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“good hotel, though perhaps a bit pricey” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Embassy Suites Alexandria-Old Town

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Embassy Suites Alexandria-Old Town
3.5 of 5 Hotel   |   1900 Diagonal Road, Alexandria, VA 22314 (Old Town)   |  
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Ranked #14 of 49 Hotels in Alexandria
Alexandria, Virginia
Senior Contributor
24 reviews 24 reviews
13 hotel reviews
Reviews in 13 cities Reviews in 13 cities
11 helpful votes 11 helpful votes
“good hotel, though perhaps a bit pricey”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed March 14, 2013

I stayed here for 3 nights recently for work, and it has a great location. Not just for my work but it is literally across the street from the king street metro stop. This is convenient for travelers like myself flying into Reagan airport and going to DC without a car. There is also a shuttle bus at the metro that takes you into old town which is nice to have so close. It probably has the best location of the hotels in the alexandria/kingstreet/carlyle area but there are quite a few other ones within a block or two. It's in my experience a little more expensive than the Westin or the Marriot. Honestly I think in the future I will probably continue to just get the one that is cheapest when I need to go.

Pros: Atrium and breakfast are nice, typical of embassy suites. Nice to have a free breakfast, the Westin charges a ton for it. They tried to charge for Wifi which bugs me, but I was able to get free ATT Wifi most of the time which was great. Elevators are very fast and nice to use, one of the best systems I've seen. Not sure how but there was never a wait! Bed was comfortable and I slept well.

Cons: The couch was awful. Most uncomfortable couch i've ever sat on. Seemed new and probably fairly expensive but it was so stiff, boxy and rigid it was completely un-usable. Just to sit on, I did not attempt to sleep on the pull out part - nor would i want to. Room was a bit loud in the living room side, but the bedroom was quite which worked for me. I could see it being an issue with kids on the sofa though. The couch was so uncomfortable I ended up not using that room at all. Another con was the pool, it was tucked away in a tiny corner, very uninviting - seemed like it was just there because they had to have one. Not a big fan of that, but it was a similar problem at the Westin. Amazingly this one was even worse though.

Note on breakfast -Breakfast as a slight bit disappointing, not because it was bad it was just like what i have had at other Embassy Suites but it wans't any better either. This is in a city with a ton of great places to get pastries and lots of international people/travelers and it was just a vanilla and plain as it is in the middle of georgia or michigan. That said it's a chain so maybe its hard to vary.

Room Tip: I would ask for a room on the far side from the metro (closer to Duke street), I got one of those ro...
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  • Stayed March 2013, traveled on business
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
wasot_gm, General Manager at Embassy Suites Alexandria-Old Town, responded to this review, March 15, 2013
Thank you for providing such a detailed review of our hotel. It does appear that you had some issues and I thank you for sharing these with us. Our couches in the rooms do have a contemporary flair that is not suited to every individual, and can be a challenge for those who prefer the more comfortable pillow top couches. Embassy Suites as a brand, does encourage all of its properties to provide similar items for the breakfast and Manager’s Reception, although our staff will be glad to assist with any special requests our guests may have. I do hope that you will return to our property, as we believe the value for our inclusive suites, far surpasses other hotels standard room accommodations. Best Regards … MaryAnne Russell General Manager
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874 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (178)
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RGV, Texas
Senior Contributor
23 reviews 23 reviews
20 hotel reviews
Reviews in 17 cities Reviews in 17 cities
57 helpful votes 57 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed March 13, 2013

I stayed here during a business trip to Alexandria; my husband came with me. The location is excellent for Alexandria itself--across from the metro (only two stops from DCA) and a short walk to the quaint King's Street area. The lobby area and lounge are very nice. As with other Embassy Suites, there is a manager's reception with complimentary softdrinks, beer, and wine; there is a charge for cocktails, but it is slight (something like $2.50). The breakfast buffet has a good variety of made-to-order options beyond omelettes.
The room itself is fairly standard for ES, with the bathroom being just slightly smaller than others I've seen in ES. I would consider staying here again for another trip to Alexandria. Since it is located across from the metro, it would also be convenient for DC.

