I am back in Seattle and this time it’s for the opening of the new and remodeled North Satellite at Seattle-Tacoma International Airport. The highlight will be for sure the new Alaska Airlines lounge.
While in town for this event, I was looking for a hotel with an airport shuttle service. This would save me from renting a car and would make it easy and convenient for me to get to and from the airport without using the rental car center shuttle bus. The best rate I was able to find was at the Best Western Seattle Airport Hotel for ~$156 for the night. Because of Best Western’s current promotion, I received a $20 gift card for an earlier stay at the SureStay Plus Hotel by Best Western in Lompoc, California. Most of the time my gift cards expire because I am not staying enough at Best Western hotels and they are not transferable anymore. This time I wanted to make sure to use my gift card and that would bring my nightly rate down to just over $130/night.
After I arrived in Seattle, I picked up my checked back and headed outside, across the terminal to level 3 of the parking garage. That’s the drop-off and pick-up area for all courtesy shuttles. On my way over there, I called the Best Western Hotel to request a shuttle pick-up. The agent on the phone told me to go to island 1A and waive down the red
“Aeroparking.com” bus. Good that he told me, otherwise I would have waited for a shuttle with some kind of Best Western logo on the outside.
Update: The hotel has now its own dedicated shuttle with the Best Western logo on the outside. It took the shuttle about 20 minutes to arrive after I called it in. I am not sure if they sent it out because I called in or if it was already on the way to pick up other customers. Island 1A is the very first one at the pick-up area and as I saw the shuttle coming in, I waived at the drive and he pulled over in front of me. This made loading my bags easy, which are stored in the cabin, not in a trunk space at the back of the shuttle.
After that, the shuttle made one more stop to pick up AeroParking customers and we left the airport area. The drive to the Best Western Hotel was about 10 minutes with the first stop being the hotel itself. I got dropped off right in front of the main entrance.
Check-In at the Best Western Seattle Airport Hotel
I walked inside and the one agent working on the front desk was on the phone helping a guest. In the meantime, a second agent walked in and she was checking me in. While showing her my I.D. and credit card, I pulled up the screenshot I took of the $20 Best Western gift card for her to apply to my reservation. It was one of the best ideas to take a screenshot because I didn’t have to dig up the email with the gift card and unfortunately cellular service is very bad in the lobby. My Verizon phone showed me one bar and 4G but loading anything took forever.
While I was filling out the usual paperwork for no smoking and others, she prepared a set of two keys and handed it over to me. With my bags in tow, I walked down on the right side of the front desk towards the elevator. The elevator is almost at the end of the hallway. Overall the Best Western Hotel has 3 floors with the lobby being on floor one. There is a ground floor, below the lobby and second floor. The reason for this, the hotel sits on a slope and the back half of the building, where the parking lot is, can be accessed from the Ground floor instead of the first floor. My room was however on the second floor. From there I only had to walk right around the corner and 3 doors down to my room.
1 King Bed Room (Room 259)
As I tried to open my room with the key card, I got a red light flashing. I tried again and the same thing, the door wouldn’t open. After that, I tried my second key and hoped this one would work as I don’t want to drag my bags back to the front desk. Surprise! The second key actually worked. I put the defect key aside to not confuse it and lock myself out of the room.
The room has a decent size. Definitely spacious enough, as I have been in smaller rooms. The room is very deep but not as wide. It gets a bit wider at the last third of the room. In this niche is a work desk with light and room telephone at the exterior wall. There is an office chair in front of the desk, but there were two issues with it. First, you couldn’t extend it high enough to work comfortably at the desk. The chair was always to low. Second, the chair slowly bled off by itself when sitting on it. It is so slow you don’t actually feel it, but if you try to lift the chair again after a few minutes, it moves the whole way back up. From the only window in the room, I had a good view of the courtyard and the roof and skylight of the indoor swimming pool. The window can be opened a tiny little bit. In generall, there are no good views. The courtyard view is almost the best one because the outside facing rooms have a view of the parking lot next door or the busy street leading to the airport. Right below the window is the A/C unit. It’s in a very bad spot in relation to the work desk. The fan will blow the cold air directly into your neck. To the left of the work desk is a closet with drawers and a refrigerator, hidden behind a door. On top of the closet is a coffee maker with all the goodies.
Opposite of the closet and work desk is a sofa chair with a separate footrest, cocktail table, and light stand. There is enough space around to comfortable stow luggage or other items.
The King bed itself is positioned pretty much in the center of the room all the way to the right. It sits in another niche on the right side and the headboard pretty much takes up the whole width of it. Each side of the bed has a nightstand. One with another telephone and the other side with an alarm clock. Both sides have a reading light mounted on the headboard and two power outlets on either side but no USB ports. Opposite of the bed is a TV which is mounted to the wall and angled down to be viewed from the bed. When I arrived, the TV remote and request cards for service were sitting on the corner of the bed.
As you walk into the room, the bathroom is located to the right. The bathroom is narrow but wide enough to get comfortable in and out. To use the shower/tub combination, you need to close the door for better access. The shower comes with three soap dispensers rather than single bottles you would find on the vanity. The vanity has only one basin and a wall-mounted mirror over the full length of the wall. Outside, but next to the bathroom is a small wall closet. It has no doors but comes with hangers for clothing, iron, and ironing board. The room itself doesn’t have a safe.
