I stayed at The Jefferson, Washington, D.C., for six nights in the first week of January 2012. This is generally a quiet week in Washington, D.C. It's cold but otherwise a great time of the year to visit the capital - the museums and monuments are all open but without the crowds of spring and summer.
The hotel is a boutique property (with around 90 rooms) housed in a beautiful 10 or 11 story beaux-arts style building on the corner of 16th and M Streets. It's in an upscale area surrounded by embassies, other luxury hotels and professional and not-for-profit organizations (the National Geographic Society is next door). The location is great - walk about four blocks south and you're in the White House precinct and a couple of blocks north and you're in the lively Dupont Circle area. The nearest Metro Stations are less than 10 minutes walk away.
Although housed in a historic building, The Jefferson was renovated completed in 2008. The restoration is very impressive - the rooms and public areas are sparklingly fresh and modern yet preserve the hotel's old world charm. Somehow the hotel manages to be grand and opulent yet homely and intimate at the same time - I don't how they do it!. In the six nights I stayed there I didn't see many other guests and the staff always recognized me, greeted me by name and made me feel welcomed.
Which brings me to the service at this hotel. It's simply superb in every way - every single staff member I interacted with - doormen, front desk staff, concierge, housekeeping staff - was warm and polite and really seemed to enjoy their jobs. They were so genuine, without any trace of haughtiness. All my requests and queries were dealt with promptly, efficiently and professionally, and always with a smile and sense of humour. The staff struck the perfect balance between being attentive and pro-active while remaining unobtrusive. Being a relatively small hotel, service is also quite personal - for example little comments I made to staff were passed on to and remembered later by other staff.
I was very pleased with my room. Furniture was custom-made for the hotel in an 18th plantation century style reminiscent of Thomas Jefferson's home in Monticello. Having been renovated a few years ago, it was also very modern - iPod player, Bose sound system, climate control air-conditioning, 32 inch TV with dozens of U.S. and international channels and high-speed free WiFi. I loved that all room phone calls within the United States were free of charge - more hotels should adopt this policy. The attention to detail was excellent - light switches were thoughtfully positioned and there was even a stationery kit in my desk drawer (very useful!). One of the best parts of the room was that the window actually opened - I like having fresh air in my room!
The bathroom was luxuriously appointed (faced with sandstone I think) with plenty of bench space. Toiletries were the hotel spa's own brand. There was a very spacious glass enclosed shower - this was a treat, but I found the controls fiddly and difficult to get the water temperature right. Towels in numerous shapes and sizes were thick, fluffy and plentiful.
Room housekeeping was excellent - I returned to my room each evening to find it immaculately made up with little details taken care of (e.g. water bottles refilled). I was amazed at how clean the room was kept.
I ordered room service a few times and had breakfast in the Conservatory restaurant once. The food, mainly classic American fare, was delicious. I also had drinks with friends in the Quill bar (inside the hotel) once - this is an upscale place that attracts a wealthy D.C. crowd and offers interesting people-watching.
Overall, I was delighted with The Jefferson in every respect. The feeling of luxury and elegance matched with warm and personal service made me feel like I was a guest at the private mansion of a wealthy friend rather than at a hotel.
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.