On my recent mini-trip to Seattle I decided to stay at the Hyatt Olive 8. It is literally around the corner from the Grand Hyatt Seattle, so it was a hard decision between the two since the price was very similar for my dates. However, I gave preference to the Olive 8 as I had read very good things about it, and I love that they are a “green” LEED certified hotel.  I will write more details about getting around Seattle in Part 2 of this post, but Olive 8 was just a few blocks walk from the downtown Light Rail stop of Westlake.  It was a very walkable part of town, so I highly recommend just paying $2.50 to use the light rail from the airport if you are heading to this part of town.  It was about a 40 minute ride and did not require any transfers.

20130113-161657.jpgThe Lobby and Check-in:

The lobby was large airy, modern, and open.  There was no real delay in checking in.  The agent helping me informed that my originally assigned room on a higher floor was not yet ready, but she could put me on a lower floor now.  That was no issue at all for me, and I was immediately given a corner king room on the 7th floor (which was a bit of an upgrade over my booked deluxe king room).

 

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20130113-161718.jpgI was very excited when she told me about the Diamond breakfast options at this hotel.  I was told that I get a $26.50 per person credit for each registered person in the room (and I was reluctantly honest that it was just me in the room).  I was told I could use the credit in the restaurant or for room service.  She said that the $26.50 could toward the prices printed on the menu and to not worry about any tax or delivery fees above that amount as they would be taken care of.  I was also told I could leave a tip of up to 20% and that would also be taken care of.  So, the reality is the benefit is really worth more than $26.50 per person.  This was by far the most thorough and complete explanation of the Diamond breakfast benefit I have ever encountered.  Major props to this hotel for the flexible policy and the execution!

The Corner King Room:

I was told that I needed to have my room key inserted in a slot near the entry to the room in order to turn the power on.  This was similar to how it worked at the Park Hyatt Zurich, and I was thankful to have some instruction ahead of time so I wasn’t fumbling around like a total idiot.

20130113-161725.jpgWhen you first entered the room there was some storage on the right hand side, but then you have to turn around the corner to see the bulk of the corner room.  It was kind of nice and made the room feel larger than it really was.

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20130113-161745.jpgThere was more than enough room for just me in this room.  I love having huge windows all around the room so I could look out and enjoy being in Seattle (though the view from  my particular room was not spectacular).  Unlike in some cities, the road noise here was virtually non-existent from the room.

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20130113-161807.jpgThe bed was very comfortable and they came through with turn-down service just as requested (which I know is silly, but hey why not?!).  ;)

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I also liked this little sitting area that I used to store my bag for easier access to my clothes without having to actually unpack.  It was a nice little extra that was useful and appreciated.

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Here are some brief videos of the entryway, bathroom, and the bedroom.

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The Bathroom:

I really liked the style of the bathroom as it was modern without feeling like it was trying to be too modern and fancy.  The water pressure and temperature were great.  Of course, a shower-only option is never my first choice when I travel with my daughter, but it was fine for this solo trip.

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20130113-161843.jpgIt had a high efficiency toilet which is fitting with their “green” designation.

20130113-161848.jpgI slept great in the room and didn’t hear a peep from either the street or any other rooms/hallway.  The only noise I ever heard was the knock on the door when room service was delivered.  Room service at this hotel runs from 6AM – 12AM and it was delivered during the time range that I had requested.  The yogurt parfait was huge but yummy.  I actually had some bread that is hidden in the basket in the photo below that was also good (I liked the white better than the wheat).  The coffee, however, was surprisingly not very strong.  This is Seattle after all, so I expected some strong coffee.  It tasted just fine, but I was just a bit surprised. Perhaps I just had some bad luck – not a huge deal either way.  I was just thrilled that my Diamond benefit covered room service!  Eating in bed is such a huge treat.

Other hotel amenities:

The hotel has a full service elaia spa on the second floor that is an organic LEED certified spa.  I wish I had the time/budget to sample their services, but that wasn’t in the cards on this trip.  If I am lucky enough to return in the future I will be sure to check it out.

20130113-161856.jpgAlso on the second floor is the indoor saltwater pool.  As you can see, even though it can be used both by Hyatt guests and the residents in the upper floors of this building, it was totally empty when I visited.  Made me wish I had packed a swimsuit.  Somehow swimsuit didn’t make my packing list for Seattle in January!  However this pool would a great treat if you came to this hotel with your kiddos!

