Photos and Review by Oyster.com Investigators
This updated boutique hotel is convenient, but not luxurious
Most visitors to Seattle head straight for downtown, with its access to the waterfront, Space Needle, and Pike Place Market. But if your trip calls for time spent at or near the University of Washington, Hotel Deca is for you. One: because it’s one of the few non-chain hotels (i.e. Silver Cloud, Hampton Inn) in the area. And two: because the ambience and view beats those chain hotels hands-down. Built in 1931, the property capitalizes on its Art Deco roots, with an exterior shape that’s not unlike the lower half of the Empire State Building. Though a bit tired and worn on the outside, the inside has been completely renovated, with a welcoming lobby that offers plenty of stylish, sit-and-mingle seating (think: high-backed, upholstered chairs in bold colors), plus iron railings, and oversized period art pieces. And once you’re upstairs, you’ll find that the 12-room-per-floor set-up preserves Hotel Deca’s boutique status.
Minutes from the University of Washington, but not much else
Whether you’re attending a college graduation or sporting event, conducting business, or just feel like steering clear of downtown Seattle, the "U District" -- where Hotel Deca is situated -- is a reasonable option. Just a few blocks off of Interstate-5 and minutes away from the sprawling University of Washington campus, the property is smack-dab in the heart of student country; you can walk to dozens of mid-range restaurants (sushi, subs, and more), in addition to the multiplex Metro Cinema just a couple of blocks away. By the same token, expect to see knapsacks everywhere you go, and a somewhat seedy night scene on and around University Avenue (known simply as "The Ave."); the area doesn’t lend itself to comfortable evening strolls. If you’ve got a car, the entrance to Highway 520 -- the floating bridge that takes you to Microsoft and the east side -- is a five-minute drive from the hotel.
158 boldly decorated rooms and suites; some with balconies and views
Anyone who has stayed in the hotel before its 2005 purchase by Noble House Hotel & Resorts will be happy with the design overhaul. Rooms, which include a downright swanky Presidential Suite, channel the hotel’s original Art Deco roots. Decor includes gutsy pops of color (like royal blue headboards and orange mosaic bath tiles in the suites), sleek black furniture, and sweeping drapes that pull back to showcase the views of mountains and water on the Sky Level. Those looking for large digs will be happy to know that the Presidential Suite (already 1,000 square feet) has connecting doors to the Isabelle Suite, which together, turn the space into a sprawling 2,500-square-foot apartment. Despite the stylish renovation, however, it’s important to remember that this hotel is 80-plus years old; not surprisingly, some of the rooms -- which range from about 250-400 square feet -- have begun to show their age.
All Rooms Include:
Typical amenities at this out-of-downtown boutique hotel
A stylish lounge, but no room service
If you need to stay near the University of Washington -- and want to avoid chain hotels -- Hotel Deca is a solid option. While it certainly lives up to its name as a fun boutique hotel with swanky, bold decor, it lacks the polish and sightseeing perks of many of Seattle’s downtown properties.