McMenamins Opens its First Seattle-area Hotel

The Oregon-based family business to convert Art Deco Anderson School into its signature hotel

By Seattle Mag

mcmenamins1115_0

October 13, 2015

This article originally appeared in the November 2015 issue of Seattle Magazine.

When the City of Bothell invited McMenamins to consider the city’s landmark 1930s-era Art Deco Anderson School as a site for its first Seattle-area hotel, the Oregon-based family business, led by brothers Mike and Brian McMenamin, was faced with an exciting, and perhaps slightly daunting, challenge. The school would be the largest historic property the hospitality group had ever converted into one of its signature hotel/breweries.

McMenamins went for it, using the former junior high school’s sprawling spaces as inspiration for fun features. The redevelopment preserves the school’s pool, adding a tiki theme to the pool building. The 72 classrooms in the main school structure have been dressed up as hotel rooms, while other buildings house the on-site brewery, movie theater, day spa, restaurants, bars and event spaces, with public gardens planted among them. The place is full of McMenamins’ signature eclectic artwork and murals, which incorporate local history as well as McMenamin family and brewpub lore.

The McMenamin brothers are known best for converting historic buildings in Oregon, such as Masonic lodges and schools, into family-friendly, cozy and quirky brewpubs, hotels and theater pubs. “This is probably the best project we’ve ever seen as far as location,” Mike McMenamin says. “The buildings are beautiful—the University of Washington [Bothell campus] has 10,000 people right there, there’s high tech everywhere, there’s Chateau Ste. Michelle and all the tasting rooms close by. It’s all about community.” Opens 10/15, Bothell, 18607 Bothell Way NE; 425.398.0122; mcmenamins.com/AndersonSchool 

 

Photography by Tyree Harris

Book Excerpt: Marmots May Be Running Out of Time

New book explores endangered species in Pacific Northwest

In her debut as a book author, Josephine Woolington turns back the clock to examine events that have shaped Pacific Northwest wildlife in an effort to provide a deeper sense of place for those who call this unique and beautiful region home. Where We Call Home: Lands, Seas, and Skies of the Pacific Northwest sheds…

Illustration by Arthur Mount

Seattle Artifacts: The Mystery of Chief Seattle’s Death Mask

Is it real? Where did it come from?

In different parts of the world, and throughout the course of history, death has been memorialized in a variety of different ways. One of the more intriguing was death masks. Typically, a wax or plaster cast was made of a deceased person’s face, which then served as a model for sculptors when creating statues and busts.  …

Photography by Sage Chen

The Art of Weathering Winter: Foraging, Bathing, and Gold Dust

Two Seattle Chefs on the Soothing Hobbies that Get Them through the Winter

Though I’ve lived in Seattle nearly my entire life, the early winter sunsets, which fall like a set of blackout curtains over the world, never fail to feel like a curse. This year, though, I wanted to challenge myself to find a better way to get through it. Could it be an opportunity to surrender…

DSC_5132 copy 2 hero-min

Hip-Hop Healing in Seattle

Rapper Carter Costello’s house is more than just a venue for artists

The last time I was at Seattle rapper Carter Costello’s house was under the cloak of night. I had been invited to an art and music show — featuring Seattle photographer and artist Baby Claypool, a duo of fire dancers, rapper Nobi and Costello — by local photographer James Gerde. Once I set foot on…

Seattle artist and curator Anthony White challenges consumerism and societal hierarchy in his work.

Seattle’s Prince of Plastic

Artist Anthony White’s work offers deep, and sometimes uncomfortable, cultural commentary

Overheard conversation at artist Anthony White’s current exhibition at the Seattle Art Museum plays out like a zeitgeisty spoken-word soundtrack that weaves between the past and present, hitting various cultural milestones along the way. “Is that Lindsay Lohan?” “Look, Nintendo!” “Do you notice the Greek columns?” “Ah, Lisa Frank!” The joyful cacophony is a reaction…

September Backpage cropped-min

Time Warp: ‘Seattle’ Magazine Cover Still Relevant, Five Decades Later

Magazine cover from 1968 still applicable today

Rising prices. Concern over firearms. The above cover from “Seattle” magazine is from September 1968, but it’s sadly just as relevant today. At 4.19%, inflation in 1968 was less than half what it is today (9.1% in July), but was rising rapidly. For perspective, an item that cost $1 back then would cost $8.51 today….