Iconic city of pristine nature, style, and innovative spirit along the shores of Puget Sound

Welcome to Seattle, WA

It’s the jewel of Puget Sound; “The Emerald City” and home to unbridled innovation, trend-setting culture and effortless style. It’s the kind of city where cutting-edge big business can thrive alongside fashionable artists—all against the verdant backdrop of the Pacific Northwest. It is Seattle, and you’ve finally arrived.

About Seattle

Permanently inhabited for over 4,000 years now, Seattle is home to an eclectic variety of residents, a charmingly unique kind of local history & culture, and a wealth of thriving local brands and businesses. From the stalls of historic Pike Place market to the halls of the century old Seattle Symphony Orchestra, the local culture is as proud and rich as you’ll find anywhere else—come rain or shine.

But the city is also a busy Urban Center.

From its historic association with Boeing and the aircraft industry to more modern businesses like Microsoft and Amazon, Seattle has always had a knack for breeding successful and innovative new businesses. And the same goes for the local culture; with famous musicians from Jimi Hendrix all the way up to Soundgarden & Nirvana all hailing from Seattle.

Through ups and downs, booms and bust, Seattle’s residents have repeatedly proven their will to succeed and have a great time doing so … to excel and be one’s own person. It’s something that just comes naturally to area residents …


A History of Self-Reliance

Named for a benevolent Chief of the local tribe, Seattle was originally incorporated as a city in the 1860’s—shortly before playing a major role in the Klondike Gold Rush; which saw tens of thousands of prospectors using the city as a jumping-off point on the long road to Alaska.

Where prospectors trudged through wilderness and awful weather in hopes of fortune, Seattle’s residents pinned their hopes on something much more consistent—their thriving lumber industry. With the American West outgrowing its bounds everywhere, Seattle’s conveniently-located lumber mills helped to feed expansion for decades. By 1910, Seattle had become one of the 25 largest cities in the world.

But the Great Depression dealt a crushing blow to the city’s economy—one that would set the city back for the better part of a century, until the tech revolution of the 80’s and 90’s brought material prosperity back to the shores of Puget Sound.

It’s important to remember, though, that Seattle didn’t just stagnate there year after year, waiting for its fortune to return. Instead, the city’s local culture took over, with a thriving jazz music scene that helped to develop the early careers of people like Ray Charles and Quincy Jones.

And the city’s rich musical history is just the beginning—


A Cornucopia of Culture on Puget Sound

It’s the birthplace of Grunge Music … the birthplace of Jimi Hendrix and even some of the coolest Jazz music you’ve ever heard—but Seattle’s also home to some more conventional but equally stunning local culture and entertainment.

Take the 5th Avenue Theater; built back in 1926, where acts both local and international take to the stage. All told, the city has an immense number of theaters—some 100 altogether—making it second only to New York as one of the country’s liveliest theater communities.

Or what about the iconic Pike Place market, where vendors and producers are encouraged to meet face-to-face with their consumers … a practice that paved the way for modern farmer’s markets seen in every major American city.

The city draws a wealth of tourism for major events like the Seattle International Film Festival, the Penny Arcade Expo, and much more. Countless more film & entertainment festivals choose Seattle’s friendly urban center as the perfect place to for their events; meaning there’s rarely any shortage of exciting activities.

Seattle’s also home to a professional team in four of the big five sports—from the Seahawks in Football and the Mariners in Baseball to the Seattle Sounders in Major League Soccer. And from hosting the first American team to win the Stanley Cup to the Seahawks’ recent Super Bowl win, Seattle’s teams are no strangers to excellence.

You can check out the live sports action at the impressive SafeCo Field or CenturyLink Field … or if that’s not your cup of tea, don’t forget about the Henry Art Gallery, or The Seattle Art Museum. Rest assured; there’s always a little bit of something for everyone in downtown Seattle …


A Patchwork of Downtown Success

Over the long years of success and consolidation, Seattle’s downtown sector has become a patchwork of companies old and new … the kind of place where a century-old logging or logistics company might have its headquarters across the street from a five-year old tech startup that’s worth a billion dollars.

