Friday, August 14, 2015

Pacific Northwest Trip, Part Twelve

 Our flight to Seattle, once it finally got going, was uneventful. It was late afternoon when we arrived, and Seattle was experiencing a major heat wave.

We easily found our way to The Inn at the Market, where we were to stay for two nights. It is newly remodeled; the room was spacious and the bathroom was glorious! I wanted to take home every single thing -- the glass shower, the faucets, the towels -- from this place! We were tired, and were happy when we asked the concierge to recommend a place for dinner and she suggested Cafe Champagne, a charming French restaurant steps away from the Inn. After a leisurely meal, we returned to the hotel to retire early -- we had a very full day ahead on Saturday!

Promptly at the appointed hour, we gathered at the famous gum wall (which I found distasteful -- see above) to begin our two-hour tour of Pike Place Market with a knowledgable and personable guide from Savor Seattle Tours. We had stopped at the Market when had been in Seattle prior to Alaska and found it overwhelming. Taking this tour was definitely the way to really enjoy the Pike Place Market. The tour group was limited in size to sixteen participants and included were four deaf women and a pair of interpreters. We made stops at eight different food stands, learning something about each one, and having a most enjoyable sample of chowder, salmon, cherry candy, cheese, crab, pirogies, doughnuts, and I honestly can't remember the last one! At the famous fish-throwing stand, there was an opportunity for one member of our tour group to attempt to catch a fish and the deaf group quickly nominated their friend Mish, who was delighted. We were all surprised that the man at the fish stand knew ASL and the interpreter didn't need to get behind the counter with Mish!

Exhausted but full, and very warm, we went back to the hotel where we read and napped for a while and then headed out to catch the Monorail down to the Space Needle Area. We didn't  care at all about going to the top of the Space Needle; our destination was Chihuly Garden and Glass!

We had long admired Chihuly's work and it somehow seems to fit so well with the vibrance and modernity of Seattle (have I mentioned that I really liked this city?). To control crowds, a limited number of tickets was sold for a specific time of entry. We wandered around the area while we waited for our appointment and then we went in. What a wonderful place!  I took so many pictures . . . . We enjoyed the glass installations inside, the films about Chihuly, the exterior garden, and the gift shop where we purchased a small round glass vase that reminded me of Sputnik.

Our dinner at Collections Cafe, which the concierge had also recommended, was delicious, and was a fun ending to a marvelous trip. The next morning we would take the train to the airport for the long flight home.


Barbara Anne said...

A GUM wall??????? I share your feelings ... Ick!

Your time in Seattle was certainly well spent and you went to such interesting places. I hadn't heard of Chihuly Garden and Glass and that was amazing.

Did you find any quilt shops?


Lori said...

I hate that gross wall too!

Carol said...

I've looked forward to every post about your trip and this is one I hope to do one of these days. Such a wealth of information you have given. We've been to Seattle a number of times and always stay at the Inn at the Market. Can sit and watch the harbor activity for hours. I hope you stopped in at Market Spice Tea Co. in Pike Market. Love love their own Market Spice tea--either hot or iced. I buy it in bulk when we are there or friends have gotten it for me when there as well. Did you know the Inn front street entry is in the movie Sleepless in Seattle? I think that's the one. Also Meg Ryan and Tom Hanks are in a dining scene at a Greek restaurant in the Market and we always eat there every visit. We've been to Alaska a few times, to a cabin on an island accessible by boat only and enjoy the gorgeous scenery, salmon fishing and quiet slow pace. I hope to go further north some day. Thanks for your wonderful trip posts.

Carol said...

forgot to add we were just there in June and stayed at the Inn. As many times as we've been, I've never seen that gum wall and don't plan to look it up next trip! There was a new yarn shop across from the Inn that was nice and new. I managed to help the Seattle economy in there. We love Pirosky Pirosky, tiny little Russian bakery just below the Inn for pastries for breakfast---or any time!!