One of the most disappointing aspects of the way I-502 was structured was that it included a couple important provisions that essentially banned the possibility of the weed lounges a lot of us hoping to see one day. There were already a few factors which make this difficult, from the state ban on indoor smoking to the numerous restrictions on smoking “in view of the public.” Perhaps the most important, however, is the stipulation of I-502 that states that marijuana cannot be consumed at the place at which it has been purchased.
At the rate at which these laws change, it will be a while before we see Seattle’s first cannabis lounge – but what will a marijuana lounge look like when one finally opens? By skirting some of the rules, and outright ignoring some of the others, let’s take a look at Cascadia Cannabis Lounge, Seattle’s first hypothetical proposed weed lounge.
One of the biggest problems facing the process of opening a weed lounge inside of Seattle is figuring out where you can place it. The 1000 foot rule, which is designed to keep places selling marijuana away from schools and parks, means that the most densely populated areas are ineligible for any sort of dispensary or weed lounge. We’re going to toss that rule out the window and put Cascadia in the heart of Capitol Hill, possibly someplace in between Broadway and 12th, within blocks of some of the Capitol Hill’s best restaurants, music venues and coffee shops.
With a location like this Cascadia can bring real value to the neighborhood. One of the most basic is to add a service to the area that is both unique and complementary to the neighborhood at large. Just as like-minded people gather at coffee shops and bars to take part in shared interests, from espresso and news at Stumptown Coffee to music and drinks at Nuemos, so will people be able to enjoy cannabis and socialize at Cascadia Cannabis Club. By providing a safe, accessible place for adults to purchase and consume marijuana during most of the day, probably from 10am to 12am, Cascadia Cannabis Lounge will help accomplish what I-502 purports to do – taking marijuana distribution out of the hands of dealers and consumption out of the view of the public.
What will Cascadia Cannabis Lounge look like? As the first cannabis lounge in Seattle, we want it to be demonstrative of how a well-designed marijuana lounge can definitively add value to its surrounding neighborhood. To that end, Cascadia Cannabis Lounge is going to be a classy joint. Not stuffy classy, no one should feel intimidated to hang out there, but someplace with lodge-like qualities that celebrate the heritage of Seattle and Washington, and with clean, industrial lines. Imagine a cross between Smith and Café Vita, if you would.
Cascadia Cannabis Lounge would be staffed by experienced industry professionals, providing product guidance and to-order joints. A large selection of edibles would be available, and a full coffee bar would be open from 10 am, alongside other medicated and non-medicated beverages. A small stage would host low-key performances and music in the evenings.
All in all, Cascadia Cannabis Lounge would be dedicated to providing a professional, enjoyable cannabis experience that would bring real value to a community that could easily benefit from it. Hopefully, one day this dream can become a reality.