THE HOTEL: Hyatt House, an ‘apartment hotel’ of 237 studio rooms, is located on The Wharf, a newly- developed one-mile-long stretch facing the Potomac river. It is one of three hotels here – Canopy by Hilton and Intercontinental are the others – along with upmarket restaurants, bars, music venue and outdoor stage.
THE CHECK-IN: Signage is not great and after my Uber dropped me in the underground parking area – Bill and Hillary Clinton drove by as we were arriving – I eventually figured out I needed to take an elevator to the small check-in area on the second floor. It is a busy space, with a bar, breakfast room and small ‘market’ all squashed together. The welcome was a warm one and my registration was swift. I was given a detailed run-down on the hotel’s facilities and was handed a city map.
THE ROOM:My Executive room, a corner room on the top (ninth) floor, was enormous. The door opened to a small kitchen area with a hob, dishwater and fridge-freezer, that in turn leads to a dining room with a work table, sofa (that folds down into a bed) and chairs and a large TV. The biggest ‘wow’ is reserved for the main bedroom, with its king-size bed, second couch and huge windows that had a magnificent view of The Wharf’s marina and the Potomac.
THE FACILITIES: There are three ‘flexible’ meeting rooms offering the full range of presentation facilities. A 24-hour business centre has computers and two printers. Wifi is free throughout the hotel. Breakfast, featuring the traditional cooked fare, fruit and an omelette station is included in the rate – unusual for hotels in the city. There’s a small workout room and a rooftop pool. Excellent restaurants are located just yards away, but for the super-busy the hotel will do a grocery run.
THE VERDICT: Just three blocks south of the National Mall and a few minutes’ walk from L’Enfant Plaza and other downtown business areas, this is an excellent alternative to the many hotels in the Penn Quarter and Du Pont Circle areas. It’s a chic and modern choice – for example, lifts are operated by a swipe of your key card, which takes you directly to your floor. The only downside is the $35 a day parking charge.
THE DETAILS: Hyatt House, 725 Wharf Street, Washington DC, 20024. Rates start from around $200 a night. Tel: +1 202 554 1234; See hyatt.com.
Reviewed by Steve Hartridge (2018)