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Take a peek at restoration of the Eitel Building, soon to be the State Hotel

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Lake Union Partners shows the work going into the building at Second and Pike

A rendering of what the Eitel Building will look like when completed.
Weinstein A+U, courtesy of Lake Union Partners

The Eitel Building, first completed in 1905, is on its way to a new life as the 90-room State Hotel. The building at Second and Pike, despite its location and landmark status, hasn’t been fully occupied since the 1970s.

After multiple attempts to revive the building failed, Lake Union Partners purchased the property in 2015 for $5.35 million, and got to work on the building’s restoration with architecture firm Weinstein A+U and structural engineers Coughlin Porter Lundeen.

Downtown Seattle association Jon Scholes spoke with Joe Ferguson of Lake Union Partners about the process and ethos for the restoration, while offering a view of the construction.

“[It]s] fairly complicated retaining the two facades, both on Second and Pike, and still creating the structural upgrade that we need to,” explained Ferguson. “We basically demoed all the [original] light timber framing... and we’re coming back up with concrete, new elevator, new stairs.”

The hotel will also include a restaurant and bar on the ground floor.

“We’ve always maintained that [the ground floor] helps create the place for the building, for the neighborhood,” said Ferguson. “Without it we might otherwise just be in the commodity housing business. Instead, we’d rather focus on true mixed-use and places people remember. So we’re really reliant on these local entrepreneurs, these folks who have a vision, have the energy and passion behind what they’re doing, and can help us achieve that.”

Lake Union Partners is behind multiple projects around the city, including the Midtown Center in the Central Area. “We’ve been very much attracted to emerging corridors, neighborhoods with an identity, neighborhoods where we feel like we can complement what’s already there but be a part of the momentum that’s growing this city,” said Ferguson.

Watch the full video below.

When the State Hotel is finished, it will be operated by Columbia Hospitality, which also operates Salish Lodge & Spa of Twin Peaks fame, among others.

It will be joined by a couple of other hotel projects popping up around Pike Place Market, including another historic restoration project by Palihotel and another hotel, sans operator, planned for First and Pike.