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“Nice hotel but not 5 star”

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Mandarin Oriental, Washington DC
Ranked #15 of 141 Hotels in Washington DC
Certificate of Excellence
GreenLeadersSilver level
tx
Level Contributor
65 reviews
33 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 38 helpful votes
“Nice hotel but not 5 star”
Reviewed 12 October 2013 via mobile

The hotel overall is nice. I just spent 3 nights here and the staff was friendly although housekeeping wants to barge in your room at 7:45am every morning with 3 consecutive doorbell rings and then busts in the room. So don't forget to put the "do not disturb" sign on. There is NO movies-on-demand. So if you enjoy watching movies in bed after a long day of touring the city, or working, do NOT pick this place. The spa was great one day, then the next I was a few minutes late to my 2 session spa day and they gave my entire block of treatments away with charging me, so that sucked.
It's a good location but you must have a car or take a taxi everywhere. It's not walking distance to anything.
Overall- it was good but it wasn't great.

  • Stayed October 2013
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank mj79Tx
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
MOWashingtonDCHotel, Public Relations Manager at Mandarin Oriental, Washington DC, responded to this review, 9 November 2013
Dear mj79Tx,"

It is always helpful to receive reviews from our guests, especially when they provide opportunities to provide a better guest experience.

We are especially sorry for the service concerns you have listed, and have shared them with the respective department leaders so they can address them with our colleagues.

Should your travels include DC, we do hope that you consider another stay with us in the near future.

Very kind regards and safe travels,
Mandarin Oriental, Washington D.C.
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Phoenix, Arizona
Level Contributor
999 reviews
84 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 555 helpful votes
Reviewed 11 October 2013

We are in Washington, DC, up to about 4x per year. Normally, we stay in the DC NW areas, at hotels, such as the Ritz-Carlton, Hay-Adams, Hilton Washington, and a few others. Often, we are in town for an event, or meeting, and then my wife heads to Capitol Hill, for meetings with Congress. Once, the SW Area was, well less than savory, but things have changed. Redevelopment is everywhere, in the area around the Mandarin Oriental. The event was in the hotel, but again, there were those meetings on Capitol Hill, that followed.

Our arrival trip indicated that much had changed in the surrounding neighborhood.

First, the property, from the arrival, is exquisite. The circular drive affords an arriving guest a beautiful view of the hotel. That is just the start.

The door-staff is very professional, and quick to get all luggage ready for delivery, after check-in. At many luxury hotels, finding the reservations desk is tough - not so at this inn. The reservations desk is right inside the door, and the staff is ready to help. Even with three largish events "in house," they were highly efficient.

Now, our stay was part of an event, but one would have thought that we were frequent, returning guests. There was no hesitation in assigning us a very nice room, though the rate (with the event) was at a discount. Some inns make one feel like an interloper, just because they are with some scheduled event, but NOT the Mandarin Oriental, DC.

Our room was spacious, well-appointed and very, very comfortable. OK, we did not have a view of the Potomac River, or the Yacht Basin, but it was a great room. We had a King Room, and there was more than adequate space. The bathroom was very good (some notes to follow), and we never felt cramped, in any way.

Though only one room, it was actually more like a "Jr. Suite."

Luggage service was excellent.

The only complaints that I can offer are:

Bathroom lighting - could be better - brighter, but we are seeing more dim lighting, due to "eco bulbs." The general room lighting was very good.

Storage drawers were a bit sparse. We could have used a few more for a five day, four night stay. The closet was very good, and only the drawers were a bit lacking.

No coffeemakers in the room, but there IS coffee downstairs, or across the circle at the Starbucks. Still, having that first cup in the room, in the early AM is nice.

The staff at the door worked very hard, to see that my wife had a cab for every meeting, off-property, even when some cabbies only wanted to take fares to airports.

The Empress Lounge is great, and right across from the reservations desk. While their bar menu is slight, their short wine list is fun, and hardly has even one of "the usual suspects." Really a nice little wine list, served by very attentive folk.

CityZen, the formal restaurant (see separate review), is great, and ranks with some of the top DC restaurants.

We often stay at luxury resorts, inns and similar properties, and are recognized by the staff, as we frequent those. Though we had never stayed at any Mandarin Oriental property before (we have dined at two in Hawai`i), I was amazed that ALL of the staff, knew our name. I am not sure how they all did that, but it made an impression. I encounter similar, at only the best, and then, only after a stay, or two. The DC Mandarin Oriental staff was on top of it, and instantly. Impressive.

