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“Great Hotel/ great stay”

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Holiday Inn Washington - Capitol
Ranked #81 of 141 Hotels in Washington DC
Certificate of Excellence
Rochester, NY
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
“Great Hotel/ great stay”
Reviewed September 2, 2006

Great Hotel !!! walking distance to all the sites. I was very pleased with the service and the location can't be beat. The food was some what costly in the hotel restaurant, but there is a McDonalds, sub/sandwhich shop and CVS just out the front doors of the hotel within a 100 feet. The rooms are very clean and the staff will see to your needs. If your traveling with a family this is the place to stay, I parked the car in the underground garage and didn't move it for four days. The hotel is one block from the Mall and all the sites. The area was very safe with as you would think with a large police presence.
The one and only thing that I didn't care for was the daily charge for parking, when I booked the hotel the reservation showed a $22.00 dollar charge but it did not show that it was a daily charge for parking, but all the hotels charge so it is what it is. The hotel needs to be clear on the charges for parking. I would stay at this hotel again and will not look at any other unless I am unable to book the dates that I need. All in all we had a great vacation with no problems thanks to this hotel.

  • Liked — Location
  • Disliked — Parking daily cost
  • Tips/Secrets — Enjoy this hotel great location.
  • Stayed August 2006, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
9 Thank BG54
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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New York
Level 3 Contributor
23 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 49 helpful votes
Reviewed August 21, 2006

This is a tough review. We stayed at this hotel August 2006. We really didn't like the hotel much, but the location is so good it is hard to give it a negative review.

The workers were friendly, which is half the rating in my eyes. They made up for some of the things the hotel was lacking. The lobby is nice looking, the restaurants are nice - though the food was just ok. We had a non-smoking room, yet it smelled like it at least used to be a smoking room, very musty/stale. The bathroom is what really turned me off the most. The grout was falling out of the tiles, mold in places. The floor was clean, but looked to be 20 years old. Paint peeling from the ceilings. No vent in the bathroom (which probably leads to all the problems in there). There was no attention to details at all. That statement is true for the whole hotel - no attention to details. For example, the computers in the public computer room in the lobby all had keyboards that had half their keys worn to the point you could not make out the letters. Point is, a keyboard cost about $10 - just replace them every 6 months. The pool on the roof was freezing (not sure how, the weather had been in the upper 80's/90's for the weeks leading up to and including our stay. The pool noodles were about 5 years old, they were disgusting.

A minor complaint is about the "kids eat free" deal they have. They only eat free from a very tiny/limited menu. We ended up getting our children something else off the main menu (they do deduct the $3.99 that they would have had free from the kids menu). Last thing is the parking garage. When I checked in I asked about 5 times how the parking garage works, do I need to show a room key, receipt, etc. when leaving - "No, just tell them you arr staying at the hotel". When we left, we were held at the exit gate for almost 10 minutes while the attendant tracked someone down at the front desk to get our parking garage number. Apparenlty the front desk is supposed to give you a form for the garage that you show when you enter/leave which the pleasant lady checking me in did not know about . Again though, the staff was very friendly and helpful.

Location is the greatest thing they have going for them. The hotel is 2 short blocks South of the Air & Space museum. If you look at a map of the attractions you can see that yopu can walk to just about all of them from there. The only downside to that is that the "nightlife", including restaurants, are all on the north side of the Mall and this hotel is on the south side. So we did have a bit of a walk to go out to dinner each night.

In short, I would not mind staying at the hotel again - the location overrides most of the negatives. The negatives were not horrible, I wasn't very stressed over them. I would probably try to find a hotel just north of the Mall in a similar location, but this hotel is a decent choice.