Common Areas at the Best Western Seattle Airport Hotel
This hotel offers quite a lot of amenities to its guest considering that it is an airport hotel. First things first, when you walk in through the main entrance you have the front desk right in front of you. From the outside, you won’t notice it but the hotel has a U-shape and you actually enter through one of the long arms of the “U”.
To your left is the dining area and a corridor to your right will lead to the rooms and elevators. The lobby has some additional and comfy chairs to sit down and hang out compared to the dining tables in the dining area.
While you walk down the hallway to the elevator you have flyers and brochures stand on the left side. The elevator is almost all the way down the hallway on your right, just before the last hallway goes down to the right as well. Other amenities on the first floor include hot and cold water dispenser, ATM (both near the lobby) and a microwave to warm up food. The microwave is located inside the Rainier Room which can be accessed with your room key.
Besides the guestrooms, you will find the Business Center on the second floor. The business center is basically above the front desk and you can take the elevator or the stairs in the lobby to get there. Access to the business center requires your room key and inside you find three workstations and one printer with a window view out front. Near the business center are more vending machines for candy and sodas.
The true treasure of this Best Western is the ground floor. It has a lot of amenities for the guests. In the atrium, the center of the U-shaped building is the indoor swimming pool and whirlpool. To get to the pool you have to use your room key to open the door to the fitness center and cut through this room to get to the pool area. The fitness center is rather small but decent enough for a small workout. Wath while you going down the stairs. The tiles are very slippery when wet. There is an elevated pool deck with chair and tables. The pool area also has a unisex bathroom. To brighten up the area, there is a large all-window wall separating the pool from the courtyard and a skylight is located in the ceiling.
Next to the pool area but at a separate area of the building is the Activity Area with Shuffle Board, Ping-Pong, and Soccer-table-game. Great to keep your kids busy. The necessary gear for these table games can be checked out at the front desk as well as other board games.
Outside and between the buildings is a nice and beautiful courtyard. Just outside the pool is a small sundeck with pool loungers and patio tables and chairs. This area is separated from the courtyard by a fence which doesn’t need a room key to get in or out. The walkway in the middle of the courtyard leads you out to the parking lot. On either side, you find a grassy area, trees, and flowers planted along the way.
Dining at the Best Western Seattle Airport Hotel
Breakfast is served right next to the front desk in a big dining area. This is one of the rare hotels where breakfast actually starts at 5:00 a.m. If you have to leave even before that, request a To-Go breakfast bag at the front desk. The Best Western Seattle Airport Hotel has you covered. The hot breakfast buffet is complimentary and has a pretty good selection on food items like eggs, cereals, yogurt, fresh fruit and more. At the corner facing the front desk is the coffee/tea station. Coffee and hot water are offered complimentary throughout the whole day. Besides the usual half&half creamer, they have also flavored creamer like Hazelnut or French Vanilla.
The same place becomes the “Cafe” every night from 5 p.m. until 10 p.m. except on Sundays. The Cafe is closed on Sundays. I found a dining menu for the cafe in my room and to mention a few items, you can select between burgers, pizza, sandwiches, salads,… If you are hungry between these times, there is grab-n-go food available, like pre-packed sandwiches.
The hotel is old but well maintained. The team does a good work of upkeeping this place. One stairwell was closed during my one-night stay, but maybe just for renovation. You know right away that you are in an old wood building when you here the floor crackle as you walk over it or someone above walks on the floor. It’s not a big issue and it’s common in old buildings, actually, it has something rustic about it.
Staff interaction was great, check-in, as well as check out, was easy and quick. The only downside is the location of the hotel. There are no restaurants around within short walking distance but you can find a few pizza places and burger joints. Everything else is further away. The only interesting place for aviation geeks would be the Alaska Airlines Company Store basically just across the street.
The Angel Lake Link Light Rail Station (station map) is about a 10-minute walk from the Best Western Hotel and gives you access to Downtown Seattle. The rail runs all the way north to the University of Washington Campus. In between, you can connect to other lines and buses for different destinations. Depending on where you go, a ride will cost you about $3 to Downtown Seattle (Light Link Rail Fares). A bus stop is also close by, just walk south on Highway 99 and cross S 208 Street.
One great place which is worth checking out is Angel Lake Park. It’s located about 1 mile north of the hotel on Highway 99. You can take the 20-minute walk or take the bus as the stop is right in front of the park.
Overall I had a great and pleasant stay here. It’s worth considering this property for easy access to the airport. Especially the free praking during your stay can save a ton of money. Compare that to rates of $40 and more per day in Downtown. If you plan on a stay and fly package, you can leave your car for the first seven days for free. Inquire with the hotel itself for more and updated information.
Peter has a passion for Traveling, Photography, and Geocaching. These are the best ingredients for amazing adventures all over the globe. “Traveling is fun, no matter if you stay in a luxury hotel or travel like a backpacker.” Peter shares his experiences on his Blog www.gatetoadventures.com
Some of Peter’s photos are published on corporate websites, in-flight magazines, travel guides, and much more.