Hotel check: Westin Seattle

WHAT’S IT LIKE? One of three Starwood properties in the city centre (the others being the W Seattle and the Sheraton Seattle hotel), the Westin is the tallest hotel in the city and is spread over two 47-storey cylindrical towers.

WHERE IS IT? On Fifth Avenue, one block from the monorail terminal which serves the Space Needle, and around five minutes’ walk to Pike Place Market. Seattle-Tacoma airport is a 30-minute drive away.

HOW MANY ROOMS? 891, including 318 Deluxe, four Westin Workout and 26 Grand View rooms (all non-smoking).

ROOM FACILITIES If at all possible, ask for a room high up in either of the towers and facing north-west, as these have wonderful views of Puget Sound and the Olympic Mountains. I didn’t, and consequently had a rather mediocre vista of a roof terrace and other high-rise buildings from my tenth-floor room. (To guarantee a good view, book the appropriately named Grand View rooms.) All rooms feature a king-size Westin Heavenly Bed (which really is as comfortable as it sounds), TV with satellite channels and on-demand movies, a large desk with wired internet access (charged at US$9.95 for 24 hours), a minibar, an iron/ironing board and a laptop safe. There is also a machine offering free Starbucks coffee – not surprising, considering Seattle is the home of the mega-chain. Rooms start from around 30 sqm and are decorated in light green and beige hues. Bathrooms have a combined bath and shower (with a double showerhead), hairdryer and bathrobe.

RESTAURANTS AND BARS Coldwater Bar and Grill is open for breakfast, lunch and dinner, with an emphasis on Pacific Rim seafood dishes such as pan-fried Yearling oysters and Alaskan king crab legs. Fifth Avenue Corner Café serves breakfast and lunch, with a traditional American feel to the menu including waffles, burgers and smoked turkey wraps. Finally, the Lobby Bar (open 4pm to midnight) offers snacks and wifi internet access. It’s slightly surprising that a hotel with 47 floors and great views at its disposal hasn’t chosen to locate a restaurant or bar on one of the upper floors – all of the eating options are located on or around the lobby.

BUSINESS AND MEETING FACILITIES There are 22 meeting rooms across four floors, ranging from the 1,675-sqm Grand Ballroom (accommodating 2,000 people for a reception), to several boardroom-style venues, all with wired and wifi internet access. The business centre is open 24 hours a day and has internet and printing facilities (US$5.95 for a 15-minute session).

LEISURE FACILITIES The Westin Workout Gym is open 24 hours and includes exercise bikes and free weights. The indoor pool was closed for refurbishment when I visited but was due to reopen in early summer.

VERDICT A centrally located hotel with comprehensive meeting facilities and comfortable rooms.

PRICES Internet rates for a midweek stay in July/August started from US$310 for a Deluxe room.

CONTACT Westin Seattle, 1900 Fifth Avenue; tel +1 206 728 1000; westin.com.

Mark Caswell


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