New West Seattle business: Meeples Games at Charlestown Center

(Laura Schneider with the banner that’ll hold a place outside until signage is installed)
By Tracy Record
West Seattle Blog editor

The space vacated when Anytime Fitness moved from Charlestown Center to the ex-Admiral Blockbuster already has a new tenant.

In fact, Laura Schneider signed the lease last fall and has been eagerly waiting to get in and get going.

This spring, Schneider plans to open Meeples Games in the northern second-floor space of the California/Charlestown building, next to West Seattle Runner (WSB sponsor).

No, “games” does not mean an electronic arcade. Schneider declares that Meeples will be “all analog, all the time.” Not that she is opposed to electronics – she is a former software executive – but she researched the region while deciding where to open the business she has long dreamed of running, and this is a niche unserved in West Seattle, a place to buy and play board, card, and role-playing games, both informally and during organized events. She envisions seminars, too. And more:

Meeples will be a café as well as a gaming space and retail store, with espresso, beer, wine, and simple food offerings. Schneider is building a kitchen in the center of the expansive space, but not one with a fryer or oven; she says it will be designed to prepare healthy local food that goes with game-playing and socializing, like vegetable/fruit plates, cheeses and crackers, smoked salmon, and sandwiches. She’ll include vegetarian and gluten-free options.

Back to the games:

If you are not part of the game scene, you might be interested to know that this generally is something more than Monopoly. It’s the “high-quality European-style games” that will be the focus, both in the retail space and in the game library at Meeples. She cites titles including The Settlers of Catan and Cards Against Humanity as well as classics such as Magic: The Gathering, Pokémon, and Yu-Gi-Oh.

Schneider’s gaming history traces to everything from Dungeons and Dragons in her college days to realizing while raising her now-grown son that there had to be better-quality games, both in substance and in materials, than what they were encountering.

She believes West Seattle will be perfect for a place like Meeples Games because of its strong sense of community, and is delighted with the welcome she’s already received while talking to West Seattleites about her business.

Right now, she’s waiting for permits so that about six weeks of construction work can commence, for the aforementioned kitchen as well as to separate the space into retail (west side), the café (south side), and the tournament/event space (north side). The space is well lit, with plenty of windows on both sides; the former gym’s mirror wall to the north will be going away. Furnishings and decor will include dining-room-type tables and track lighting.

Wondering about the hours? Likely 9 am-9 pm Sundays-Thursdays, open later (11 pm-ish) on Fridays and Saturdays. There won’t be a cover charge to come in and play, but of course, as with coffee-shop etiquette, purchases will be appreciated, whether beverages/food and/or retail items.

Meeples already has a website – which will include an online store soon that will interface with the retail merchandise – a Facebook page, and a Twitter account, so you can keep track of its progress toward opening.

(P.S. The “meeple” in the name is the game piece you see in the logo on the banner. But you probably already knew that.)

49 Replies to "New West Seattle business: Meeples Games at Charlestown Center"

  • CEA February 14, 2014 (11:10 am)

    This sounds so great!! A new kind of hang out spot for lots of people, including teens. Welcome!

  • Ashley February 14, 2014 (12:00 pm)

    Yay, I’m so excited! Now I won’t have to drive all the way to Ballard when I want to go to a gaming cafe or buy games or MTG :) Can’t wait. Will be one of your best customers!

  • Paula T February 14, 2014 (12:26 pm)

    Fantastic news! I hope we see Cribbage players there :)

  • Steve Ercolini February 14, 2014 (12:28 pm)

    Excellent news! If it anything close to Blue Highway Games on Queen Anne I will visit often and happily spend my gaming dollars here in West Seattle!

  • Michelle Shafagh February 14, 2014 (12:34 pm)

    Great idea! Food too!! I look forward bringing friends & family.

  • Jeff February 14, 2014 (12:34 pm)

    Awesome! I’ll be there.

  • Michelle February 14, 2014 (12:45 pm)

    This is great news! I hope there will be weekly Magic tournaments for kids. Currently we drive to Blue Highway every Friday afternoon and it would be great to stay in our own hood.

  • Loree February 14, 2014 (12:48 pm)

    Awesome! Anyone happen to know how ADA accessible the building is?

  • themightrabbit February 14, 2014 (12:54 pm)

    fabulous! we love games! nice to have this close by!

  • B-Check February 14, 2014 (1:02 pm)

    Awesome, great idea (thought around Xmas how WS could really use that) – can’t wait!

  • Brian February 14, 2014 (1:05 pm)

    @Loree: The building and Meeples Games layout are designed to be ADA accessible. See you at Meeples!

  • Sue February 14, 2014 (1:06 pm)

    Yes!!! Happy Valentines to me! A game store in the neighborhood will be awesome!

  • Derek February 14, 2014 (1:11 pm)

    This is very exciting! Beer and board games!

  • BQ February 14, 2014 (1:21 pm)

    Great article! Welcome to the neighborhood! I can’t wait to stop by, hang out and test drive some new games before I purchase!!!

  • ELL February 14, 2014 (1:31 pm)


  • martin February 14, 2014 (1:36 pm)

    Very excited to see this type of business come to west Seattle!

  • skeeter February 14, 2014 (1:57 pm)

    Just in time for the 40th anniversary of Dungeons and Dragons!!

  • Laura Schneider February 14, 2014 (2:24 pm)

    Wow, so many comments! To answer a few questions:

    We will have Magic on Fridays – all ages welcome! We’re going to have ‘After School Pokemon and My Little Pony’ weekly. Details to come!

    The store is on the second floor but very ADA accessible. There is an elevator for the building and we’re designing the interior to be very friendly.

    We’ll have Cribbage, Chess, Go, Mahjong and other classic games as well.