  • Stayed August 2006
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
7 Thank dgthompson
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Kingston-upon-Hull, United Kingdom
Level 4 Contributor
26 reviews
25 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 72 helpful votes
Reviewed August 20, 2006

Although we had travelled through Washington DC before, this was the first time we had stayed here, so a hotel close to tourist attractions was our main priority, and it certainly didn't disappoint. The Mall with it's world class museums was practically on the doorstep, and the Air and Space and Natural History Museums were well worth the visit, even for non-museum people like us!!. The room, located facing the courtyard (luckily by all accounts, but not by request) was a good size, had free internet, always handy for keeping in touch with family back home, and was comfortable. Unlike some however I had difficulty adjusting the a/c and almost froze to death every time I sat at the desk with the laptop. A simple switch to set the cold air to "off" would have helped now and again. As a priority club member, we were given $2 off breakfast, but found the choice pretty disappointing at the price. We didn't sample any of Smithson's evening meals, preferring to eat before returning to the hotel for the night, and it seems the general opinion is that it was a wise choice. Other than McDonalds and a sandwich place, the choice of places to eat apart from the hotel seemed to be zero within walking distance. We ordered a pizza from the Pizza Hut menu in the hotel one evening, and the added charges almost doubled the cost of the pizza!! For convenience and also price in a place like Washington DC, i would definitely recommend this hotel

  • Liked — Definitely the location
  • Disliked — The food choices
  • Tips/Secrets — If you don't have a car and want to visit Baltimore, take the tip given to us by an Amtrak employee......take the MARC train from Union Station instead of hiring a car or using Amtrak. We went to a baseball game and our return trip was $14 each, which included a waiting bus outside Oriole Park for our return journey, a fraction of the cost of Amtrak.
  • Stayed August 2006, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
5 Thank JanH775
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Rhode Island
Level 4 Contributor
21 reviews
9 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 25 helpful votes
Reviewed August 20, 2006

We stayed at this hotel for three nights, (myself, husband and 11 year old son). When I booked the room direct from Holiday Inn they had told me that I could not choose a room at that time. I had read postings about the train noise. When we checked in I asked for a room overlooking the court yard and was told there was not one available. I told the person at check in about the conversation I had when I made the reservations and she said that the person I talked to should have made a note on the reservation. She was very helpful and gave us a room over the courtyard. When we went to our room both keys did not work and we had to go back to the lobby and they re-keyed them and apologized. At this point I was a little worried I had made the wrong hotel choice. Everything from that point on was great. Great location. The room was large and very clean. Beds comfortable. If you forgot something, toothbrush, toothpaste, comb etc they would bring you one complementary. They even offer to bring you a different pillow, soft, firm etc. We drove in so we parked in the hotel parking garage ($22.00 per night). The attendent at the garage was very friendly and helpful on where to park. We could not find a parking spot close to the elevator so we left everyting in the car and went to the Washington Monument (had tickets for 4:00) bought on line for $1.50 each. We walked to the monument (10-15 minutes, after nine hours in the car, it was a nice walk). When we came back there was a parking spot next to the elevator so we moved the car there for the three days and never took it out until we left. We did not eat at the hotel. We did eat at the McDonald's and Subway. There is a CVS next door also. The Starbuck's coffee was yuck! The coffee pot in the room was much better. My son went in the pool one night and there were a few people but not enough to not enjoy yourself. I got a kick out off all the rabbits that live on the roof, nice touch. We would stay here again .

  • Liked — Clean room
  • Disliked — paying for parking
  • Tips/Secrets — Ask for room away from the train tracks
  • Stayed August 2006, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
5 Thank smokeybomes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Independence, Ohio
Level 3 Contributor
11 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 17 helpful votes
Reviewed August 19, 2006

I should have known it was going to be bad when we had problems checking in. I had reserved a non smoking room with two double beds. When I checked in they told me they only had a king room in smoking. I told them that is not what I wanted because there were 4 of us & they told me I could get two roll a ways at like $15 each per night! After quite a bit of arguing and complaining they were able to find me a double non smoking room. Then we had a package delivered to the hotel the second day of our 3 day stay, which they didn't have, then had but lost, then didn't have again (even when we had the fed ex tracking numbers and the name of the employee that signed for the package). Finally after we intended to check out they found our package, so we were now late for our next destination.

The room was clean and pretty quiet. Smithsons was alright for breakfast ( I con't comment too much because we were there during the flooding and with the grill being down the selection was limited.) The location was incredible we were able to walk just about any where, and the view from the pool top was pretty good. The kids loved the bunnies that lived on the roof in the pool area!

