Wednesday 16 January 2013

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The People You Meet in the Elevators of Hyatt Olive 8

While in Seattle for our New Years trip, we were fortunate enough to spend a couple of nights at the Hyatt Olive 8. It's a hotel that we've stayed at before, and one we really enjoy for it's large rooms, great staff, and fantastic breakfasts. If you're looking for a place to stay in Seattle, I highly recommend it. 

Seattle sign Hyatt Olive 8
Of course, unless you're a close personal friend of mine, you'd probably like a few more details than me just telling you that the Olive 8 is a great hotel. That's fair enough, so let me elaborate by telling you about the people of the Hyatt Olive 8. Not the staff, although I could go on for a while telling you how wonderful they are, but I think the real way to get to know a hotel is by examining the people who stay there. Unfortunately, following random guests around a hotel and taking notes on their activities is generally frowned upon by hotel management (and may very well be illegal in the State of Washington), but there's one place where looking at each other and taking mental notes is perfectly acceptable. We all have to get up and down, so here's a look at the people you'll meet in the elevators of the Hyatt Olive 8.

The Just Checked-in Person (Happy Version)

This person just stepped out of a taxi, had a great interaction with the Olive 8's friendly front desk staff, and now they're climbing the floors on the way to their super comfortable room. If they look filled with anticipation, this is probably their first visit. If they look relaxed, they've been here before and know that their room is going to be great. If they look giddy with excitement, they probably left the kids at home.

2 bed queen hyatt olive 8
The room. Yeah...we brought the kids....

The Just Checked-in Person (Happy yet Shocked Version)

This person just had the same great front desk experience as the first person, but instead of arriving via taxi they drove their own car. That means they just realized there's no self-park option at the Hyatt Olive 8, and valet parking is $41 a night. If the person only looks slightly stunned, it's probably just an overnight stay. If they're doing mental math and counting on their fingers and toes, they most likely just checked in for a week.

2 queen room hyatt olive 8 seattle
The other half of the room. Don't ask me what Lori is doing.

The Lady with Lots of Shopping Bags

The Hyatt Olive 8 is located right beside the Pacific Place shopping center, a five level mall featuring stores like Coach, Kate Spade, and Tiffany & Co. Quite often you'll get in the elevator with somebody returning from a shopping trip, their arms filled with the spoils of a day spent shopping. Whenever this used to happen, Lori would give me a little kick to the ankle, and I would nod my head and give her my sheepish "Yes, I know I'm not a millionaire" look. Nowadays I have two pre-teen girls who love shopping every bit as much as their mother, so when the shopping bag lady gets on the elevator now, I brace myself for a barrage of kicks that causes my ankle to swell up like a watermelon. On the other hand, there are odd occasions where my girls are the ones returning with all the bags, and I take great delight in watching other husbands hobble out of the elevator on those days.

Seattle shopping Pacific Place Tiffanys
Fortunately, Tiffany's closes early.

The Sports Fan Who's Not Going to the Game

Hyatt Olive 8 Seattle hotelIt's only a short couple of blocks from the Olive 8 to the Light Rail station, and from there it's only a five minute ride to either Qwest Field (home of the Seahawks) or Safeco Field (home of the Mariners), so it's not unusual to run into people in the elevator decked out in full team gear on game day. I love any excuse to talk sports, so whenever I find myself in an elevator with one of these people I always throw out a "Going to the game?". Almost without fail however, this question produces a downcast look, a reddening of the face, and a mumbling of "No. We're not going." Look, if it's that embarrassing to you, go ahead and lie to me. I'm not going to follow you around all day to make sure that you really do go to the game. We've already established that's illegal in this State. Just tell me you're going to the game, we'll have a brief "Go Seahawks!" chant, and then we'll probably never see each other again. 

The "I'm going to Beat You to Breakfast" Person

OK, I'll admit it...I am this person. I have an excuse though. The restaurant at Olive 8 is called Urbane, and it serves the best breakfast that I've ever had. My vice is the Seattle omelet filled with cream cheese and smoked salmon, while Lori swears by the Dungeness Crab Benedict. It's so good that the Olive 8 is the only hotel where we've never slept through breakfast, and we've had some pretty late nights on the town. So if you're in an elevator at the Hyatt Olive 8 and you notice somebody starting to creep towards the front around the fourth floor, introduce yourself, but whatever you do don't get between me and the exit when we hit the ground floor.

Urbane Hyatt Olive 8 Seattle restaurant

The Locked Out of their Room Person

The Hyatt Olive 8 is a green hotel. Very green. Everywhere you go there's devices and systems set up to save energy. Low flow shower heads, dual flush toilets, and something called LEED certification which sounds to me like something my daughter has given her stamp of approval to. The most notable energy saving initiative though, is the way you turn on the lights in your room. To turn the lights on, you have to insert your room key into a slot by the door. The theory behind this is that when you leave the room you'll take your key out and all the lights will turn off automatically. That's the theory. In practice what happens is you leave the room then immediately realize you left your room key inside powering the lights. At least once a day you'll be sharing an elevator with somebody heading down to the front desk to get a replacement key. Be nice to those people though. It really is an easy mistake to make. Twice.

Hyatt Olive 8 Seattle high floor view
The view from room 1762
In summation then:

  • Good sized rooms                                 
  • Great staff
  • Expensive parking
  • Close to shopping
  • Easy walk to Light Rail station
  • Best breakfasts ever!
  • LEED certified (but Leeds likes it too)

Written by Steve Pratt