  • Stayed March 2013, traveled on business
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
wasot_gm, General Manager at Embassy Suites Alexandria-Old Town, responded to this review, March 15, 2013
Thank you for your review. How wonderful that you were able to visit, and that your husband could accompany you on the trip. I am please that your stay was nice and look forward to having you visit again, when you are in the DC area. Best Regards…MaryAnne Russell General Manager
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Illinois
Top Contributor
96 reviews 96 reviews
34 hotel reviews
Reviews in 62 cities Reviews in 62 cities
95 helpful votes 95 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed March 11, 2013

We got a great rate for an overnight as our base for a visit to DC. Parked our car for $12/night using their special parking and room rate. Metro is across the street. Hotel is also within walking distance of many nice shops and restaurants on King St. Hot breakfast is very complete and tasty. There is a fee for internet access but I was getting free attwifi from somewhere while I was there.

Room Tip: Our room was down a short hallway away from the atrium. Very quiet compared to noise of atrium.
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  • Stayed March 2013, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 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.
wasot_gm, General Manager at Embassy Suites Alexandria-Old Town, responded to this review, March 12, 2013
Thank you for your review. I am delighted that you were able to avail yourself of the “Park and Play” room rate and that your stay was a pleasant one. Do come back and see us soon. Best Regards…MaryAnne Russell General Manager
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South Orange, New Jersey
Contributor
13 reviews 13 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
8 helpful votes 8 helpful votes
1 of 5 stars Reviewed March 8, 2013

Positive: Good location for the Metro & Amtrak; The Wharf & Flying Fish Restaurants.

Negative: Had to wait 45 minutes for a room even though I had a confirmed reservation since August '12. The room was FILTHY. Upon request, we received another cleaner room. On the 3rd night (of a 5 night stay), we were kept awake until 3AM by noisy teenagers. When I called the Front Desk, no one answered. Had to be up at 5:30AM to attend a 7AM business conference with only 2 1/2 hours sleep. After I returned from the conference, I asked for a room change & was rudely told that "I" couldn't keep switching rooms. I mentioned to one of the personnel that as a Hilton Honors member, I had never been treated so impolitely or disrespectfully. The other personnel said she located a room & we needed to move ourselves.
Beyond the room problems, the front desk seemed annoyed whenever I asked for directions to a restaurant/pharmacy/shopping/church. That really made a bad impression on this 1st time visitor to Alexandra VA. The pool is very small. The free breakfast & manager's reception are just OK. Will definitely consider other hotels, besides a Hilton, when making another reservation.

Room Tip: Stay at another hotel.
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  • Stayed March 2013, traveled on business
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 1 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 1 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 1 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 1 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.
wasot_gm, General Manager at Embassy Suites Alexandria-Old Town, responded to this review, March 12, 2013
Thank you for taking the time to write this review. I am concerned by your stay. Needless to say, that we have not provided you with the stay you so deserve. Please reach out to me at the hotel, as I would appreciate speaking with you directly about your issues. Best Regards…MaryAnne Russell General Manager
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texas
Senior Contributor
24 reviews 24 reviews
13 hotel reviews
Reviews in 18 cities Reviews in 18 cities
12 helpful votes 12 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 4, 2013

We got there Thursday afternoon, and chose this hotel because Amtrak was across the street along with Metro stop, and we were taking Amtrak next morning to Richmond. We loved this hotel so much that we cancelled our other hotel booked for Saturday night and changed it to come back to here. It was a joy to be able to walk across the street and hop on Metro. We brought our grandkids and daughter back with us for one night, and little ones enjoyed the indoor pool. Beds were extremely comfortable, room was very clean,and also like the fact that it is 2 stops from Reagan Airport. Irish bartender was a delight to talk to, and made great drinks. The atrium served us well in all just sitting around and talking. One thing to know. This hotel at the front desk has a list of rules, such as no loitering, no kids roaming around unsupervised, etc. It shows in it being a peaceful place to stay. We will stay here when we come back to DC, no doubt about it. Also can take Metro to Reagan airport, or a quick 17 dollar cab ride. Alexandria was also a beautiful area to stay in. Felt very safe.Also if you get a chance, Thiesmanns next door had wonderful food. The hotel also had good pizzas for the night we were there with grandkids, and 2 for 25 was not a bad price for hotel food. I would recommend this place to any of my friends if they were coming to DC to visit.