Even the housekeeping staff knew our names, and greeted us constantly. Oh, the housekeeping staff was top-notch, at every turn.

While everything was not perfect (see above), it was surprisingly great!

We will be staying there in the future, and hope that the entire neighborhood redevelopment goes smoothly. Then, they will be in a perfect location, and are a great inn. They managed to make us feel like we were long-standing, returning guests, on our very first visit, and that is tough.

Room Tip: Dine at CityZen, at least one night. Spend one afternoon at the Empress Bar in the lobby.
See more room tips
  • Stayed October 2013, travelled on business
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank The_Loup_Garou
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
MOWashingtonDCHotel, Public Relations Manager at Mandarin Oriental, Washington DC, responded to this review, 9 November 2013
Dear Mr. Hunt,

We are thrilled that you opted to stay with us during your recent visit to our nation's capital. Your thorough and complimentary review is especially appreciated and does provide our colleagues with valuable feedback that their hard work and efforts are noticed and greatly appreciated.

We have also made note of your areas for improvement and have taken those into consideration as we make decisions on how to best impact the overall guest experience.

With regard to local development, you are correct that additional changes are coming to Southwest DC that will only provide additional options for our guests to enjoy, and this is something that will truly enrich the neighborhood.

We do hope you return to Mandarin Oriental, Washington D.C., when your travels next include DC.

Many thanks, and safe travels,
Mandarin Oriental, Washington D.C.
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Tustin, California
1 review
Reviewed 5 October 2013

The staff at check-in were great! We arrived very early and wanted to get in our room and back out to the Smithsonians, etc. before everything closed and they let us have a nice room right away. Coffee shop is gone and I miss it. Gift shop is ok but I wish they had a better selection. The Sou Wester restaurant is nice and the staff are very attentive and made sure our meal was just prepared just as we wanted. Breakfast vegetable omelette was delicious. Dinner was delicious. Room service might have been even better than the Sou Wester, or maybe it was just the comfort of being in a nice room. The bathroom was great and the cleaning staff were very patient and accomodating to our specific requests. i wish turn-down service included a little chocolate like other luxuery hotels. Concierge was knowledgable and followed-through. Suggested Old Ebbet and Hamilton's and got us rsvp on short notice. MO is not in the center of activities but very close and with great view of Potomac. in door pool is great.

  • Stayed October 2013, travelled with friends
    • Value
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    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
Thank life_is_great_2001
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
MOWashingtonDCHotel, Public Relations Manager at Mandarin Oriental, Washington DC, responded to this review, 9 November 2013
Dear "life_is_great_2001,"

We do appreciate you taking the time to post a review regarding your recent stay. We welcome the comments from our guests, especially when they have had the opportunity to experience several facets of the hotel and enjoyed them as much as you did. We have shared your review with the colleagues so that they can see that their efforts are appreciated.

Safe travels,
Mandarin Oriental, Washington D.C.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Portland, Oregon
Level Contributor
147 reviews
47 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 71 helpful votes
Reviewed 4 October 2013

While this Mandarin Oriental is rated as a 5-star hotel, it does not live up to those standards.

A trainee was responsible for our check-in, a process that took her nearly 30 minutes. A supervisor should have been nearby. Once, we called the operator requesting some information. We were put on hold for several minutes and finally another person came on the line asking what we needed.

The food service was very disappointing. Admittedly, we were there for a conference so many guests were served at about the same time. Still, the food was often luke-warm and had obviously been prepared long before serving time.

The evening turn-down crew arrived about 5 pm, just when we were dressing for dinner, to prepare our room for sleeping. Isn't that too early?

Still, a number of staff members were very accommodating and did their best to take care of us. The hotel certainly has potential but it hasn't reached it yet.

  • Stayed September 2013, travelled on business
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
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    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
Thank passionatetraveler20
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
MOWashingtonDCHotel, Public Relations Manager at Mandarin Oriental, Washington DC, responded to this review, 9 November 2013
Dear "PassionateTraveler,"

Many thanks for taking the time to share comments regarding your recent stay.

We are especially sorry that your stay did not meet your expectations, as the items you have listed are atypical and not the service levels we strive to offer. We have shared your comments with each respective department leaders, so that they can address the service areas that you encountered and have detailed.

We do hope that your travels return you to DC in the near future.