  • Liked — The location
  • Disliked — The front desk staff
  • Stayed July 2006, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank cinyou
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Wisconsin
Level 1 Contributor
4 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
Reviewed August 14, 2006

Our stay at this hotel was a terrible disappointment. We planned to have a nice get away in DC at this site and left disappointed and feeling ripped off. First, despite a nice hotel room service menu, the restaurant was only serving a very limited menu of burgers and "meatloaf special" because the grill was out. The clerk that brough us our order said that the kitchen was on limited service for over a month due to the problems with the grill. Our room was on the side of the hotel that faces a rail road track that kept us up. And the final insult was the seams of the tile in the bathrooms was spotted with black mold. We stayed one night and left. This site hardly deserves to be part of the holiday inn chain and should be avoided at all costs!

  • Liked — Nothing
  • Disliked — Terrible restaurant service (kitchen grill out, terrible menu) Poor location near rail road line
  • Stayed July 2006, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank Jeanne7386
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Santa Rosa, CA
Level 3 Contributor
10 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 33 helpful votes
Reviewed August 14, 2006

We stayed here 8 nights in late July/early August. We booked through their 1-800 number because we realized that bookings through their web site cannot be cancelled at all. The price quoted to us for 8 nights (AAA/AARP) was $934 plus taxes. The rate on the weekend was $121/nt and during the week about $170. Our bill for a few meals and the room was $1500.

So perhaps we expected too much. The location IS fabulous. A little over a block from the Metro and the Circulator and the Air & Space Museum and the Tourmobile. We did not have a car so we were dependent on public transportation. We picked this location over Georgetown etc specifically because it was so close to transportation and the Smithsonian museums.

Just before we left I got a message about points if you joined their Priority Club. Perhaps because I joined we got the minisuite for no extra charge (small fridge and microwave). The room was sufficiently big not to feel cramped but it had no closet, so it was cluttered with two armoires (one for clothes and one for TV with drawers), a desk, big chair and ottoman, and lamp. The ironing board and luggage rack were stuck in the corner between the armoires. The bed was very comfortable. And best of all was the air conditioning, which was thermostat controlled and quiet (not the kawump kawump variety). The windows had blackout drapes as well as sheers.

This hotel won an award for its refurbishment recently but most of it seems to have been in the lobby. The furniture and carpet etc in our room was ok but not outstanding in my opinion. Everything was pretty clean but a wine cork left from the last guest remained on the floor during our whole visit.

Many people have written about the food, and I will too. The first night we arrived we were tired and hungry. We took the easy way out and had the Friday Night Buffet at Smithson's. I think it was $14 each. Certainly inexpensive. But the only edible food I found was the salad bar (which claims 31 items.....by counting the dressings) and the chicken, which was delicious. We got coupons for $2 off the breakfast buffet, which we had twice. That made it $8 each. Service was great and the servers were friendly and helpful. The food at breakfast wasn't outstanding but it was edible. Pretty typical, with the flip-over waffle maker that requires extra cooking to avoid mushy waffles, etc. We ordered breakfast off the menu one day and the food was fine also. Then on Wed when the temps were over 100, we decided to stay in and eat. So we fell for the Wed buffet. After I got my salad I realilzed the salad dressing was room temperature and I told the server attending the buffet. He got pretty defensive, saying they had the food cooled from below and it was fine. I told our table server that I was concerned about food poisoning but we had had it from salad dressing before. He said he would tell the manager. Finally someone came out and poured ice around the food and dressing. Once again, only the salad and chicken were edible. And the chicken was actually quite good again. The rest of the food wasn't as good as a TV dinner.

A form on the lobby desk promised a chance to win $ for your opinions, so I filled it in and wrote a letter on it and sent it to the hotel general mgr with my comments about Smithson's. Is anyone surprised that I have had NO response to date? It's obvious to me that they really don't care.

I suspect that the food on the limited menu is better than the buffet food. But selections are pretty limited.

We ended up switching to the Deli for breakfast. We got an egg and cheese breakfast burrito and split it in half and I ate the egg with a fork. We split a small fruit salad (which was quite large) but only contained two melons. The Deli has nice salads and prices are reasonable for lunch also. Starbucks has good sandwiches also. Breakfast for two with our coffee coupons was $7 compared to $20 for the buffet breakfast.

