You know you’re in for something out of the ordinary when you enter the lobby, look up, and see frescoes of leaping dolphins copied from the Palace of Knossos on Crete. Those playful mammals are indicative of the sophisticated but playful nature of this Kimpton hotel created in 1997 from a rather undistinguished office building in downtown Seattle. Patterned wallpapers, lush colors, quirky art, and an unpredictable mix of comfy sofas and chairs add pizazz to the rooms and suites (former offices); in the suites, curtains rather than doors separate the living and bedroom areas. (Unless you are using the room only to sleep, you might want to steer clear of the smaller rooms that face the grim FBI building next door.) At 5pm, head down to the light, airy, high-ceilinged lobby and curl up next to the fireplace with a glass of complimentary wine. You can also dine at Outlier, the hotel’s restaurant. Kids are very welcome at the Monaco, where you can request a pet goldfish for your room or bring your own pet with you. The staff are super-friendly and helpful.