Reviews

Review: Fairmont Washington, D.C. Georgetown hotel

From fine dining to casual eats and high-end suites to standard rooms, the Fairmont caters to a wide variety of DC travellers.

Overall Rating

By Chris Chamberlin, October 14 2019
Fairmont Washington, D.C. Georgetown hotel
Country

United States

City

Washington, D.C.

Hotel

Fairmont

Rating

4-star

Room

Deluxe Room

Notes
The Good
  • Wide variety of on-site food and beverage options
  • Fast in-room WiFi
The Bad
  • Located in a nice neighbourhood, but a bit of a walk from major attractions
X-Factor
  • The largest and best-equipped gym we've ever seen at a hotel
Location
Rooms
Meals
Overall

Introduction

With 413 guestrooms including 33 suites, the Fairmont Washington, D.C. Georgetown hotel tailors its amenities to both business and leisure guests visiting the United States national capital.

Location & Impressions

Situated in West End and adjacent to Georgetown, the Fairmont Washington, D.C. hotel resides in a quaint and relatively quiet neighbourhood, but without being far from the main Washington sites.

Dupont Circle can be reached in 15 minutes on foot, or The White House in 20. Allow 25 minutes to the Lincoln Memorial, or 30 minutes to the Washington Monument and the National Mall: all good excuses to get out and go for a walk after a long flight.

Alternatively, the Foggy Bottom-GWU metro station is an eight-minute walk – connected to the Blue Line with service from DCA Airport, as well as the Orange and Silver Lines – or a 12-minute walk to Dupont Circle metro station for service on the Red Line.

The hotel itself incorporates the surrounding city into its design, which is most noticeable in the lobby when first arriving:

That lobby wraps around an inviting courtyard: a great place to kick back and relax, or to use as an outdoor office should the need arise.

All major credit cards are accepted, with the property also participating in the Le Club AccorHotels loyalty program, soon to become ALL: Accor Live Limitless.

Room

Staying in one of the hotel's Deluxe Rooms provides a spacious environment with a king bed, and plenty of room to move around it.

It also opens up to a courtyard-facing balcony, for some fresh air.

Luggage is kept below the TV with a fixed baggage rack, and charging ports are also found at the bench beside, which keeps any unused devices out of your way, too.

The main advantage of a Deluxe Room over an entry-level Fairmont Room is the presence of a two-person sofa – doubling as a great place for one person to put their feet up.

Also in the room, tea- and coffee-making facilities, with the Keurig machine pouring a strong morning brew.

Beside the bed, you'll find a Quartz clock – tilting it slightly illuminates the face, for viewing in the dark – as well as both AC and USB power outlets built into the bedside lamp.

The bathroom offers a large vanity and mirror, with a shower over bath.

Le Labo amenities are stocked, which are nicely scented.

Just don't forget, in the United States, tipping the housekeeper is customary: typically US$3-5 per night aside a small 'thank you' note, or more in larger (and more time-consuming) suites.

Work

Guests staying in Fairmont Gold rooms have access to the hotel's Fairmont Gold Lounge, although be aware that unlike other brands within the Accor stable that provide lounge access to Platinum cardholders staying in any room type, this perk isn't provided at Fairmont hotels, unless the room booked includes that access.

In a 'regular' Deluxe Room, this means working within the room itself, with a table and chair proving adequate for some brief laptop work, although the placement of the power point wasn't ideal:

When immediate power connectivity isn't required, devices are more conveniently charged underneath the TV, which offers both AC and USB power, and avoids these cables getting in the way.

WiFi is fast, with Executive Traveller tests revealing average download speeds of 61Mbps, and average uploads of 33Mbps – great for everything from basic browsing through to data-intensive tasks like HD and 4K video streaming, and large file transfers.

Eat

The hotel's on-site restaurant Juniper covers breakfast, lunch and dinner, located on the ground floor:

À la carte breakfast is served between 7am and 11am, from which a classic bacon Eggs Benedict, served with breakfast potatoes and grilled tomato, hit the spot.

The buffet is instead available from 7am until 10:20am, with a variety of hot food, again including eggs, bacon and potatoes.

Joining those, a variety of breads, cereals and pastries, plus fresh fruit, meats and yoghurt.

Separately, there's the Lobby Bar. As the name suggests, it's found in the lobby, but its smart design avoids what's often a feeling of sitting in the centre of a large hall, instead feeling more cosy and inviting:

The bar's signature drink is the Beetini, blending vodka with honey syrup curated on the hotel's rooftop – plus elderflower, lemon, citrus and bitters – for what's ultimately a sweet and very drinkable cocktail:

Food is served too, including artful bites such as the smoked salmon tartine with capers and cream cheese, which was nice and fresh:

There's no shying away from more typical 'pub food' though, such as the house fish and chips with malt vinegar and tartare sauce:

Finally, there's 24-hour in-room dining, with the charcuterie board pairing well with a glass of French red.

Relax

All hotel guests have complimentary access to the on-site Foggy Bottom Balance Gym, offering not only the typical cardio and weight machines, but also group exercise classes, a pool, sauna and steam room.

In fact, we'd say it's the largest and best-equipped gym we've ever encountered at a hotel: so much so that paid memberships are sold to local Washingtonians. The only charge for hotel guests is when attending CrossFit classes, which attract a fee of US$20 per person.

Outside that, the hotel's central courtyard area is also a nice place to relax and unwind, especially of a late afternoon.

All things considered, the Fairmont Washington, D.C. hotel is most deserving of its four-star rating, and made for a pleasant stay.

Chris Chamberlin was a guest of the Fairmont Washington, D.C. Georgetown hotel.

Chris Chamberlin

Chris Chamberlin is the Associate Editor of Executive Traveller and lives by the motto that a journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step, a great latte, a theatre ticket and a glass of wine!


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