Thrillist recommends spending Seattle weekends at the foot of The Emerald! The Emerald’s premiere location at Second and Stewart places you in the center of downtown Seattle – just one block from the iconic Pike Place Market, steps from the waterfront and surrounded by the city’s best culinary and cultural destinations. The recent feature highlights several walkable spots within close proximity to our community which make it the perfect launching spot to explore Seattle whether a visitor or native that loves the city.
“Rising steeply from Elliott Bay, Seattle’s Downtown greets visitors to the city with a sample platter of its best features. From the culinary diversity and fresh ingredients of the iconic Pike Place Market, to the rooftop gardens, to the first Starbucks location — the city takes pride in its open spaces and open attitudes. Seattle’s personality comes from its wide array of neighborhoods, but Downtown’s ease and convenience makes it an essential starting point for a weekend tour.”
Discover a Rooftop Garden at Fourth and Madison. Spend a sunny day in the garden. This rooftop garden is located on the 7th floor of the tower and wraps around three sides of the building. The patio is a lush, green retreat from the city below. Tables and chairs are situated throughout the garden area, perfect for lunch on a beautiful day. Enjoy up-close vistas of the Smith Tower and the Central Library and peekaboo views of Elliott Bay. The rooftop garden is open from Monday to Friday from 7 am to 5:30 pm and also features free Wi-Fi.
Visit the First Starbucks. This small shop in Pike Place Market offers visitors a peek at the history of Seattle’s hometown coffee chain, as nearly all of the original features are still intact. Admire the 50-year old original Starbucks sign on the front façade, spy the original Starbucks logo and fixtures inside this 1,000 square foot store. Purchase something from the modern menu at the original Starbucks and strike a pose, it’s an Insta-worthy location.
Lunch at Pasta Casalinga. One of Pike Place Market’s newer lunch spots, this tiny pasta shop offers an equally tiny menu. It always includes a lasagna and plain tomato sauce option, plus one each “from the garden, “from the ocean,” and “from the farm.” All of the offerings utilize seasonal ingredients — often from fellow Pike Place vendors — in a vegetarian, pescatarian, or meat option. The pasta shapes are specially chosen to highlight the flavors of local foods.
Mee Sum Pastry. Also located in Pike Place Market, this Chinese bakery stall makes more than 1,000 of their buns, also known as Hom Bow, each day. They offer versions baked or steamed, and stuffed with their unique curry beef, traditional barbecue pork, chicken, or vegetables. The buns share the deli case with almond tarts, sesame balls, wife cakes, and all kinds of other Chinese sweets and savories.
Ventures Marketplace. Located right below the famous fish throwers, at first glance this shop could be just another eclectic gift shop — something of which the Pike Place Market hosts a delightful variety. But here, your purchase of hot sauces, jewelry, lip balm, wallets, or incense goes even further: this is actually a consignment store for graduates from a non-profit business incubator called Ventures. The organization focuses on providing training and resources for people for whom those things are often difficult to access — especially women, people of color, and immigrants — and for many who go through the program, this shop is one of the first places they sell.
Olympic Sculpture Park. Covered in monumental artworks, this award-winning nine-acre sculpture park on the waterfront is Seattle’s largest downtown green space and is just one mile north of the Seattle Art Museum. The sculpture park offers monumental contemporary sculptures and breathtaking views of the Space Needle, Olympic Mountains, and Puget Sound. Stroll along a 2,200-foot path that zigzags from the pavilion to the water’s edge to tour the park and its surroundings.
Take a Walk down the Red Hall at Central Library. Dutch architect Rem Koolhaas designed the city’s flagship library, opened in 2004, and it boasts floor after floor of public art, impressive open space, and 1.5 million books. But the fourth floor stands out, even among the many unique areas, because the hallway that loops around the floors, meeting rooms, and computer labs features more than a dozen different shades of red on the floor, ceiling, and walls. It’s the library’s most photographed section and shows off the intersection of art, function, and architecture that make this building such a beloved and significant part of Seattle.
Observatory Bar in Smith Tower. If you prefer your views with a craft cocktail, the iconic, world-famous Smith Tower satisfies. Whisking visitors up 35 stories, the Otis elevator introduces you to a Prohibition-themed bar that harkens back to the 1914 building’s early years. Stop by for happy hour and the stunning 360-degree views of Seattle from what stood as the tallest building west of the Mississippi until 1931. Take in the views from the elegant Observatory Bar as you sip local microbrews, barrel-aged cocktails, and bourbon flights.
Your Seattle adventures begin here. The Emerald is now over 50% sold. Onsite tours of our eight models homes and breathtaking amenities are available for tour by appointment. With homes starting in the $400,000’s, it’s the perfect opportunity to invest in a dream location or find your full-time home.
Image credit: Photo by Tiffany Von Arnim/FLICKR