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“Site Selection”

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Kimpton Donovan Hotel
Ranked #33 of 140 Hotels in Washington DC
Certificate of Excellence
GreenLeadersSilver level
Cambridge, Massachusetts
Level Contributor
31 reviews
14 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 12 helpful votes
“Site Selection”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 5 June 2014

I have been meaning to write this review since March 2014. I am an Special Event Planner. I work with many hotels in the DC area. Donovan House is a treasure. Managers wine hour every week night. Awesome bar wonderful food choices. Front desk staff totally amazing...Brittany and Kevin...Kudos to you...Marina Wagner, know exactly how to present and represent her Kimpton Property. All the rooms are different...Donovan House, I will see you in October. Due to the great service, I will also be using Hotel Monaco as well. Thanks and keep up the good work!!!



Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory

Room Tip: Don't bother going out for dinner, dine at the restaurant in the hotel. Prices are fair and dri...
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  • Stayed March 2014, travelled on business
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Jenine617
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Elif H, General Manager at Kimpton Donovan Hotel, responded to this review, 9 June 2014
Dear Jenine 617,

Wow!!! What a great review!

I truly enjoyed reading your comments and personally thanked our staff for exceeding your expectations. It always make me feel so proud to be part of this great team.

I would love to personally meet you when you return in October.

Thank you and see you soon!!!

Elif H
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1,579 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (418)
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English first
Miami, Florida
Level Contributor
4 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 2 June 2014

My husband and I booked this hotel for a little getaway in late May 2014 and the hotel exceeded our expectations. We arrived around 11am on a Tuesday and were given access to our room immediately. The rooms were nice and clean. We really loved the spiral shower and our "city view" was fabulous even though we were only on the 5th floor! The rooftop pool was a lovey haven after a long day of traveling. We ordered cocktails and sushi from the Zentan Restaurant... probably some of the best sushi we have ever had! The best surprise came at 5pm when the lobby transforms itself into a "happy hour lounge" and offers a "free wine hour" until 6pm. You have your choice of red or white wine and can have as many refills as you like. They also feature complimentary appetizers and sushi from the Zentan Restaurant, along with some of the most delicious spicy trail mix. The staff was nice and friendly and knew us by the end of our stay. They recommended great restaurants, lounges and things to do around the city. But one of the best lounges we encountered was the Donovan's own Rooftop Pool Lounge which opens at 6pm! Great atmosphere, reasonably priced drinks and gorgeous views! We also took advantage of the free bike rentals which was a wonderful way to view the D.C. area. Needless to say we loved our stay and the Donovan House and would stay here again!

Room Tip: Ask for a "city view"
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  • Stayed May 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
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    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
Thank Vivian S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Elif H, General Manager at Kimpton Donovan Hotel, responded to this review, 4 June 2014
Dear Vivien,

Thank your choosing our Hotel for your little gateway. I am so thrilled to hear that you had a great time and we exceeded your expectations.

We can not wait to have you back with us soon.

Cheers
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Boulder, Colorado
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 30 May 2014

Nice features: complimentary wine early evening, friendly staff, location, easy access to Metro, comfortable bedding, beautiful views and serenity of rooftop pool/lounge in day time. Just eh: hipster/ dark décor a little depressing; pool not ideal for kids because small and intimate; rooftop pool closed in evenings; attached restaurant very pricey and offerings mostly limited to sushi; small lobby. Overall, I felt the hip hype was overrated. This might have been a more ideal for a couple, but I brought my two kids and found it to be a bit too 'adult' for the kids (i.e.: be quiet and well behaved in the pool).

  • Stayed July 2013, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank serenaleland
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Elif H, Assistant General Manager at Kimpton Donovan Hotel, responded to this review, 9 June 2014
Serenaleland,

Thank you for your review!

I do appreciate you pointing the goods and areas to improve on your review.

As much as we would love to keep our pool open for later hours, it is closed for the security and safety of our guests when the bar is open for both internal and external guests.

Your valuable feedback is also shared with our restaurant team, so thank you.

We hope that you will give us another opportunity in the future.

Thank you for staying with us.

Cheers,

Elif H.
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Denver, Colorado
Level Contributor
70 reviews
67 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 163 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 29 May 2014

This Kimpton hotel continues the Kimpton brand philosophy of hipness - there's a log of eggplant paint on the walls and the Star Trek transporter showers are good for a chuckle or two (although you won't fit if you're 6' 6" or taller). One can imagine Kimpton properties as the official hotel of Austin Powers.

