My boyfriend and I needed a place to stay for one night after a late concert in DC. We wanted someplace clean and safe and were not looking for any frills. Although we knew the street was not in the best area, we figured the HoJo had a decent enough reputation to suffice for one night, and the price was great. After our experience, I can say that it is worth it to pay more to stay in a decent area.
The only reason this hotel rated a two out of five is that the room seemed clean. Everything else was a disaster. We walked downtown after checking in and passed dozens of homeless people begging for change. The walk is not something I would ever do again as it led through dangerous looking and dark parts of town. We returned to the hotel that evening, and at 5:30 a.m. were awoken by a loud banging on the door. We were terrified, and upon looking through the peephole saw a large, man standing there swaying and looking incoherent. He continued to bang on the door foor the next five minutes. We shouted at him to leave and finally he did. It occurred to us (in our half asleep state) to call the police, but we figured the man would be long gone by the time they arrived. The rest of the night we tossed and turned unable/afraid to fall asleep.
The next morning we went to put our luggage in the car and noticed glass all over the ground next to the driver's side door. I remarked that we were lucky it was not our car that was broken into. Unfortunately, I spoke too soon because when I went to open the passenger's door, the window was completely smashed out. The stereo was ripped out and several personal items were stolen (including a GPS system which we should have never left there in the first place.) This, in combination with the last night's door pounding, left me feeling terrified and angry, and I went to alert the desk clerk while my boyfriend called the cops. When I told the clerk what had happened, he didn't even bat an eye as he told me this type of thing was common, "especially at this time of year." (Apparently the thief was Christmas shopping in our car?) I told him it would have been nice to have been made aware of this little issue before we checked in.
Hopefully this review will alert anyone else looking to save a few bucks in DC and steer them away from this hotel. My new outlook is that DC is outrageously expensive, whatever way you look at it, so, eat fast food or take the Metro to save money, but don't skimp on hotel prices as they indicate safety. The DC police later told my boyfriend that car break ins are common at hotels all over the city except in paid hotel parking garages. Pay the bit extra to help guarantee your safety, especially if you have children!
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- Also Known As:
- Howard Johnson Express Inn - Washington Hotel Washington Dc