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The State Hotel

1501 2nd Ave, Seattle, WA 98101, USA
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The State Hotel

Why we love it: the latest addition to downtown Seattle’s Pike Place Market scene has a five-story mural painted by the Obama “Hope” poster artist

- A mix of mid-century and Art Deco design
- Accepts dogs 50lbs and less
- A rooftop deck with views of Puget Sound’s ferries, Pike Place Market and the snow-gilded Olympic Mountains

The review: Built in 1904 as a medical office building, this property blossomed into a billiards and gambling hall with a restaurant in the 1930s. Almost 90 years later, it now shines as an independent downtown Seattle hotel, steps away from the world-famous Pike Place Market. Look for the five-story mural “Firesale” by activist and street artist Shepard Fairey, the man behind the 2008 Barack Obama “Hope” poster: a tribute to each person concerned about global warming defying powerful corporations. Graphically he employs ripped, jagged edges to encourage citizens to look below the surface.

This 91-room hotel boasts a rooftop bar, 24-hour fitness center and the valet parking typical of downtown. It’s also home to Ben Paris restaurant, serving craft cocktails like the Longshoreman (rye, the Sicilian amaro Averna and Punt e Mes, a drink created for Italian stockbrokers, enlivened by flamed orange peel). Pro tip: if four diners order the same beverage, the cocktail cart might make a fabulous appearance! The eatery also serves classic American dishes, including buttermilk hush puppies, fried chicken and collard greens, and line-caught king salmon with morels, buttered corn and dandelion pesto.

Locally made beds greet each guest, along with regional art that includes portraits of portraits of well-known Seattleites from singer-songwriter Brandi Carlile to mountaineering legend Jim Whittaker. Rooms also include custom-designed desks, closets and leather catch-alls. Expect high ceilings flooded with natural light, alongside walk-in, glass-enclosed showers. Some rooms have city and water views, not to mention terrace. The crème de la crème: the terrace king suite, an ADA-accessible space on the top floor with a private rooftop deck overlooking The Emerald City.