The Urbanist’s Seattle: Talking Points

The Headliners

Photo: Adam Robb/FilmMagic/Getty Images; Patrick McMullan

In the sibling rivalry between PDX and SEA-TAC, Seattle just eked out a big culinary win. Chef Matt Dillon of Sitka & Spruce won Best Chef Northwest in this year’s James Beard Awards, while longtime heavy-hitter Tom Douglas won Outstanding Restaurateur. Portland winners: 0.

Photo: Ted S. Warren/File/AP Photo

Earlier this year, latex-suit-wearing, crime-fighting real-life superhero Phoenix Jones reportedly pepper-sprayed some May Day protesters. Now Jones, who is equal parts local celebrity and potentially dangerous vigilante, has found his nemesis: anti-vigilantist and self-described “super-villain” Rex Velvet. The war is on. As of July 17, Jones’s supporters had donated $3,300 toward the bulletproofing and redesign of his superhero suit.

Photo: Elaine Thompson/AP Photo

For Seattle sports fans, who have been without an NBA team since the SuperSonics moved to Oklahoma City in 2008, there’s a swelling sense of hope. In February, Seattle native and hedge-fund manager Chris Hansen announced his intention to bring basketball back to his hometown. Most recently, his company proposed to guarantee up to $200 million in municipal bonds for a new sports arena.

Buzz surrounding the newly built Escala Building has less to do with its sweeping views or floor-to-ceiling windows than it does with the condo tower’s most famous resident: Christian Grey, the fictional business magnate who beds (and bruises) Anastasia Steele in the omnipresent erotic novel Fifty Shades of Grey. The building’s penthouse recently sold for $6 million.

The Urbanist’s Seattle: Talking Points