Room Tip: We stayed on side with train station and slept like babies, so can not imagine any of the rooms bein...
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  • Stayed February 2013, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 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.
wasot_gm, General Manager at Embassy Suites Alexandria-Old Town, responded to this review, March 8, 2013
Thank you for your review. How wonderful that you decided to stay with us longer than originally anticipated. I am pleased that you and your family were able to spend quality time together and enjoy what our hotel has to offer. We hope that next time you visit the DC area we may be able to welcome you again. Best Regards…MaryAnne Russell General Manager
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San Diego, California
Top Contributor
129 reviews 129 reviews
110 hotel reviews
Reviews in 83 cities Reviews in 83 cities
127 helpful votes 127 helpful votes
1 of 5 stars Reviewed March 3, 2013

I stayed at this hotel more than two weeks ago and was so upset regarding the experience that I had to take a cooling off period to write a review so that it is non-emotional and objective.

Needless to say I am still not up to writing about this hotel so instead I am posting the letter I put under the office door of the GM (as the staff said she is scheduled but they never know when or if she will show up due to personal issues). The following is the letter outline with names and some comments redacted:

To: Mrs. XXXXXXX (name redacted)
General Manager
Embassy Suites- Alexandria


Mrs. xxxxx,

At 9:00 am this morning, February 16, 2013, I attempted to get ahold of you. I was told by both people at the front desk that you were scheduled to be in at 9:00am but that this may or may not happen and that you may or not show up due to your personal circumstances with your husband. Last night I had a major issue here at the hotel and when I asked for you I was told by the front desk that you and the assistant manager were off for the weekend. The second shift front desk manager also stated this.

At 9 this morning the two women at the front desk told me I could speak with the MOD of housekeeping. As one who has been a General Manager of properties as well as a current professor in hospitality management, I was surprised they would even recommend I talk with the MOD of housekeeping. The issue has nothing to do with housekeeping.

As I noted that you make comments to the majority of comments on TripAdvisor, I would like to direct your view to my review which should be completed by the end of the weekend. I have reviewed over 90 properties around the world so my reviews on TripAdvisor hold a bit more weight than the one time reviewer who had a poorly executed experience at a lodging property.

With that said, the primary complaint is against the restaurant/bar supervisor, XXXX, the one with the glasses and beard. I went to the bar at 7:10pm like I did the night before to get a beer. It was a packed bar and every seat was taken in the lobby. He asked if I was staying there and I said yes. He then asked for my room key which I showed him. He then asked for my room number! And then to top it off asked for my name. This was in front of dozens and dozens of people so now all of these strangers knew my name and room number. I asked him if he did this to everyone as the night before this didn’t happen with the other bartender. He said yes he did. So I sat there and watched and not a single person was asked, even for their room key.

When confronted about this later in front of the front desk supervisor, he said that he didn’t recognize me but that he recognized everyone else. Please don’t insult my intelligence. As a very frequent traveler who knows the markets, rhythms of hotel check-ins, check-outs, I guarantee that he didn’t know everyone. If he knew every one of the dozens upon dozens of people I am impressed, and yes this is sarcastic as it is obviously not true. I pointed this out to him stating that the majority of people there just checked in. The business people in the hotel, many of them, check out on Friday. By the long lines to check in throughout the day on Friday it is pretty obvious that the majority of guests were just checking in.

After speaking with the front desk I was asked if I wanted to move rooms due to the potential security issue. I initially said no but then realized with all of my electronics that yes, I needed to move. I went down and after waiting for the manager for 20 minutes she finally came out and was quite nasty in regards to dealing with this. She said that Fred told him my wrong room number hence the constant questioning. I told her how could that be. How could he look up my room number without knowing my name then stating I gave him the wrong room number? This was one of many fabricated comments made. I realized that I was dealing with the most amateurish group of people I have come across in a hotel property like this. I would come to expect this in a Motel 6 or sometimes even a Holiday Inn but I presumed Embassy Suites was a bit better. I haven’t stayed at an Embassy Suites in years but I have stayed at many properties within the overall hotel portfolio.

(Besides the room security key, the elevators do not require a key to go up/down in and the doors for most of the door are open to the public. As reinforced through the interaction with the restaurant/bar supervisor with the English accent, security is a non-issue to them. I also asked if the could pull the recording of the front desk manager, the English supervisor, and myself but was told there were no cameras...another security issue....as well as a liability issue)

As a suggestion, you will want to offer training to the restaurant/bar "supervisor" regarding the hospitality and f&b laws of the United States. He really could care less when I was talking with him and neither could the second shift front desk manager. In fact they both basically could not grasp what I was talking about. Maybe if you send all managers to a class on laws and liability in the hospitality industry that would help them understand the harsh realities

I am in town right now because someone from this area stole my identity and used it to take out tens of thousands of dollars in student loans in my name. This incident xxx, the restaurant/bar "supervisor" and the rude reception of the front desk manager regarding this issue was only exasperated by the reason I am here in town.