20130113-161902.jpgThere was also a pretty large sized workout facility on the second floor, but it was very dark in there (presumably due to energy conservation) and my photos didn’t really turn out.  This is also a shared space with Hyatt guests and residents of the building.  There were a couple of people working out when I visited, but there were rows of machines that were available.

On the ground floor of the hotel there is also a sitting area off of the main lobby, a farm to table restaurant called Urbane, and Urbane Market that is a casual lounge where you can grab a glass of wine, a cup of coffee, or a quick snack.  The market is open from 6AM – 9PM.

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Overall Impressions:

This hotel is a Category 4 Hyatt which means that you can use the annual free night from the Hyatt Credit Card (which is good at category 1-4 hotels) to score a “free” room here.  In a perfect world I would not use the two free nights from the Hyatt card sign-up here, as I would rather maximize their value at a category 5 or 6 Hyatt.  You could choose to use 15,000 Hyatt points per night for the stay (or transfer 1:1 from Chase Ultimate Rewards from cards like the Chase Sapphire Preferred Card, Ink Plus Business Card, etc.).

Rates can also be very reasonable – often in the $150 to $250 range.  My midweek January stay was just $126 booked via one of the Hyatt 48 hour sales, so at that rate I would certainly not use points.  However, if you were points rich and cash strapped, you would a better deal at that rate using your Ultimate Reward points as cash rather than transferring them to Hyatt Gold Passport.  Used as cash for that rate you would need around 10,000 points for the night rather than 15,000.

I do think this is a good spot for families as it is in a safe and walkable location, the indoor pool would be a blast for kids, it has a very generous Diamond breakfast benefit, and the market in the lobby is perfect for when your crew doesn’t have the time or patience for a full blown sit-down meal.  The hotel felt very welcoming and wasn’t an overly fancy stuffy place where I would have felt out of place with a family.  I don’t like the lack of bathtub in the standard rooms, but otherwise it would have been just fine for my kiddo.

I have yet to stay at the nearby Grand Hyatt, but that hotel has a Regency Club whereas the Olive 8 does not.  I prefer getting the full free breakfast rather than club access – especially on a solo trip.  However, the Grand does have tubs in their standard rooms, and has a history of upgrading Hyatt Diamonds into suites from time to time.  I hope to try it out in the future since it requires the same number of points, and often is only slightly more expensive than the Olive 8.

Overall the Olive 8 is very nice, and I would not hesitate at all to recommend it for your downtown Seattle travels with or without your kiddos.  Stay tuned for a post on some of the various nearby Seattle restaurants and attractions that would also be fun for adults or families.

 

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Posted by Mommy Points | 19 Comments

19 Responses to “Hotel Review: Hyatt Olive 8 Seattle”

  1. MCP says:

    Thanks for the tip on using UR points as cash rather than HGP points. 5,000 is a lot of points to save. I never thought of that so I’m glad I read this post. I love Hyatt. This hotel chain just has a higher standard all around. I am PLAT now but I hope to achieve diamond through a status match because I don’t travel enough to earn it based on number of stays. Thanks again.

  2. FriendlyOtto says:

    I had this same tough choice a few months back and I picked the Grand Hyatt. I’m glad I did because I’d read that the GH tries to upgrade its Diamonds to suites, and I was lucky enough to get that upgrade (without having to use points or certificates)! Plus, as you mentioned, GH has a Club + an indoor jacuzzi & an indoor steam room. I loved it.

  3. mommypoints says:

    MCP, no problem – keep in mind that the “points as cash” rate will vary based on the cash price of the room, so in this case it was more favorable because the price was so low. If the price was $200+ the scales would tip back the other way. Good to keep in mind all options though!
    FriendlyOtto, scoring free upgrades is always very exciting. Glad you enjoyed the GH. I hope to try it out in the future!

  4. omatravel says:

    Having both driven from Seattle airport hotels to downtown and ridden the light rail, the light rail is faster and more convenient.

    There is also a Hyatt Place under construction near the Space Needle, I find they work well for families as well as being less expensive than other Hyatt properties.

    I appreciate the tip on UR points, I get a lot of these from work but have no idea how to redeem them to maximize their benefit.

