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1155 14th Street N.W.
Tel: 202 737 1200
Tel: 800 383 6900 (toll-free)
If Washington, D.C., is the new New York, then the Donovan House has arrived on the scene at the perfect moment, adding an edgy option in a central location on Thomas Circle. The top-to-bottom renovation of a former Holiday Inn added a chic rooftop pool and lounge accessible by key card only (something you'd expect in hedonistic L.A. or Miami); a buzzy Todd English-helmed Asian-fusion restaurant, Cha; and furnishings with a cool Cold War-era meets Modernism sensibility, especially in the lobby's funky hanging chairs and futuristic wingbacks. The last are also in the 193 guest rooms, which have dark-wood walls, low beds, and showers encased by nautilus-shaped spiraling Plexiglas. Although the rooms' low ceilings are an unfortunate remnant of the budget-hotel days, the overall experience is high-caliber and the service warmall at a wallet-friendly price that is very right for the times.
When to go: Washington is a year-round destination, but the city is at its most beautiful during early April's cherry blossom season.
Which room to book: Those on the upper floors have floor-to-ceiling windows looking out toward the eighteenth-century National City Christian Church.
Information may have changed since date of publication. Please confirm details with individual establishments before planning your trip.