*Please note: As of 2022, this hotel is a Waldorf-Astoria Hotel property by Hilton. Unfortunately, Hilton Hotel standards are not be the same as those of the Trump International Hotel brand. Please read this post with that in mind!
Updated July 24, 2022.
What is the best hotel experience you’ve ever had? I’ve stayed in quite a few hotels and various other accommodations—everything from hostels and Air BnBs to real bed and breakfasts and luxury hotels! My favorites have one thing in common: history! I just love staying in a place steeped in history, seeing unexpected pieces preserved, and being inspired by the places that have withstood the test of time.
*This is not a sponsored post. I did not receive any discounts or compensation for my stay. I did not tell anyone there that I am a travel blogger; to them I was just an average person—which I am!
The Trump International Hotel Washington, D.C., is perhaps better known locals as the Old Post Office. It was built in 1899 as the District’s main post office. It basically looks like a castle in the middle of downtown! When I moved to D.C. 11 years ago, this building had already been saved from demolition multiple times, but somehow it had become a smelly, run-down food court with tacky souvenir shops mixed in. But no longer!
Since being renovated and transformed into a luxury hotel property, it’s truly the diamond of Pennsylvania Avenue. Read on and start planning your visit today!
Just a few blocks from the White House, the Capitol, and the National Mall, you’ll be hard-pressed to find a more suitable location for your D.C.-based adventures. In fact, you can go up in the clocktower, which is run by the National Park Service, and you’ll be rewarded with the best view in town! There’s also a Starbucks around the corner of the building, the Federal Triangle Metro Station (blue, orange, and silver lines) is right across the street, and you’re just steps from the National Archives, too!
More here: 7 Things to Do in Penn Quarter, D.C.
I’ve been into the Trump International Hotel D.C. many times since it opened, though I have stayed overnight only twice. I have received a warm welcome every single time—not something you get just anywhere in D.C.! The doormen open the doors with a smile and a warm “hello!” “Good morning!” or “Good afternoon, ma’am!” The staff inside have always greeted me with a smile, and the waitstaff at all the restaurants have been more than accommodating. Also, the lobby is quite possibly the most welcoming and beautiful of any hotel in D.C.!
Upon check-in for my recent visit, Brian at the front desk kindly asked what brought me to their hotel. I hesitantly said I was there for a little writing getaway, and much to my delight and surprise he said, “Oh! Well let me make sure we put you in a room that will inspire you!” That’s the mark of someone with customer service training who knows how to do their job well.
The Architecture and History
To be perfectly honest, any room would have inspired me! I chose this hotel for its history and inspirational story. The assuming Romanesque Revival architecture always makes me think of a castle, and the clocktower makes me think of Cinderalla. Over the years it housed the U.S. Post Office, Washington City Post Office, General Accounting Office, Smithsonian, FBI, and more, but it never really seemed to find its purpose until now. In fact, it’s been slated for demolition multiple times since it opened! I think its true calling was to be a luxury hotel in the heart of the District.
You can find out more info on the building and its history at the U.S. General Services Administration website!
When Brian said, “a room that inspires you,” I nearly fell over. Every room would certainly inspire me! But this one was definitely something special for a writer looking to get away from it all. I was in room 806, tucked away in a corner with a view of the Capitol Dome, a gigantic free-standing soaker tub, the most comfortable bed you can imagine, and the crowning jewel of it all: a large, beautiful writing desk!
I couldn’t have asked for anything better. But it did get better! The television provided commercial-free background music from multiple genres (I chose classical), the luxury toiletries made for maximum pampering and comfort, cozy slippers made me feel ultra-cozy, and the robes helped me really unwind after spending my day hunched over my laptop! Between the dual shower heads in the walk-in shower and the chocolate-covered sea salt and caramel chocolates left at turn-down service, I hardly needed to leave the room at all!
Personally, I prefer a run outside, but not every day is conducive to that! The Trump International, however, has an excellent, spacious gym! With plenty of cardio machines, weight machines, free weights, and an open area for stretching and yoga, you can accomplish any of your fitness goals in here.
I have never, in all my travels, been treated with more kindness, respect, and thoughtfulness than at the Trump International Hotels around the world. Everyone from the doorman to the front desk folks, from the concierge to the housekeeping staff, from the spa attendants to the waitstaff is kind and seems genuinely happy to help! You won’t see a lot of smiles from passing strangers in D.C., but you will here.
Last but not least, the good stuff! Whether you prefer pastries, brunch, fine dining, or room service, the kind people at the Trump International D.C. will take excellent care of you. I didn’t eat all this in one stay—lots of my visiting friends want to come eat here when they come to town! Here’s a sampling of what they have to offer.
More here: What to Eat in Penn Quarter, D.C.
Craving more about D.C. and all the incredible experiences you could have here? Check out my Washington, D.C. Page for all the resources!
Want to read about my Writing Retreat and find out how you can create your own creative retreat? Read Destination: Creative Retreat!
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