The Seattle skyline is one that has dominated many movies and television shows. Amidst its notable and iconic structures, the first that may come to mind are the Space Needle – with its distinct silhouette – or perhaps the Columbia tower, rising up as the largest building in Seattle at 76-stories and 933 ft. While there are many impressive and also architecturally beautiful buildings to see in this city, the one that always seems to capture my attention and draw my eyes to it, more than the others, is The Smith Tower, located in the the historic Pioneer Square neighborhood.
It’s one of the few structures of its magnitude and from its turn-of-the-century time period still standing in the area. In a city in a constant state of growth, always looking forward, it is a monument to the illustrious past of Seattle. Built in 1914, it was – at the time – the tallest building west of the Mississippi until 1931. Named for its builder, Lyman Cornelius Smith, it has been a host to both residential and office spaces continuously since its completion. It forms the southern-most point of interest when viewing the city’s skyline, noticeable due to its white facade, obelisk-like shape and overall stunning aesthetic.
The building had passed through many different hands and experienced a lull in occupancy that threatened its continued operation and maintenance at one point, however it has risen again in popularity with the tech-boom, currently housing companies like Microsoft. Now, you can tour the interior – in designated areas – restored to its former, turn-of-the-century glory, including a prohibition era-style restaurant. You can even rent your own apartment here, if you have the necessary currency – it’s not cheap living, for sure!
Today, several areas original to the structure have been restored to their former pre-20’s glory and are available to be toured. Tickets are very moderately priced at $19 per adult and this allows you to view the observation deck, grab a drink in the magnificent Chinese Room (now home to an art-deco-style bar) and take a trip back in time! Take a seat in the fabled wishing chair and see if your dreams come true or book yourself for the live jazz performance and jump, jive and wail like its the roaring twenties all over again. You can find out more about tickets for this and more here.
We are a little obsessed with The Smith Tower here and highly recommend tickets to tour its exhibits and 360 observation deck. Enjoy the neo-classical architecture and imagine, for a moment, a Seattle from another time, a historic moment for the city captured in the granite and terra-cotta facade of this monolith. You can also indulge your own obsession with this beautiful piece of history by checking out some of the custom prints and wall art that we offer of The Smith Tower. They make for gorgeous home decor and will surely be conversation-starters; one which you’ll be prepared to engage with and be informative. You can check that out at our Etsy shop, DeckledEdgesNet!