Saturday, December 7, 2013

Luxury accommodations at the Fairmont Olympic and Wann's Happy Hour

Traveling through different times zones on long flights doesn't make us jet lag but going from high 80's to low 20's with the wind chill does make us sick.  On our first day in Seattle, we had sore throats, cough, stuffy nose and fever chills.

We had to suck it up, there was a lot to do and see in Seattle, Pike's Market, the Public Market, Original Starbucks, and the
Space needle

We rested comfortable at the Victorian themed Fairmont Olympic in Seattle.  The hotel was reminiscent of my best friend's childhood home which is coincidentally located on Fairmount.  We walked into the grandeur lobby and was greeted by an enormous beautifully adorned Christmas tree at the entrance of the hotel. MaryLou, (Alice's mom) always has her signature ornamented gargantuan tree where we like to pose for pictures in front of every year at the annual caroling party.

Fairmont Olympic Seattle

The Hubbell's Christmas tree from last year (one of many others)
The Hiubbell's Christmas Tree
Since we were on our honeymoon, the reception upgraded us to a Deluxe executive suite with a separate sitting area.  Again, the suite reminded me of my friend's parents house with all the beautiful romantic Victorian decor that included antique lamps and Victorian upholstered chairs.  The hallway wallpaper had elaborate floral patterns and the carpet was just as detailed.  Mrs. Hubbell makes her own curtains and the ones in our suite looked a lot like something she would make.  It was good to feel like I was in familiar surroundings.

I stole the first picture from their website

The hotel sent us some chocolate covered strawberries with a congratulatory card.

We didn't want to spend too much time sleeping in Seattle so we ventured out towards the famous Pike's place and Public Market.
On our way, we grabbed the famous Beko Gourmet "Japon dog" which is a Japanese Fusion hot dog for a quick lunch.  If you know me, there are 3 things I love most, eggrolls, wings and hot dogs! My coworkers make fun of me when they ask me what I want for lunch and I reply, "a hot dog." I've been known to go to 7-11 for lunch for a hot dog.  I've read many amazing reviews about the fusion hotdog and wanted to give it a try, I even had it in our itinerary.  They were running a special that gave us free fries with our order of $6.00 or more.

 I got the Matsuri, which was their # 1 selling dog.  It was a Kielbasa sausage topped with seaweed, carrots, onions and Japanese mayo (which had a hint of wasabi).  This was not my typical American hot dog with ketchup, relish and mustard.  It was delicious but really messy to eat.  All the toppings kept falling off before I could finish the dog, I think I needed to down and eat it with a plate and a knife and fork.

 The Mo got the hot spicy pizza dog with jalapenos, mozzarella and pepperoni.  He loved it.

Pikes Place and the Public Market was a stone throw away and we walked around visiting at various vendors selling artwork, food, crafts and of course the famous fish stands.  It was a bit too cold in the open aired market so we didn't stay too long.

We walked over S.A.M. Seattle Art Museum  and the entrance was free because it happened to be the 3rd Thursday of the month, which is "Free day" for most of the Seattle museums.

We were too tired to explore the city so we stayed in our hotel confinements and took part in the onsite's restaurant Shucker's  early 3:00 PM to 5:00 PM Happy hour special.  Have you noticed that "Happy Hour" has become a theme for our vacation?

The regular menu was a bit pricey but we ordered mainly off the Happy Hour specials.  The Mo an I shared succulent oysters (3 different types one was fish point), their famous lobster mac and cheese, chili spiced popcorn shrimp,  and sausage arancini to compliment our pino grigio and local craft beer.  The food was great.  My favorite was definitely the oysters and the lobster mac and cheese with its rich cheesy sauce and lumps of actual lobster.  The waiter threw in a complimentary bread basket that offered a wonderful variety of warm toasted breads.

We passed out before 7 PM that night as we were exhausted and woke up Friday afternoon in time for lunch.  We took a cab to the International District for some highly rated and anticipated dim sum at Dim Sum King.  They are known for a la carte dim sum where you can order a single piece and not a whole bamboo steamed tray.  It's also a fast food kind of place where the local Chinese people visit.

We got our usual staples, pork spareribs, shumai, shrimp noodles, shrimp ha gow, etc.  It wasn't bad but it wasn't extraordinary either.  The place was so full that we had to share our table with another young couple that we didn't' know.

Before checking out of the Fairmont, we visited the Teddy Bear Suite on the 3rd floor.  The annual holiday tradition is one of their largest suites decorated by a local interior designer and is magically transformed into a teddy bear winter wonderland.  Entrance was free was there was a donation box where proceeds would go to the local Children's Hospital.

 The kid was too comfortable and wouldn't move for 15 minutes so I figured I had to take the picture with him in it.
We moved onto our next hotel, Hotel Maxwell.  Why the move for jsut another night? We like checking out different hotels and areas of the city.  The Maxwell hotel, "Pineapple Hospitality" had a fun vibe to it.  T

 They have a free shuttle called the "Pineapple Express" and offer free pineapple cupcakes and Starbuck's coffee at their afternoon reception.

 We took the Pineapple Express back to Pike's Place to visit the first Starbuck's in the country.

Since it's a historical site, it had to maintain its original sign.

Next up, we went to a place for Happy Hour that offered fried brie cheese.  I love brie cheese.  Wann, is a Izakaya style Japanese bar and restaurant located in Belltown.
 They boasted an extensive Happy Hour menu with sushi, sashimi, appetizers, soups and small plates selections.  We were a bit overwhelmed, I wanted to try everything.  We came up with a challenge that we couldn't order anything that we usually ordered (wings, shumai, gyoza, spider roll, etc).

The Mo and I shared the below

Salmon Poke- Raw salmon tossed with soy sauce and sesame oil
Takoyaki-ball shaped flour snack filled with minced octopus 
Sweet Potato Korrokke -Japanese  Sweet Potato fried 
Fried Brie "The All Star" 
Kalbi Short Ribs
Fried Calamari salad
We were stuffed. The foods satisfied our palettes and it was great to try the different interesting plates. My favorite of course was the fried brie and calamari salad.

Wann Japanese Izakaya on Urbanspoon