As a DC native, it's strange for me to stay in hotels. We selected this one based on it's location- which is great. Walking distance to everything- Chinatown, The Mall, etc. It's a 7 minute taxi ride to Union Station. We flew directly in to National. It's an easy Metro ride but much luggage and a cranky 8 year-old? We took a cab. It was less than $20 from the airport to the hotel.
The room itself was clean and neat. We looked out to the dumpsters but really, it's a hotel in a major city. I wasn't paying for premium views, I was paying for a place to sleep. The heater wasn't working right but I let the front desk know on our way out and it was fixed when we returned a few hours later. The beds were comfortable and clean. I didn't notice any noise at all but I live in a downtown area so that's probably why.
We ate at the Grist Mill, their restaurant, and were very pleasantly surprised at how good it was. We did not have breakfast there as it seemed incredibly expensive for what you get, and there's a ton of bagel places and Au Bon Pain, etc. within blocks of the hotel.
It was a nice place to stay and while not a 'regular' Garden Inn (obviously it hasn't always been a Garden Inn, it's a pretty old building I think!) it was as well managed as they all have been. My son in particular thought the doorman was fantastic.