By Monica Fischer
If you’re a visitor to Bellevue, there’s a mode of local transportation you may not be aware of, but really shouldn’t miss. It’s called the Seattle Mariners bandwagon, and it’s one of the most exhilarating rides in town.
We’re not gonna lie—it’s been grounded for a while. (The Mariners haven’t made the postseason since 2001!) But with the team second to the top in the American League West, and icon Ken Griffey Jr., headed to the Hall of Fame this summer, it’s the perfect time to get back on board! Here’s what you’ll need to know if your trip to Bellevue has Major League Baseball in the lineup.
Seattle Mariners baseball games take place under a retractable roof at Safeco Field, one of the most beautiful ballparks in America, with views of the Puget Sound and the Olympic Mountains to the west, and downtown Seattle to the north. Single-game tickets are priced dynamically based on demand, but generally run $50 to $200 (up to $500 for the swanky Diamond Club).
Visit the Mariners’ official website to pick a game and buy tickets. There are lots of fun promotions throughout the season—often with discounted tickets or keepsakes—including Felix Hernandez Bobblehead Night (June 24), Turn Back the Clock – ’80s Mariners Retro Cap (June 25), Family Night (June 28), Filipino Heritage Night (June 29), Guys Night Out (June 30) and more.
Parking near the stadium is competitive and pricey, so we recommend traveling to Seattle via public transportation, taxi or uber—especially if you’re planning to pre-function with your co-workers before heading to the game. Visit the Sound Transit website to easily plan your trip by bus from the centrally and conveniently located Bellevue Transit Center.
You can’t properly represent in business-casual khakis and a polo, so be sure to stop by the Seattle Mariners Team Store at Bellevue Square for a baseball cap, T-shirt, jersey or—our favorite—foam finger. The Seattle Team Shop and Macy’s stock fan fashion, too, and Sports Authority can hook you up with a new glove for catching fly balls.
Bars near “the Safe” are cray on game day, so we suggest a pint or two in Bellevue before departing for the stadium (with someone else at the wheel, of course). You’ll find plenty of hometown camaraderie and happy-hour specials at Tavern Hall, Earl’s Kitchen + Bar, 520 Bar & Grill, The Pumphouse Bar & Grill, The Mustard Seed Grill & Pub, and many more local bars.
“Stadium food is so affordable,” said no one ever. Bench the high prices and fuel up in Bellevue instead. There are dozens of restaurants to choose from, but we like Lot No. 3, Palomino, Red Robin, Cactus, The Cheesecake Factory and Daniel’s Broiler on game day because they’re relaxed, roomy and an easy walk to the Bellevue Transit Center.
If game day just isn’t the same without a hot dog, stop by Sizzle Dogs on 120th Avenue East near the Bellevue Botanical Garden, or save your appetite for the stadium. There are several affordable sausage vendors outside Safeco Field and numerous concession stands inside the stadium that serve foot-longs—even one behind Section 132 that serves veggie dogs!
Not only are our local hotels home to fantastic pre-game watering holes like Basil’s Bar at the Hilton Bellevue and Joey Bellevue at the Hyatt Regency Bellevue, many of them also offer lower nightly rates on weekends. So if you can’t make it to the ballpark during the week, stick around for a day or two after your convention or conference and take in a Saturday or Sunday matinee.