20001 Travel Guide
Hotel renovations are always an interesting study for us. Lately, we’ve come to expect a mix and match of historic and decorative styles as the new normal. But here's a hotel design that just might be a first--one that merges Chinese culture with Civil War era, Victorian-inspired architecture.
The Morrison-Clark Inn in Washington, D.C., has done just that, with the unveiling of its new expansion and uber-Asian look. With good reason.
The Morrison-Clark is a national landmark named after David Morrison and Ruben Clark, original owners of two side-by-side townhouses, both dating to 1864. After many years as a military hostel and social club for First Ladies and their BFFs, the property was sold, renovated, and opened in 1987 as the quaint Morrison-Clark Inn with just 42 rooms.
Looking to expand every which way, the Inn saw an incredible opportunity in its next door neighbors-- home of the Chinese Community Church and Parsonage for over 70 years. Hence the honorary Chinese-influenced design.
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The singsongy sounding Marriott Marquis Washington DC is still planning to open on May 1, but right now, reservations are being accepted online only for June 1 at a grand opening rate of $269 a night.
Yet in an effort to capitalize on the summer travel to DC (did you know this summer will be the 200th anniversary of the Star Spangled Banner?), the soon-to-be-largest hotel in DC (with 1,175 rooms) has put together three opening packages and they are actually deal-worthy. Here they are:
· Summer Weekends Deal: From June 1-September 1, the hotel is offering 40 percent off two night stays and 50 percent off three-night stays from Thursday-Sunday nights. Suites are exempt. All stays must be purchased in advance and are nonrefundable. Still, you can get a two night stay for just $108 a night or a three-night stay for just $90 a nigt. Book by May 23 to score the best rate. Use code NEW to book.
We love hotel renovations nearly just as much as we love new hotels. But what we really love about hotel renovations is seeing the transformation that happens when an old, tired and lackluster room gets a modern makeover and transforms into new, spiffed-up, stylish guest room. Or put more simply, we love comparing the Before and After.
In a city where images of the "Father of His Country" are everywhere, Washington DC hotels need to keep it interesting. And so, it was high time time for the Hotel George by Kimpton to declare its independence from dull colors and furnishings and establish a revolutionary new look.
Keep reading to see how the hotel looks after the renovations!
As hyped as we are for new Trump International Old Post Office Hotel, we have more imminent DC hotel news to get excited about.
The downtown Shaw neighborhood of DC is getting a major new hotel next spring. The Marriott Marquis Washington will be the largest hotel in DC, connected to the Walter E. Washington Convention Center. The hotel will have a massive 1,175 rooms, including 49 suites, 105,000 square feet of indoor/outdoor meetings space, five dining outlets, a high-tech concierge lounge, and a bi-level health club. The hotel is also designed to be LEED Silver accredited, and will incorporate the site’s original historic Samuel Gompers AFL-CIO headquarters, known as the "Plumbers Building,” and a 56-foot sculpture by Rodney Carroll, which will be the centerpiece of the grand glass atrium lobby. All interiors are by BBG-BBGM.
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The Renaissance Washington, DC Downtown Hotel just announced they’ve completed a redesign of all 807(!) guest rooms and suites to the tune of $30M. Wow -- talk about investing in the economy. Good on ‘em.
The hotel is located across from Mt. Vernon Square and the Walter E. Washington Convention Center, close to DC’s Chinatown and Penn Quarter districts.
The rooms, designed by Dash Design in New York, are meant to complement the hotel’s recent lobby redo and are done in khakis and cocoa-browns with splashes of reinterpreted denim blues and reds. Each room is accented with clean and modern furniture. The leather lounge and desk chairs are inspired by twentieth-century modernism. LED reading pin lights are mounted on headboards with easy to reach plugs for guests to plug in their own mobile devices.
We've recently spent some time in Hong Kong and Tokyo but now we've got our eyes on the hotel scene in Shanghai.. But where should we stay? Katherine Spiers comes to our rescue with her Shanghai hotel suggestions all this week.
These days, images of Shanghai focus on its absurdly fast growth, with all those skyscrapers that break height records for a few seconds before a new, even taller neighbor pops up.
The hotels are as gigantic as you'd expect in such a more-is-more town. Some of them occupy tops floors in multi-use buildings, giving them pretty fantastic views, too. But even taking into account the joy of literally looking down on a city of 20 million, the tiny Langham Yangtze Shanghai is my favorite hotel there.
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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.
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The Renaissance Washington, DC Downtown Hotel just turned 21, and to celebrate becoming legal, the hotel lobby got a facelift to make it ready to Mixx and Mingle.
Mixx and Mingle, along with Explore, are actually cute names of the newly created intimate spaces in the sleek, modern lobby. It's all part of an effort to rid the hotel of its "convention hotel" label from Dallas-based designers Looney & Associates.
While Washington D.C. hotels prep for the 100% occupancy which will come with Obama's January inauguration, deals on rooms are selling out and fast. Wait too long and you'll be stuck blowing what's left of your 401K on one of the last remaining rooms in town, most likely an overpriced suite. Take for instance the Hyatt Regency Capital Hill, who is featuring two blow-out packages for any procrastinating rich people suffering from Obamania.
Finally, the Hyatt Regency Washington DC has completed the renovations on their lobby, transforming the public spaces from staid Hyatt lobby into a $7 million, tech-savvy, social scene. Here's the press release description:
An awe-inspiring grand staircase awaits guests as they enter the lobby, paralleled with new glass paneled escalators connecting them to the registration level. Modern staffed registration pods and separate self check-in kiosks ensure an easy and efficient welcome. A sparkling custom chandelier draws attention to the lobby and lounge, where luxurious couches sprinkled with fluffy pillows await, inviting guests to unwind.
Here's what that description would look like if HotelChatter was doing PR: This place looks a heck of a lot better than it used to. Yeah, we got escalators too! Got a problem with that? And in keeping the place high-tech, we added some check-in kiosks. Don't know if you'll use 'em but we got 'em. And the couches in our lobby and lounge are so comfortable you can totally pass out here after drinking one too many after Election Night.
Room rates at the Hyatt start at around $219 a night.
[Photo: Hyatt Regency DC]
The gimmick behind the name of the soon-to-open restaurant and lounge at Washington, D.C.'s Hyatt Regency is a bit cheesy, yes, but we're suckers for a good pun and think it's cute in a groan-inducing way.
"Article One expands dining rights on Capitol Hill," the press release announces. Har har, we get it.
Just in case you aren't up to par on Constitutional fundamentals, Article One is the one that outlines the powers of Congress. So it's only fitting that a new restaurant near the Capitol would play to its potential customer base's egos.
This image here is larger than it actually appears on the Hyatt website.
Word has it the Hyatt Regency Washington DC is offering prices more in line with Super 8 than with super luxe this month. A recent email offer read:
"Plan a getaway to our nation's capital and enjoy end of summer savings. With Hyatt Regency Washington's Summer Getaway offer you'll receive luxurious accommodations on Capitol Hill at rates starting at $89 per night.
You'll also be within walking distance of the Smithsonian Museums, Union Station shopping and a number of historic DC monuments.
The offer has blackout dates from now through August 22nd but after that the $89 rate is totally bookable until September 1. But here's the fine print. Literally.