Shopping in Seattle offers a unique experience through its diverse and eclectic mix of places to go shopping. You can find luxurious malls selling high-end brands, historic neighborhoods lined with charming boutiques, quirky trailer park malls, and weekly farmers’ markets.
From designer labels to vintage apparel and unique gifts to local produce, there is something for everyone in Seattle. So grab a famous Seattle roast and get ready to shop until you drop!
The Best Places to Go Shopping in Seattle
1. PIKE PLACE MARKET
Pike Place Market is the beating heart of Seattle. It was originally founded for produce growers to sell directly to consumers, and it has since become a protected historic district. It is a hub of activity, with sights, sounds, smells, and some of the best people-watching in town. People from all over come here to shop, dressed in anything from suits to tie-dyed t-shirts, wearing anything from boutonnieres to wildflowers.
The market is home to five social service programs, 220 independently owned shops and restaurants, 150 craftspeople, 70 farmers, 60 buskers, and 450 residents who live in affordable housing. This makes Pike Place Market a great place to start a shopping adventure. It is recommended as the best shopping destination in Seattle, offering something for everyone.
2. Pacific Place
Pacific Place is a shopping mecca in the heart of Seattle’s Downtown district. Spanning five floors and an entire city block, the mall boasts a plethora of shopping options, ranging from local stores to international giants such as Tiffany & Co. and Lululemon. With clothing, jewelry, tech stores, galleries, and more all under one roof, Pacific Place is sure to satisfy even the most discerning shoppers.
Recently renovated, Pacific Place has become more than just a mall – it’s an all-encompassing entertainment hub. Visitors can enjoy various dining options, an 11-screen movie theatre, and even live music events held throughout the year. Don’t forget to take the sky bridge to the nearby Nordstrom flagship store for an extra dose of retail therapy!
3. UNIVERSITY VILLAGE
University Village is the hub of the University District shopping scene and is Seattle’s only outdoor lifestyle shopping center. It features popular hometown outdoor clothier Eddie Bauer and chains such as Barnes & Noble and Pottery Barn, Crate & Barrel, Gap, and The North Face. More than two dozen local merchants also have stores in this unique center, providing shoppers a touch of Northwest flavor, including chic candle maker glassybaby and Fran’s Chocolates.
Attractive garden areas, numerous restaurants, and ample free parking are additional draws to University Village. Among the many restaurants, visitors can enjoy Din Tai Fun, Bamboo Sushi, and Ba Bar (check out pickup options, too) and afterward, treat themselves to some delicious Frankie & Jo’s plant-based ice cream.
University Village is recommended for best shopping in Seattle because it boasts 120-plus stores and restaurants, from Athleta and Room & Board to local favorites glassybaby and Fran’s Chocolates.
4. Capitol Hill
Capitol Hill is the epicenter of Seattle’s LGBTQ+ community. Located just a short walk from Downtown, it is a vibrant and trendy neighborhood with fantastic independent shops and boutiques. You can tell you have arrived once you spot the rainbow-colored sidewalks or the life-size Jimi Hendrix statue.
The area is particularly popular with younger shoppers and is a hipster’s haven, boasting a variety of quirky thrift shops, gift shops, and galleries. Revival Shop Seattle, Butter Home, and KOBO Shop & Gallery are just a few places to explore.
For a unique urban-rustic experience, check out the fabulous Melrose Market and the hidden alleyway down to Chophouse Row. Here you can enjoy shopping and dining, all within the same area.
5. The Elliott Bay Book Company
The Elliot Bay Book Company is an independent bookstore located in the popular Capitol Hill neighborhood of Seattle. It is renowned throughout the city and beyond for its impressive collection of 150,000 books arranged on cedar shelves.
The store carries a variety of collectible editions in addition to its wide selection of titles. It hosts many events and author readings throughout the year, making it a great destination for literary lovers.
Whether you plan to attend one of the events or pick up a book or two, it is worth the visit. On rainy days, visitors can find a cozy spot in the cafe to get lost in a new book.
6. Pioneer Square
Pioneer Square is one of the oldest neighborhoods in Seattle, but it has managed to stay up-to-date and is now acclaimed as a trendy shopping destination. This historic area is known for its red brick buildings and Renaissance Revival architecture, making it a desirable spot for unique boutiques and quaint gift shops.
If you stroll down the cobbled streets, you will come across many interesting stores, such as Bon Voyage Vintage for vibrant clothing, Agate Designs for captivating crystals, and numerous galleries. Additionally, there are plenty of cafes throughout the neighborhood, serving some of the best coffee in the city. The tree-lined pedestrian zones make for a pleasant environment to enjoy a cup of coffee.
