with a private bathroom or Hotel Max or The Moore Hotel. Max and Moore with slightly better locations. All very different but each with a unique hotel 'personality'.

I usually recommend Mayflower Park or the Warwick because they are great hotels in perfect locations with some down-to-earth charm. They aren't "large boring hotel chain" but not funky/hip/alternative either. Just cool Seattle hotels.

Pensione Nichols B&B is right on 1st Avenue nearish the Market.

Higher price point there's places like Hotel 1000 or Arctic Club.

suze

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7. Re: Funky/Arty/Alternative/Hipster Seattle Hotel?

Thank you for you suggestions. Some good ideas there, the Ace is perfect but I had hoped to stay in the other Ace in Portland so was hoping for something different in Seattle. I was hoping for something like the McMenamins Crystal Hotel in Portland but in Seattle. Ideally I would like something a bit more alternative than some of the larger hotels and I will happily pay more for something different and compromise on luxury if neede, though I would like an ensuite!!!

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8. Re: Funky/Arty/Alternative/Hipster Seattle Hotel?

I really can't think of any hotel or place to stay in Seattle that really fits what you are describing. I'll be interetested to see if anyone else can! There's some very cool B&B's in the old mansions up on Capitol Hill, but that doesn't seem exactly what you're after either.

suze

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9. Re: Funky/Arty/Alternative/Hipster Seattle Hotel?

Sadly McMenamin's has yet to open any lodgings in Seattle, although they're working on a big complex (a la Edgefield? Kennedy School?) in the northern suburb of Bothell.

Just in the interests of more options, Kimpton has several good hotels in the downtown area that are "funky" in an upper-class sort of way (e.g. a pet goldfish to keep you company during your stay, but comfortable enough for the Sultan of Brunei) - the Alexis, Monaco and Vintage Park. Of those, the Monaco is the most central, and reasonably funky (and with a great restaurant, Sazerac, on the premises.) kimptonhotels.com/hotels/hotels-seattle.aspx

Out of downtown, you might have a look at the Hotel Deca in the University District. Wonderful old art deco hotel, with very stylish and comfortable rooms. The "U District" has a lot of cafes, restaurants, etc., but also easy transportation to the downtown area. http://www.hoteldeca.com/

In the Lower Queen Anne area the Marqueen is an older hotel that one either loves or hates - definitely scores on the funk scale, but also loses points with some on its amenities. Good location across from one of Seattle's premier restaurant/watering holes, Toulouse Petit. http://www.marqueen.com/

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10. Re: Funky/Arty/Alternative/Hipster Seattle Hotel?

Hey all.

Hotel Ballard isn't centrally located which is why I didn't mention it. It is easy enough to travel between Ballard and downtown (and all the other central neighborhoods) using public transportation so it's not that I am not recommending a stay in Ballard. To the contrary Ballard potentially would be very appealing to the poster. Being on Ballard Ave it couldn't be more central to one of the more hip parts of town (Ha! I am still surprised to hear myself say even though the change was underway when I moved here in 2000).

I also have recently decided that I am not going to regularly post on hotel questions. I can tell people which hotels are convenient to different parts of town, what the area is like around different hotels, what part of town I like better if a person is asking for a choice between two hotels, etc. However since I live here and have only ever stayed in two Seattle hotels (years ago) I just think my advice is probably of limited value by comparison to the numerous user reviews that are posted on TA.

I have never stayed at the Hotel Ballard. http://www.ballardinnseattle.com/

However here are my observations from what I have seen of it.

It is certainly independent. It does not have a high level of design like for example the Starck hotels (or maybe the Gat or Room Mate hotels in Spain). It is funky and stylish though ... and charming in the European pensione or hostal vein. Some rooms have shared baths and some have private baths.

The primary concern that I see in TA reviews is noise. The hotel is only two stories. It is low rise, a retrofit of an historic building and Ballard Ave is busy very late. Ballard Ave is not necessarily quiet even on week nights. You can count on sizeable crowds passing the hotel Friday and Sat nights.

The hotel has not had a lot of reviews (under B&Bs/inns). 6/8 reviews are very good(3) or excellent(3). There are then no average or poor reviews and two terrible reviews. Of those two, one poster was from Vashon and the other from Seattle. They both reported that they stayed in January 2012 as part of a couple travel. They both mentioned echoing. One of them has only 1 review and the other two reviews. It seems pretty clear to me that they traveled together and posted separately in a coordinated effort to slam the hotel. I thought the 1* reviews seemed a little uncharitable since they were either traveling on a paid voucher or got a voucher for another night as an accomodation after their stay and the clerk seemed to try to address their concerns. That being said they have a right to their opinions about their experiences and I have to say that noise would be a very real concern for me.

It does seem like the hotel is trying to make adjustments. The top floor rooms all appear to be carpeted to reduce noise for people below. One more recent poster said that earplugs are provided in the rooms. Others suggested an interior room if you are bothered by noise (I almost always ask for a quiet room and bring earplugs. I also have a white noise app on my ipod). One poster said that parking was a problem. The poster here did not say whether or not they would be driving. Parking is difficult on Ballard Ave. However I noted that one guest said that the hotel provides parking vouchers for nearby lots. You should call to confirm any amenities (like the earplugs or parking vouchers).

The hotel gets an average review of 3.5*/5 (3.625) on TA with the modal score being 4 or 5. Had the people (who again I am assuming were a couple traveling together but reviewing separately) only made a single 1* review the average would be 4*. (apart from its which presumably is based on amenities rather than an assessment of quality.

Edited: 10 July 2012, 16:57