Speaking of successful ventures, it's hard to believe that the mega coffee company Starbucks started out as a small coffee store located at the heart of Pike Place Market. The first store actually opened on Western Avenue in 1971, but it moved to its present location in 1977 and has been there ever since. Originally, Starbucks didn't serve beverages the way it does today, it only sold whole-bean coffee; back then, coffee was something you usually drank at home or at the restaurant. However, after a trip to Milan where he got to observe the Italian custom of stopping by a coffee shop for an espresso or a cappuccino, one of the Starbucks owners decided to include a beverage menu and the rest, as they say, is history.
The small Pike Place Market store, which was established in an old feed store, does not offer much seating space as this was not its original purpose. However, this doesn't stop hundreds of daily visitors from waiting in line to buy a cup of coffee, as though this were a pilgrimage of some sort - which is kind of funny because there's another Starbucks located within easy walking distance that isn't half as popular. The original store features some old black and white pictures, as well as the original company logo featuring a two-tailed siren whose origins can be found in Norse mythology.
Right across from the abundant flower stands of the open air market that is Pike Place Market lies the first ever Starbucks store. Number 1. Numero uno. The Alpha Starbucks. It’s filled to capacity most times and there are no seats or tables set out to sit and reflect on how it was really your idea—but were too lazy—to open up a specialty coffeehouse that catered to individual, specific and silly needs (decaf grande 2 pump vanilla soy latte with whipped cream) of the populace at large. Sort of like that great idea you had to put wheels on luggage, make a retractable handle on top and roll them up upright for ease of use.
My fascination with Starbucks really isn’t about their coffee, but their success story. Who knew? I’m guessing not even the owners did, ah, but what do I know. I'm still kicking myself over the eBay idea--oh...you too?
When you go to Seattle, you'll see that there are trillions of coffee shops! Every few paces you'll find one. If you're finding it hard to decide which one to visit, then check out the first ever branch of Starbucks which was opened in 1971. All the furniture/fittings are very wooden, unmodernised.
Although not my cup of tea, Starbucks is an integral part of Seattle. You see them in every other corner, and everybody in Seattle loves it. It's all over America now. Even when I travelled to nearby Vancouver, it seemed popular too. Their recent hit was to go "organic".
The original Starbucks store can be found in Pike Place Market. The photo shows the original store viewed from behind Pike Place flower market.
If you go to Seattle, you surely need to check out the coffee culture. It is one of the city's major cultural extravaganzas. Do not go to simply Starbucks; however, enjoy the independent coffee houses. The University District (University of Washington) is great for this. There are plenty of coffee shops, and you’ll enjoy watching students studying and interacting.
It is just a small store, but the world's first Starbucks -- keeping a retro design out front due to the Pike Place Market area requirements -- is in Seattle right by the fish market. There are some other neat places -- home made Russian pastries, and an Asian food stand, not to mention the whole market -- right near by.
Despite the ubiquitous nature of Starbucks in the Northwest -- seems there's one on every corner, just like bars in Wisconsin -- there's something neat about seeing the Starbucks that was here 'first.'
The first Starbucks coffee shop can be found in Seattle, specifically at the Pike Place Market. This first Starbucks shop was first opened in 1971, and today Starbucks can found throughout the world with more than 7,500 locations. So when you are in Seattle, be sure to visit this first shop which has a sign inside that says it's the first Starbucks shop.
Here's the original devil that spawned them all. How many Starbucks does one really need on one block? Anyway, this is my sister's picture--I think there's still some charm to a regular coffee.