The One Washington Circle Experience
By the time we rolled into Washington DC, the Great US Road Trip was into its fifth and final week.
Coupled with the fact we’d just made the marathon 10 hour (without stops) drive from Nashville, we were feeling understandably saddle sore and weary by the time we found our accommodations and found a place to park the Mustang.
Despite this weariness, I was quite excited to see the hotel. I’d partnered with Modus Hotels for our two nights in DC, and was intrigued to see what a ‘lifestyle hotel’ was.
One Washington Circle is (obviously) located on Washington Circle, putting it at the beating heart of the US capital. Emphasizing health and wellness, the all-suite hotel provides local jogging maps and complimentary passes to local gyms and yoga studios to its guests – a feature we were in no shape to capitalize on after our long day on the road.
What we did capitalize on was the luxurious suite we’d been afforded. Check out the view from our balcony below!
The suite featured a fully equipped kitchen (complete with the ability to order groceries to stock it), a large living/dining space with accompanying grand piano, two bathrooms, and a massive King bed that I could easily have shared with Hogg.
I didn’t – I made him sleep on the fold out bed, but I totally could have shared it without any risk of unwelcome bonding.
Too tired to do any exploring, we contented ourselves with a little late night dueling piano shenanigans and some locally brewed beers courtesy of the hotel’s management. What a nice treat after a long day cramped up in the car with pro-wrestling podcasts for company!
Perhaps the best thing about One Washington Circle was its central location, putting us just a short cab ride (or walk, if we weren’t so lazy) from major local attractions like the National Mall and the White House.
The one drawback to our stay was the combination of a late arrival and an early morning tour. We didn’t get to experience the hotel as I’d have liked, but what we did experience was amazing,
A DC Food Crawl
The highlight of our first day in DC was undoubtedly a Washington DC food crawl with Carpe DC Tours.
I’ve written at length in the above post about the experience, but it really was a fun way to learn more about the city than just its political history.
It was a fun way to experience DC through different eyes, having already done the memorials and Smithsonian on my previous visit in 2012.
We moved to another Modus property for our second night in DC, taking the short walk down the street to Avenue Suites.
The two are literally a five minute walk apart, with Avenue Suites maintaining the same standards while managing to have a totally different feel to its sister property. Located on the very fringes of the city’s Georgetown district, it has a more breezy and West Coast feel to it than One Washington Circle.
Our room here was a comfortable twin setup, with a pair of queen sized beds, a separate sitting area, and the same warm welcome we’d experience at One Washington Circle – albeit with a bottle of good white wine rather than local IPAs.
Another highlight of the hotel for me was it’s comfortable lounge area, which spans both indoor seating and outdoor seating in a cute little garden area. I tried to snap artsy photos of both, but neither turned out especially well, sadly.
DC by Night
Being so close to the National Mall made it easy for us to get out and explore the various monuments for which Washington DC is famous, and with our day filled with a food tour – we did this by night.
Guided by one of Hogg’s former study abroad buddies, we spent a few hours wandering the darkened paths between the towering statues and moving tributes that comprise this fascinating corner of the city.
From the iconic Lincoln Memorial and Washington Monument to lesser known but no less beautiful monuments such as the haunting Korean War Memorial, it’s a really fun walk even when it’s dark out.
Hell, I especially enjoyed it at night, as you didn’t have to contend with crowds of people when it came time to snap a photo or two.
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Our day in Washington DC featured a guided food tour through Shaw with @carpedcfoodtours, a delicious Turkish-Greek dinner at Agora, and a moonlight tour of the city's beautiful monuments and memorials to finish. I again partnered with #ModusHotels, this time overnighting at their @avenuesuitesdc property to be right at the heart of Pennsylvania Avenue. After a relaxing night's sleep, I started my day with brunch at @foundingfarmers before touring the Capitol Building to learn more about the founding of the USA and the important role the democratic process still plays today. It seemed a fitting farewell to the city given the current political theatrics taking place.
The downside, of course, is that night photography on an iPhone can be tricky business. Even with a good night photography app (I like Cortex Cam), it’s difficult to capture the majesty of these towering edifices and do them justice.
Never Enough Time
Like every other stop on the Great US Road Trip not named Las Vegas, we didn’t have nearly enough time to do DC justice.
We didn’t have time to check out the Smithsonian and could only manage a rushed tour of the Capitol Building, but managed to enjoy the US capital all the same.
A huge thanks to Modus Hotels for helping to make the visit possible. I only wish we’d had more time to avail ourselves of the properties and their on-site restaurants!
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