WITH NEW SIGHTS, HOTELS, RESTURANTS,
AND, YES, COFFEE SHOPS, SEATTLE IS EVEN COOLER THEN YOU
ALREADY THINK IT IS. HERE, WE COMPARE WHAT WAS HIP WITH WHAT
The problem with reputations - even good ones - is that they're
hard to shake. Take Seattle. When the world woke up and smelled the
coffee in the 1990s, it discovered the best stuff was coming from
the Emerald City. Then grunge conquered the universe, word got
around that there actually is a summer in the Pacific Northwest,
and a guy named Frasier moved in to shore up the city's
cosmopolitan character. All of which helped boost Seattle tourism
by an impressive 20 percent - from 7.2 million to 8.64 million
visitors between 1996 and 2001 alone. Trouble is, Seattle's more
famous sights now cast a Space Needle-sized shadow over
up-and-coming attractions. No one should visit Seattle without
watching the guys throwing fish at Pike Place Market or ordering a
triple foamy latte just about anywhere, but it would be an even
bigger to mistake to assume that the city of 2.7 million wrapped
itself in some sort of flannel time capsule after Nirvana broke up.
Seattle probably isn't the city you think it is - it's newer and
definitely more diverse. But is it better? Here's a head-to-head
comparison of the best of Seattle, new and established.
HIP NEW SLEEPOVER
Four Seasons Hotel Seattle, 411 University St., (206) 621-1700
- The downtown building may have a spot on the National Registry of
Historic Places, but from the oversize bath towels to complimentary
high-speed Internet access in every room, the newly renovated Four
Seasons may have a stranglehold on the Seattle hotel scene for
quite some time. The man on the street probably couldn't tell you
what the "coveted Acorn Award" is given out for (best British chef
under the age of 30), but with executive chef Gavin Stephenson at
the helm, the hotel's Georgian restaurant has ascended to the top
of the heap of Seattle's luxury Northwest-cuisine dining rooms.
It's also the best place in town for breakfast with clients.