America’s capital is no stranger to the high life – heads of state, diplomats and CEOs come here seeking glamorous digs, so you can piggyback on that VIP treatment at the top hotels in town. Whether you choose to stay Downtown, close to the proud patriotic landmarks in the city or near the dining delights of sociable Adams Morgan or Georgetown, you’re in for fine hospitality in Washington DC. Book your stay now with Culture Trip at one of these top luxury hotels.
This Hong Kong-born brand is renowned for its Asian-style opulence and microscopic attention to detail – just check out the dainty afternoon tea in the Empress Lounge. Cool sheets, plush furniture and deep marble tubs all elicit a sigh of contentment. One huge draw are the pin-drop-quiet pool and spa with huge daybeds – but the Downtown location is superb for sightseers, too.
The Willard has the gilded feel of a palace. Glinting chandeliers, fresh flowers and monogrammed headboards salute all guests as VIPs – while tapestry carpets and heavy oil paintings add grandeur to spun-gold hallways. Within walking distance of the National Mall, it suits holidaymakers, but the service and facilities draw an executive crowd.
While this is the hotel that prompted us to add “gate” to every scandal since 1972, don’t expect faded mid-century looks – its 2017 makeover by Ron Arad Architects was a revelation. The famous donut-shaped exterior hints at the sculptural, swerving details in the lobby and restaurant, with metallic installations spiraling out like soundwaves. Rooms have fluid, polished wooden desks and concrete-grey bed frames. A river-view rooftop and industrial-feel pool and spa add yet more wow factor.
A hushed canalside location greets you at this red-brick townhouse in storybook Georgetown. You’ll find lovingly designed spaces here, from the low-lit, russet intimacy of the Cut restaurant to the waterfront terrace and rooftop pool. Everything feels smart and classic, with gentlemanly textures of leather, metal and polished wood, though rooms are paired down with crisp whites and gold-and-grey accents.
This B&B, in northern Dupont Circle, is another step back in time for Washington’s history hunters. Carved-wood writing desks, heavy crimson curtains and ornamental fireplaces induce a frisson of the past, while friendly staff keep the regulars coming back. Breakfast is a timeless checklist of filling faves – pancakes, waffles, omelets and eggs benedict – tailored to your taste, so you won’t set off hungry.
A business-luxe master, the Ritz-Carlton in DC wins out on a kindly staff, who leave guests beaming. Art- and ornament-brightened suites are more stylish than basic guest rooms, which come in ice-white and gunmetal grey. You’re close to charming Georgetown and foodie Adams Morgan for an evening out.
Just blocks from the White House and Smithsonian Museum, Riggs has the high ceilings, marble pillars and wedding-cake cornicing you want from this grand old city. Thoroughly modern rooms come in powder-puff pinks and silvers, with striking floral-motif headboards – but it’s the communal areas of this former bank that pack the most punch. A bite at art deco Cafe Riggs is a must, but your nightcap should be taken on the velvet sofas of low-lit Silver Lyan.
Still looking for somewhere to stay in DC? Read our guide to the best hotels in Logan Circle, Washington DC, the best hotels in Washington DC, or check into one of the best boutique hotels. If you’re looking for a historic place to stay, you could read our rundown of the most famous and historic hotels in Washington DC, bookable now on Culture Trip.
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Since you are here, we would like to share our vision for the future of travel - and the direction Culture Trip is moving in.
Culture Trip launched in 2011 with a simple yet passionate mission: to inspire people to go beyond their boundaries and experience what makes a place, its people and its culture special and meaningful — and this is still in our DNA today. We are proud that, for more than a decade, millions like you have trusted our award-winning recommendations by people who deeply understand what makes certain places and communities so special.
Increasingly we believe the world needs more meaningful, real-life connections between curious travellers keen to explore the world in a more responsible way. That is why we have intensively curated a collection of premium small-group trips as an invitation to meet and connect with new, like-minded people for once-in-a-lifetime experiences in three categories: Culture Trips, Rail Trips and Private Trips. Our Trips are suitable for both solo travelers, couples and friends who want to explore the world together.
Culture Trips are deeply immersive 5 to 16 days itineraries, that combine authentic local experiences, exciting activities and 4-5* accommodation to look forward to at the end of each day. Our Rail Trips are our most planet-friendly itineraries that invite you to take the scenic route, relax whilst getting under the skin of a destination. Our Private Trips are fully tailored itineraries, curated by our Travel Experts specifically for you, your friends or your family.
We know that many of you worry about the environmental impact of travel and are looking for ways of expanding horizons in ways that do minimal harm - and may even bring benefits. We are committed to go as far as possible in curating our trips with care for the planet. That is why all of our trips are flightless in destination, fully carbon offset - and we have ambitious plans to be net zero in the very near future.