Seattle has a huge recreational cannabis market due largely to the fact that Seattle is one of the busiest cities in the country. It’s got everything; art, music, fine dining, clubs, tourism, museums, and of course, cannabis, which all make for a melting pot of culture and excitement.
The dispensaries here cater to pretty much everyone including the tourists, parents and grandparents, hipsters and hippies. Each and every recreational store here is designed to fit in with a specific segment of these target demographics, so you’ll see a huge variety of stores. The store a block away could be totally different than the one you shop at regularly. This is because there is so much competition here on the Emerald Mile, and the dispensaries that operate here must bring their A game if they want to make it. Due to the restrictions on where recreational shops can operate, these stores must set themselves apart from each other. Here’s what we know about Seattle dispensaries on the Emerald Mile.
The Emerald Mile
The Emerald Mile is a cluster of Seattle dispensaries in an industrial neighborhood near Seattle’s sports stadiums. Because there are strict zoning regulations in Washington regarding where recreational marijuana stores can operate, this location is perfect. You can’t operate a retail store within 1000 feet of a school, school bus stop, public park, public transportation, or drug-free housing areas without receiving double fines or imprisonment, so this location is perfect. There are no schools, churches, or parks anywhere near these dispensaries, and because the area is industrialized, the real estate and rent was reasonable, since the neighborhood at the time wasn’t necessarily desirable. However, this is changing — these dispensaries are opening in such close proximity and they must adapt their identities to the customer base they want to relate to. The neighborhood is improving, and due to their location being so close to the stadiums, it receives a lot of foot traffic from the tourists. You can walk through and see a lot of art and culture which really brings out the Seattle experience. Seattle dispensaries on the Emerald Mile even sell to people over the age of 21 with out-of-state IDs after signing in at the dispensary you choose. There’s a dispensary here no matter what your taste is, and it works so well here in this part of town. It’s a civilized and trustworthy process and proves that states that still haven’t legalized weed are behind the times. Here are a few of the dispensaries on the Emerald Mile and how different they are from each other:
Dockside Dispensary is one of the really down to earth dispensaries in Seattle on the Emerald Mile. It has a really earthy, yet elegant feel to the shop since there are beautiful light wood details all over a spacious store with a ton of natural light. It’s a warm and inviting store that differentiates itself from the others by choosing their own clientele. The inventory at Dockside Dispensary is of the finest quality and presented in a really nice manner. The owners make sure the customers know where the product comes from and they only put reputable products on the shelf. They also have a pretty sweet cannabis museum display piece that contains historic bottles in large glass cases.
Vela is on the opposite end of the retail spectrum — the store is designed to be sleek and minimal, like a gorgeous pot-filled jewelry store. It’s a very upscale place, but the staff here will make you feel comfortable during every visit. Don’t be intimidated. Vela displays their cannabis in display cases (like a jewelry store) on a black background. There are also iPads on the counters so you can check out product details, strain-related information, and more. They’re also very unique in the fact that you can actually see a professional grow facility in action since a grow operation shares a space with Vela under a different license. Vela is very focused on education. Think of it like an Apple store of Seattle dispensaries.
During an interview with Leafbuyer, Vela had much to say about the design of the store. “We wanted to create a place where anybody can come in and not feel intimidated. We tried to streamline the process and make it easy for people who don’t know a lot about cannabis. We’re always very happy to have a detailed conversation and meet you at your education level. If you’re coming in off the street or you want to be introduced or reintroduced to cannabis we want to make it easy for you. We actually have a vela spectrum which introduces an easier entry level language for people who come in instead of categorizing everything by sativa, hybrid, indica, etc. We have 4 main categories, and everything we sell is linked to that spectrum so that it’s user-friendly.
This really shows the differentiation of the shops that operate on the Emerald Mile.
Ganja Goddess is packed with awesome inventory, and they’re more about showing off the product than showing off the dispensary, even though the dispensary itself is absolutely magical. They carry just about every product you could think of, and it almost has a comfortable hippy vibe to it. Ganja Goddess sets themselves apart by running a shuttle van downtown to pick up tourists and bring them to the dispensary. The menu is handwritten and decorated, making it a comfortable shop, appealing to people who are still getting used to the idea of legal cannabis.
In a recent interview with Leafbuyer, Ganja Goddess had some things to add on the design of their shop. “The owner, Tara, has an amazing sense of style. The builder actually designed and built the place using sacred geometry as a big part of his style. So when you walk into our place it really has the feeling of a temple. The first thing you see when you come in is the statue of Buddha, the flower of life symbol behind it. We always try to have some plants around. We just want to make people feel comfortable, with the industry and the dispensaries.”
Cannabis City was the first dispensary to open in Seattle and on the Emerald Mile, and the second store to open in the state, and just by a few hours. It’s decorated with nice bright colors on the wall and beautiful wood floors. They carry a ton of products in brightly lit glass cases, and they have a plaque out front for making history as the first pot shop in Seattle.
A recent interview with Leafbuyer provided a lot of cool information in the design of the shop. “It’s an interesting space because it’s fairly small. We were limited when we first opened up because there were very few locations that we could use and there were very few people who wanted to be in the industry. It’s now changed, but our spot is small. When people walk in we really want them to feel comfortable, relaxed, casual setting with a little bit of an impact that says “wow, look how much stuff they have!” We really try to push that we carry the most pharms of anyone in the state. “
Green Fire is almost like a museum, featuring beautiful displays throughout. They started as a glass shop in the medical marijuana market and recently started selling recreational cannabis. The first thing you’ll notice is a ton of glass cases with heady looking pipes and bongs, which are truly pieces of art. The pieces on display are worth the trip alone, not to mention the cannabis. Green Fire also has an excellent selection of cannabis and cannabis products and relates to the more artistic customers on the Emerald Mile.
In a recent interview with Leafbuyer, Green Fire talked a bit about the design of the shop. “The location we were in previously was a restaurant and a club, so we still have the old bar top, and we’ve put a little marijuana spin on it. Usually, the first thing customers see is the big metal door at the entrance. Then they notice how big the actual space is. We have about 1000 square feet of wood flooring, the glass gallery, the classic bar seats, and lots of shelves to show off our products.”
If you’re interested in seeing more dispensaries on the Emerald Mile as well as the rest of Seattle, check out Leafbuyer’s Top 10 Most Eye-Catching Seattle Dispensaries. You can take a look at pictures of the stores and read the full interviews.