Five Places to Visit in Seattle (at least based on my short visit there)
1. Pike Place Market- It's touristy, yes. However, its a great opportunity to get unique, handcrafted souvenirs while supporting the local economy. And some tasty Honeycrisp apples, if they're in season. Across the street are blocks of great little bakeries and coffee shops, including, OH HO!, the original Starbucks.
2. Elliott Bay Books- The oldest and largest of Seattle's independent bookstores. Fine selection, especially literary and unusual magazines. If you want to buy a guidebook on Seattle, spend your dollar here. Stop and enjoy the architecture in Pioneer Square while you're at it.
3. Atlas Clothing Company- Located on Broadway, just outside of Capitol Hill(and a weird stretch of street with trendy stores, sex shops, and restaurants populated largely by hipsters, gay couples and meth heads), Atlas Clothing is a vintage shop with some handmade original clothing and jewelry. Great stuff to be had, and I am only wishing I could have dropped $140 for that adorable customized velvet blazer.
4. Uwajimaya-Visiting this enormous Asian market is a little bit like culture immersion, especially when you are trying to decipher the packaging entirely in another language and determine whether or not it might be something scary or tasty. I loaded up on Asian candies and snacks. Alastair has really been loving his Japanese baby cookies which could be made with arsenic for all I know. There's nary an English word on the box. Uwajimaya also sells more varieties of saki than I knew existed; you can even buy it in enormous rope-wrapped barrels.
5. The Pink Door- Modeled after a Prohibition speakeasy, The Pink Door has no signage, only a large metal door painted pale pink to indicate its location. They serve traditional Italian fare, very nicely done, and if you order a single serving of wine they bring it to you in a small green bottle with a glass tumbler. The burlesque show starts after 11 p.m. on Saturday. If you're lucky and get a good waitress, she'll watch for an empty table in the back and move you after your meal. Oh and on Sundays, they have a trapeze artist swinging above diners.