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They don’t call it the second-gayest city in America for no reason
With 200 cloudy days a year and the gloomy weather, Seattle might not sound like a fun travel destination, but the bohemian vibe, the thriving arts, the sophisticated urban setting, and the pristine wilderness might change your mind. Adding to the experience, Seattle has one of the highest concentrations of LGBT residents in the United States. In terms of percent, according to the Census Bureau, 2.6 percent of Seattle’s households were gay couples.
Capitol Hill is the center of gay community in Seattle, where you will find a plethora of gay and gay-friendly businesses, bar, restaurants, clubs, shops, and more.
Before the cultural shifts in the 1970s, when homosexuality was taboo, most of Seattle’s gay scene was centered in Pioneer Square, also known as “Skid Road”. Although Capitol Hill is now the epicenter of gay life, you can still find some gay venues in Pioneer Square, including The Casino, which opened in 1934 and is one of the oldest continuously operating gay bars in the country.
For hikers and nature lovers, Seattle is the place to be. From kayaking, skiing, and snowboarding to hiking and climbing, Seattle offers countless alternatives to those who don’t want to resume their holiday to nightclubs and cafes. During the day, you can relax on Madison Park Beach, Seattle’s unofficial gay beach.
Despite the dreary weather, Seattle is a bustling city with plenty of things to do and see. Here are some of the must-visit gay hotspots in Seattle.
The Bottleneck Lounge
Gay owned and operated, The Bottleneck Lounge is a neighborhood institution known for its welcoming vibe and dog-themed cocktails. Full of friendly folks, you can expect to find here an eclectic crowd – from gay moms to go-go boys and to straight dudes. It’s a great place to meet up with friends or make new ones.
The Crescent Lounge
For decades, the Crescent Lounge has been a staple of Toledo gay nightlife. This neighborhood watering hole is especially known for the mellow ambiance and fun karaoke nights. Full of smiling faces, it won’t take you long to meet new people and make new friends.
Forget about Starbucks, Espresso Vivace serves one of the best coffees in Seattle. Fresh roasted coffee beans, handcrafted beverages, the elegant setting, and the buzzing atmosphere give you the feeling of an authentic Italian Café. Espresso Vivace is conveniently located in the heart of Capitol Hill, within walking foot of many shops, clubs, and attractions.
Founded in 2001, Stellar Pizza, Ale & Cocktails is an old-school pizzeria located in Georgetown neighborhood. Although their delicious pizza is their biggest asset, other items on the menu, such as the bacon topped mac’n’cheese or the salads are worth checking out. They also serve family owned craft brews.
This gay-friendly restaurant is one of Seattle’s favorite dining destinations. Although it is a bit far from Capitol City, the eclectic ambiance, and stellar breakfast make the trip worth it.
The Gaslight Inn
Conveniently located just one block from Lincoln Square, next to Seattle’s bustling cosmopolitan life, the Gaslight Inn is a favorite lodging destination for gay travelers. Gaslight Inn’s guest rooms and suites are fully-furnished and include queen-sized beds, refrigerator, flat screen TVs, and, depending on your selection, a fireplace, private deck, or private garden.
With 415 guest rooms, 9 suites, a private dining room, a chic urban restaurant, W Seattle is an oasis of urban hospitality. Located in the heart of downtown Seattle, within blocks of Pike Place Market, Symphony Hall, shopping centers, and hooping nightclubs, W Seattle is a hip and stylish Seattle accommodation.
If you are looking for authentic Vietnamese cuisine served in an exotic setting, look no further than Tamarind Tree. Nestled in the heart of Little Saigon district, this gay-friendly restaurant is one of the most beloved businesses in Seattle. Besides the extensive menu, the Tamarind Tree also boosts a well-rounded cocktail list.
Featuring a large selection of leather items, Doghouse Leathers is Seattle’s go-to place for quality leather at fair prices. From leather jackets, pants, or vests to sex toys and pride items, Doghouse Leathers caters to Seattle’s leather daddy, kink, and bear community.
Pike Place Market
Created more than a century ago, Pike Place Market is Seattle’s go-to place for fresh, locally sourced and specialty food and a beloved historic treasure. It’s a place where you can meet the producer and buy locally made handcrafted goods.
DuBois Cary Law Group PLLC
DuBois Cary Law Group provides experienced law and estate-planning representation to same-sex couples. With more than thirty years of combined experience in complex litigation, DuBois Cary Law boosts a team of professionals from disciplines as finance, accounting, parenting, trial consulting, and tax planning and aims to develop your strongest case.
A traditional American dining experience with a touch of style and a whole lot of love, Americana is a gay favorite. Serving traditional comfort food with a contemporary twist, Americana offers some of the best food in Seattle and is a great place to see and be seen.
The Cuff Seattle
The name may conjure images of tough leather daddies and beefy bearded men, but The Cuff isn’t an exclusively Levi’s/leather bar. A friendly gay venue, catering to all types and ages, The Cuff is a great place to meet up with friends and kick back. The crowd tends to be a bit older early in the night, but it gets younger as the hour passes.
Dance the night away at Neighbours, Seattle’s go-to place for people who love to dance. Whether you are gay or straight, young or old you will fit in immediately with Neighbours’ friendly crowd.
Warwick Seattle Hotel
Located in upscale Belltown district, Warwick Seattle Hotel blends the classic charm of the Warwick name with the contemporary edge of Seattle’s culture. The guest rooms feature floor-to-ceiling window walls that open to private Juliet balconies, Italian marble baths, and an outstanding view of downtown.
Elliot Bay Book Company
Featuring an impressive 150,000 selection of titles from all genres, including a nice collection of gay literature, Elliot Bay Book Company is a stellar bookstore in Capitol Hill district. The café downstairs serves delicious vegan pastries and surprisingly tasty coffee.
Billed as a truly “Quintessentially Northwest”, Copperleaf is an upscale restaurant serving seasonally inspired fare. A popular dining destination, Copperleaf is usually filled with a mixed crowd of local and tourists. Local tip: arrive early and sip a cocktail before experiencing a unique dining experience.
Purr Cocktail Lounge
Expect generous pours, strong drinks, and hot go-go boys when heading to Purr. A mellow atmosphere reigns supreme during the week, making Purr a great place for after work drinks and karaoke parties. Featuring $4 double dinks, their Happy Hours are worth checking out.
Nestled in the heart of downtown Seattle, just steps away from the city’s bustling culture and entertainment scene, Hotel 1000 promises to offer a unique lodging experience. Besides the fully furnished guest rooms, the hotel also offers a full-service spa, virtual Golf Club, and a hip bar and restaurant.
Located in South Lake Union, Oculus is dedicated to providing personalized service, professional eye care, and a diverse collection of independent eyewear brands.