I am not sure at all how XXX or the front desk supervisor got promoted but I blame that on whoever made the decision to promote them to their current positions. I presume it was the GM who made this decision but as the staff indicated, you are not around hence I am not sure what indicators are used for promotions in-house.

As for follow-up, I will be writing a case study out of this and will also be writing about this issue for different hotels associations I belong to. You may also find my credentials throughout the internet regarding my background in the hospitality industry which as you can see I have published and presented throughout the world on this area.

Lastly, I will contact the headquarters and will make sure every sight for reviews has a review on it. And as I see you write back to most reviews on TripAdvisor, I will write back if any clarifications are needed. To say this stay was a disappointment would be the most understated comment. The stay started off incredibly great….nice front desk agent who checked me in, the nice bartender (Irish guys), the complimentary drinks and buffet in the morning. As you know, all it takes is one guest agent to mess up an entire experience and you had two---Fred at the bar and the second shift front desk manager (the larger woman). She basically got hostile with me and this did not add to the situation. You may want to invest in people who have been trained in hospitality and know that their actions impact the entire guest experience.

I wish you were in to talk with you this morning but as the front desk said, you may be scheduled to come in but due to your husband being ill there is no way to know if or when you will come in.

On a side note, I did speak with the GM the following day and she said she would speak with the "supervisor" and front desk manager. She also offered me a free night which I turned down but may ask for it since this experience was surreal and I actually should have been paid to go through it. As for contacting corporate, I was sent back communication stating that the issue was already dealt with by the property GM with me. This means that basically any problems just go directly back to the property hence they stay isolated within that property system. This is a business model that is used out there that I am against as it does little to make issues transparent outside of the localized establishment.

In this case I will get through to corporate and now that I have had a cooling off period I will start working on a letter writing campaign so that the issues written about do not stay in-house where nothing really needs to be addressed and that actions of staff like xxxx, the restaurant/bar supervisor as well as the actions of the front desk manager and the absentee GM go unaddressed. The GM tends to write back to most reviews on TripAdvisor so I look forward to her reply. I will say that she was very pleasant to speak with but I got the good sense that nothing will actually happen. This is one of the problems in the industry....transient clientel and supply/demand of clientel for a location come into play when addressing situations like this. They do not need my business as they will get business either way (although it is a huge property and I am unsure of the occupancy rates or RevPar of the establishment).

This review has been written after a two-week cooling off period.

Unfortunately all of the great things about the hotel I initially experienced on the first night were completely trumped by having to deal with the amateurish and untrained actions of the restaurant/bar supervisor and the apathetic front desk manager that night. I extended my stay after the first night for the sole reason that everything and everyone was so great.

  • Stayed March 2013, traveled on business
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 1 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 5
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
wasot_gm, General Manager at Embassy Suites Alexandria-Old Town, responded to this review, March 8, 2013
Thank you for your feedback. We work hard to provide a quality experience and want to assure you that your concerns have been heard. If you would like to discuss further, please contact me at 703-684-5900. Best Regards…MaryAnne Russell General Manager
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Destin, Florida
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 2, 2013

I stayed here on New Year's Eve 2012 and it was a great stay just like my other stays at Embassy Suites. Free cocktails during happy hour and free breakfast were awesome. I love how close it is to the blue/yellow line metro to get to and from the airport. Lots of restaurants nearby as well.

  • Stayed December 2012, traveled solo
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
wasot_gm, General Manager at Embassy Suites Alexandria-Old Town, responded to this review, March 8, 2013
Thank you for your review. I am pleased and grateful that when you travel to this area, you choose to stay with us. Best Regards…MaryAnne Russell General Manager
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Embassy Suites Alexandria-Old Town

Address: 1900 Diagonal Road, Alexandria, VA 22314
Phone Number:
Location: United States > Virginia > Alexandria > Old Town
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( Wi-Fi ) Kitchenette Restaurant Room Service Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#9 Business Hotel in Alexandria
#11 Romantic Hotel in Alexandria
#12 Family Hotel in Alexandria
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:3.5 star — Embassy Suites Alexandria-Old Town 3.5*
Reservation Options:
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Also Known As:
Embassy Suites Alexandria-Old Town Hotel Alexandria
Alexandria Embassy Suites

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