Passport to Pleasure: Happy Hours and Happy Times During a 1st Avenue Overnight at Downtown’s Hotel 1000

boka_exterior_600How about golf, a spa, a comfortable room with scenic views, and a wide variety of interesting dining options—right in or outside your hotel on 1st Avenue in downtown Seattle?

There’s also a world of restaurants right outside the door.

If I was visiting Seattle for business, I’d want to stay at Hotel 1000. I love the location, and little things like the free Internet access and VOIP calls make the guestroom a great remote office, or home away from home. But Hotel 1000 isn’t just for out-of-towners. It’s a perfect place for you to enjoy a pleasurable downtown couples’ getaway full of food, fun, and relaxation. And it’s where we stamp this week’s Passport to Pleasure—a hedonistic quest for food and good times.

THE HOTEL

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These are no ordinary hotel rooms. There’s a warm feeling upon entering your room, with cherry wood wardrobes and plush velvet pillows part of the sleek décor. You’ll take in the views of Elliott Bay by day, then draw the curtains to take advantage of flexible mood lighting by night.

Sleep promises to be peaceful.

In fact, you might not ever want to leave your room.

boka_guestroom_bathWhat makes Hotel 1000’s rooms extraordinary are the bathrooms.

You’ll be intrigued by the two-person pedestal tub sitting right in the middle of your bathroom. Where’s the plumbing, you wonder? When you’re ready to share a bath (your choice whether or not to draw the blinds to block out the city lights at night), the tub fills with water that pours down from the ceiling.

You’ll be tempted to bring bubble bath.

This will be a magical part of your magical stay.

SPAAHH

boka_spaAs if the bathtub’s not relaxing enough, you can throw on bathrobes and take the elevator down to the spa, known here as “The Spaahh,” for a couples massage. Treat yourself to some pampering, finding peace in this busy stretch of city. Customize your treatment, choosing from Swedish to deep tissue to hot stone massage.

In the two-person treatment room, it’s a special feeling knowing that your special someone is on the table next to you, relishing the relaxation.

THE REST

boka_golfThere’s no need to limit your activities to the room during your getaway. Just off the front lobby, you’ll notice the open fire pit in Studio 1000. It’s the site of many events, from talks to performances to holiday festivities (a special time to stay at Hotel 1000, when they make it snow every evening during the season).

Check out The Golf Club, a virtual reality golf experience (with over 50 famous courses) that can actually help your game—or get you interested in it. With snacks and drinks available, it’s a fun way to play with your partner.

For quieter time and a creative outlet, the Library offers a fireside retreat to do reading, writing, and thinking. And back by The Spaahh is the fitness center, with exercise equipment and free weights to help build muscle and burn the calories you’ll be consuming during your culinary adventures.

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DINING IN…

boka-interiorYou don’t need to go far for good food, as BOKA Kitchen + Bar is open early for breakfast and until midnight or so for your late-night cravings. Alternatively, you can dine in-room at any time, as the kitchen never closes.

Breakfast and brunch are favorite meals here, but you might also enjoy the $3/$6/$9 happy hour specials, or come for dinner when the dining room is at its sexiest. Lots of cozy, comfortable, and curvy seating, and if the ever-changing colored lights are just a little overdone, they’re still fun. Grab a seat at the bar, and when you’re ready for more, move to a table for a completely different perspective.

boka-ribsChef Angie Roberts prepares “urban American food” with Pacific Northwest flourishes using as many organic ingredients as possible; look for dishes like sashimi-style geoduck with corn pudding, warm bacon dressing, and bing cherries.

(Pictured is a pork ‘n’ bean duo that Roberts did special one day. On one side of the plate are “sweet and sticky” baby back ribs sitting on jicama slaw; on the other side, braised pork belly with baked Full Circle Farm’s beans. Dividing the two: a stick of watermelon rock candy and a glass of watermelon soda. Fun and delicious!)

…OR OUT THE DOOR

According to Urbanspoon, there are at least 50 coffee shops and restaurants within one-tenth of a mile of the hotel. From Mae Phim to Met Grill, you’re sure to find something of interest.

For breakfast, Belle Pastry offers all kinds of croissants and more, as well as Caffe D’arte coffee. (You might also snag some cookies for an afternoon or evening snack.) Speaking of snacks, Post Alley Pizza is good for a slice (or a whole pie) if you can catch them while they’re open—they’re only open weekdays, and only until 6pm.

boka_mae_phim_9171You’ve got lots of lunch options here, especially Asian. Mae Phim is a popular place for set price plates ($5.95) of Thai noodles, curries, and more. There’s a branch of Pho Cyclo close by if you prefer your noodles and rice plates to be of the Vietnamese variety. And if you’re craving sushi or another Japanese snack box, Bento Kudasai is a great place for a grab-and-go to bring back to your room.

For a cheap but filling happy hour, head across the street to McCormick & Schmick’s. There are lots of excellent deals here, including a half-pound hamburger (with fries!) for under three bucks. Note that this place can get extremely crowded.

met_grill_neon_sign_640_atsushi.satohAn option for a more upscale burger is Metropolitan Grill, where one with the works is just $6 during happy hour. Note that Met Grill is a classic steakhouse; so expect mahogany and brass, martinis and merlot, white linens and a tuxedo-clad maître D. Among the many choices to consider at this fine dining establishment is the chateaubriand for two ($128 for 26 ounces).

And if you just want a Guinness and grub from an Irish pub, Fado is where you’ll want to go. (Back to the happy hour burger theme, you can get two gourmet mini paddy melts on rye for five dollars.) I’ll always remember this as the place I tried speed dating when that first became the rage; you can go with your lad or lass and laugh at the singles trying to score a connection.

AND, MORE OUT THE DOOR

Hotel 1000’s location is perfect if you want to play tourist in Seattle. SAM is just three blocks away, and if you time your stay with First Thursday, you can drink all that wine at the nearby art openings without concern about driving home. You’re also close to the piers and Pike Place Market, as well as the Smith Tower and the stadiums. In the evening, perhaps take in a show at Benaroya or the Triple Door.

boka_taboo_video_9174For a show of a different kind, take a peek at Taboo Adult Video. As a sex educator, I can’t help but mention the place, and you can’t help but notice it right next door to the hotel. Okay, it’s far less classy than the hotel, but if looking for a third in the way of a blow-up doll, visual stimulation in the video arcade, or, better, a DVD to bring back to your room (you’ll need your own DVD player), Taboo is geographically convenient and an always-open diversion. If you’re too timid to enter, you can always just check out the crazy window display; should you be brave enough, you just might spend a “happy hour” here.

Note: Hotel photos courtesy of Hotel 1000, BOKA photos courtesy of Rina Jordan, and Metropolitan Grill photo courtesy of Flickr pool’s atsushi.sotah.

Belle Pastry on Urbanspoon

Post Alley Pizza on Urbanspoon

Mae Phim on Urbanspoon

Pho Cyclo on Urbanspoon

Bento Kudasai on Urbanspoon

McCormick & Schmick's Seafood Restaurant on Urbanspoon

Metropolitan Grill on Urbanspoon

Fadó Irish Pub and Restaurant on Urbanspoon

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#Fado
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#PhoCyclo
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