Seattle, Washington — a city where urban charm meets natural beauty, offering a blend of cultural richness, iconic landmarks, and culinary delights. We love Seattle, and think you will too. The conference is located in the center of Seattle with easy access to restaurants, tourist activities, and shopping. The neighborhoods surrounding the city center provide a vibrant art and cultural scene. If you enjoy exploring, you’ll find a wealth of interesting activities within a short walk or ride from the conference center.
The conference venue is The Westin Seattle. It is right in the center of Seattle.
Easy Ground Transportation
The city has a great range of transportation including free downtown bus service, passenger ferries to the islands, a streetcar to Lake Union, the monorail to the Space Needle, and plentiful taxis. Seattle is also a very walkable city with safe streets and friendly people.
- The Seattle Map and Walks app is free and offers a lot of great information about things to do in the area.
- Take a self-guided walking tour with your phone, or take advantage of The Westin concierge who can provide you with detailed information about just about everything there is to do in the Seattle area.
Downtown Seattle: Downtown Seattle buzzes with energy, where historic charm meets modern vibrancy. Pike Place Market is a sensory feast, surrounded by eclectic shops and eateries. The Seattle Art Museum and Paramount Theatre anchor a rich cultural scene, against a backdrop of the iconic Space Needle. With its stunning waterfront and gourmet dining, downtown embodies Seattle’s dynamic spirit and natural beauty, all within a compact urban core.
Along the waterfront, you can find restaurants like Anthony’s and Ivar’s. Harbor tours depart from this area. The Washington State public passenger ferry to Bainbridge Island offers excellent views of the city and Puget Sound for about six bucks. The Seattle Great Wheel o0b offers great views of the waterfront .
Pike Place Market
Just south on Alaska Way from the conference center you will find elevator and stair access up to Pike Place Market. This vibrant historic market features hundreds of small shops and eateries. It’s a hub for local artisans and farmers, famous for its fish-throwing tradition. Stroll the market early and enjoy pastries from Le Panier or grab a drink from local shops like Espresso Vivace or Storyville Coffee.
The Space Needle and the MoPOP
Take the historic monorail to the Seattle’s most famous landmark, the Space Needle, found in the heart of the Seattle Center. The Space Needle’s observation deck offers panoramic views of the city, the Puget Sound, and the Olympic and Cascade Mountains. On a clear day you can see as far as the Canadian and Oregon borders.
Adjacent to the Needle is the Museum of Pop Culture (MoPOP). Dive into a world of music, sci-fi, and pop culture at this Frank Gehry-designed museum by the Space Needle. You can witness the mesmerizing glass art of Dale Chihuly, at the Chihuly Garden and Glass, a short walk from MoPOP.
Dining and the Arts
Great restaurants nearby include Assaggio, Lola, and Palace Kitchen. The Westlake Center Mall is four blocks away and has a Subway, Taco del Mar, PF Chang’s, a Food Court, four levels of shops, and the monorail station. A great bar for classic cocktails is Oliver’s in the Mayflower Park Hotel at 4th & Olive.
The Seattle Art Museum (SAM) is just a short walk from Pike Place. SAM boasts a diverse collection, with pieces ranging from Native American art to contemporary exhibits. Performing Arts options within walking distance of the conference hotel include the Seattle Opera and the Seattle Symphony.
Seattle is a city that boasts an eclectic mix of neighborhoods, each offering its unique flavor and experiences.
Belltown: North of Pike Place Market is the Belltown neighborhood. There are many bars and restaurants located along First and Second Avenues. Belltown also hosts the Olympic Sculpture Park. Meander through this stunning outdoor park where modern art and nature meet against the backdrop of the Puget Sound.
Pioneer Square: South from Pike Place Market is Pioneer Square. The oldest commercial area in Seattle, Pioneer Square is made up of historic buildings that are now home to shops, restaurants, and the Underground Tour. In the evening, many of the restaurants feature live bands.
Queen Anne: Queen Anne sits atop its namesake hill just northwest of the conference venue, offering breathtaking views of Seattle’s skyline and the serene waters of Puget Sound. This charming neighborhood blends historic homes with vibrant cultural spots, including the bustling dining and shopping scene along Queen Anne Avenue. The crown jewel, Kerry Park, provides the perfect vantage point for iconic photographs of the Space Needle and downtown, making Queen Anne a must-visit for its picturesque tranquility within the city’s heart.
Capitol Hill: Capitol Hill is the epicenter of Seattle’s vibrant music and arts scene. Known for its eclectic nightlife, the neighborhood boasts a plethora of bars, clubs, and music venues that cater to every taste. By day, Capitol Hill is a hub for coffee culture, with numerous cafes and bistros lining its streets. Most restaurants and clubs can be found between Pine and Pike and Broadway and 13th.
Fremont: Often referred to as “The Center of the Universe” by its residents, this quirky neighborhood is known for its public art installations, including the famous Fremont Troll under the Aurora Bridge and the statue of Lenin. Fremont has a lively arts scene, with numerous galleries and studios, as well as a range of dining options from street food to fine dining.
Ballard: Once a sleepy Scandinavian fishing village, Ballard has transformed into one of Seattle’s most dynamic neighborhoods. Its historic Ballard Avenue is lined with chic boutiques, trendy restaurants, and cozy coffee shops. The Ballard Locks, where you can watch boats make their way between Puget Sound and Lake Union, is a popular attraction. Ballard also hosts a vibrant Sunday farmers market that draws locals and visitors alike.
Beyond the city center are many interesting activities including cruises, visits to the Museum of Flight, the Bloedel Reserve, and a tour of Lake Washington. If you have more time and the weather cooperates, watch spawning steelhead salmon make their way through the Ballard Locks, take a day trip to Victoria in Canada, or explore Mt. St. Helen’s National Volcanic Monument. Skiing often lasts into April in the Cascades. Hiking is almost always possible in the Hoh Rain Forest and beaches of Olympic National Park.