Seattle Neighborhood Guide: Pioneer Square
The best big cities in the U.S.? Seattle ranks in the top 10, according to Condé Nast Traveler readers. Which makes us proud to say that Hotel 1000, a luxury refuge in the heart of Seattle, is one of Loews Hotels’ newest properties. Don’t miss our series highlighting the best Seattle neighborhoods with Hotel 1000’s Concierge team.
In our second Seattle neighborhood guide, we explore the historic and popular Pioneer Square with Robin Banks….
Robin, how long have you lived in Seattle?
I’ve lived in the Seattle area for more than 40 years, and in many neighborhoods including Downtown, Eastside, Northend, Southend, and University District. I’m a Western Washington gal. I love the feel of the city – low key, comfortable, friendly – with mellow weather, and no humidity in summer!
What is one of your favorite neighborhoods in the city?
Without a doubt, Pioneer Square. There is such a rich history! Pioneer Square is where the city really got established. So much about how Seattle started is remarkable… this is the place to get that history. It’s the oldest neighborhood, the original downtown. When it was rebuilt after the Great Fire of 1889, the city raised street levels and built on top of existing structures, creating what is now Seattle’s underground. Pioneer Square is just a few blocks from Hotel 1000, so very easy to explore.
In Pioneer Square…
…what’s your favorite thing to do?
It’s a great place for sightseeing. I recommend two tours – first, the underground tour by Beneath the Streets exploring the historic underground passageways of old Seattle. Then, the Smith Tower tour, which is Seattle’s first skyscraper, an iconic building in the city skyline that offers amazing views. Pioneer Square is also ideal for eclectic shopping. Check out E. Smith Mercantile and the London Plane.
The area is also a vibrant art scene here with loads of galleries. Glass-blowing is always fun to see. Finally, there are pub and taverns that are great and ideally located for pre- baseball or football game food and drinks, since Pioneer Square is walking distance to both stadiums.
…your favorite place to go in Pioneer Square?
Smith Tower – built in 1914, it’s a beautiful building. I worked there for several years and learned so much about the building, the people who built it and the area surrounding it. The observation deck on 35th floor has open-air viewing with 360-degree views of Seattle and Elliott Bay. Then there’s a Prohibition-themed café and bar.
…your favorite bite to eat and beverage to sip?
We hope to see you soon at Hotel 1000! Thank you, Robin, for your Seattle recommendations.