    Can’t wait to open and see all y’all at the store!

  • Karen February 14, 2014 (2:52 pm)

    How about D&D or Pathfinder? We take the kids to Ballard once a week to play. Closer to home is better!

    Sounds so fun!!

  • Val February 14, 2014 (3:21 pm)

    Terrific story. It’s great to see another woman-owned business in the city. I can’t wait to get my Meeples coffee and sit at a table with my favorite Dominion expansion. And for Paul on this thread – I’ll be there with a cribbage board,too.


  • Kim February 14, 2014 (3:39 pm)

    I can’t express how excited i am for this! This makes my year!

  • nkmcalli February 14, 2014 (3:43 pm)


  • WS February 14, 2014 (3:46 pm)

    yeah, so happy not to have to drive to QA or Ballard. will there be a section for kids games as well?

  • Laura Schneider February 14, 2014 (4:30 pm)

    Yep, Pathfinder, D&D, kids games. We’ll have it ALL!

  • Joan February 14, 2014 (4:31 pm)

    Yay! Can’t wait!! Parcheeeeeeeesi!!!!!!

  • Mike February 14, 2014 (4:33 pm)

    Right on! Will they have growler fills too? Depending on their tap rotation I might be there a lot just for a growler fill. Welcome to the neighborhood, great addition to make things even better.

  • Elaine February 14, 2014 (4:56 pm)

    Excellent! Can’t wait to meet some novice-level Settlers of Catan players…

  • Alex February 14, 2014 (5:00 pm)

    I am SO excited to see this happening!
    @Val – we’re Dominion players too (and cribbage & many, many more).
    Any Advanced Civ board game players out there?

  • trickycoolj February 14, 2014 (5:18 pm)

    Awesome!! A thought once everything is established and running smoothly vending at ECCC or Geek Girl Con would be a great way to get word out!

  • Kara February 14, 2014 (5:20 pm)

    You found the best hood to call home…I’m already looking forward to a nice walk instead of a bus ride to Ballard to get my gaming fix! WOOT!

  • Laura Schneider February 14, 2014 (5:34 pm)

    Alex, is that you? Yes, we definitley have to play AC soon! I got one of those custom sets from that guy on BGG and NEED to play it soon.

  • Seanjohn Walsh February 14, 2014 (6:29 pm)

    Yay Hurray Hurrah! Me Love Meeples Peoples!

  • justme February 14, 2014 (6:42 pm)

    Great news! I hope you’ll welcome Brony meetups and possibly sell MLP collector card packs, etc…Seattle meet ups for the Bronies would love a place to meet in this neck of the woods!

  • KD February 14, 2014 (7:01 pm)

    Wow! This isn’t my world, but wow..! These are VERY HAPPY people! Is there going to be a number of night and/or weekend introduction classes to teach some of us older folks what makes all of you so happy to see this? I’m not familiar with hardly any of these games, but… I wanna be happy too!!
    (Congrats and Welcome).

  • William Z Cohen February 14, 2014 (7:48 pm)

    Just the mere mention of Cards Against Humanity makes me sick. I find it to be a disgusting game that enforces racism, stereotypes, and many other negative social ills. The owner of this store should think of the diverse clientele that could be great customers and how quick she will lose their support if she makes this a hallmark of her store.

    Mrs Schneider, there is a good reason why the majority of game distributors DO NOT carry this game to sale.

  • desertdweller February 14, 2014 (8:46 pm)

    William, you do realize that the game is not serious, right?

  • Alex February 14, 2014 (8:53 pm)

    Is there any chance of having a monthly board game tourney? Btw, I love the idea and look forward to becoming a loyal customer.

  • newnative February 14, 2014 (9:00 pm)

    I completely missed the mention of Cards Against Humanity until William’s rant. Thanks! New game to look for.

  • Myles February 14, 2014 (10:59 pm)

    I am sure the store will be a 7th wonder of West Seattle and start a pandemic of popularity

  • Mike February 15, 2014 (5:41 am)

    “enforces racism, stereotypes, and many other negative social ills” and “there is a good reason why the majority of game distributors DO NOT carry this game to sale”
    Or it could be that you can download it for free and print it yourself under Creative Commons licensing. Seems like William just wanted to make a negative comment without thinking first.

  • Helen February 15, 2014 (5:59 am)

    Yaaaaa! I do adore Blue Highway but it would be nice to keep it ‘micro-local’.

  • skeeter February 15, 2014 (8:09 am)

    I’d love to get some Dungeons and Dragons games started. It’s a sort of awkward time, though, because we are in between editions. I think the new edition launches this summer, though. I’d like to find some people to give that a try.

  • clinker February 15, 2014 (10:36 am)

    How fun! And right next to my house!
    Look forward to a place that encourages community hang-out time.

  • Darlene February 15, 2014 (12:43 pm)

    I am so excited. A place I can take my kids in the afternoon and not a bad walk from our house. Welcome!

  • WSince86 February 15, 2014 (9:46 pm)

    Yippee yahoo !! How fun is this gonna be!! So excited for the possibility of cribbage tourneys and some side splitting Cards Against Humanity!!!!

  • Jack February 15, 2014 (9:54 pm)

    yay! We are so excited!

    Hoping there will be Birthday party options????

  • Laura February 17, 2014 (7:55 am)

    Excellent! Can’t wait for opening….

  • West Seattle Junkie February 19, 2014 (1:23 pm)

    Woohoo!!! Bring on the Lords of Waterdeep!!!

  • Dawson February 28, 2014 (10:57 am)

    As a high school gamer in the area, this looks like the perfect reprieve after a long week of school- and a great place for Friday Night Magic.
    Now if only they were hiring, what a great summer job that would be!

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