Past the fun mid-century touches and the egg chairs suspended in the lobby, however, the hotel still has to function as a hotel. In that, this property comes up average at best.

This was a renovation of a property at Thomas Circle, perhaps the DC Circle farthest away from any good Metro connections or stops; luckily, many good eateries are within a short walk. The elevators are slow, small and retro (to put it mildly). Everywhere in this property, ceilings are low and hallways are NYC-style small. Rooms themselves are reasonably ample, but then you open up the closet to hang up clothes, and you realize that's impossible because the in-room safe and three drawers are taking up all but the top 2 feet of space below the closet rod. I ended up having to hang shirts above the second bed, taking advantage of the completely non-functional but definitely hip trim above the beds.

One thing this property does right: The TVs are practically a religious experience. Probably 60 inches, inset into a decorative border that gives you a true cinema experience from the comfort of your bed. Good HD channels to boot.

Unfortunately, location and lack of practical detail would probably steer me away from this particular Kimpton property in the future. When you reno a property in this day and age, it's possible to be both kitschy-hip AND practical. Kimpton needs to learn this.

Room Tip: If you need closet space, ask specifically at check-in if the assigned room has a clear closet - or...
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  • Stayed May 2014, travelled on business
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank DenverBrian
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Elif H, Assistant General Manager at Kimpton Donovan Hotel, responded to this review, 30 May 2014
Dear DenverBrian,

Thank you for sharing your valuable and detailed feedback with us.

Our elevators are scheduled to be renewed very soon and we will certainly take your feedback into consideration for our future renovations.

I appreciate the details on your review as this is the best way to improve our service and products for our valuable guests.

Hope you will give us another chance in the future.
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Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
Level Contributor
4 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 28 May 2014

This hotel was in the perfect location. My girl friends and I wanted a quick weekend getaway where we could also lay by the pool. The rooms were very modern and spacious. Bed was very firm, which I love. Anytime we needed something it was taking care of immediately. Check in was a breeze and anytime we needed our car it came in minutes. The highlight of the hotel is the rooftop pool. It’s beautiful. We had such a nice time. My only complaint is while at the pool we wanted to order a bite to eat but were advised we couldn't order until 5pm. I definitely will return.

  • Stayed May 2014, travelled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Pretti01
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Elif H, Assistant General Manager at Kimpton Donovan Hotel, responded to this review, 2 June 2014
Dear Pretti01,

Thank your a great review!!!

We are thrilled to see that you enjoyed your weekend gateway with us. You are absolutely right; our rooftop is one of the most popular location in Washington, D.C. area;great location and stunning view facing Thomas Circle.

We hope to see you soon for the upcoming weekend gateways as well.

Cheers
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Belfast
Level Contributor
15 reviews
12 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 17 helpful votes
2 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 28 May 2014

I have booked this hotel for an upcoming 4 night stay in June. I originally sent a message to the hotel via their website before I booked re booking/prices etc. and didn't receive a response. When I chased and finally got a response I made the decision to proceed with my booking...I'm now not so sure.

I recently emailed again asking about adding the $1 breakfast deal to my room and again haven't got a response...it concerns me that this is the level of service I'm going to get in the hotel.

  • Stayed May 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Location
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank NYAddictBelfast
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Elif H, Assistant General Manager at Kimpton Donovan Hotel, responded to this review, 2 June 2014
Dear NYAddictbelfast,

Thank you for your review.

Please accept my sincere apologies for pre-stay difficulties you experienced with correspondences. Would you be so kind to reach me at elif.hendrickson@donovanhousehotel.com? I would like to make sure that all of your questions and concerns are resolved prior to your arrival. Rest assured that my wonderful team will be providing you with a flawless stay.

Looking forward to having you with us soon.

Elif
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Columbia, Maryland
Level Contributor
3 reviews
2 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 27 May 2014

I wanted to love the Donovan Hotel, I really did. I've always been attracted to the cool, hip decor of the Kimpton's boutique hotels from afar. And this past weekend, I decided to take the plunge.

The good: The location is phenomenal for easy access to everything in the city. There is a curbside valet. The lobby decor and room decor is cool. Nice view from room. Four USB ports and two desktop outlets, is a win. The rooftop pool has a spectacular city view. The cocoon shaped shower with rainfall spout. That's it.

The bad: No attention to details! The valets seemed to have a lot of trouble understanding the instructions, do not park my car. I was taking the keys with me as we were dropping our bags into our rooms and leaving within 10 minutes of check in. We were asked for our keys twice after making this statement. And again by two different people while walking back to our car to leave, after coming from our room.