7. Westlake Center
Westlake Center is one of Seattle’s most popular shopping malls, offering four floors of well-known fashion brands and a food court. Located in the middle of Downtown, its accessibility makes it a prime choice for visitors and locals, being right next to the Westlake Monorail Station. Popular brands such as Claire’s, Lush, Zara, and Saks OFF 5TH can all be found at Westlake Center.
The Nordstrom flagship store is just across the road. However, those looking to save money can visit the Westlake Center’s lower level, a Nordstrom Rack. Here shoppers can find the same famous brands at a fraction of the cost.
8. INTERNATIONAL DISTRICT
The Chinatown-International District, or the “ID,” was settled in the 1880s by Chinese railroad workers. Since then, a diverse range of Asian cultures has come together to form the Asian-American district of Seattle.
Many wonderful boutiques and family-run Asian restaurants are worth a visit. Uwajimaya is an especially noteworthy destination, as it is an enormous market where you can find anything from arts and crafts to live fish and fresh produce. After your shopping spree, the district offers some of the city’s most delicious food. For these reasons, the Chinatown-International District is recommended for the best shopping in Seattle.
9. SHOPS AT THE BRAVERN
The Shops at the Bravern is an upscale shopping complex located in Downtown Bellevue. It occupies multiple levels of a Microsoft office tower-and-condo complex and has elevated Northwest shopping by attracting international luxury brand retailers.
This high-end collection of merchants and restaurants includes Neiman Marcus, the first outpost of its kind in the region, as well as Trophy Cupcakes, John Howie, and Wild Ginger. Among the well-known retailers are Jimmy Choo, Karen Millen, David Barton Gym, Louis Vuitton, Salvatore Ferragamo, Neiman Marcus, Tory Burch, Hermes, and Wolford. On chillier evenings, the courtyard’s huge stone fireplace is a great place to gather.
The Shops at the Bravern is recommended for some of the best shopping in Seattle because it offers a comfortable retail environment on the Eastside with high-end stores.
10. PCC COMMUNITY MARKETS
PCC Community Markets is a member-owned cooperative with more than a dozen Seattle-area locations. They offer fresh, local, and organic produce, quality meats, sustainable seafood, and a range of gifts.
These include journals, books, knitted goods, kitchenware, chocolates from local companies, Washington wines and beers from neighboring businesses, the PCC Cooking from Scratch Cookbook, cooking class certificates, and PCC gift cards. These gifts are perfect for friends, family, and loved ones. Shopping at PCC Community Markets is a great way to support local businesses and find the perfect gift.
11. Redmond Town Center
The Redmond Town Center is a bustling multi-purpose outdoor shopping center. It provides shoppers with a variety of essential stores, as well as office spaces for AT&T and Microsoft. In addition, this resort-style center offers a range of fun outdoor activities for kids, such as golf and plenty of large gathering spaces.
Shoppers can find affordable brands, explore health and fitness offerings, and enjoy casual dining at one of the many stores and hotels. Therefore, the Redmond Town Center is the perfect place to find something for everyone.
12. Show Pony
Show Pony is a local boutique in Fremont that has quickly become a favorite among shoppers. It specializes in selling American-made, high-end clothes, handbags, jewelry, beauty products, perfumes, and gift boxes at affordable prices. For those looking for a bargain, the store’s second floor is a treasure trove of thrift purchases. Established as a trendy women’s clothing store, Show Pony has since expanded its offerings to appeal to a broader audience.
Shopping in Seattle FAQ
What is the main shopping area in Seattle?
Pacific Place is the main shopping area in Seattle. It occupies an entire block in the city’s bustling Downtown district. The mall has five floors, each offering a variety of stores, ranging from local brands to international names like Tiffany & Co.
Does Seattle have a shopping district?
The downtown retail district of Seattle is a great place to shop. You can walk to dozens of stores, including the flagship Nordstrom store. If you want to explore further, visit Seattle-grown national brands such as Filson, Brooks Running, and REI. All these stores are sure to provide you with a great shopping experience.
Does Seattle have a fashion district?
Yes, Seattle has a fashion district. It is called Fashion District NW and consists of many different fashion-related businesses, such as designers, boutiques, models, photographers, hair and makeup artists, and fashion bloggers. This district provides an opportunity for growth in the fashion industry not only in Seattle but also in Portland and Vancouver, British Columbia.
What is Seattle best known for?
Seattle is best known for its close ties to the tech industry, with both Amazon and Microsoft having their headquarters in the city. It is also home to iconic landmarks such as the Space Needle and Pike Place Market and a thriving coffee culture, with Starbucks being the most popular coffee shop.
Seattle is also popular with outdoor enthusiasts due to its abundance of hiking and kayaking opportunities. The city is also renowned for its grunge music scene and sports teams, particularly the Seattle Seahawks. Shopping is also popular in Seattle, with a wide range of stores for visitors to explore.