Let's discuss the location first. The hotel is located on Waverly, which is directly off of Wisconsin Avenue and is about a 5 minute walk from the Bethesda Metro station (south). I didn't have much of a problem walking here from the Metro carrying and rolling multiple pieces of luggage. I took the Metro from Reagan International and this venture took about 45 minutes.
The property is located near a ton of great restaurants, a Regal Cinema, the Crescent City running/biking/walking trail, banks/ATMs, and an assortment of other businesses like local coffee shops, a Barnes and Noble, and a cupcake store. When I go to new places I love to venture out and try new restaurants. A week would be a perfect amount of time to visit your selections of these restaurants (or pubs). I was here for 3 nights and actually had a tough time deciding which restaurants to choose.
The hotel was very clean and well kept. The staff was friendly and helpful. My check in was quick and I was welcomed (and thanked) for being a HHonors guest. I received a phone call from the front desk during the middle of my stay asking if I had everything and if I had any problems. I thought it was a nice touch to check in on their guests. I usually do a quick lookover in my room upon entering (to make sure cleanliness levels are up to my standard) and I had no issues. The rooms had a microwave, an LCD 32" flat panel TV, and a mini-fridge.
Breakfast was good for a HGI and there was a chef on hand for orders (hot items like eggs) for those interested. They also have their spread of cereal, bagels, yogurts, fruit, toast, and juices. There were flat panel LCD TV's in the breakfast areas with news playing each morning. I don't think the breakfast is worth the $13 if you have to pay for it. It's a good deal if you are a GOLD or higher HHonors member and the breakfast is included.
I had two minor complaints: First, some of the fruit at breakfast was a bit overripe. For example, some of the pineapple was browning. Second, it wasn't very clear where the exercise room was as the elevators didn't have any markings. The front desk may have mentioned this to me upon check in, but I don't recall. It's on the 2nd floor. As you can see, these are very minor (and picky) complaints.
Helpful recommendations: If you enjoy running outdoors, there is an entrance to the Crescent City/Bethesda trail very close to the hotel - go 2 blocks down on Wisconsin, and like 1 block west on Bethesda; follow the signs. This was a great find for me. Restaurants I tried: BD's Mongolian Grill, Union Jack's British Pub, and Shanghai Village. There are plenty of places if you go west on Waverly, cross Wisconsin, and head down Elm. I plan on visiting some of these places next time in Bestheda.
I will definitely stay here again.
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Thank you so much for taking the time to write out a full review on the experience you had at the Hilton Garden Inn Bethesda and our location. Being a new Hotel we are always thrilled to get feedback from our Guests.
I could not agree with you more in terms of all the great restaurants, shopping and entertainment within safe walking distance to the Hotel, really adds value to our Guests stay.
Hilton Garden Inn Bethesda looks forward to welcoming you back!
HGI Bethesda Team
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.