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“Perfect for Families Visiting DC” 4 of 5 stars
Review of L'Enfant Plaza Hotel

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L'Enfant Plaza Hotel
3.5 of 5 Hotel   |   480 L'Enfant Plaza, Washington DC, DC 20024   |  
Ranked #108 of 130 Hotels in Washington DC
South Carolina
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
9 helpful votes 9 helpful votes
“Perfect for Families Visiting DC”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed March 10, 2014

Note: This hotel is closed for restoration as of Spring, 2014, and so this review may have only historical merit. It sounds like the owners' plan is to make the place somewhat pricier, which is understandable given their investment but would a shame since one of the old L'Enfant Plaza Hotel's best selling points was its value for the location.

The Bad:
Of two accessible outlets in the room, only one worked.

This sort of thing doesn't bother me, since I've stayed in many a cheap beachside motel, but the floors were filthy in the Escher-like labyrinth of stairs and hallways leading to the pool.

Speaking of the pool, on Saturday afternoon the hotel hosted some kind of booze promo party with loud, stupid music and loud, stupid (non-hotel-guest) partiers. This went on for a couple of hours and, according to a staff member, it's "something we do." Not a big problem, since most people in DC aren't there to sit by the hotel pool--but if I wanted a frat party, I'd stay closer to Georgetown.

Bad wireless / 4g reception (to be fair, this isn't the hotel's fault but is an artifact of the building's location and architecture).

No microwave as promised.

The Good: Once you get to the pool, it's excellent-- large and well-maintained, with observant lifeguards.

Very effective air conditioner! In DC this is important. The fridge also cooled very well. This wasn't your usual 60-degree hotel room fridge. We were on a budget and appreciated being able to safely store milk and leftovers in the fridge. To minimize eating out, we got groceries from the CVS on C Street.

Lots of pillows, and they're nice ones. Other amenities included excellent soap (several steps above typical hotel freebie soap), and plenty of towels in the bathroom.

Summary: Located a few minutes' walk from the Mall, this is a comfortable hotel with many amenities. I can't imagine a better location for families: the hotel has a Metro station downstairs, and a food court with plenty of stuff picky kids like to eat. We had a large room, which was much appreciated since there were three of us. If the new L'Enfant Plaza Hotel stays at a similar price point, it will remain a great bargain and a prize destination for families on a budget.

  • Stayed June 2013, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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1,247 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    3.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (240)
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Fiddletown, California
Senior Contributor
21 reviews 21 reviews
6 hotel reviews
Reviews in 8 cities Reviews in 8 cities
18 helpful votes 18 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed March 9, 2014

Staying at the L'Enfant Plaza Hotel, you really are at the epicenter of the action Washington DC has to offer. They are currently under construction but I can review with emphasis on this location. You really are 2 blocks away from the US Capital/Smithsonian Museum complex... yes, if you didn't know, the Smithsonian Museum is actually a collection of many buildings housing specific areas of museum-worthy topics. This also is another review for another time. The thing you'll want to be ABSOLUTELY sure to do while in DC if you are going to stay for ANY amount of time more than 2 days is be sure to get a room with a working refrigerator. You may speculate if you really need one and it seems like a mundane detail, but trust me you will be saved by that device! There is a small drug store in the adjacent building and a few street vendors you can find, and the hotel has a small gift shop but there is no food except at restaurants (and PLENTY of those) that you'll want to visit for Dinner, but for all other meals/snacks you are on your own. The first meal I bought after we arrived for our one-week stay was a simple turkey sandwich at the very modest Smithsonian's cafe (a small brunch counter) which I was shocked to find that with a beverage was $16.75!! Sixteen dollars and seventy five cents for a VERY basic turkey sandwich and fountain soda and an orange... yeah, I was blown right out of my shoes, but the reason I bring that tid-bit up is that I'm emphasizing the need for that refrigerator. After we spent a day taking in the museum (you'll need at least 10 days to even get a cursory look at everything) I went on a mission to find regular provisions just to have around the room to snack on and small meals etc and to my amazement there is only one regular big chain supermarket in a vast radius of the hotel and a $10.00 cab ride will take you to it. It's a S4#eway and they have pretty much everything you'll need there. Be sure TWO people go, because you're in a cab on the way back too and you'll e carrying a lot of groceries (if your smart and thrifty). If you like to have booze in your room, you'll need to take another cab trip into town where there are only a couple (2-3) liquor stores even within a reasonable distance to the hotel. Neither the nearby drug store nor the big grocery store carry anything stronger than wine and the grocery is the only place to buy that unless you'd like to just flush a lot of money for fun by room-servicing it.. Weather you drink or not, you'll be saved by what you get and keep in that refrigerator, and if you ever think that it sounds like too much effort to do your grocery shopping on the first day, just remember that you will be relegated to SUPER overpriced (and rather mediocre) casual dining which will not only burn a hole in your wallet, it'll shout insults at your general common sensibilities on it's way out. So plan the trip, get the right room, take the big bus tour and see everything... but none of that will feel right or even feasible unless you make a shopping list and at your first opportunity shop... and when ordering your room at the L'Enfant Plaza Hotel, be sure get the 'fridge!

