Day 1 – Seattle

It’s been a while since my last blog entry! Life has been busy lately and I just haven’t had the time and money to travel! Hopefully there will be some opportunities to travel again before my big trip next October to Maui!

After watching Magic For Humans on Netflix, K and I completely fell in love with Justin Willman! When we heard he was going to perform at the Neptune Theatre in Seattle, we decided to make a road trip out of it! Luckily, we were able to get 4th row tickets and the tickets were only $25 USD each! Show tickets are always significantly cheaper in the States compared to Canada. It’s not fair! ☹

We headed down Friday morning and the border wait time was not too bad. After taking a short coffee break, we went full steam ahead to Pike Place Market to grab lunch and do some shopping. Pike Place Market is my favourite market of all times and it is always busy here, even on a working Friday! Make sure you park at the garage parking of the market itself as that is the cheapest lot around, only $4 per hour!

Our first stop was to grab lunch at Pike Place Chowder. There are great online reviews for this restaurant and always long line ups so we decided to give it a try. There was already a line up when we got there but fortunately it was moving quite fast.

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We probably waited less than 10 minutes. We ordered all 3 of their rolls – lobster, shrimp and crab.

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Also, we got 5 flavours of their famous chowders – clam, scallops, seafood bisque, Manhattan style chowder and a crab & oyster chowder. The bill came up to $63! That’s a pretty pricy lunch considering that it’s self serve and the small proportions! Now let’s see if the food is worth the $$… The rolls were pretty good; the buns were buttery, crunchy and stuffed with seafood.

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With regards to the chowders, they were good but not mind blowing…If we had to rank the 5, it would be the seafood bisque, scallops, clam, crab & oyster and the Manhattan last. The soups were warm and flavours were decent but I would have preferred it hot and flavours more condensed.

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You can help yourself to free oyster crackers and sourdough bread to fill up. Overall, the food was good but not good enough for me to come back again considering the cost and the wait. If you do want to try it out but don’t want to deal with the long lines, you can pre-order ahead online. However, pre-order is only limited to the chowders!

We had a little more time to explore the market on this trip so we went from floor to floor to check out all the shops. I’ve been to this market so many times but we’ve only had time to check out the first floor. Who knew there were so many interesting shops underneath! There are many vintage shops that sells clothes, records and stamps. There is also one of the oldest magic store here which is next to the Giant Shoe Museum. There is so much to see at this market you could honestly spend a whole day here! Of course, a trip to Pike Place Market is incomplete until we stock up on some truffle goodies at La Buona Tavola. Absolutely love their truffle pasta, salt and creams!

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Before we left, we also took a stroll along Pier 57. It seems like their pier has been under construction forever as it was already under construction the last time I visited! At the pier, you can check out the Miners Landing which includes several attractions such as the Seattle Aquarium, Seattle Great Wheel, Wings over Washington and a handful of famous seafood restaurants like Crabpot.

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Since we had more time, we explored their mini indoor amusement park which includes an arcade, a vintage carousel and some midway games. There are also many interesting statutes here that you can take photos with and don’t forget to check out their giant gumball machine!

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The Pier is a quick 5-minute walk from the Market; there are steep stairways going down on each block. Take caution as you will pass by some homeless people on the way down but the area is generally quite safe.

Cheesecake Factory is another one of our favourite American franchises. The one on Pike Place is always super busy so we decided to grab takeout this time. We went there at 4:30 p.m. and placed our order. There was a 25 minute wait so we decided to check out Gameworks across the street.

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Gameworks brings back childhood memories when my parents used to take me to play arcade games at Playdium! We need a giant arcade again in Vancouver!

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You can purchase a card with credits or play unlimited for an hour for $10. Since we were only there for a short while, we purchased 20 credits ($7).  We decided to play DDR for old time sakes. 10 credits had us dancing for 5 rounds and we were there for almost 35 minutes.

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It is actually a pretty good deal! They also have a large selection of other arcade games, a restaurant and some pretty sweet prizes. Definitely will check it out again next time we are in town!

We grabbed our takeout and headed for our AirBnB. We were starving at this point so I didn’t get a chance to take a picture of the food before we devoured it! Cheesecake Factory is always so delicious! The experience is a little less satisfying now since they display the calories on their menus! Being more health conscious now, we went with the cheesecake that had the least calories….Food was so good but you can’t help to feel a little guilty when you’ve eaten your day’s worth of calories in ONE meal!  After we settled down, we headed out for the Justin Willman magic show, the main purpose of our trip!

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The show was at Neptune Theatre which is a vintage and cozy theatre in the University district. Parking was a sweet deal as it was a flat rate of $6 for the evening. We found our seats and eagerly waited for Justin Willman to come on stage! The opening act was a local comedian by the name of Kermet Apio who was absolutely hilarious. This guy deserves a Netflix show! After a good laugh, it was finally Justin’s turn! The next 1.5 hours was mind blowing! Magic is 1000x better when you are so close to the stage and you can see everything so well! Justin was funny, entertaining and amazing at story-telling. I felt like a kid again! The highlight of the trip was definitely the time when we got to talk with Justin! He also signed autographs and took a selfie with us! He was the nicest and most down to earth celebrity I’ve met! I really look forward to seeing his next show on Netflix or seeing him live again!

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I told K during the show that I needed a BBT fix and he shot me down by saying that there’s no bubble tea in the States! Funny enough, there was a Chatime just across the street from the theatre…! The night was just getting even better! The bubble tea here was decent but not as good as Vancouver and it was also more expensive too! There was a group of customers playing mah-jong at the back which was quite an interesting sight at a bubble tea restaurant! After getting gas, we headed back to our AirBnB to get some sleep. It had been a long day but we had an amazing time! Stay tune for day 2!

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