We decided to stay at the Virginian on our recent family vacation to Washington DC. We chose this hotel for a few reasons, but mostly because it seemed like a good value for the amenities offered in comparison to some other options in town, which were a bit pricey. We booked a King Suite as well as a Queen suite. The King was very well appointed with plenty of room; however, the 2 Queen was lacking in space. The 2 Queen room offered the small galley kitchen space, desk, TV on small dresser, pull out couch and the two beds. There was no eating table, and only about 4 hangers in the closet.
There are some things you will want to consider before booking this hotel:
1. Transportation: The Metro (bus or subway), taxi or your personal car is the only way to get into the city. Yes, there is a shuttle to and from the Metro Station; however, it does not run 24/7. Actually it runs until about 2 in the afternoon, then it doesn't run again until 4:30. If you plan to take an evening monument tour, or get to/from the metro on off hours, you will need to get your own transportation or walk back to the hotel. The walk from the station is hilly and 15-20 minutes for someone who is not in the best shape or likes to walk at a slower pace. You will have to pay a fee for both the bus and the metro. I would not suggest taking your first trip on the metro during rush hour.
2. Location: The location of this hotel seems ideal due to it's proximity to the Iwo Jima Memorial and Arlington, but those are about the only things it is close to, unless you are interested in going to Ft. Meyer. The other tourist sites are not within walking distance. Metro will take you to Union Station where most bus tours start and is about a 20 minute ride.
3. Amenities: The hotel has a pool, which is nice, but the area is at the back of the hotel which seemed to be under construction and possibly the smoking area. There is also a work out room that seemed to be fairly complete. Breakfast is offered at a steep fee of $6/adult/day. Breakfast offerings were cold cereal cups, yogurt, oatmeal cups, bagels and muffins or frozen breakfast sandwiches. There is apparently a catered meal some evenings during the week which can be purchased for $12. Breakfast and catered meals are not advertised by the staff at check in or by posters in the building or elevators. Actually, the only food item that we were told about is the seafood restaurant shown on the hotel's map given to us a check in. The way they pushed it on us I am sure they got some type of kick back for advertising.
We asked several different questions of hotel staff and didn't get 'personal' responses, rather only one or two phrases in an annoyed tone of voice. They seemed to cater to business professionals who had car services, taxis or were used to using their own cars rather than tourists. This hotel could benefit from a concierge to help answer questions about tours, transportation and tickets...especially monument tickets that are free, but have to be picked up at the location early in the morning.
It would have been nice if there would have been information about the breakfast and evening meals on the sheet we were provided at check in, as we didn't find out about any of that until mid-week.
We did have a maintenance issue while we were there and were amazed at the responsiveness of the maintenance staff after having a more negative experience with the front desk staff.
Housekeeping sometimes didn't get to the rooms until late in the afternoon, but that was not a problem for us.
Mt. Vernon is about 30 minutes away, Annapolis is 30 minutes away, Alexandria is about 20 minutes away by car. There is a mall with the big food court close by as well as a Panera in the Rosslyn Metro Station. Go to the grocery before you get into the city, as prices at the Safeway are quite high.
We would consider staying at the Virginian again; however, we wouldn't consider the kitchen facilities or location to be amenities.