Room Tip: Job 1: Get the refrigerator! ... and the rooms that have balconies facing the Capital Mall are nice...
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  • Stayed September 2013, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
New York City, New York
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
8 helpful votes 8 helpful votes
1 of 5 stars Reviewed January 25, 2014

Yhis hotel has been sold amd it is now closed for somewhere between a year and 18 months.

The new owners plan to do a complete renovation.

It was a great hotel only when it first opened......went way downhill.

Stayed January 2014, traveled on business
Was this review helpful? Yes 6
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Littleton, Colorado
Top Contributor
86 reviews 86 reviews
27 hotel reviews
Reviews in 41 cities Reviews in 41 cities
75 helpful votes 75 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed January 20, 2014

If you're new to DC, like I was, you may not know where to stay. The Mall area looks like its close to everything - do not make that mistake. If you are there for sightseeing, we recommend staying in the Penn Quarter. Although we were close to some museums, staying at the L'Enfant, there were NO restaurants or shops nearby. We ended up traveling often into Penn Quarter, for sights, restaurants, and a sense of culture, sometimes via taxi (so we didn't save that much money) or long walks. The L'Enfant touted "superior views" but we did not see them. The hotel was under construction while we were there. The room was fair. The hotel did have a couple decent eating options so if you need to stay there, it may be best to eat in. Breakfast not included but there is Starbucks in the hotel. There was a problem with the computer and we had to wait a couple hours to get our keys. I thought our experience was a little less than what others have experienced.

Room Tip: "Superior view" is not superior, but it is better than facing the front.
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  • Stayed November 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 2 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Tauranga, New Zealand
Reviewer
5 reviews 5 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
1 of 5 stars Reviewed January 9, 2014

My husband and I stayed 5 nights. Be aware there are no guest laundry facilities (only valet which is expensive) and no free wifi. The room was as we expected older but appeared clean and tidy. A lot is written about the convenient location and it is good with the metro below, however food options are extremely limited. There is a foodcourt below the hotel but this closes at around 7pm and is not open in the weekends. So if you come back to hotel after a busy day sightseeing and want dinner you have to again venture out on the metro which we found inconvenient. Also to wash our clothes we had to take the metro to chinatown. We would have preferred a more central location, which even if it cost slightly more would have saved on time and the cost of the metro. The restaurant at the hotel was expensive and its staff were not particually helpful or friendly. You also need to factor in that while you can walk to the attractions it is a good walk and once you have then walked around the attractions we found our feet were sore. We are both young and do plenty of exercsie but even we struggled.

  • Stayed August 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 2 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Aurora
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 30, 2013

I stayed at L'Enfant Plaza with a group of high school kids while we toured the city. It was clean, comfortable and in a great location. I loved that the metro was in the lower level of the hotel and so easy to access! The staff were so helpful and polite (not always an easy task when dealing with 20+ high school kids). They were professional and pleasant. I hope to return to DC with my family and we will most definitely stay here!

  • Stayed March 2013, traveled with friends
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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Hoover, Alabama
Contributor
14 reviews 14 reviews
Reviews in 7 cities Reviews in 7 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 29, 2013

This hotel is one of the best locations for TRB attendees, with indoor access to L'Enfant Plaza subway station. The price is competitive, and the service is excellent. The staff is are very professional and they cater for the guest needs. Everything works as expected.

  • Stayed January 2013, traveled on business
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about L'Enfant Plaza Hotel

Address: 480 L'Enfant Plaza, Washington DC, DC 20024
Location: United States > District of Columbia > Washington DC
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #108 of 130 Hotels in Washington DC
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:3.5 star — L'Enfant Plaza Hotel 3.5*
Number of rooms: 370
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
A homey and comfortable hotel within walking distance of major attractions. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Hotel l Enfant Plaza
Lenfant Plaza Hotel
l Enfant Plaza Hotel

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