There was very little of my trip to Seattle that was planned. I pretty much just walked everywhere. Every. Where.
If I happened upon something that looked interesting, I checked it out. While making my way towards the Space Needle, I walked up to Chihuly Garden and Glass. I recalled a relative mentioning that it was a wonderful place to go, and I admit I was totally skeptical. How thrilling can rooms full of glass be?
Turns out it can be very entertaining and quite a photographer’s playground!
I have an embarrassing confession to make. Before this trip I’d never heard of Dale Chihuly. That in itself wouldn’t be embarrassing, but one of my favorite places in the world is the Bellagio in Las Vegas. I’ve taken countless photos in the lobby standing underneath the gorgeous glass ceiling. This was a great “aha” moment to remind me to take the time to learn about the beauty in this world and not just snap a photo and move on. So my new phrase is “Make time for Chihuly.” Which will be code for “Slow down and enjoy life.”
In case you’ve never heard of Chihuly either here are five interesting facts about him and some more photos from inside the Chihuly Garden and Glass exhibit.
1. Chuihuly, a native of Tacoma, Washington, enrolled in the nation’s first glass program at the University of Wisconsin, after studying interior design.
2. In 1968, Chihuly went to work in a glass factory in Venice.
3. Chihuly has received with 12 honorary doctorates.
4. In 1976, Chihuly was in a major car accident and was thrown through the windshield leaving him blinded in the left eye.
5. Chihuly helped found Pilchuck Glass School in 1971.
This picture above was one of my favorite installations to photograph. I love the vibrant colors against the black background. I stayed in this room for quite a bit just enjoying the variety of design and colors.
The atrium provides a great opportunity to take a photo of the Space Needle framed with Chihuly’s glass.
When I bought my ticket for the Chihuly Garden and Glass exhibit I took advantage of the combo ticket with the Space Needle. There was one catch – you have to book a time in advance. I wasn’t sure how much time I was going to wander in the exhibit so I decided to book my ticket to the top for the following day. Mother Nature wasn’t on my side the next day in regards to rain, but I was able to capture this beautiful shot of the Space Needle before the rain set in.
If possible I would recommend booking your tickets ahead of time to save yourself some time. Tickets are available on the Chihuly Garden and Glass website as well as the Space Needle website. Ticket prices appear to be based on time of day you want to go up in the Space Needle. I did notice that some tickets are a few dollars cheaper on the Space Needle website.
As you can see from the photos below, the weather was less than perfect during my scheduled time.
It was pretty cold and rainy during my trip to the top of the Space Needle so I just grabbed a cup of coffee and did some people watching. I found an outlet to charge my phone while I relaxed.
To end my day, I hopped on a water taxi to West Seattle to visit a relative. The ticket was $2.50 one way. If you are in Seattle and don’t want to invest time riding a Washington State Ferry this would be a quick and budget-friendly way to get out on the water.
The view below is from the water taxi as we pull away from the shore. Look at that beautiful sky! Pretty much the second I hit West Seattle the clouds rolled in for the evening and took away the sunshine.
Once in West Seattle, we drove around for a bit and the ended up a small restaurant called La Rustica. We started off with the Ostriche al Forno (Oysters with Spinach and Mascarpone Cream.) For my main course I had the Fettuccine alla Carbonara.
Seattle is basically a foodie’s paradise so I doubt many people visiting ever have much time to make it to this small restaurant in West Seattle, but if you have the time – and a way to get there – I’d recommend a dinner at La Rustica.
In my next post, I’ll share with you my magical Tom Douglas dinning experiences. Until then, which of Chihuly’s pieces pictured above is your favorite?