Best Areas to Stay in Seattle, Washington

Americas, Seattle, United States, Washington  /   /  By bestdistricts

Where to stay in Seattle – A guide to the City of Rain

Seattle, the famous “Emerald City”, also called “The Gateway of Alaska” or “City of Rain”, is the largest city in the state of Washington.

Seattle is located in the northwest of the United States, between Lake Washington and the Bay “Puget Sound”. The metropolis is known for being the birthplace of grunge and where world-renowned bands such as Nirvana, Pearl Jam, Soundgarden and Alice In Chains were formed.

It also houses the first location of the popular Starbucks coffee chain, Tully’s and Seattle’s Best Coffee.

The Space Needle is, definitely, the architectural symbol of Seattle, an observation tower built in the center of the city in 1962.

Reaching the Emerald City is possible through the Seattle-Tacoma International Airport, also called “Sea-Tac”, located south of Seattle and north of Tacoma.

Unlike many large American cities, Seattle has a relatively extensive public transport system that includes light rail, trams and city buses.

The city also enjoys a lively nightlife, including bars, restaurants with live music, and breweries.

When it comes to the best areas to stay, Seattle has a large number of hotels of all kinds, especially in its central area (See accommodation in Downtown Seattle).

If your visit is short and you have a tight budget, we recommend staying in the vicinity of Seattle as Northgate (See accommodation in Northgate).

Below is a guide with the best areas to stay in Seattle, Washington.

The best areas to stay in Seattle

1. Our favorite area: Central Waterfront

Central Waterfront is a port area located east of the city center. It covers from the coast of Pioneer Square to Downtown Seattle, the neighborhood of Belltown and Broad Street.

Among the activities to do at Central Waterfront, we recommend a walk around the Pier 55, where you can go to the amusement park, the Aquarium, and shops or taste fresh seafood in the restaurants by the ocean.

Around Central Waterfront, you will find the Frye Art Museum, comfortable hotels with stunning views of the bay, department stores, the Cinerama and souvenir shops.

It is also possible to visit the St. James Cathedral, with its neo-Renaissance style and, at night, you can attend the Showbox, where artists, comedians, and local groups perform.

Central Waterfront is connected by metro, light rail, and tram.

Central Waterfront is recommended when deciding where to stay in Seattle for being one of the most interesting areas on the coast of Elliot Bay, its modernity and lively nightlife will make your trip an experience.

Where to stay in Seattle - Central Waterfront & Downtown

Where to stay in Seattle – Central Waterfront & Downtown

Accommodation in Seattle Central Waterfront - Click on the map to see all available accommodation in this area

Accommodation in Seattle Central Waterfront – Click on the map to see all available accommodation in this area

Why we love this area for a stay in Seattle:

  • Elliot Bay
  • Best area for sightseeing
  • Aquarium
  • Great nightlife
  • Seafood restaurants
  • Hotels with amazing views

Accommodation in this area

Top Choice

Ace Hotel Seattle

This modern hotel is located in the Belltown district of Seattle, 750 meters from Pike Place Market and 1 mile from downtown Seattle. It offers contemporary-style rooms with free Wi-Fi and a shared breakfast room.

from US$109
Budget

Green Tortoise Hostel Seattle

This hostel offers free Wi-Fi and a breakfast to taste with cereals, fruit, juice, coffee, tea and hot chocolate, and is located across from the famous Pike Place Market in downtown Seattle, near the Seattle Art Museum.

from US$34
Luxurious

Kimpton Alexis Hotel

The Kimpton Alexis Hotel is located in downtown Seattle, a 5-minute walk from the seafront and the Seattle Ferry Terminal. The rooms have a flat-screen cable TV. The hotel is also within walking distance many other places of interest.

from US$249
 

 

 

2. Belltown

Just north of Downtown Seattle is the Belltown neighborhood.

Belltown houses a variety of condos, restaurants, bars, boutiques, and clubs that make the district a lively area, ideal to stay when visiting Seattle.

The attractions within this area range from the Paramount Theater, terraces to enjoy brunch, Pier 66, the Moore Theater and the markets of Belltown, full of art pieces and crafts.