Arriving in the room, we immediately began to inspect the digs. I have always been a fan of the fully stocked mini fridge. Although the rates for each item were ridiculous, I'd still prefer to have it as an option for those middle of the night cravings. I quickly discovered that I would not be using this fridge for my cravings as several of the soda cans and liquors were covered in some sticky substance. (perhaps a soda spilled by a previous resident) The hotel should be cleaning, if not replacing the contents of the fridge after each guest leaves.

On our first evening at the hotel (Saturday, May 24th/ Room 703), my son decided he would like to see the pool. It was late, as we'd just arrived back from dinner. I explained to my son that the pool closed at 7, but that I would let him view the pool from the closed door. We were a bit surprised when we arrived to the 14th floor and there was a bit of a party atmosphere. My intention was to let my son view the pool then return back to our room. There was a very rude manager working the rooftop who barked at my family and I "the rooftop is at capacity and you wouldn't be able to bring him up here anyway." The last time that I checked, hotels should give their guests the utmost respect and hospitality at all times. A better comment would have been "I'm sorry madame, but we've reached capacity for the evening function. I see that you have your child with you. Children are welcome to visit the pool from 10 am to 7 pm. We hope that you will return tomorrow" If proper hospitality cannot be given, then the person should not be working in the hospitality industry.

Sunday morning, an un-uniformed maid attempted to give our room service. We denied entry.

Later Sunday, after returning to our room, we noticed that our room had been serviced. All of our towels were removed and replaced... leaving us with no wash cloths. This is the first time that I have EVER had room service remove all washcloths from the room and not return with others.

We decided to try our luck again with the rooftop pool at approximately 5 p.m. This time, we did not have our child in tow. We arrived to see plenty of chairs/cabanas for relaxing. What we did not find were towels. I had to call the lobby, from the pool, in order to have additional towels brought. What I also saw appeared to be an abandoned mini bar area. Why would there not be a bartender to service the rooftop hotel pool? The final straw for the rooftop pool were a particular guests' children. While I was lounging poolside, three children arrived to the pool and decided to cannon ball repeatedly into the water. The first time, the parent sheepishly apologized. The tenth, Eleventh, and TWELTH times, the parent failed to acknowledge, so I moved away from the pool. Although the blame ultimately lies with the parent who was unwilling to control their children, the pool should definitely have a sign or rules posted that instruct guests not to "cannon ball" into the modest sized pool.

We did have several drinks at the rooftop bar/lounge. These were prepared well. The "hot plate" of Ramen Noodles, was delivered cold.

We went back to our rooms to order the room service and I was poisoned. The restaurant decided to put meat into a non-meat dish. I am a pescatarian and I continue to be sick from this negligence. (full review here: yelp.com/biz/zentan-rest…)

There were several other details that the hotel just missed the mark on. The sinks drain way too slowly, which is disgusting considering that they're a modern square flat shape. This means when brushing your teeth and spitting you can expect to see the residue for a good 5 minutes before it washes down.

The elevators are too tight/small (I wear a size 6 for reference, so I'm not very large) The space felt confining with 4 people sharing the elevator with one luggage bag each.

Overall, I would not choose to stay at this location again. There are too many areas in which the hotel is neglectful of its responsibilities to patrons.

  • Stayed May 2014, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank laureniam
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Elif H, Assistant General Manager at Kimpton Donovan Hotel, responded to this review, 2 June 2014
Dear Laureniam,

Thank you for your review.

We truly value your feedback as it allows us to improve our product and services. I would like to personally apologoize for all the inconveniences you experienced during your stay. Please be assured that your review is shared with our team to make sure that those kind of experiences are not happening in the future.

We are looking forward to having you back with us for more enjoyable stays in the future.
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Additional Information about Kimpton Donovan Hotel

Property: Kimpton Donovan Hotel
Address: 1155 14th St NW, Washington DC, DC 20005-4111
Phone Number:
Region: United States > District of Columbia > Washington DC > Upper Northwest
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Centre with Internet Access Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#16 Green Hotel in Washington DC
#19 Luxury Hotel in Washington DC
#24 Business Hotel in Washington DC
#41 Romantic Hotel in Washington DC
#56 Family Hotel in Washington DC
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££
Hotel Class:4 star — Kimpton Donovan Hotel 4*
Number of rooms: 193
Reservation Options:
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Also Known As:
Donovan Hotel a Thompson
Donovan House Washington Dc

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