The decor is lovely and modern, and the rooms are comfortable, but the staff is very snobby and not especially helpful or friendly. I've stayed here several times on business trips, and enjoy the "hipness" and decor of the hotel, but am just not that impressed with the service.
The restaurant (Earth & Ocean) is really good. The gym is adequate, and a fair bit nicer than most hotel gyms. The Heavenly Bed is exactly that. But if I were paying for the hotel stay myself, I'd stay at a comparable hotel with better service.
It's centrally located downtown, but there's no self parking and it's quite expensive to park a car there.
PROS: great decor, good restaurant, central location, Heavenly bed
CONS: snobby service, expensive parking
I've stayed here several times on business, and also on my wedding night. It's an amazing hotel. The staff is very helpful and friendly, the adjoining restaurant (Sazerac) is great, especially for breakfast, and you even get a goldfish in your room if you're missing your pet back home. The decor is quirky and fun, and the beds are really comfy.
The suite we stayed in for the wedding was beautiful and HUGE, with a jacuzzi tub, top of the line toiletries, and a nice spa basket waiting for us.
I highly recommend this for either business or pleasure as it's centrally located downtown and you don't need a car if you're planning to stay close. Parking can be expensive and overnight street parking is extremely hard to find (and possibly non-existent).
PROS: great decor, great service, yum restaurant
CONS: expensive parking (no self-park)
We've used this kennel multiple times for our large Rottweiler mix and he always has a great time. At another kennel he seemed sort of traumatized and confused, but after a couple of days at AoCB, he's just as happy as ever. When we drop him off, he's eager and happy to go with the staff member.
At the end of their stay, you get a cute "report card" that outlines how your dog did during his stay - whether he ate his food, how his bath went, etc.
They also provide a "Board and Spoil" option where you can spend a little extra per day to have a staff member provide your dog with some extra attention: a walk, game of fetch, even massage!
They fill up at holiday times so call early. Also make sure your dog's shots are up to date. They will feed your dog their food, or his own food if you provide it, and allow you to leave a few toys for them.
Parking is plentiful and the kennel is easy to get to from I-405.
PROS: great staff, nice facilities
CONS: limited hours on Sundays, early closure in evenings
I've been going to Brookside for about 2 years now, and switched back to them after trying another dentist. The staff is almost entirely female, and very attuned to the fact that most people hate going to the dentist. They'll schedule multiple appointments if you need a lot of work done and aren't comfortable sitting in the chair for a long time. They also have Walkmans you can listen to so the drilling and scraping isn't as loud.
They have ample parking, and will remind you of your appointments via email.
My only complaint is that they're somewhat pushy about recommending extra services like teeth whitening.
PROS: comfortable atmosphere
CONS: pushy about extra services
I got my dress custom made for my May 2005 wedding at Cicada. The minute I walked into the shop, I knew I would buy my dress there. The range of fabrics and choices was amazing. Dresses aren't the typical poofy white gowns and are modern, unique elegant styles that you can't find in regular bridal shops.
They even incorporated some fabric my mom brought back from India 2 weeks before the wedding and redid the hem because the woman who was doing the fitting didn't like the way it fell (I didn't even notice!). The dress itself was amazing quality, not a stitch out of place. I got a ton of compliments on the dress.
They also made my husband a matching tie and pocket square to go with the fabric they used for the dress. That was a little pricey for the quality but it looked great in the pictures.
Very expensive, but totally worth it. Make an appointment if you want to try on dresses on weekends or evenings, and you'll get better service. Parking is the usual mess since it's right downtown.
PROS: unique designs, huge choice of styles and fabric
CONS: expensive, hard to find parking
I took in several pairs of pants to be taken in at the waist. They did an OK job, nothing spectacular, and some of the threadwork was messy, though hardly noticeable when worn.
Prices are in line with other alteration shops in the area. The limited shop hours make it difficult to find a convenient time to drop off and pick up your items.