Public transportation in this area includes the ferry at the Seattle Clipper terminal, the bus or light rail from the University Street Station- Bay A and the Pioneer Square Station.

Because it is located in the surrounding area, the Belltown district is considered a cheap area to stay in Seattle, where comfortable hotels are available at reasonable prices.

Belltown - Best areas to stay in Seattle

Belltown – Best areas to stay in Seattle

Accommodation in Belltown - Click on the map to see all available accommodation in this area.

Accommodation in Belltown – Click on the map to see all available accommodation in this area.

Why we love this area for a stay in Seattle:

  • Good transpor options
  • Belltown markets
  • Restaurants and bars
  • Theaters
  • Pier 66
  • Ferry station

Accommodation in this area

Top Choice

Belltown Inn

The Belltown Inn is a 15-minute walk from the Olympic Sculpture Park, which overlooks Puget Sound, and features a roof terrace with a furnished terrace. The Pike Place Market and the Space Needle Tower are no more than 10 minutes away on foot.

from US$111
Budget

Kings Inn

From this comfortable hotel, located in downtown Seattle, you can walk to many of the city’s attractions, such as the Space Needle and Pike Place Market.

from US$59
Luxurious

The Westin Seattle

The property, which is located in downtown Seattle, has panoramic views of the city and the sea. It also offers spa services in the rooms and is a 5-minute walk from the Washington State Convention Center.

from US$239
 

 

 

3. Queen Anne

Originally called “Eden Hill”, Queen Anne is located northwest of the city center, on the highest hill in Seattle, with a maximum elevation of 456 feet (139m).

This hill became a sought-after place to live in Seattle, and it was filled with mansions and properties that belonged to the cultural elite of the city.

The great urban center of Seattle, Queen Anne is roughly divided into residential neighborhoods to the north and east, parks and green spaces to the west and its south side, which concentrates a large number of tourist and cultural attractions of Seattle.

This area, known as Lower Queen Anne hosts the famous Space Needle, historic houses, the Museum of Modern Art, some boutiques and views of the Upper Queen Anne area.

In Lower Queen Anne, there are also the Seattle Gardens, with art exhibitions that are well worth visiting and the Kerry Park, located on Highland Drive, which covers just 1.26 acres (0.51 ha), but has one of the most attractive views from the city.

For these reasons, Queen Anne is one of the best districts to stay in Seattle.

Where to stay in Seattle, WA - Queen Anne

Where to stay in Seattle, WA – Queen Anne

Accommodation in Queen Anne - Click on the map to see all available accommodation in this area

Accommodation in Queen Anne – Click on the map to see all available accommodation in this area

Why we love this area for a stay in Seattle:

  • Space Needle
  • Luxury hotels
  • Museum of Modern Art
  • Shopping area
  • Residential area
  • Stunning views

Accommodation in this area

Top Choice

Hampton Inn & Suites Seattle-Downtown

This hotel is located in downtown Seattle, within walking distance of the Space Needle and just 20 minutes by subway from the Art Museum, the docks and the Seattle Aquarium.

from US$109
Budget

Travelodge by Wyndham Seattle By The Space Needle

This Seattle hotel offers rooms with free Wi-Fi. The Travelodge by Wyndham Seattle by the Space Needle is a 5-minute walk from the Seattle Center, the EMP Museum and the Space Needle.

from US$69
Luxurious

MarQueen Hotel

This historic 1918 hotel is located in the Queen Anne neighborhood of Seattle, just a few blocks from the Space Needle observation tower. The hotel houses a spa, hairdresser and business center.

from US$107
 

 

 

4. South Lake Union

South Lake Union is a neighborhood known for its culture.

The online giant Amazon is headquartered in this neighborhood.

This area borders Queen Anne to the west and, as the name suggests, is at the southern end of Union Lake, which gives South Lake Union a nautical atmosphere that makes it an attraction for tourists and locals.

This district is connected to the rest of the city by trams and buses.

South Lake Union is home to fascinating museums such as the MOHAI Museum, as well as Puget Sound and its historical artifacts exhibits.

