Downtown Shopping Spree


Stop at Westlake Center and grab an espresso and pastry at the stand in the plaza before window-shopping Westlake’s indoor mall. Inside, Made in Washington offers a large and creative inventory of regionally produced merchandise. Walk across Pine Street to find Nordstrom’s spacious flagship store, stocked with top designer brands and the absolute best of everything. Splurge in Pacific Place mall, where you can choose from upmarket stores including Tiffany & Co., Coach, Ann Taylor, Cartier, and Williams-Sonoma. Exit the mall on Pine, turn right, and then left on 5th Avenue to University Street for pricey boutiques and fine jewelry, such as Fox’s Gem Shop (1341 5th Ave).

Descend into the cavernous indoor mall at Rainier Square , underneath the white high-rise that rests on a narrow pedestal. The base of the building opens up for a city block’s worth of shops, galleries, and restaurants. Look for fine art in the Jeffrey Moose Gallery and imported Swiss chocolate from Neuhaus. Walk downhill on University to 4th Avenue, where you can board a number of non-express buses for a free ride back to Pike Street, or stay on the bus a few more blocks to Virginia Street for a superb Italian lunch at Assaggio . Ask the driver for help if you need it.

Around Belltown

  1. Lenora Street Bridge

    This elegant footbridge leads from Western Avenue to the Elliott Bay piers, providing stellar views of West Seattle and the Olympic Mountains.

  2. Whiskey Bar

    This trendy yet comfortable bar in Belltown offers a large variety of whiskey. Good for pre-concert gatherings due to its proximity to the Moore Theatre.

    • 2000 2nd Ave

  3. Belltown Billiards

    A mix of professional-quality billiard tables with sumptuous Italian fare, DJs, and live music creates a hopping late-night scene.

    • 90 Blanchard St

  4. Rendezvous

    This bar houses the miniscule Jewel Box Theater, a 1926-era private movie screening room, while the remodeled bar draws hipsters and condo dwellers.

    • 2320 2nd Ave

  5. TopPot Doughnuts

    Take a hiatus from healthful dining and grab a few doughnuts from this stylish cafe’ that welcomes loungers sipping coffee and dipping tasty treats.

    • 2124 5th Ave

  6. Sub Pop World Headquarters

    The local record label created by Jonathan Poneman and Bruce Pavitt in the mid-1980s signed bands such as Nirvana and Soundgarden that put Seattle on the rock music map worldwide.

    • 2013 4th Ave

  7. Waterfront Station

    For a picturesque journey while heading to Pioneer Square or the International District, board the waterfront streetcar. There’re stations near Belltown at the foot of Vine and Bell Streets, near Piers 66, 67, and 69.

    Waterfront streetcar
  8. Austin A. Bell Building

    Elmer Fisher, Seattle’s foremost commercial architect, designed this handsome building that reflects Richardsonian, Gothic, and Italianate styles. It houses pricey condos and a nightclub.

    • 2326 1st Ave

    Austin A. Bell Building
  9. Art Institute of Seattle

    The institute offers programs in graphics, fashion, and culinary and media arts.

    • 2323 Elliott Ave

    • 206 448 0900

  10. Millionaire’s Club

    This social service agency helps potential laborers find temporary work.

As a general rule, keep your distance from transients, panhandlers, and strangers with drunken pleas.

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