Kind regards, and safe travels,
Mandarin Oriental, Washington D.C.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Level Contributor
152 reviews
83 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 71 helpful votes
Reviewed 30 September 2013

I had to stay at this hotel for 4 nights attending a conference. The rooms are at best ok and don't even have a coffee maker! Want internet? It will cost you $15 a day on top of their high rates.
Need a wake-up call? Don't count on it being at the requested time. What really got to me was the quality of the food served at the breakfast functions, lunch functions and even dinner functions. I could not eat the breakfast as it was always cold and who likes cold eggs! Lunch was not that much better and dinner was also on thel cold side. Had a dinner function at the Library of Congress which was fabulous. If a caterer can do it right, why not a hotel in their own building?

I have to say that I would have to talk clients out of staying at this hotel and stay at the W, Willard, or other similar hotels better situated.

  • Stayed September 2013, travelled on business
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Reumann
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
MOWashingtonDCHotel, Public Relations Manager at Mandarin Oriental, Washington DC, responded to this review, 2 October 2013
We are always concerned when a guest has not had a positive stay, so we have reached out to "Reumann" via private message to see how we can best address commets and review regarding his recent stay.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Santa Monica, California
Level Contributor
68 reviews
55 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 51 helpful votes
Reviewed 29 September 2013

This hotel does not the expectations that come with the Mandarin Oriental brand. From the minute you arrive you feel that it is dated and in need of TLC. Fortunately most of the staff members i came in contact with were warm and efficient professionals, despite the hotels overall shortcomings. Food quality especially was quite disappointing. Updating of the room product is sorely needed: old entertainment system , no option for coffee or tea in the rooms or suites, no electronic checkout, minibar was not serviced during my 4 night stay. Spa and gym are quite nice.

  • Stayed September 2013, travelled on business
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank WLSCH
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
MOWashingtonDCHotel, Public Relations Manager at Mandarin Oriental, Washington DC, responded to this review, 3 October 2013
Dear "Petersch,"

We are especially sorry to hear that we did not meet your expectations during your recent stay. We have sent a private message to your via the TripAdvisor portal to better address your comments. We look forward to hearing from you.

Kind regards,
Mandarin Oriental, Washington D.C.
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Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
Level Contributor
25 reviews
14 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 19 helpful votes
Reviewed 15 September 2013

Great professional staff, nice comfortable beds, very upscale. Quiet on the weekends which is great if you're looking for a nice escape.

From the front desk to the car valet, everything was top notch.

  • Stayed September 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank coldescape99
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
MOWashingtonDCHotel, Public Relations Manager at Mandarin Oriental, Washington DC, responded to this review, 3 October 2013
Dear "Coldescape99,"

We appreciate you taking the time to post a review about your recent stay! "Short and Sweet," is always great, but we do hope the next visit will be "Long and Lovely!"

Safe travels and many thanks for your patronage!

Mandarin Oriental, Washington D.C.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Mandarin Oriental, Washington DC

Property: Mandarin Oriental, Washington DC
Address: 1330 Maryland Avenue, SW, Washington DC, DC 20024-2100
Phone Number:
Region: United States > District of Columbia > Washington DC
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Centre with Internet Access Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
#5 Spa Hotel in Washington DC
#10 Luxury Hotel in Washington DC
#13 Business Hotel in Washington DC
#14 Green Hotel in Washington DC
#17 Family Hotel in Washington DC
#24 Romantic Hotel in Washington DC
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): £££
Hotel Class:5 star — Mandarin Oriental, Washington DC 5*
Number of rooms: 373
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Summer is when the Nation’s Capital is most welcoming. Visitors can fill their itineraries with fun outdoor festivals, live concerts, thought-provoking museum exhibits, professional sports, along with some of the world’s most recognized monuments and the nation’s most cherished memorials. As Washington’s only hotel featuring views of the monuments and the water, Mandarin Oriental, Washington DC is at the center of everything. Now featuring dramatically refreshed luxury guestrooms, MO is located just steps from the Jefferson Memorial and the beautiful cherry tree-lined Tidal Basin. Our honored guests also enjoy very short walks to the National Mall, museums of the Smithsonian Institution, Washington Monument, and the White House. Business travelers will appreciate swift transfers between Ronald Reagan National Airport, Union Station, U.S. Capitol, and House and Senate Office Buildings. Mandarin Oriental Hotel Group is famous for providing legendary service, excellent dining, arresting design, and immersive spas that rejuvenate body and mind. Our hotel presents you with an experience that is uniquely Washington and always mindful of our oriental heritage. Are you a fan? ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Mandarin Oriental, Washington d.c. Hotel Washington Dc
Mandarin Oriental Hotel Washington Dc
Mandarin Oriental Washington Dc
Mandarin Washington Dc
Washington Dc Mandarin Oriental

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