    • MCP says:

      @ Omatravel: WOW…where do you work? I’d love to get some free UR points :) I’m so glad they are transferable to the Hyatt 1:1 so immediately after getting my Sapphire card I topped up my HGP balance to get enough nights at Hyatt cat 6.

  5. mommypoints says:

    @omatravel, they are more affordable than some other similar properties around the US. I will do a post soon on using UR points since I am sure you aren’t the only one who might need a refresher. ;)
    MCP, ha ha – right?! Which Hyatt are you going to visit? There are some great Cat 6 properties!

  6. Matt says:

    Nice review MP! Both the Grand Hyatt and Olive 8 are well located. The Grand Club has been fairly empty on my recent stays but food offerings seem limited. Add my vote for the light rail. Wish we had something as convenient here in San Diego.

  7. I stayed at the Grand Hyatt last May for only one night, and LOVED it. I was treated like a queen. I am going back to Seattle in December (for a marathon) and I’m torn where to stay – assuming prices are similar… Did they have a lounge at Olive8? was it open weekends?

    • mommypoints says:

      Kathy, no lounge at Olive 8. Free full breakfast instead for Diamonds. Sounds like you can’t go wrong either way. If it is a two-night stay maybe try out both? ;)

  8. MCP says:

    @ MP – Not sure which property my husband will agree to yet but hopefully one where there’s enough to see and do around the area for 7 days. Never been to Seatle myself.

    What I like about your posts is that it includes incredible photos of the properties you’ve visited. Much appreciated.

  9. Cincy says:

    Isn’t this where the “Top Chef: Seattle” contestants stayed? Although I’m sure it was probably on the upper levels (are the apartments also owned by Hyatt?).

  10. mommypoints says:

    MCP, if I were there for a week I would absolutely venture out of the city some and experience some of the great outdoor activities the Pacific Northwest has to offer. I would also strongly consider an overnight in another city like Victoria or Vancouver. Here is a link to an article about getting to those cities.
    http://seattletimes.com/html/travel/2008116402_trthreecities17.html
    Cincy, Mr. Google confirms that is where they stayed.
    http://www.zillow.com/blog/2012-11-28/top-chef-filmed-in-seattles-olive-8-penthouse/

  11. Apple says:

    @MCP, if going to Seattle for 7 days , I would check out the eastside. Hyatt Bellevue is very nice and close to tons of dining and shopping. Hyatt House in Redmond is backs to a park and we saw a bald eagle on our first day there, plus free breakfast for everyone and made to order omelets. Very short distance to mountains if hiking is your thing, and along bike/walking trail. Very close to Chateau St Michele for wine tours and Red Hook Brewery for beer tours

  12. In my mega trip last August, we stopped 3 nights in Seattle. We stayed at the Hyatt Place just one night and then moved on to the Westin. We had a fantastic stay at the Hyatt Place. Huge rooms, great views, nice service, pretty good breakfast, shuttle available! That hotel had the strongest wifi signal ever! My kids wanted to return to it after the over rated Westin!

  13. MCP says:

    @ Apple – thanks. I looked at the Hyatt Bellevue. Pretty nice for a cat 3 property.
    @ MP – I checked out the links you posted. Seems like We’d have plenty of options of places to see. Trip is in April. Can’t wait. Thanks to both for the suggestions.

  14. Todd says:

    Mommypoints. Takes a round trip flight to Seattle that emits over 900,000 pounds of greenhouse gasses (per passenger share: 4,200 lbs) . . . picks her hotel because it’s LEED.

  15. Scottrick says:

    They seem to be revising their Diamond benefit. The last time I was at Olive8 there was no dollar cap on breakfast, and it did not include room service. Having stayed recently at the Grand Hyatt (review coming soon…) my opinion is that the Olive8 is a superior experience.

  16. Wow excellent and helpful review. Thanks for sharing! I know a lot of people, especially families who are from out of town, are looking for a great stay. I am still amazed on how thoroughly you went about each detail of the Hyatt. From how much parking was outside to eating in bed lol. I must say you did a swell job. Luxurious hotels are always a way to go when staying overnight. Just choose wisely! :)

  17. […] hotels are extremely well covered by other bloggers.  Others’ coverage made our choices much easier than they should have been for a […]

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