Courtyard Seattle Downtown/Pioneer Square Completes Restoration

SEATTLE—The Courtyard Seattle Downtown/Pioneer Square has completed a 19-month, $750,000 restoration of its historic building. Located downtown in Seattle’s historic district, the hotel is an adaptive reuse of the 1904 Historic Alaska Building.

The restored Pioneer Square hotel today houses redesigned rooms, a high-tech lobby and numerous modern amenities. Originally completed in 1904 as the tallest building in the city at the time, the building is considered by many to represent the beginning of the modern-day Seattle, according to the brand.

The 15-story steel-framed, fireproof skyscraper was a first of its kind in a period of economic and industrial growth in Seattle, according to Courtyard. When the building first opened, the Scandinavian-American banking hall occupied the first floor, while the Alaska Club, a commercial organization of residents and entrepreneurs, convened in the penthouse and maintained a reading room that featured Alaska newspapers and mineral exhibits. The Alaska Building came to represent the significance of the gold rush in Seattle.

After 110 years, the decorative facade and lion heads that adorn the building parapet began to show their age with signs of water intrusion in the decorative terracotta. In an effort to restore the building, the Pioneer Square hotel began to embark on the restoration efforts in early 2013.

Detailed engineering, material sourcing and the permitting process were undertaken to develop the necessary design plan to return the Alaska Building to its original state. The National Parks Service as well as the Pioneer Square Preservation Board conducted the design review. After several proposals were presented, the final designs and engineering plans were approved.

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