The Fairmont Washington DC - luxury, local, lovely!
For most of us, a true escape from daily life is all the luxury we need, and this can come in many shapes and ways. And this is why I loved getting the chance to spend a night at the Fairmont Washington hotel recently, as it allowed me to enjoy the city as a visitor instead of a resident – I could escape reality without leaving the city I call home!
The Fairmont DC property is located in the West End “hotel zone” between Dupont and Georgetown which makes it a great location from where you can explore all the theater, culture, history, nightlife, and shopping that our city offers! It’s an easy walk to Dupont for nightlife, Georgetown for shopping, The Kennedy Center, and walkable to all the major landmarks while being just outside the hustle and bustle. Close enough to the heart of things, but far enough from the hectic streets!
From the outside the hotel looks classy and elegant. Kris and I arrived at the hotel late afternoon on what was one of the coldest days in DC. But walking into the cozy and inviting lobby instantly made us forget the cold. A friendly receptionist checked us in and we were handed our room keys. Although we had only a small day bag, they offered to take our bags to the room. A great first impression, although we declined.
The lobby area is just gorgeous – a huge atrium with large windows overlooking the courtyard, lots of comfortable chairs and couches arranged with plenty of sitting areas. A perfect place to relax and enjoy a cocktail. And that’s exactly what we did. The lobby bar serves up cocktails, beer, and wine, and snacks as well. Oh, and there is live piano music every evening – which was a wonderful addition. We started with a “beetini” cocktail, which is made with honey harvested on their rooftop. Impressed yet again!
Pro Tip: The atrium is a fantastic place to grab a drink with friends, even if you are not staying at the hotel. It’s definitely on my rotation now! The courtyard is fantastic when it’s warmer outside.
The rooms are spacious and have all the modern amenities that you expect from a luxury hotel – mini-bar, tea and coffee maker, work desk, lots of USB ports to charge all the devices, fluffy robe, slippers, a KING SIZE bed! The Fairmont just went through a huge room renovation and ALL the guest rooms are either updated or in the process of being updated. The new rooms are beautifully designed with tasteful furnishings and a DC touch in every room. I loved the different pieces of DC art in the room! As it turns out, the designers took inspiration from the city – modern with classical pieces. I especially loved the accent art walls behind the bed headboard –a modern DC map. Very cool.
The bathrooms are pure luxury too – huge (especially coming from a downtown condo bathroom!), large walk in showers, and all the expected vanities, and even a ring holder! This is definitely one hotel where I would want to take home all the little bottles of shampoo, lotion, etc – they provide Le Labo toiletries. I had no idea about the brand, but LOVED the stuff, and soon enough, I come to find out that they are a cult French fragrance company that makes perfumes, candles, body washes, etc. They just opened a store in DC in the Shaw neighborhood. Anyway, I have my travel toiletries for now after the stay at the Fairmont J
I always say that the staff can make or break a hotel experience for me. In this case, the staff are friendly, non-obtrusive, but available when you need them. As we walked into our room post-dinner, a staff member gave us additional bottles of water, and made sure to check if we needed anything. We had the newspaper available the next morning when we woke up. In all our interactions with the staff, we found them courteous and helpful.
The hotel restaurant, Juniper, led by Executive Chef Mariah Tysz is a hidden gem in the city. Sometimes we get carried away by all the new and flashy restaurants that come up, not paying enough attention to the established and not “uber trendy” restaurants that are still doing great stuff. The Juniper is a prime example of this. Using local ingredients from local farms is now expected everywhere, but Juniper takes it up a notch. They harvest honey from the rooftop honey bees, which are used in many of their seasonal dishes, but also support local organizations and school groups – educating people about the importance of “local”. We had a great dinner here from their seasonal menu – highly recommend giving this place a try whether you are local or visiting. Simple and sophisticated. Stay tuned for my next post on the different ways the hotel uses the harvested honey.
After a full night’s sleep on that comfortable bed, we enjoyed breakfast at Juniper, and a cup of coffee on the couches in the lobby! All in all, a fantastic stay. Kris and I tried to come up with something that we thought could be improved, but seriously had nothing!
1. The Fairmont is located at 2401 M St NW, Washington, DC 20037. Visit the website for packages and deals.
2. If you looking to exercise during your stay, The Fairmont has an in-house gym that is run by Balance, featuring all the usual equipment, plus daily classes including Crossfit.
3. Gluten free and paleo meals are available!
4. They have culinary classes every once in a while – I absolutely loved the crab cake cooking class (which happened to be the day we stayed), but keep an eye out for their other offerings too. These include complimentary wine and nibbles too, so all in all is a great deal!
If you’re looking for a luxury DC hotel with a great location, elegant surroundings and wonderful staff, The Fairmont should be your choice! It’s perfect for a luxury vacation, a business traveler, or just that staycation you know you want to have!