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Publix Hotel officially transformed into 125 new apartments

Originally built in 1928 to house transient immigrant workers from Asia, it's now part of Seattle's mixed-use boom


It was way back in 2013 when we heard that The Public Hotel in Chinatown-International District was going to be reborn as a mixed-use complex. Originally built in 1928 to house transient immigrant workers from Asia, it had fallen on disrepair and was closed in 2003. Today, the Publix Hotel reopens its doors after a $24 million rehab.

A ribbon cutting ceremony with Seattle mayor Ed Murray is planned for 4:00 p.m.

Uwajimaya, which owns the building, oversaw the construction of a new six story building over the existing parking garage, which created 125 new apartments and 12,000 square feet of ground-floor commercial space.

Apartments (many of which are made up of what was once boarding rooms) range from a studio just over 300 square feet in the historic building to a three-bedroom that clocks in at 1,120 square foot in the new building. Units are 60-percent leased before the opening.

Twenty percent of the apartments are available to households making between 65 to 85 percent of the area’s median income (approximately $46,605 and $60,945 per year for a family of two).

The Publix Hotel lobby and original storefronts have also been restored with high ceilings, wood paneling and original marble detailing. A glass enclosed connection from the new building was added to the second level so that tenants have direct access to the Publix and shared amenities. Amenity spaces include a penthouse community room with a kitchenette, rooftop deck with BBQ grills, outdoor lounge, dog area, gym, community kitchen and party room, media lounge and bike storage.

Spectrum Development Solutions served as the project manager. Other team members included Clark Design Group, Graham Baba Architects, and Marpac construction. Blanton Turner is the property management company.