They were just sitting there, wasting space.
But recently some enterprising souls saw the rich potential in converting SoDo's big abandoned warehouses into party palaces.
Aston Manor is leading the charge. After some struggles getting a liquor license, the doors are open and the space is spectacular.
The man reputed to be fronting this place is Roy Aston, Seattle socialite and notorious 1930s bootlegger. If you haven't heard of him, that's because he's not real. He's been fabricated, Heisenberg-style, to add even more mystique.
But Aston Manor has a lot more than a made-for-TV backstory. It's got made-for-TV digs.
This is full-on Vegas-style clubbing: excess piled onto excess until you're in full sensory overload. Decor is Prohibition-themed, with lots of hidden nooks and crannies for the bold explorer. Just don't climb into the bathtub full of rose petals.
The sound system is banging, with serious volume and miles of bass. They're bringing in DJs from all over the world who specialize in floor-rocking party music, and crowds are getting wild.
If you want to hold court, reserve VIP tables early. They're filling up fast. Of course, nobody's stopping you from adopting your own fake persona to own the queue.
In fact, old Aston might even like that.