Built as a ritzy, beaux-arts apartment building in 1906, the Churchill’s bones are historic to the core—just check out the stone balustrade and ornate plasterwork (not to mention, the fact it’s on the National Trust registry). Beautifully renovated, you know the designers had fun with the décor: colorful paintings, finely upholstered furniture and jewel-tone accents give it a 21st-century sensitivity. Its location near the restaurants, bars, and galleries of Dupont Circle and Embassy Row is a plus.
Dark woods set off a neutral palate with accents of jewel-toned color in the elegantly decorated rooms. The beds, with their pillow-top mattresses and plush bedding, promise an amazing night sleep. An extra special touch: The higher floors have spectacular views over the city.
YOU SHOULD KNOW The elevators are showing their age, alas. They’re perfectly safe, so no worries there, but it takes forever to move from floor to floor. Also, pick a room far away from the elevators since they can be clanky.
Not all bathrooms are created the same, and in this case, the Churchill has outdone itself—including granite countertops and Neutrogena toiletries.
The chandelier-graced lobby makes a firm statement in this hotel’s persona: it’s historic, it’s beautifully restored, and it has modern flair. The latter is evident in the colorful art adorning the walls and the modern take on traditional furniture. This is the sort of place you want to snag a chair, grab a newspaper, and do some good old-fashioned people-watching (celebrities and dignitaries have been known to stay here).
You’ll be able to keep up with your workout regimen at the newly renovated gym, which includes treadmills, elliptical machines, stationary bikes, and free weights.
The Churchill Hotel is conveniently located in the popular Dupont Circle neighborhood, near Embassy Row. You have many restaurant and bar choices just outside the door. The nearest Metro stop is Dupont Circle, a 12-minute walk away.
For classic French bistro fare, head to Bistrot du Coin (3-minute walk) a buzzing bistro offering buckets of mussels, onion soup, and, bien sûr, steak frites. For sophisticated Italian, longtime-running Sette Osteria (5-minute walk) is a local favorite; the patio is perfect in warm weather.
Russia House (3-minute walk) is a popular spot for vodka and caviar. For walls and walls of whiskey and bourbon (and five different tasting rooms), Jack Rose Dining Saloon (7-minute walk) is making waves on the national scene with a stunning array of whiskeys.
WHY WE LIKE IT
We love walking off busy Connecticut Avenue into the welcoming embrace of this historic property. The rooms are modern and clean, and after a busy day of sight-seeing or business meetings, all we can think about is getting to the cozy, pillow-top bed as quickly as possible. The fact you can open the windows is literally a breath of fresh air. The neighborhood is happening with restaurants and bars, offering a taste of DC’s local side—though you’re also within a few Metro stops of DC’s major museums and monuments.