Washington, DC Travel Guide
Donald Trump has finally scored big in the nation's capital. It's not the White House, but it's pretty damn close -- two blocks to be exact.
Last week, Trump reached a 60-year lease agreement with the U.S. government that will allow him to transform the Old Post Office Pavilion on Pennsylvania Avenue into a 260-room luxury hotel. Currently, the building is used as Federal office space and its tenants are in the process of being relocated. If all goes according to plan, construction should begin in 2014 with a target opening of 2016. The property will be called Trump International Hotel, the Old Post Office, Washington, D.C.
Aside from its beautiful appearance, the best trait of the property might be its location between the National Mall and Capitol, which will attract both business and leisure travelers. The design plan calls for in-house restaurants, spa, conference facilities, and no shortage of penthouses and presidential suites. The all-glass annex inside the building will also be redeveloped, either into new retail stores or conference space.
The Irish flag flying out front of the St. Regis Hotel in Washington, D.C. makes a lot more sense now.
If Irish billionaire Dómhnal Slattery had a drink or two this weekend for St. Patrick's Day, it’s unlikely they were as celebratory as those thrown back by others as last week a high court ruled he owes approximately $10 million resulting from a personal guarantee to help fund the purchase of the St. Regis.
The kicker? Slattery said he didn’t even know the contract he signed was a personal guarantee, and that he didn't necessarily intend to splash the pot. So much for the luck of the Irish!
The good news is Slattery is one of Ireland’s wealthiest citizens. His airline leasing company, Avolon, has raised over $5 billion in capital since its 2010 beginnings. We’re guessing he won’t lose too much sleep over this multi-million dollar payout.
The Fairfax at Embassy Row is taking the whole patriotic red-white-and-blue idea in a whole other direction—a tasty one. If you stay at the Washington, D.C., hotel on Fourth of July weekend, you'll get a flight of red and white wines and artisanal white and bleu cheeses.
The aptly named Red, White and Blue package is perfect for food-and-drink fans who'd rather celebrate the holiday by boozing it up. However, if you still want to see some fireworks action, the package will also give you two round-trip Metro passes from the Dupont Circle Station—which is just a block from the hotel—to the National Mall, where you can watch the big pyrotechnics show.
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Sure, summer is almost over, but we can still pretend that it's not going anywhere. One way to do that is by indulging in alcohol-infused Sno-Cone cocktails at the Liaison Capitol Hill's Art and Soul restaurant, which has a whole menu dedicated to the delicious icy treats.
But you won't just get boring old cherry here. Instead, these more adult versions of crushed ice are drenched in alcohol like St.-Germain and cachaça and are served in a cone-shaped martini glass.
The focus of the room is on the open kitchen with its wood-burning oven. Executive chef Brian McBride puts it to good use, cooking up comfort food-ish cuisine that celebrates American farmers. (It is the capital after all.)
As for the menu, Conde Nast loved the duck au jus and the beet salad with goat cheese. We'd be a little more apt to tuck in to the braised lamb shank with a side of fava beans and morel mushrooms. But we all agree nothing's more American than the apple pie.
[Photo of Pecan Pie Ice Cream: flora and flying's photos]
Cubicle Dreamin' is a feature in which we ask the hotel mavens to take some time out of their busy work day, surf the Internet, and tell us what hotel they wish they could beam themselves to right that very second--all on the slave driving companies dime, of course. Oh, like these people aren't surfing aimlessly anyway--at least now their purposeless clicking will be cobbled together into useful hotel stories--we hope. Have a destination hotel you are just dying to leave your cube for? Send the story our way.
In this episode, Hotel Maven PBB imagines where he'd stay when visiting the nation's capital. Enjoy.
In honor of the cherry blossoms we missed a few weeks ago--and to toast a friend--I'm heading down Washington, DC this weekend. Sadly, a hotel paradise does not await me. But if I had my way, I'd be checking in to Kimpton's Hotel Madera.
And not just for the free WiFi, either. Smack in the middle of Dupont Circle, it's within striking distance of plenty of cool cafes and museums. The hotel's free happy hour can't hurt either, even if it is a play right out of Drury Inn's handbook. Plus, how can you not love a place that has animal-print pillows and robes in the rooms. True, the staff doesn't ballet, but you can't have it all, right?
·Hotel Madera reviews [TripAdvisor]
We know hotels are meant for sleeping, but the Fairmont in Washington, D.C., is taking it to an entirely literal level of zzzzen.
On Saturday, January 6, 2007, the Fairmont DC will offer a slumber party with sleep therapist Ann Dyer, who will present her trademarked Yoga Sleep Ritual. Although Dyer is the sleep expert, guests will begin their descent to dreamland with a ballroom seminar featuring Robert deStefano, founder of Sleep Garden and director of zYoga.
There, he'll reveal the secret to ixnaying what he calls the "negative sleep narrative." If you haven't fallen asleep by then, deStefano's speech is followed by a 90 minute zYoga seminar with Dyer.
Bedtime is set for 10pm, again, if you haven't already found your head rolling and eyes closing. Although they haven't said anything about having someone carry you up to your room, when you wake up the next morning you'll enjoy a continental breakfast and invigorating morning yoga session.
All this for $199 a person. Dyer's seminar alone is worth $150, according to the press release. Suddenly, we're feeling verrry sleepy....
Image via Jonk/Flickr
· Fairmont DC reviews [TripAdvisor]
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The Wall Street Journal reported yesterday that former San Diego Rep. Randall "Duke" Cunningham, who has already been sentenced for taking bribes, took some more bribes from contractors in the form of (in a routine order) prostitutes, a limo service and nightly stays in the Watergate Hotel's suites and possibly the Westin Grand.
Now reports are surfacing that there could be a half-dozen Republican politicians involved in the sex scandal.
While this is all very sensational, it's also sort of boring. Can't congressmen find something else scandalous to do in hotels these days? Like hard-core drugs or policy-making?
· Prosecutors May Widen Congressional-Bribe Case [WSJ.com]
· Republicans Involved In Lobbyist Sex Scandal At The Watergate Hotel? [Daily Kos]
In a weird twist, Anna Nicole Smith will be heading to the Supreme Court to contest her late husband's will.
One of our very reliable spies told us that she checked into the Four Seasons in Washington D.C. the other night before her Supreme Court appearance yesterday morning.
Smith was married to J. Howard Marshall II for only 14 months before he died at the age of 90, leaving a $1.6 billion estate which his son Pierce is fighting to keep solely his.
We only wonder if your real name is Vicky Lynn and you change it to Anna Nicole Smith, then marry a man with the last name Marshall, what is your alias? Trim Spa Baby?