Parking is easy to find, though the shop is in that weird part of Redmond where all the streets are one-way.
The cakes at this bakery are amazing - I've tried at least 4 different flavors and they are all fabulous. We ordered our cake from Regent for our May 2005 wedding, and got so many rave reviews on how good the cake was. (Flavors: strawberry on one layer, mocha on the other)
In fact, Regent will only make a wedding cake for 75+ people, so we ordered twice as much cake as we had wedding guests (only 36), and all of it was gone by the next day. Compared to other bakeries, the price was amazing (only $2.75 per person), and the taste soooo much better. None of that plasticy fondant, just an amazingly light frosting that actually tastes good. They delivered the cake on time.
The only disadvantage is that they are somewhat pushy about what a wedding cake is "supposed" to look like, so I got one that was much more flowery looking and less modern than I wanted. In addition, you can't get non-traditional flavors like chocolate if you want a tiered wedding cake. You can get regular cakes in any flavor, but if you want one that looks like a wedding cake, the staff at the store will insist you do it their way.
Their cake is so good, however, and so inexpensive, that I was ok with that. Our wedding cake was pretty, but not the Martha Stewart Weddings style I had hoped for. But the taste blew all those regrets out of the window.
They will make cakes on short notice, and have several you can walk in and buy. Definitely recommend them for any special occasion where you want a yummy cake!!
PROS: inexpensive, delicious cakes, reliable, huge variety of flavors
CONS: limited flavors and styles for wedding cakes
I worked with Nisha at Fleurish for my May 2005 wedding, and she did an unbelievable job at a very reasonable price. She worked hard to stay within my budget, and is a true artist. She takes your colors and your ideas and creates beautiful flower arrangements. She also created a wedding canopy that was more beautiful than I could ever have imagined. She was easy to work with, and delivered everything perfectly, far exceeding my expectations.
My only complaint is that Nisha doesn't use email, as a lot of my other vendors did, and was sometimes hard to reach by phone. But she *always* returned my calls.
If you want a lot of hands-on control on *exactly* what it's going to look like, this isn't a shop for you, but if you're willing to sit back and let a true artist take control, definitely choose Fleurish!
PROS: amazing artistry, reasonable prices, easy to work with
CONS: no email
If you're serious about working out, and want a one-stop shop for all your fitness needs, the Pro Club is the right gym for you. It has the usual cardio and weight workout facilities, multiple pools, tennis, squash, and racquetball courts, aerobics, yoga, and Pilates classes, along with a restaurant, cafe, and full service hair salon and spa. And did I mention the auto detail service?
They have a specialized weight loss program called 20/20 that has been very successful as well. Nelson is an excellent personal trainer, and Sarah was very helpful as my dietitian, and they introduced me to the 20/20 program without me having to actually enroll in it (which is really expensive unless your insurance pays for it.).
The Pro Club is conveniently located on the Eastside for Microsoft employees, and the hours are good as well (open until 11pm on weekdays). The club recently was remodeled so everything is brand new. It's also very clean and doesn't have that stinky "gym" smell a lot of places have.
Membership is *very* expensive if you don't work for Microsoft (I guess that's how they keep out the riffraff), and it's appalling that you have to pay for any classes given the high cost of membership. But it's an amazing benefit if your company pays for it.
PROS: great facilities, tons of classes, great staff
CONS: expensive, must pay for classes, too many kids around on weekends
The staff at Mud Bay is always friendly and knowledgable about pet food and treats. They suggested several food choices for my dog who has skin allergies and gave us several samples to try out. When we bring our dogs in, they always get treats from the staff.
One night, when we were totally out of dog food, we got to Mud Bay just after they had closed, and since they had already shut down the register, we couldn't buy any food. The staff member there gave us enough samples of our dog food to tide us over until the next day. This kind of service is why we keep going back, even if their prices are a few dollars more than the large chain stores.
PROS: great service, great selection of premium foods
CONS: more limited hours than chain stores, expensive for toys and supplies