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“Unpleasant beginning”
Review of The Hay-Adams

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The Hay-Adams
Ranked #3 of 142 Hotels in Washington DC
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed 7 April 2011

Previous reviews were very complimentary and overall they are on target. The hotel prefers guests not to book through Expedia as we did and we had a very unpleasant beginning to our three day stay. The front desk person was unfamiliar on how to handle our Expedia reservation and said the bank had refused our credit card when we registered. We gave her two other credit cards and she said that they were refused as well and we would have to pay in cash up front. With other guests standing around this was quite embarassing. We had already paid in full through Expedia. When we called the banks they said the hotel was entering the information incorrectly, that they had approved what the hotel sent anyway, and nothing had been declined. It was finally settled but it was rather humiliating and a very bad start to our stay.

The hotel manager sent up an apology note later but I do not think he was sensitive to how embarassed we were. The two tangerines he sent up as an apology gift seemed awkward and odd.

The rest of our stay there was pleasant and the room service food was excellent. The servers in Off the Record, the bar on the ground level, were great. If you like gin, you must try the Classic Gin and Tonic. I didn't think you could do much to such a simple drink, but the tonic they use is very different.

If you stay there I hope you have better luck with the front desk.

  • Stayed: April 2011, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank RCochrane
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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1,083 - 1,089 of 1,319 reviews

Reviewed 2 April 2011

I stayed here a few years ago and found it nice but not wonderful. The public spaces were great but the rooms were rather tired. So I then tried a number of other hotels--Ritz Carlton, Mandarin, etc--but each had their issues. A few weeks ago, I tried the Hay-Adams again. It was terrific! The rooms we were in had clearly been renovated. The fabrics were all fresh, the bathrooms fixtures seemed new, the carpets had been replaced. I am not sure if all the rooms in this hotel have been renovated. If not, you should certainly request a renovated room. A couple of people have commented on their terrible window views. I think with this hotel you get either feast or famine with your views--and you do pay extra for the feast (GREAT views of the White House). I happen to think the good views are worth the extra money. However, we didn't think to request such a room during our recent stay and were stuck with a dreadful view right into the windows of an office building less than 30 feet away (it may have been as little as 10--it sure felt like it), so we kept the drapes closed the whole time. This actually worked fine. The room is designed so you can do this and it doesn't feel dark or claustrophobic. This is an old, historic hotel, so if you need clean modern lines, this place won't suit. If you like cornices and moldings and carved wood, however, you'll love this place. And the location is wonderful for visiting DC. You are walking distance from the White House, the Mall, the Smithsonians, and the National Gallery. The staff are very kind and accommodating. This is definitely my favorite DC place to stay at the moment.

  • Stayed: March 2011, travelled with family
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1  Thank Kirkberta
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 20 March 2011

On the plus side, this smaller hotel has a certain (old-style) charm; it is located well if you like to be close to the White House; and the WIFI is free. On the minus side, be prepared for a view of an inner court yard (i.e., NOT the White House), aggressive maid service, smallish rooms, weekend wedding parties in the restaurant off the lobby, and whatever you do.....DO NOT TOUCH THE PHONE. They managed to charge us about $400 for a few domestic long distance phone calls on the house phone (Yes, some of them were long, but my AT&T cell phone did not get a signal in our room). Even calls that did not go through were on the bill for $8 a piece. What a dumb way to turn guests off!!!

  • Stayed: March 2011, travelled with family
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6  Thank PKRON
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 10 March 2011

My husband and I had the great fortune of staying at the Hay Adams during the cherry blossom festival in DC two years ago. The hotel brings you back to another era. I felt like we were staying in a bedroom in the Chateau of Versaille in Paris! It was absolutely magnificent. This hotel has a very rich feel about it. I will say that driving up in a normal car when every one else was driving a Porsche or luxury vehicle was a bit uncomfortable, but once inside it was wonderful. The crowd tends to be more senior so we did feel like we were the youngest people there, but it really did not bother us. I would love to go back. (May just leave the car at home)!

  • Stayed: April 2010, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank LadyLux123
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 8 March 2011

I stayed here recently on a business trip and was simply blown away by the outstanding service. The room was nicely updated without losing its charm. Food was expensive (no more than any other hotel, as an aside) in room service but quite good. Bed and pillows were outstanding and unlike many other hotesl I have stayed at on business--actually helped me sleep!

  • Stayed: March 2011, travelled on business
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2  Thank NorCalBusTrav
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 20 January 2011

I had a one night stay here recently. The staff was friendly and knowledgeable. Although it was beyond the hotels control others staying on the same floor were not so quiet. This was some what expected since it is an old hotel however its also a very high end hotel I didn't expect to be kept up by other guest screaming in the hallway or children running up and down. Overall this was a good hotel. My next visit will be to the intercontinental as its a little closer to the mall.

  • Stayed: January 2011
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1  Thank Misssunnybunnie
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 19 January 2011

I stayed at this hotel as a returning guest. The rooms are dated. The fold-out couch, which was the second guest bed, was sagging and broken.

Dinner in the restaurant was fraught with staff noise tableside and other, incompetance and poor presentation.

  • Stayed: October 2010, travelled on business
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5  Thank WeGoGreen
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about The Hay-Adams

Address: 16th & H Sts. NW, One Lafayette Square, Washington DC, DC 20006
Phone Number:
Region: United States > District of Columbia > Washington DC > Dupont Circle
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Centre with Internet Access Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Suites Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#2 Romantic Hotel in Washington DC
#3 Family Hotel in Washington DC
#3 Luxury Hotel in Washington DC
#12 Business Hotel in Washington DC
Price Range: £273 - £424 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:5 star — The Hay-Adams 5*
Number of rooms: 145
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Welcome to Washington's landmark residence of choice for visitors to our nation's capital. The Hay-Adams, a luxury boutique hotel, is as close as you can get to staying at the White House without a personal invitation from the President. Originally designed in the 1920s as a residential hotel, The Hay-Adams carefully emulates the ambiance of a distinguished private mansion on Lafayette Square. The 145-room boutique hotel in Washington, DC features 21 luxury suites with stunning views of Lafayette Park and the White House. All of our guest rooms exhibit the perfect combination of heritage, luxury, contemporary comfort and technology. Ideally situated in Lafayette Square and steps away from many of Washington D.C.'s famous attractions, The Hay-Adams is the premier destination for leisure and business travelers alike. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
The Hay-Adams Hotel Washington Dc
Hay Adams Washington Dc

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