A Visit to D.C.

Washington, D.C.: The Nation’s Capital. Home to 680,000 residents and over 21 million tourists each year.

History buffs, bright-eyed wanderers and travelers of all kinds flock to revel in the sights and hospitality here. It’s almost impossible to miss the presidential monuments and war memorials that line the streets but even harder to not fall in love with the beauty of this historic city.

Out of the Ordinary

Take a double-decker bus tour around town and learn about our nation’s history. If that sounds like a bore, spice it up a little by taking a boozy late-night tour. You might not remember every little detail, but it’ll sure be fun! In all seriousness, these landmarks at night are stunning against the inky, indigo sky and is a new way to experience the city. There are multiple tours  like this available. Find the right fit for you.

D.C. is also home to the International Spy Museum, which houses the world’s largest public collection of international espionage artifacts. The unsung heroes who have shaped history and world events are honored here. In fall of 2018, the International Spy Museum will have a new permanent home at L’Enfant Plaza.

For an Instagram-worthy time, check out Blind Whino SW Arts Club. This 1886 converted church is wrapped in psychedelic murals and ushers in new crowds of artists, photographers and even event planners. Many couples choose this place as a wedding venue and we can see why. Each corner is covered in vibrant colors, swirls and dots – a fascinating display for the senses. During its regular hours, Blind Whino is an art gallery open Wednesdays from 5-8, and weekends 12-5. See their events calendar before you go.

Who doesn’t love free things!? Check out these wallet-friendly activities.

D.C. Chow Down

If you’re in D.C., you’re in for a culinary experience. Named the 2016 Restaurant City of the Year by Bon Appétit magazine and Hottest Food City by Zagat, Washington, D.C. offers an array of crave-worthy dishes.

Making Bon Appétit’s list for Hottest Restaurants in America is Himitsu, a new Japanese dining experience. This is a first-come, first-served location – no reservations are required and can seat parties of 4 or less. Their ever-changing menu is updated daily depending on their fresh catches and farmed finds.

The Salt Line is a seafood lover’s dream. Belly up to the outdoor bar that overlooks the Anacostia River, sip on a local brew and order a buttery lobster roll, New England oysters or fried clams.

In the historic Bloomingdale neighborhood, The Red Hen proudly serves the community Italian-inspired dining. Try the fresh burrata followed by the mezzi rigatoni with a fennel sausage ragu. Perfetto!

Want more? See our D.C. dining ideas in our recent Low-Key Spring Destinations blog.

Celebrate the 21st Amendment

Think about this. In D.C., there were more speakeasies in the Prohibition Era – around 3,000 –than there were bars before Prohibition was enacted. If you’re looking for the ambiance and intimacy of a 1920s speakeasy, they aren’t hard to find today.

Blues Alley is a classic 1965 Jazz Supper Club with 1930s vibes. They’ve hosted top acts like Dizzy Gillespie, Grover Washington Jr., and Eva Cassidy. Sip on a Manhattan and groove to their live music.

The Columbia Room takes craft cocktails to another level. Inspired by pre-Prohibition trends with a modernist twist, The Columbia Room mixologists create drinks like the Shoreline Cup: vodka, sea beans, celery, wild chamomile vinegar, Muscadet and the Parisian Sazerac No. 2: rye, hors d’age armagnac, green chartreuse, roasted star anise, peychaud’s & angostura bitters. They also serve a Summer 2017 Tasting menu with your choice of 3 or 5 curated cocktails.

A true speakeasy has a secret entrance. Dram & Grain is a proper speakeasy, accessed through Jack Rose Dining Saloon. Guests must text a number to get a reservation into the D&G. Check out their Twitter to find the phone number, as it changes occasionally. On Wednesdays and Thursdays, Dram & Grain opens at 7pm with first-come, first- served seating. Try the Absinthe Frappe or the Royal Voyage cocktail. Cheers!


Whether you kayak the water of the Potomac, sightsee on a complimentary bike from Hotel RL, spend a day at the Smithsonian Museums, or eat your way through Astro Donuts, we hope you enjoy your stay and make it #WorthIt.