The Stadium District is Tacoma's historic gem, getting its name from castle-like Stadium High School. Originally built as a luxury hotel in 1891 and reconstructed as a high school in 1906 following a devastating fire, Stadium High School is a historic Tacoma landmark and also the setting for the 1999 feature film 10 Things I Hate About You.
Things to do
Stroll through this historic district and you'll run into King's Books, where you'll find an overwhelming selection of new and used titles, as well as an impressive assortment of indie comic books and graphic novels. On the weekends, King's Books hosts community events featuring local artisans.
Explore the meandering pathways of Wright Park's expansive 27 acres, including a playground for kids, a sprayground for hot days, bocce courts and the massive WW Seymour Botanical Conservatory. The historic glass conservatory, having been designated a city, state and national historic landmark, is home to exotic tropical plants and seasonal floral displays.
Places to eat and drink
In a historic district, it seems appropriate to enjoy a throwback burger and shake at Shake Shake Shake, which is among the best shake shops in the county. The retro, 1950s vibe of their decor and counter seating match the menu offerings perfectly to create a soda fountain ambiance.
If German eats and beer are more your thing, Rhein Haus Tacoma is a relatively new addition to the Stadium District, having opened its doors in 2016. With hearty Bavarian fare and a huge selection of German beer, including dunkelweizen, hefeweizen, schwarzbiers, kölsch, doppelbocks and pilseners, you can drink your fill and enjoy a game or two of bocce on their indoor courts.
Harmon Brewing Company, one of the best-known local breweries, has their taproom and their Hub Tacoma restaurant co-located on the edges of the Stadium District. Offering burgers, sandwiches, salads and high-end pub fare alongside a long list of craft beers, the bicycle-themed restaurant is a family-friendly spot with views out over Commencement Bay, and outdoor seating during the summer.
Tacoma's first bean-to-bar chocolatier, Tease Chocolates is a micro-chocolatier serving chocolates, toffees, truffles and other handmade confections out of their Stadium District storefront. Hand-processed using mostly coconut sugar and honey for sweeteners, Tease is a local favorite and makes a unique and quickly-devoured gift to bring back home when visiting Tacoma.