Featured Starbucks: Fourth and Seneca, in the heart of downtown Seattle

It’s time to feature another Seattle Starbucks store.  Many readers tell me they like hearing about stores in my area, and so I decided to feature a store that just recently underwent a remodel, now has a Clover, and has a track record of great customer service.  It’s located in the heart of downtown Seattle and it is the “Fourth and Seneca” Starbucks.

  • 4th and Seneca (Store #392)
  • 1125  Fourth Avenue
  • Seattle, WA 98101
  • 206 623 0860

About ten months ago, I mentioned this store in a previous blog post that covers all the downtown Seattle Clover Starbucks stores:

Clover Coffee Episode #3 – Your guide to Clover stores in downtown Seattle.

The Fourth and Seneca Starbucks is one of the more recent stores to get the Clover.  I think the Clover arrived at the store sometime in the Spring of this year.  Overall, though, the store has a fascinating history.  It represents one of the very few Starbucks that once operated as a “Circadia” branded store.  Those were restaurant concept Starbucks, which eventually became “Cafe Starbucks” and then finally much later stopped food service.  I found an old article from 1999 mentioning this store’s unique piece of Starbucks history:

Puget Sound Business Journal:  “Starbucks still seeking a rhythm for Circadia.”

There isn’t too much to say about this store except that I like it, and I don’t get to it quite often enough.  I was in the store just this past Sunday and I bought some Aged Sulawesi Kalosi which is part of the “Reserve” series of coffee.  (yes, I need to mail that out along with  a few other things to readers of this blog).  The register barista, who did not know me at all, asked, “how are you brewing your coffee at home?”  It’s been a while since a partner just randomly asked me an open-ended coffee question.  I replied honestly, “any way my boyfriend makes it is fine by me. But he’s a fan of the Melitta Pour Over.”

By the way, I will be soon mentioning Circadia again in this blog.  I plan to review some of the stores that were once Circadia stores due to their unique history.  And with a little help from Sebastian Birr, I might get to most of them.

But the bottom line is this is just a good store to visit.  It’s big and comfy, and has perfect customer service.  It’s also amazing to me how you can be right in the heart of downtown yet feel far away from the hustle and bustle of downtown when you are at this store.  Here are some photos from the recent model, just completed within about the last month:

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12 Comments

  1. Pencil to Paper
    Oct 15, 2010 @ 00:34:39

    What a roomy looking Starbucks! Looks to me like the remodel is a definite success! I love when Starbucks locations are unique. Very charming. Thanks for sharing the pictures! If I ever get to visit Seattle, I will absolutely look this place up! :-)

    Reply

  2. purple1
    Oct 15, 2010 @ 07:15:22

    Melody this store looks so inviting and community focused. Wish more stores were like this. Never heard of Circadia stores – are they only in Seattle? Thanks for posting and traveling around Seattle.

    Reply

  3. Melody
    Oct 15, 2010 @ 07:19:04

    Hello purple1! Starbucks abandoned the Circadia business a long time ago and converted those few restaurants to normal Starbucks. I think the last Starbucks stop food service was the Madison Park store. (??). I have been thinking I should review that store sometime – Get out of the downtown core. Haven’t even been in ages. That’s a huge store too. Well, the Circadia restaurant history is definitely a unique history to this store, so I thought it was worth mentioning.
    I am really hoping that Nob drops by this thread – I know he has some great pics of the exterior of this store.

    Reply

  4. darkkatpouncing
    Oct 15, 2010 @ 09:02:37

    WOW! I have to say I seriously approve of the amount of comfy chairs they have in the new remodel!!! I love that! I was sort of looking for a place to camp out with the computer when I find myself in Seattle and I like this starbucks centralized location :) I am going to mark this down in the cell phone – thank you!!!

    Reply

  5. Sebastian
    Oct 15, 2010 @ 09:16:40

    This store looks so great! It looks elegant and exclusive. Really high-class look! :D

    Thanks for all the pics…now I am waiting for Nobs pics…:D

    Reply

  6. Nob
    Oct 15, 2010 @ 15:32:54

    When I visited it, the store did not yet have clover.
    http://yfrog.com/1aw7jj http://yfrog.com/766yqj http://yfrog.com/63mgnj

    I have to visit this store again. Very good interior design, like 15th Ave coffee & tea. I like it.

    Reply

  7. Hayley
    Oct 15, 2010 @ 18:51:15

    Very classy looking and really pretty entrance! It was nice that the baristas asked you some questions about coffee too, engaging!

    Reply

  8. Brendan206
    Oct 15, 2010 @ 21:01:09

    Hi Melody! By coincidence, I’ve been to the 4th & Seneca location twice in the last week (even made a special trip up from Auburn), and it has become my favorite Starbucks store anywhere!! I used to enjoy the “Heritage” store at 102 Pike St for its unique decor and Clover brewer, but the word has gotten out, and tourists flock to that store since it’s so close to Pike Place Market. The 4th & Seneca store is farther south in the downtown core, so there are more businesspeople and fewer casual visitors, and the store feels absolutely serene, even at the afternoon peak. The furnishings (about 8 leather armchairs, separated by coffee tables, along with the usual tables and stools) suggest a classy, understated clubroom, and I’ve been pleasantly surprised to find Bold drip coffee ready to serve, well past noon. I agree 100% with your assessment of this store, from the customer service to the overall vibe. Great pictures, too!

    Reply

  9. Anthony
    Oct 15, 2010 @ 21:34:39

    This is the one across from the W Hotel, right? I was there last year!

    Reply

  10. Michael
    Nov 09, 2010 @ 16:42:28

    Wow, this Starbucks is beautiful! It looks like it defines “cafe”. No store I’ve ever been to has been that nice. I could probably stay there long enough to put myself into a mocha coma haha.

    Reply

  11. Melody
    Jan 01, 2011 @ 14:09:44

    Funny, this store has changed quite a bit since I wrote this post. One of the chalkboards has been removed, and big heavy drapery has beeen hung. I’m here and it is open – 4th and Seneca never closes for a holiday, I’ve noticed. I need to take a few update photos and add them to this blog entry.

    Reply

  12. Lois
    Oct 18, 2012 @ 17:10:31

    Thank you for your blog. My husband are from over the mountains. When we come to Seattle, our favorite thing to do is read, people watch and drink coffee. Your blog led us here after our hour-long stay at the 40th floor store in the Columbia Tower, also found courtesy of your blog. More exploring tomorrow.

    Reply

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