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Historical Traveler Reviews Pensione Nichols Seattle
Paying for the location
I would agree with those who found Pensione Nichols to be a little less than tidy. My sister and I stayed in a suite for two nights in mid-September and were surprised by the lack of attention to details. When I was in France in 1988, I stayed in many similarly threadbare hotels, but my expectations weren't high because I was paying the equivalent of $20. We expected more of our $195 suite at Pensione Nichols, but alas! Our first surprise was having to clean the tub out ourselves -- the maid must have walked away after scrubbing the incredibly slow-draining tub, leaving the cleanser and a wad of hairs behind. The bathroom sink also had hairs stuck in the drain, in plain sight, and the floor didn't appear to have been swept. The towels were thin, worn through in places, and frayed on the edges. In the living room, the bedspread on the daybed had large stains on it, and a comforter we got off a shelf was grungy on the edges from contact with people's skin. These are all easy things to take care of, and we wondered why they hadn't been. The smaller rooms that we peeked into looked tidier and more charming, but we didn't look at the shared bathrooms. The smells referred to in other reviews weren't noticeable to us (and to its credit, our suite smelled sweet). The breakfast of fruit and bread was adequate -- good French press coffee by Caffe d'Arte. All in all, I believe we were paying for the great location; it was admittedly nice to tumble into our own place between forays to the market, malls, and museums.
Another Rave Review!
Imagine sitting on your balcony looking out at Pike's Place Market and the sparkling waters of Elliot Bay. That was our view from our suite at this unique hotel right in the heart of Pike's Place Market. I thought I'd never get my husband off that balcony and out to explore Seattle, but I guess that's what vacation is for.
Our hostess, Nancy, graciously prepared us a breakfast tray to take back to our suite, but we could have joined the others in the charming community room with that same fabulous view.
At just under $200 a night, the open suite with bedroom, kitchen, living room and bath was perfect for us. Other rooms were small with shared bath and go for about half that price. But you still have access to the community room with sofas, etc., and that great view.
I agree with previous reviewer in using the word "funky." If new and shiney is a must in your hotel rooms, this is not for you. Think Grandma's house. We were expecting a younger clientel and were please to see more mature adults. We actually spent 2 nights at the Edgewater in a room overlooking the water on our return to Seattle, and I must say I prefer this little gem. We'll be back!
The beauty of Seattle is best appreciated from Pensione Nichols, with a wonderful view of the water and the public market. I travel to Seattle regularly for business and would never stay anywhere else. Breakfast reflects the freshness of the public market and the European style mentioned in other reviews. I love the luxurious bathrooms, one with a clawfoot tub that I would never get in another hotel. The people working at the desk are always friendly, knowledgeable about where and how to get around to restaurants and other ammenities of the city.
Funky, but clean
I read with dismay the negative reviews of this place, so we were very pleasantly surprised when we arrived to find it a perfectly clean, although funky, place. The location is the main draw - right next to Pike Place Market and downtown. Yes, the second floor does have a bit of an odor, but the third floor, where most of the rooms are, is fine.
The view is great from the breakfast room. Breakfast was very good, including lots of fruit, about 4 kinds of toast/bread, jams, and wonderful coffee. The sheets were clean, the bathrooms spotless, and all in all, it was a good place to stay.
Reminded me of Europe
When I first walked into the pensione, I was in love. This place is like pensiones in Europe. Plus, the most amazing view of puget sound, the Pike Place Market and the mountains. The staff is very friendly and down to earth. Excellent!
Wonderful! A Little Touch Of Perugia in the night. Great Location, glorious views, excellent breakfast and coffee. Not to mention, The view of the harbor was nothing less than inspiring. There is no better place from which to enjoy all Seattle has to offer.
This place is BAD
Pensione Nichols looked like a flop house. Our suite had been misrepresented (it was not airconditioned); the whole place was run down; the neighborhood scared us; we stayed only long enough to find a suitable place, and then we got charged for a night at Pensione Nichols anyway! What an experience. We have stayed at B&B's all over the country, and this is by far the worst one we have ever encountered.
Old and dirty does not mean charming
Based on reviews from this web site I stayed at Pensione Nichols recently and expected a charming -- if slightly 'lived-in' -- B&B. It is far below that in terms of quality, so buyer beware. It's just about livable, but pretty ragged. I have traveled to many parts of the world and stayed in youth hostels, dives, and the like; so I could deal with this place for the one night I stayed. But if I had medium or high standards I would have been dismayed, to say the least. The room was tiny and windowless, and unfortunately the bed was awful -- old and very saggy. Worse yet I strognly suspect the sheets were not fresh (why else would there be hair on them when I arrived)? That is simply gross.
The towels were thin and cheap, which did not help. The bathrooms were on the edge of passable in terms of cleanliness and functionality. The owner and her daughter (or at least the people who were running the place while I was there) sort of drifted around, mainly looking after a toddler (the grand-daughter?). But I think they should spend more time changing sheets and cleaning the bathrooms if they want to stay in business. The location is great, and the common room is pleasant enough (more of that charming-if-lived-in feel that I expected). The place has potential, but the owners simply MUST get a grip on their housekeeping and make a small investment in decent sheets and towels. Old does not mean charming.
Home away from Home
We stayed at the Pensione this summer and absolutely loved it. The staff was great, friendly and helpful without being intrusive. The rooms and furnishings were unique and comfortable with quite a European flair, and the bathrooms were squeeky clean (and we saw the maid working hard every day to keep them that way). The continental breakfast was fresh, colorful and delicious. Can't beat the view of Elliot Bay from the living room, or the location right above the Pike Place Market. This place is a jewel!
Not so friendly
Definitely not up to B&B standards. The two bed room had only a full bed and some sort of child sized couch. The pillows stank of sweat. The shared bathroom shower was crusted with soap scum. There was hair everywhere. No closets. Extremely hot and noisy. Two long sets of stairs that smelled of cat pee. The breakfast consisted of microwaved day old bread, reconstituted frozen OJ and a thin slice of orange, melon and grapefruit. Overall decor was consistent with the cat pee smell. Staff attitude also went well with the rest of the amenities.
TripAdvisor Reviews Pensione Nichols Seattle
Travel Blogs from Seattle
... house, home about 1730, relaxed for 1/2 hour, then Tea which Caroline put into the Slow Cooker, and with some G.F. Spaghetti, the meat balls were beautiful with the lovely salad the ladies made just before tea. After Tea, lots of talks playing some games etc, a lovely night a well as a very memorable day for us. We turned into bed about 2130, for a good nights sleep. Weather; A.M. Was cloudy no wind, pleasant, 1400 onwards, strong winds heavy clouds, P.M. Rained, with wind. Temp; ...
... money to see while travelling and a woman in the box office gave us all the encouragement we needed when saying that we should return a couple of hours before Tuesday's show to potentially get our hands on some spare tickets. A promising end to a disappointing night.
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... had a room with ensuite bathroom.
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