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Eight Great Washington DC Hotels

Whether you're headed into the town for the Rally to Restore Sanity / March Against Fear on October 30 or just looking for a weekend away, our nation's capitol is filled with hotels that demand recognition. No matter what you're searching for, you'll find a personality, price point and size to suit your needs. Here are eight of our favorites:

For the "See and Be Seen" Crowd: W Washington DC
The first of Starwood's W chain to enter Washington, the former Hotel Washington has gotten a chic modern makeover. The Beaux Arts façade has remained virtually intact with an interior top-to-bottom makeover that includes the area's only Bliss Spa, a steakhouse by Jean-Georges Vongerichten and a rooftop lounge that provides a view of the entire city, including the White House. The vibe is New York chic, and the thumping lobby music might be a bit much for those seeking a haven of relaxation ... but it's definitely a place to see and be seen. 515 15th St., NW, Metro Center; www.whotels.com/washingtondc

To Live Like a Diplomat: The Jefferson
Re-opened after more than two years of renovations in 2009, The Jefferson has long been one of DC's most fashionable addresses. At just 99 rooms, the intimate Jefferson hotel boasts the distinction of being the only DC property to belong to the elite Relais & Chateau membership group. Expect thoughtful and personalized touches in every room, including Red Flower bath amenities and books and décor inspired by Thomas Jefferson's love of music, wine, gardening and more. Don't miss drinks in the cozy Quill bar, where some of the city's best mixologists serve up made-to-order cocktails. 1600 M St., NW, Downtown, www.jeffersondc.com

For Urban Cool in the Heart of Dupont Circle: Hotel Palomar
Lovers of the Kimpton brand will rejoice – the DC area boasts more than ten of the chain's properties. One of the best? Dupont Circle's Hotel Palomar, a zen-feeling boutique property and an accompanying restaurant, Urbana, that many have long called one of the city's best. Enjoy walking distance from much of the city, a quiet neighborhood street, some of the city's larger hotel rooms and daily happy hours with wine, free for guests. For a similar, yet cheaper feel, book Hotel Rouge, just down the street. 2121 P St., NW; Dupont Circle; Rouge: 1315 16th St., NW; Embassy Row; www.hotelpalomar-dc.com
To Rest in the Heart of Power: Liaison Capitol Hill
If you're looking to spend time exploring Capitol Hill, the Liasion is your best bet. Opened two years ago after a $12 million renovation, the hotel boasts a rooftop pool and sun deck, a restaurant by former Oprah chef Art Smith, and a location that's walking distance to Union Station and The Mall. 415 New Jersey Ave., Capitol Hill; www.affinia.com/liasion

East Meets West, Luxury Style: Park Hyatt Washington
One of several area properties owned by the Hyatt brand, Park Hyatt Washington is arguably on par with names like Ritz-Carlton and Four Seasons. The Tony Chi-designed interior evokes Eastern inspiration in the form of cherry blossom murals, sparse modern spaces, and a top restaurant, Blue Duck Tavern, where guests can dine in glassed-in "power booths." A favorite of visiting diplomats, the hotel is conveniently located in DC's West End, just a few block walk in to Georgetown or up to Foggy Bottom. 1201 24th St., NW, Foggy Bottom; www.parkhyattwashington.com

For a B&B Feel in the Heart of DC: Morrison Clark Hotel
If there's one thing DC lacks, it's inns and bed and breakfasts. The only DC inn on the National Register of Historic Places, the Morrison Clark is located in trendy Mount Vernon Square, just a few block walk from Penn Quarter, the Convention Center and Logan Circle. Enjoy amenities like free Internet access, period décor and a gourmet, southern-inspired restaurant. Tip: ask for one of the courtyard-facing rooms or a suite, as the rooms tend to be on the smaller side. 1015 L St., NW, Mount Vernon Square, www.morrisonclark.com

For a Long-Term Stay: Capitol Hill Suites
If it's home-like comfort you crave, opt for Capitol Hill Suites, an extended-stay boutique hotel boasting kitchenettes or full kitchens in each room and a convenient Capitol Hill location. The pet-friendly property also serves a full Continental breakfast daily, making it quick and affordable to fuel up before you head out for a day of sightseeing, rallying, or business meetings. 200 C St., SE, Capitol Hill; www.capitolhillsuites.com

Intimate Luxury in the Heart of Georgetown: Ritz-Carlton, Georgetown
One of four Ritz-Carlton properties in the DC-metro area, our favorite is the intimate Georgetown location. Located just above the waterfront, this small property (only 86 rooms) offers a boutique four-room spa, spacious guest spaces, and daily lobby happy hours with gratis s'mores and a trained smore-mellier who can pair wines with your appetizer of choice. At just a few blocks from Georgetown proper, you'll feel as if you're in a private oasis, right in the heart of town. 3100 South St., Georgetown; www.RitzCarlton.com/Georgetown


[Flickr image via Jeff Kubina]

Filed under: Festivals and Events, Hotels and Accommodations, One for the Road

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