A pioneering spirit laid the framework for the bustling high-tech Seattle you know today. Our city was, and continues to be, shaped by curious minds unafraid to try new things and upend the norm; to make our world better. In this city, innovation isn’t just celebrated, it’s expected. And it’s easy to see how Seattle’s buzzy business atmosphere can set an inspiring tone for your next corporate meeting or event.
Attendees can witness, first-hand, new ideas our pioneering local companies are rolling out for people to test. It’s a glimpse of what’s to come for the rest of the nation, like Starbucks concept stores with an all-new design, live music, and beer and wine. Or, the Nordstrom flagship store texting customers when curbside pick-up of online purchases are ready to go.
Seattle companies are constantly changing the way we do everyday things. This willingness to try a different approach is woven into the fabric of what makes Seattle such a modern, thought-leading city—and the perfect setting for your next engaging meeting. Below is a sneak peek at some newer Seattle-born ideas intended to make life more efficient, and hopefully, just a little easier.
Seattle boasts 10 major companies from the roles of Fortune Magazine’s list of the 500 highest-revenue generating companies in the nation.
More than 100 years old, Pike Place Market is Seattle’s favorite food tourism attraction and is full of time-honored traditions like flying salmon, fresh produce & artisan crafts.
Just steps from the flying fish, a Seattle online cooking school is making national waves with new technology that is changing the way people cook. A thought leader in modernist cooking methods, ChefSteps developed an affordable sous-vide (warm water bath) cooking tool that communicates with your smartphone. Now, any home chef can make a perfectly-cooked, French restaurant-quality pork chop. At home. On a Tuesday.
We all know Amazon Fresh and Prime Now offer same-day grocery deliveries. But for those looking to get out of the house, the new Amazon Go is a grocery store model that is basically a high-tech automat. Customers can grab anything they want from the Beta store in Seattle’s South Lake Union neighborhood and a beacon detects items in the basket, then deducts the funds automatically from an account as they leave. Coming full circle in bookselling, Amazon just opened their first brick and mortar bookstore in Seattle, proving that there is still a time and place for an authentic, in-person shopping experience.
Some of our region’s top museums pay homage to Seattle’s roots in innovation and technology. The Museum of History and Industry’s (MOHAI) Bezos Center for Innovation celebrates our city’s technological achievements with an interactive timeline wall of key milestones. Meanwhile, Living Computers: Museums + Labs houses a time warp of computers running homegrown Microsoft DOS, as well as the latest in VR headsets from Oculus—which continues to grow their Seattle presence.
EIF is Visit Seattle’s reimagined Customer Advisory Board, a community built for meeting planners to engage with each other as well as top executives at leading Seattle companies. The new format takes planners to company headquarters for intimate discussions, site tours and dinners to hear directly from leadership what established Seattle brands are doing to evolve, innovate and stay relevant in the current business climate. Expedia, Filson, Canlis Restaurant and Boeing were some of the trailblazing companies featured in the inaugural 2017 EIF.
The first car share was founded in Seattle—in the year 2000(!). Known as Flexcar, it quickly took off and merged with Zipcar in 2007, which is still popular today. Taking an upmarket approach to car sharing, BMW’s Reach Now first started testing in Seattle in 2015, because why not—it’s a market that’s curious and will adapt new things. Today, their fleet of all-electric and gas BMWs and MINIs can be seen zipping around Seattle, utilized by many drivers for multiple trips each day. Don’t forget, Seattle also has hundreds of Car2Go vehicles available to attendees as well as Lyft and Uber ride-sharing services.