This area has an eclectic nightlife, with bars and pubs for all tastes, in which you can enjoy imported beer and surround yourself with a jovial atmosphere.

If you want to do outdoor activities on your trip, we recommend visiting the green areas of Denny Park, the Northwest Port or the Cascade Playground.

For being located in downtown Seattle, but enjoying a quiet environment, South Lake Union is an excellent choice and one of the best areas to stay in Seattle.

Best areas to stay in Seattle - South Lake Union

Best areas to stay in Seattle – South Lake Union

Accommodation in South Lake Union - Click on the map to see all available accommodation in this area

Accommodation in South Lake Union – Click on the map to see all available accommodation in this area

Why we love this area for a stay in Seattle:

  • Museums
  • Peaceful atmosphere
  • Cultural institutions

Accommodation in this area

  • Top Choice
    EVEN Hotel Seattle – South Lake Union

    The EVEN Hotel Seattle – South Lake Union offers rooms with free Wi-Fi in the South Lake Union district of Seattle. The property is 1.1 km from the Space Needle. Downtown Seattle is 1.3 km away.

    from US$149

    .

 

 

 

5. University District

This area is known for housing the University of Washington, the department store “The Ave” and 17th Avenue, a tree-lined street known as Greek Row where the great historic mansions, now occupied by fraternities and university fraternities, are.

University District is a mixed-use area with commercial, residential and green space.

It is located north of the city of Seattle, bordered on the east by Laurelhurst and on the west by Wallingford.

The “U District” has a youthful atmosphere with a great gastronomic offer and shops, cafes, pubs, restaurants, and theaters.

Activities in the neighborhood include visiting the Henry Art Gallery and the Burke Museum, as well as enjoying outdoor entertainment such as dance, theater and music shows at Meany Hall, or biking on the Burke-Gilman Trail.

This area is connected by light rail (University of Washington station).

Despite not having a wide variety of tourist accommodation, University District qualifies as one of the best areas to stay in Seattle for its cheerful, youthful life, major museums and department stores, ideal for young travelers and students.

Where to stay in Seattle, Washington - University District

Where to stay in Seattle, Washington – University District

Accommodation in University District - Click on the map to see all available accommodation in this area

Accommodation in University District – Click on the map to see all available accommodation in this area

Why we love this area for a stay in Seattle:

  • University area
  • Cheap hotels
  • Commercial area

Accommodation in this area

  • Top Choice
    University Motel Suites

    Located in the University District, just 1 mile from the University of Washington, this Seattle hotel offers spacious apartment-style suites with fully equipped kitchens. There is free WiFi.

    from US$89

    .

 

 

 

6. Northgate

Northgate is a business and cheap area, famous for its live music shows and sporting events.

It offers to those who visit it an endless number of cafes, bars, and pubs to entertain themselves in their vacations.

The stores and shopping centers`in Northgate are very popular, with a variety of shops that make it an unmissable tourist destination.

Do not forget to visit the Carl S. English botanical garden, the Parsons Gardens or the famous Pike Place Market.

And if you want to take home a souvenir, you’ll find shopping centers such as Northgate, University Village, Totem Lake, and the Nordstrom department store, so it is safe to say that you can get a gift for any kind of friend or family member.

Northgate connects with other areas of Seattle through bus lines.

Regardless of the length of your stay, if you are passing through or taking a well-deserved vacation in Seattle, Northgate is recommended to stay for its comfort and bustling nightlife.

Where to stay in Seattle - Northgate

Where to stay in Seattle – Northgate

Accommodation in Northgate - Click on the map to see all available accommodation in this area

Accommodation in Northgate – Click on the map to see all available accommodation in this area

Why we love this area for a stay in Seattle:

  • Northgate mall
  • Golf courses
  • Cheap accommodation

Accommodation in this area

  • Top Choice
    Comfort Inn & Suites Aurora Avenue North

    This Washington hotel is a 20-minute drive from downtown Seattle, near I-5, and offers free daily breakfast and spacious rooms suitable for pets.

    from US$79
 

 

 

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