DC
Pennsylvania Ave Hotels

The strip of Pennsylvania Avenue that we focus on--between the U.S. Capitol and the White House--is very close to many major sites. Almost anywhere along PA Ave is within a mile of all the Mall's Smithsonian Museums as well as anything in Penn Quarter. The other plus for PA Ave is that it is surrounded by Metro stations, making much of the rest of D.C. easily accessible.

The major problem with hotels on Pennsylvania Ave is that there are very few: four in fact, and they are all quite pricey.

The Willard Inter-Continental

There are nicer hotels in Washington (not many, but they exist), but none have the history of The Willard. The Willard brothers began running an inn on this corner in 1847, expanding several times and eventually becoming the elegant building it is today. The Willard has hosted Charles Dickens, P.T. Barnum, Buffalo Bill, 10 different U.S. Presidents, and Mark Twain wrote two books at the hotel in the early 20th century.

The rooms lack some of the technological advances of other hotels in its class, but are elegant and quite large. There is also a pretty decent cafe located in the building as well as a fantastic, elegant bar called the Round Robin. The name comes from the circular wooden bar surrounded by plush fabric, leather seating, and old caricatures that scream old-time D.C.

Room Rating: 88
Cost: $325

W Washington, D.C.

W hotels are in the top tier of Starwood properties and feature contemporary design. The D.C. hotel is no different--it is modern, yet classy with well-appointed rooms.

Room Rating: 83
Cost: $350+

JW Marriott Washington, D.C.

Renovated in 2015, this large, sophisticated hotel has an excellent location on Pennsylvania Ave near the White House. It is also only about a block away from the Metro Center station (Red, Orange, Blue, Silver) making it easy to roam the city from here. The JW Marriott also has a pool, a rarity for downtown hotels, and a bonus if you're traveling with children.

Room Rating: 82
Cost: $225+