Where to Party on the Water in Seattle.
The Definitive Guide
Lake Union and Lake Washington are Seattle's best kept secrets. For 8 month of the year, locals trudge through the gray, wet cold seasons, waiting until the first Saturday in May when boating season officially kicks off. Suddenly, every kayak, yacht, and sailboat are plying the waterway between the Puget Sound and Lake Washington. Joy-goers can tie up at Chandler’s Crabhouse, Ivar’s Fish Bar, or Agua Verde for a drink or bites to eat before casting off again to view the downtown skyline at sunset.
If you don't own a boat big enough for your whole wedding or you're from out of town, check these 9 places that you can rent for your small wedding or elopement on the water.
9 Places to Party on The Water in Seattle
Plus one secret bonus add on... spoiler alert: it's a hot tub boat!
The 100 foot long former Alaska ferry Trek is now Lake Union’s hottest open air event space. The party is on the car deck and provides a 360 degree view of the city and is basically a 3,000 square foot dance floor. Book your own caterer and throw the most unique party in the city.
This vessel is operated by Lake Union Charters
Built in 1921, former Seattle-Tacoma passenger ferry Virginia V will literally blow you away with its powerful steam engine and steam horn. The exquisite wooden interior takes you back in time when life was slower and somehow more beautiful. With the option to charter the vessel tied up to the dock or cruising the lake, you have options.
This ship has easy access in South Lake Union Park.
Once a ferry that connected Gig Harbor and Tacoma in the Puget Sound, the Skansonia is now permanently moored in Fremont on North Lake Union. Able to accommodate up to 75 guests they provide catering and full event staff. This venue is unparalleled in it’ views of the city.
I feel like this place is often over looked but its perks are unique. The Yacht Club event space and dock can accommodate about 50 people. They offer catering but a great thing about this place is there is a space for a food truck and a full kitchen if you bring your own catering. Reserve electric boats for all your guests and tour around Lake Union for a couple of hours before or after the ceremony. Also an excellent choice for rehearsal dinners!
The Center for Wooden Boats is a Seattle Icon and intrinsically a part of Lake Union. Host your 45-75 person event in the gallery and adjacent deck and watch the sailboats, seaplanes, and city lights. The space is managed by the excellent Kaspars Events and Catering.
Enjoy wandering the docks and looking at all the wooden sailboats
The charismatic tugboat Arthur Foss will steal your heart. Only able to accommodate 20-30 people this venue is ideal for intimate weddings, elopements, and rehearsal dinners. Bring your own catering and kick back and watch the maritime activity, or explore the wheelhouse and engine room. The Arthur Foss is a movie star from Tug Boat Annie (1933), escaped Wake Island in 1941 before the Japanese attacked it, and was built in Portland in 1889. (Don't be put off by their event rental page, just give them an email or call)
Right next door to the Center for Wooden Boats is this historic gem of a yacht. Built as a luxury boat for an affluent local in 1909, today it’s managed by the MV Lotus Foundation to preserve its history. This is another ideal location for an intimate wedding or elopement in Seattle; or as a first night get away for the bride and groom especially if you’re wedding is at the Center for Wooden Boats or another location on the lake.
This classic 87 foot private yacht is meticulously maintained by the captain and his crew, and the dark wood and brass really show it. Willing to accommodate basically any plan you have, they can depart from South Lake Union or Kirkland. Catering is facilitated by MV Discovery or can be organized by you.
Word cannot do the Zodiac justice. There are very few vessels in the world in the Zodiac’s class when it comes to beauty and experience. Able to accommodate up to 49 guests the Zodiac can be chartered by the hour or overnight. You can experience true life at sea while you watch the ship live and breathe as the full complement of crew make her jib and tack.
If your wedding is on Lake Union then these dream boats are an option! Have a floating hot tub boat or two pull along side of your dock or boat and let the party continue. Contact Hot Tub Boats for a bachelor or bachelorette party as well.
There a a lot of boats in Seattle and there are a lot of options for you small wedding, elopement, rehearsal dinner, bachelor party, or bachelorette party. If you're looking for something else, let me know because I might know just the place for you.