During a recent quick visit to Seattle, I picked the Hyatt House Seattle Downtown for two of our three nights. Among what Seattle has to offer, it was a pretty easy choice. I could have used Hilton or IHG points, but considering that the Hyatt House has a great location and excellent value, and that I am trying to attain Globalist status this year, the Hyatt House Seattle Downtown made the most sense for us. Free breakfast and plenty of space makes this brand one of my favorites [SEE: 5 best hotel chains for families of five (or more)]. Dan and his family actually also chose the Hyatt House Seattle Downtown when they were there a few years ago.
The Hyatt House Seattle Downtown cost me 12,000 Hyatt points per night, for a total of 24,000 for the stay. However, prices have since gone up to 15,000 points, as the hotel is now a Category 4 property. Seattle got hit hard in the recent category changes. Still, depending on when you’re visiting, points could be the way to go. Cash rates during our dates were $212 per night, giving me a very solid value of ~1.75 cents per Hyatt point. Cash rates are generally higher than that, and can approach $400 when the area is busy.
Location – Too perfect!
We arrived at the Hyatt House Seattle Downtown from SeaTac, taking the light rail to Westlake station and then an Uber ride over. I didn’t realize the hours of the monorail meant that it wouldn’t be operating when we arrived. That was the original plan, but our arrival into Seattle was pretty late. No matter. Uber was cheap and convenient and took us straight there.
Still, if we had been able to take the monorail, it would have been a super easy walk to the hotel. It is literally across the street from the monorail station and the Space Needle. The monorail may get too close, in fact, as it passes right alongside the hotel. We were able to look straight into second and third story rooms as we passed when riding the next day. Be sure to ask not to have a monorail view, unless you like strangers staring in at you all day.
Check-in was smooth, and the staff were very welcoming. I love when hotel staff engage my kids in conversation. A couple times I’ve added their name(s) to the reservation (most notably with Hilton), and the check-in agent will address them by name, to their shock. My normally chatty sun always decides to turn shy, though.
King Room at the Hyatt House Seattle Downtown
A king bed den guestroom was the only one available to book using points during our dates. Browsing availability later this year, it appears this may be the only room type available on Hyatt points. I’m pretty sure we were given a studio king suite, though, as the layout matched the Hyatt House Portland where I believe we’d stayed in that room type.
In any case, the layout matched that of the Portland hotel almost exactly. The room opens into the kitchen and dining area, with the kitchenette next to the door. A fully equipped kitchen is one of the hallmark features of Hyatt House hotels that quickly made me a fan of the brand.
I couldn’t help but chuckle at the wall art, as it is also the same as at the Hyatt House Portland. How’s that for brand consistency?
The kitchen at the Hyatt House Seattle Downtown was just as nice as at other properties, featuring a sink, stovetop, dishwasher, microwave, and all the cookware and dishes you’d need for a family of four.
Beyond the kitchen is the living room area, which has a sofa that does contain a sleeper bed, one of the other reasons I believe the desk upgraded us from the room type I’d booked. The king den rooms do not have a sleeper sofa. My son did *not* want to sleep on the couch or sofa bed this time, and I decided to relent.
Beyond the partition containing the television is the bedroom area. The room is technically a studio suite, but the layout makes it feel a little more broken up that a single room, which is nice. Do note that the TV is on a swivel, and it can be viewed from the bed or the couch in the living room, but not both.
Even with a king bed for both of us, it is truly amazing how much space a single eight-year-old can take up. I came back to find him like this when I decided to turn in our second night. #familytravelproblems
Our bathroom at the Hyatt House Seattle Downtown was clean and very nice. The sink is located outside rest of the bathroom containing the shower and toilet.
No bathtub in this bathroom, which is fine by me. I always prefer a tile shower, as long as it is fully enclosed and not one of the stupid half-glass designs that gets water everywhere.
The view from our room at the Hyatt House Seattle Downtown may have been the best feature. We were on the fifth floor and had an awesome view looking right up at the Space Needle towering above us. If only they cleaned the windows a little bit better.
One feature that was new to me during our stay at the Hyatt House Seattle Downtown was the door hanger where you could choose to skip housekeeping in exchange for points. I was always keen on SPG’s “Make a Green Choice”, and I am glad to see Hyatt is testing this out.
Considering that 250 Hyatt points are worth about $3.75, this isn’t that big of an offer. Starwood’s old program offered twice the points at a higher value, the equivalent of about $12, at full service properties. I sorely miss the program. In any case, I *did* hang the sign on the door, although it later took some Twitter DMs to Hyatt to get the points credited after our stay. Housekeeping skipped us completely, which is exactly what I expected. No new towels, no change or making of the bed, nothing.
My last experience with a Hyatt House breakfast wasn’t all that hot. I sat down to eat some melon and the couple remaining hot items with a plastic spoon and plate after finding the breakfast basically out of everything and no staff in sight (SEE: Hyatt House Sterling/Dulles Airport-North Review). I was a bit worried this might be the same.
But the concerns were unfounded. Breakfast at the Hyatt House Seattle Downtown was busy, but things run smoothly and staff are attentive. The same hot items are offered, including eggs, sausage and potatoes.
You can also opt for oatmeal, fruit, donuts, and a variety of bread. There is also yogurt and fruit compote for that as well. Plenty of options, and overall a nice spread for a free breakfast.
There was also, of course, the signature omelet bar, which was cranking out its delectable goodness efficiently. The wait was less than 10 minutes for a fresh omelet, and staff even brought it to our table. This was service I didn’t expect, as I have always gone back to the window to get it when ready.
The best part of breakfast might be the seating. With glass on both side, the end of the Hyatt House facing north gives you a view of two streets, the Space Needle, the monorail track, and the MoPOP. It’s pretty cool.
Services and Amenities
The Hyatt House Seattle Downtown offers exercise facilities, although there isn’t a pool. My son was a bit bummed by this. But we had such a jam-packed sightseeing schedule that I don’t think we could have fit swimming in anyway. There is also a rooftop terrace from which you can enjoy views of the Needle.
One issue for me was the WiFi. It was a struggle. I tried to work for a couple hours on our second night, and I eventually had to give up, as the connection to my remote desktop kept dropping repeatedly. I hope this isn’t the typical experience, as it would have been annoying if my son and I had wanted to stream Netflix.
My second complaint is the elevator. Only one was functional for most of our stay, and it was a huge pain. There were people waiting to board on the lower floors that couldn’t always get on, and it took so long to go up and down (lines, and stopping at every floor) that we walked down from the fifth floor a couple times. The second elevator was fixed later on, but I really think someone messed up with the design. The Hyatt House Seattle Downtown really needs a third elevator.
I think I may have found a go-to place in the Emerald City with the Hyatt House Seattle Downtown. The location is amazing, and the hotel is one of the best in the brand that I have stayed at. There are plenty of nice properties in the Seattle area, but this is a great option that was more affordable as an award than many others. If connectivity is essential, the WiFi could pose a problem. It always surprises me when really modern hotel have issues, as this is a big part of guest experience. I remember the WiFi being a struggle for us when we were staying in Paris (SEE: Crowne Plaza Paris Republique Review).
The one turn-off is now the cost, as the Hyatt House Seattle Downtown is now just as much as the brand new Hyatt Regency in terms of points per night, after the recent devaluation. Still, if traveling with my family and lacking Hyatt Globalist status, I would choose the Hyatt House Seattle Downtown simply for the extra space and the free breakfast for everyone.
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