An Insiders Guide to Seattle with Patrick Duffy De Armas

Words by Matthew Vanatta
Photos by Tyler Kalberg & Jake Hanson

When flying into Seattle, it’s hard to imagine a more beautiful city. Downtown emerges through mist and clouds, and on a clear day, is crowned by the beautiful Cascades to the North and East and the Olympics to the West. The Puget Sound reflects a mix of industry and abundant sea life. Seattle is one of the most dynamic places on the planet – a sublime mixture of metropolitan and nature.

Home to a bustling creative and outdoor scene, Seattle has become a favorite setting amongst artists, musicians, and writers for its robust creative community and proximity to wild places. From the mystical coast to the craggy Cascades, Seattle offers a unique chance to be immersed in the outdoors, while having access to a dynamic city. Home to one of the most exciting food scenes in the country, a legendary music scene, and plenty of good libations, Seattle is a must for any creative and outdoor enthusiast.

We caught up with Seattle-based artist and cultural tour-de-force, Patrick “Duffy” De Armas, to find out what spots he frequents when he’s not creating some of the most inspired art in the city. De Armas has been on a mission to leave his mark on the Emerald City, and between his creative firm Electric Coffin, his international art tour Boxes of Death, and still managing a successful solo career, it’s hard to imagine the man they call Duffy finding time to sleep.

Where to Eat:

Lots of great places to eat in Seattle… Loretta’ and Star Brass for burgers – the Tavern burger is the best burger in town. Marco Polo is a Georgetown gem, has stiff drinks and some of the best fried chicken in town, and Nascar on Sundays (not that I watch Nascar). All “Da Poke” spots around town are cool and make me feel like I am eating healthy. We mostly go to Go Poke in the ID, but if I am not in the ID for Poke, I am usually there for Dim Sum at Harbor City, Mr Pings, or Honey Court. Honestly, I mostly eat Dim Sum…

Best place to catch a show:

Honestly, last year we started going to shows out at Chateau St. Michelle. Some really cool old bands play there, you get to be outside in nice weather and enjoy so many bottles of wine – that is really hard to beat. Again though, there are so many great places to see a show that it becomes more about the bands. The places where a lot of bands I like seem to perform are: The Central Saloon, The Tractor Tavern, The Sunset, The Crocodile and The Showbox.

Best place to grab a drink:

I spend a lot of time in Pioneer Square, and I routinely find myself drinking margaritas at Casco Antiguo. They have margaritas on tap, homemade sangria, and lots of other drinks that put you on a warm beach. I like a good tiki drink, and that can be found at the Diller Room – not a tiki bar – but it does have real deal tiki drinks. Ask for Justin. Lastly, there are lots of other great bars in this city; the fancy drinks in this town are plentiful and I am a sucker for a good cocktail.

Best gallery:

Treason Gallery. It is the best thing to happen to the art scene in Seattle in the last decade. Roq la Rue was also one of my favorites. Kirsten (from Roq la Rue) brought amazing work and artists to the region, and Treason has picked up that torch and continued to run with it. They also show my work, so that is cool too (I am actually very fortunate to be a part of their artist roster).

Best nature escape:

I really enjoy the South Puget Sound. It’s quiet and great in the summer, so we go down there to swim and hang out. These days I am all about going east. The desert in the PNW is beautiful. Most people assume the PNW is all grey and pine trees, and we have a lot of that, but the desert is beautiful.

Best place to grab a coffee:

The Wick Motorcycles and Coffee. Well, it’s motorcycles… and coffee… So pretty much sums it up.

Best motorcycle cruise:

Anywhere out of the city. It doesn’t take long to get out of Seattle and find some great roads to get lost. Again, I suggest heading east, but north is good (Chuckanut Dr.), south has some fun roads down by Mt. Rainier, and west puts you on the Olympic Peninsula (well a ferry first). You really can’t lose. The city can be fun to jam around in as well. Just take the middle lane on the white line – it’s always open.

Best super touristy experience:  

I’d say the Washington State Ferries are great. They get you out on the water, plus you can get a sweet selfie with the city in the background. Personally, I like the underground tour. I enjoy history and the weird stories they tell you.

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