One of my biggest complaints is the lack of a concierge. It would have been wonderful to get a folder with directions to the Metro, and the Circulator, etc. After a couple of days we finally figured out how and where to get the Circulator, which made our trip much more enjoyable. The Circulator makes three big loops through Washington, and you can get off and on free for 2 or 3 hours (depending on the driver) and transfer easily from one loop to the other. We didn'd quite understand the layout of the Metro station, so when the side nearest the hotel was (as always) closed on the weekends, we walked to the next Metro station, not knowing there was another entrance a block away.

The reservation clerk said they have no hotel transportation. We arrived at the Baltimore airport and the reservation clerk said the cheapest way to get to the hotel was a taxi. Wrong! We took the B30 bus from the airport to the Metro station and the Metro to the hotel for $1.10 each (we're seniors) (compared to a taxi fare of about $70-80). It was easy and fast and not difficult. It took us a trip to the Metro station south of the hotel on Monday to get senior SmartTrip cards. Had we known where and when to go, we could have gone on the weekend. Something a concierge could have told us.

Our room, located on the courtyard at our request because of previous comments about train noise) was a corner room with lots of light and no noise. Only twice did I hear the train whistle during the day.

The hotel gave us a list of restaurants within a mile. I checked them out in our Access book and we tried several. Favorites were Jaleos and Rosa Mexicano, plus the cafeteria in the new Smithsonian Indian museum. The food there was as good as food we got anywhere else. Food near the Sculpture Garden and in the Natural History Museum was not memorable at all, except we felt gouged. We loved being able to get a frappucino from Starbucks when we came back in the afternoon for a siesta.

Would we stay again? Maybe. The fact that I KNOW that THEY know the food is not good in the Smithson and still do nothing about it really pisses me off. I think that to some degree they are coasting on their location. Which is truly great if you are being a tourist!

  • Liked — location
  • Disliked — restaurant food
  • Tips/Secrets — Don't go to the buffet!
  • Stayed August 2006, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Check in / front desk
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
    • Business service (e.g., internet access)
Helpful?
7 Thank MaHubs
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Holiday Inn Washington - Capitol

Property: Holiday Inn Washington - Capitol
Address: 550 C St. SW, Washington DC, DC 20024-2572
Phone Number:
Location: United States > District of Columbia > Washington DC
Amenities:
Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Restaurant Room Service Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#66 Romantic Hotel in Washington DC
#67 Family Hotel in Washington DC
#74 Business Hotel in Washington DC
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:3 star — Holiday Inn Washington - Capitol 3*
Number of rooms: 529
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Welcome to the Holiday Inn Washington-Capitol. We offer the ideal location for business and leisure travelers coming to Washington, DC. We are conveniently located one block fromSmithsonian s National Air & Space Museum. Walk to major Washington area attractions including the United States Capitol Building, Smithsonian Museums, White House, Washington Monument, World War II Memorial and the Holocaust Museum. This Washington, DC hotel is within reach of DoEd, DOE, DHHS, FAA, FEMA, HUD, NASA, USDA, and USITC. Stay connected with our complimentary high-speed Internet access in all guest rooms and 24-hour business center. Maintain your exercise regimen in our 24-hour, state-of-the-art aerobic fitness center. All hotel rooms are equipped with refrigerators. Our superb location, friendly and experienced staff, makes the Holiday Inn Washington - Capitol the best choice for business and leisure travelers alike. Enjoy a hearty breakfast at our new Capitol Bistro, where Kids Eat Free, grab a quick meal at the Shuttle Deli Express, or coffee from our full service Starbucks. Unwind in the modern, comfortable surroundings of the 21st Amendment Bar & Grill or take a relaxing swim in our seasonal rooftop pool overlooking the US Capitol. Make the Holiday Inn Washington-Capitol your first hotel choice when traveling to Washington, DC! ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Holiday Inn Washington - Capitol Hotel Washington Dc
Holiday Inn Washington Dc
Washington Dc Holiday Inn
Holiday Inn Capitol

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