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800 16th St., NW (Downtown)
(1) 202-638-6600 | www.hayadams.com
FOODThe Lafayette Room - White House views, power dining, breakfast, lunch, dinner; 24-hour room service
DRINKOff the Record Bar - great wine list, political insider hotspot, darky and clubby
ROOMSHistoric details like ornate plasterwork; some with fireplaces or balconies; marble baths
PRICE (STANDARD DOUBLE)USD 395
YEAR OPENED1928 (renovated in 2010)
# OF ROOMS145
CONNECTIVITYYes - Wi-Fi available
GYMYes - open 5:00am-10:00pm
METROFarragut West; Farragut North; McPherson Square
The motto of this elegant property just steps from 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue is “Where nothing is overlooked but the White House.” It may sound a bit hyperbolic, but they actually might be on to something. The gracious, absolutely flawless service and swanky facilities make for a unique luxury experience. The architecture, a melange of “Old World” elements that zoom from Tudor to Elizabethan to Roman, may sound a bit over the top, but it’s actually lovely and in pristine condition, with every space from the chandeliered lobby to the plush, understated guest rooms oozing old-school elegance. Given the stellar location, superb service, and the swish digs, the property has been one of the city’s most fashionable since it opened in the 1920s – back in the day, the likes of Amelia Earhart and Sinclair Lewis bedded down here, while more recently, this is where the Obamas stayed just before the 2008 inauguration. That said, you should probably expect a suited, graying set of political insiders rather than a glamorous crowd – we wouldn’t be surprised if you end up breakfasting next to your senator or bumping into a popular pundit at the bar.
GO HERE WITH
An ex-president or dignitary; significant other; parents or grandparents; colleagues
WHY WE LIKE IT
Top of the list has to be the great views of the White House or St. John’s Church (known as the “Church of Presidents”) from the oversized guest room windows – they’re so great that the rooms with the finest views are often booked by photographers looking for the perfect shot. (Some rooms look onto an interior courtyard – if a view is important to you, make sure you don’t book one of those.) If we can draw our eyes away from the vista, the room we find ourselves in is pretty sweet too. From the elegant historic design to the thoughtful details like custom Italian linens, Etro toiletries, and a complimentary choice of morning paper, everything is just right. (And, should we lack for anything, the lovely service is there in an instant.) Plus, if we’re here on business, the grand public spaces, with their filigreed ceilings and wainscoting, are ideal for wining and dining, while, if we’re here for fun, the Smithsonians and Capitol Hill are nearby (and the Metro’s really close, too, in case we want to go elsewhere).
AMENITY WE LOVE
The schmoozy bar, Off the Record. Its motto is “Washington’s Place to be Seen and Not Heard."
WHAT WE WOULD CHANGE
This neighborhood is pretty dead after dark, so you either have to take a taxi elsewhere or drink/dine on site. Also, rooms are slightly smaller than at other comparable spots around town. The bathrooms in the standard room classes are a bit small and dated.
GOOD TO KNOW
The hotel is named for two famous Washington personalities who used to live on this site, John Hay (private assistant to Lincoln and later Secretary of State) and Henry Adams (a writer and descendant of both Adams presidents). In fact, paneling from the original Hay residence can be found in the grand John Hay Room. Another historical tidbit: the dining room at The Hay-Adams was the first in the city to have air conditioning (it was installed in 1930). Although children are welcomed with amenities like child-sized robes and a library of board games, the vibe may be a bit too grown up for families. A 24-hour business center, meeting facilities for up to 225, and complimentary town car drop-off service are all available.
The Jefferson, Washington, DC (Washington, DC)
All information within this website was checked for accuracy at the time of publication. But since the world moves quickly, things may have changed. Pardon us for any errors as we strive to give you the most up-to-the-minute details!