I really enjoyed my visit here, and was very impressed with the staff. My trip to Seattle was for some work-related training downtown, and I was advised that parking downtown is a nightmare so I would have had to pay for a rental car out-of-pocket. BW- Pioneer Square was the closest hotel to my training that still had rooms available within the government rate, but I wasn't expecting much since the rooms were actually about $40 less per night than what we were approved for.
As it turns out, the hotel was quite comfortable and I was very pleased with my choice. First, the Pioneer Square Transit Station ($3 one way from SeaTac on the light rail) is about three straight blocks from the hotel. When you come up the stairs/escalator at the station, just walk about three straight blocks down the hill and the hotel will be on the left.
The hotel is obviously an old building with wide stairways, a bit reminiscent of the old Wild West (or more accurately, Klondike and Gold Rush day). You may hear footsteps of fellow guests walking down the hall, which may disturb light sleepers (you may also hear occasional sirens- see my notes at the bottom about safety). There is an elevator in the lobby. And yummy cookies in the evenings! Coffee is also available in the lobby. The front desk staff was very friendly, funny, and helpful with directions.
My room had windows but they looked out at brickwall (which was fine by me, I like my privacy). The rooms don't have closets but they do have wardrobes with hangers. And the tv automatically shuts off after about an hour. Although I initially had some trouble with internet access, once I connected I didn't have any further problems.
The rooms also have single cup coffeemakers (apparently some have a Kerug-like machines) and ice buckets. The second and third floor have soda machines and I know the third floor also had a vending machine for snacks.
There are quite a few restaurants, cafes and coffeeshops within a couple blocks of the BW-PS (including a Starbucks at the end of the block), a 7 Eleven a couple blocks away and a variety of other businesses. Pot is legal in Washington and if you are on foot you will smell it.
Much of downtown Seattle closes up about 6 pm. There are a few fine dining type establishments that are open for dinner, but they are often pricey and scattered about. However, upon request the BW-PS staff will put a mini-fridge in your room free of charge. So you can save a bit of money if you get an extra sandwich or salad at lunch, or bring your leftovers back to the room.
The hotel offers free tourist maps of the area, so you can find your way around. The Beneath the Streets Tour is about two blocks away, Smith Tower is about four blocks away (uphill), and Sky View Observatory is about six blocks away. The Seattle Art Museum is about nine blocks away, Pike Place Market is about 11 blocks away (stay off Western Ave- see my note below), and Chinatown is about 12 blocks away (some uphill).
It is about a mile and a half to the Space Needle area, but the monorail or other public transportation is available. And if you're a sports fan, both CenturyLink and SafeCo fields are about a six block walk away.
Stay off Western Ave, especially at night. While it is a more direct route to Pike Place, there is a lot less foot traffic and a lot more homeless and mentally ill.
***Be aware that there a large homeless population throughout the area. If you are uncomfortable around the mentally ill and/or beggars, downtown Seattle is not a good place for you, especially at night. Because it is a business/cultural district, during regular business hours there are a lot more people in the area in general so it isn't quite as noticeable; after dinner the uninitiated may begin to feel like they are surrounded by the homeless and therefore unsafe.
Stay aware of your surroundings, keep your head high and keep anything valuable out of plain view. As a middle-aged, single female I didn't encounter anything other than panhandlers, but I also dressed down (jeans and hoodies) and typically crossed the street at whichever crosswalk had the walk sign (to reduce the amount of time I spent standing idle and therefore reducing panhandlers opportunity to approach me). less
Rylie S, Manager at Best Western Plus Pioneer Square Hotel, responded to this review
Thank you so much for taking time to review us so kindly! We take pride in being able to offer a historic experience at an unbeatable downtown rate. We are happy to hear you got to take advantage of some of the local attractions including the Pike Place Market, the stadiums, and the Space Needle. We are so fortunate to have so great guests like you and truly can't wait to serve you again on your next visit to downtown Seattle.