In total, 4 major Fortune 500 companies call Seattle their home; from the obvious Starbucks and Amazon to the slightly more surprising Costco and Nordstrom, and several more are located just outside the city. These companies contribute a large share of the area’s $231 Billion annual GDP—a rate that made Seattle the country’s 11th most-successful metro area as of 2010.

Home to the revolutionary new $15 minimum wage, Seattle’s local government has always applied creative new plans to help the city’s local businesses succeed and flourish—as evidenced by the city’s winning the accolade of “America’s #1 Smarter City” in a recent study.


A Condo Market with Overwhelming Demand

With all the city’s proud culture and heritage … with the thriving local economy and uniquely friendly downtown area, it’s easy to see why people would want to live in downtown Seattle. But lately—as the economy has grown post-recession—the city has been overrun by eager new condo buyers.

With month after month of double-digit growth in price averages, Seattle’s condo sale prices are just shy of their all-time peak back in 2009.

But unfortunately, despite all this demand, the city just doesn’t have enough new condos to keep up. There aren’t enough new projects developing, and the few that are in the works are also booked solid … so estimates are saying that the market has a rolling inventory of just 45 days left—meaning that the slightest hiccup in production could put the market on tilt.

As a potential condo buyer in Seattle, it’s important to be patient since you might have to wait for what you want … but also being ready to pay (and sometimes pay a premium) when you do strike it rich …

Top Condo Buildings in Seattle

1. Escala
2. Olive 8
3. Fifteen Twenty-One
4. Enso
5. 2200 Westlake
6. Gallery
7. Mosler Lofts
8. Bellora
9 Cosmopolitan
10. Cristalla

Seattle Key Points of Interest

1. Space Needle
2. Chihuly Garden and Glass
3. Seattle Aquarium
4. Olympic Sculpture Park
5. Museum of History and Industry
6. Seattle Public Library
7. Woodland Park Zoo
8. Pacific Science Center
9. Seattle Art Museum
10. Hiram M. Chittenden Locks

Seattle Schools

The best of the Public & Private Schools in Seattle

Seattle public school providing curriculum of foundational academics and character development to K-5th grades.

Community-based program delivering comprehensive academics and multi-cultural studies and recognized as School of Distinction.

Public high school offering comprehensive academics, athletics, arts, and social activities in a supportive learning environment.

One of the oldest universities on the West Coast with notable programs in medicine, nursing, public health, and education.

Restaurants & Dining

Enjoy fine dining or regional favorites!

Local favorite for chef Tom Douglas’ ultra-fresh seafood with an Asian influence near Pike Place Market.

Legendary culinary experience featuring 9-course Pacific Northwest tasting menus and wine pairings.

Inspired Japanese technical mastery and artistic presentations showcase exceptional local Pacific seafood.

Seattle institution for locally-sourced fine dining in an elegant mid-century modern setting with breathtaking views.

Refined waterfront setting featuring sophisticated seafood menu, extensive wine list and first-class service.

Shopping in Seattle

Seattle is a great place for upscale shopping and world-class farmer's markets

One of the oldest farmer’s markets in the country featuring shops, fishmongers, produce, and crafts.

Outdoor pedestrian mall showcasing local boutiques, national retailers, restaurants and cafes.

Popular destination for high end retailers, restaurants, entertainment and the Nordstrom skybridge.

Upscale mall featuring ultra-premium retailers, restaurants, and entertainment.

Parks & Recreation

Take a stroll through local parks or enjoy outdoor adventure at Mount Rainier

1247 15th Ave E, Seattle 98112

2300 Arboretum Dr E, Seattle 98112

8498 Seaview Pl NW, Seattle 98117

70002 SR Hwy 410 E, Enumclaw 98022

3801 W Government Way, Seattle 98119

Seattle Transportation

Find out how to get around town when in Seattle.

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Disclaimer: From time to time our team uses watermark-free images from the public domain to enhance building imagery in an effort to help buyers, sellers and real estate professionals. If you believe certain images are yours and are protected by intellectual property rights, please follow the procedure set forth in our Copyright Policy and we will have the copyrighted material removed.

Michael HousesSeattle Local Guide