Review: Grand Hyatt Seattle

I spent a night in Seattle this past weekend, and since I’m now pretty loyal to Hyatt, decided to try out the Grand Hyatt Seattle. I redeemed one of my free nights from Hyatt’s “Big Welcome Back” promotion for my stay, as the rate was around $180 or so (and I’m earning BWB nights at a substantially lower rate than that).

The hotel is located near 7th & Pine Street, just a few stops from the Westlake Seattle Light Rail station, which is a convenient and cheap way to get from the airport to downtown, costing $2.50 and taking about 45 minutes.


Hotel exterior


Hotel exterior

The lobby was quite “grand” and elegant, and I proceeded to check-in at around 4:30PM, having landed at SEA about an hour earlier. I presented my Gold Passport Diamond card, credit card, ID, and experienced one of the most efficient check-in processes ever. The agent simply said “Welcome Mr. Lucky, we have you staying with us for one night and because you are a valued Diamond member we have given you a complimentary upgrade to a bay view emerald suite with Grand Club access, and of course you have free internet as a Diamond. Did you want the points or food and beverage amenity?” As a Diamond you have the choice between 1,000 points or a food and beverage amenity when staying in the US, and I almost always go with points, as I did for this stay. I was handed my key within seconds.


Lobby

I proceeded to my room on the 28th floor.


Elevators

My corner suite was on the 28th floor and very nice. There was a hallway at the entrance leading to a small living room with a sofa and two chairs, along with a flat screen TV and minibar. That room boasted views of the city, mostly of the other hotels in the area, like the Sheraton.


From living room


Living room


View from living room

A narrow hallway led to the bedroom, which was spacious. There was a desk, king sized bed, and large flat screen TV. The views from the bedroom were phenomenal – one could see both the city and the bay. All the rooms had electric shades that could be controlled with a switch near the bed.


Desk in bedroom


Bed


Bedroom


View from bedroom

Next to the bedroom was a closet in the hallway which led to the bathroom. The bathroom was huge, with a good sized tub and walk-in shower. All the appointments were modern and all the amenities were Portico products.


Storage space and vanity mirror


Shower, tub, and sink


Sink and toilet

In total the room was a little over 800 square feet.


28th floor

The Grand Club is located on the 27th floor and boasts some nice views as well. It is open from 6AM till 9PM, serving continental breakfast from 7AM till 10AM on weekends (6:30AM till 9:30AM on weekdays), as well as hors d’oeuvres from 5PM till 8PM. The evening spread was quite decent by Hyatt standards – lots of veggies, shrimp, cheese and crackers of all sorts, hummus and dip, cookies, brownies, etc. And as is the norm for Grand Clubs within the United States, there was a fee for alcohol, which was served by the bartender that was staffed there.


Grand Club


Two computers in lounge

The lounge was always relatively quiet, though in the evening a group of four decided to sit down next to me, and I couldn’t help but overhear their critique of the art decor in the lounge — “given the location, I would have expected a little more Native American influence.” For serious?


Evening snacks

The breakfast spread was definitely on the “continental” side, but it was perfectly adequate. They had cereal, bagels with lox and cream cheese, fruit, pastries, banana bread, etc.


Grand Club in morning


Breakfast spread


Banana bread

The hotel also had a well equipped gym with all you could possibly want, including a sauna and hot tub.


Gym


Gym


Hot tub

My flight was only in the evening so I was hoping for late check-out, but as many of you may know, Hyatt only grants Diamond members check-out until 2PM max, at least in theory. This is something I love about InterContinental, where 4PM check-out is guaranteed as a Royal Ambassador. I tried to push my luck and eventually they granted my 2:30PM check-out, but that was the best they could do.

All around I had a fantastic stay, and I’ll definitely be back. This is my new hotel in Seattle. The location is great, the club lounge is nice, they proactively upgrade Diamond members for free, and the hotel as a whole is modern with great employees. And best of all, I earn points in Hyatt’s ridiculously lucrative Gold Passport program.

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Comments

  1. We had a nearly identical experience at the GH Seattle about 2 months ago. Needless to say, we were very impressed. I wonder if the Emerald Suite is a first-time teaser? I certainly hope not, since we will definitely be returning to this hotel!

  2. Yeah. High status in hotels or airlines – perfect for making people who are nobodies on the ground, such as this kid and his suck-up compadres – feel like big shots within the institution that they pay to make them feel special.

    Have a card? Go from a nobody to instant hero! Find personal validation in your suite upgrades.

  3. Dude… next time you’re in Seattle give a buzz. I can show you some of the finer places that you can reach outside of public transportation. Heck, we could have even flown to YYJ!

  4. As a college student, I’d love to do things like mileage runs and building up hotel points…how do you recommend doing that as a starving college student like myself? 😀

  5. In other Hyatts, especially in Hong Kong and even Tokyo, I have been granted up to 430 PM checkout, when I have had a late flight or connection. Usually if the first staff member only gives me to 2 or 3, ill ask a different staff member, but hyatt seems pretty generous about it, at least in Asia =)

  6. @ Gene — I was wondering that as well. Guess we’ll see next time.

    @ bmvaughn — I will, I wll! I promise. Gah, ended up working most of the weekend anyway.

    @ Nathan — Keep reading this blog! First I would take advantage of the super cheap promotions (ie, Chase checking account), and then credit card sign-up bonuses if your credit score can support it, and finally mileage running/mattress running.

    @ peachy3 — Good to know, thanks. Still a bit spoiled with InterContinental and telling the agent when I’ll be checking out, as opposed to asking.

    @ Chris — I haven’t, but I probably will give them a try next time to compare. It’s basically right next door, and from looking through the window it looked super modern. Since they don’t have a club lounge and don’t seem to upgrade Diamond members to suites regularly, I think in the long run I’ll stick with this hotel, though.

  7. Lucky,

    I stayed at the Olive 8 (not as a Diamond, though… just a lowly Platinum), and the hotel is really really nice. Very modern and clean. The food was incredibly good in the restaurant and as a Diamond you get to eat your breakfast there. The staff was attentive, professional and efficient. Next time you’re in Seattle it’s worth a night to try.

    David

  8. At GH, Seattle, they accepted the gift certificate at the check in and then called to say sorry they don’t accept certificate since this is a group booking or something. Quite disappointed. But they offered me fruits to compensate.

  9. Lucky,
    I would agree with David. I’m here at the Hyatt @ Olive 8 now. For my first night, I was not upgraded due to my very late arrival (1 am local time) and the hotel was at capacity. Perhaps, the hotel should have been attentive to my late check-in as it was documented in the record and protected me into a suite, but I went down to the desk the next morning and requested the upgrade and received it. I mentioned that I will be back here 2 days later so the went clerk went ahead and confirmed a suite upgrade for my return. My upgraded room is very similar to the GH suite you received, although the views are not as extensive. Gym and pool are great. As you know, theses 2 Hyatts are only separated by half a block, both are 2 blocks from the Westlake light rail stop, and thus giving giving you two great options for Hyatt stays.

  10. Really great to know that they upgraded you even with the free night! I’m setting my parents up there later this month – hopefully they’ll have a nice time as well.

  11. Got a question for anyone who has stayed in both properties: what has your experience with getting Diamond upgrades been like? Asking since it sounds like you may not have to use a paper certificate.
    And, how did the suites compare at the Grand Hyatt vs the Olive 8? Thanks!

  12. FWIW Lucky late checkouts vary. I’m sure you are accustomed to 4+ as a RA. As a Hyatt Diamond I’ve gotten a 7pm in Kauai and was in a suite. ymmv Cheers Rick ps nice post

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