The best hotels in Washington, DC

Best hotels in Washington DC 4X3

The Hay-Adams; Hotel Hive; Alyssa Powell/Business Insider

  • As the nation's capital, DC is a must-visit destination filled with important history, national landmarks, free museums, and excellent restaurants and bars.
  • Hotels across the city range from trendy micro-hotels for budget-conscious travelers, to historic properties, and recently opened luxury stays.
  • We chose top hotels based on several factors including our own travel experiences, a range of price points attainable to the average traveler, along with research using reviews and rankings from past guests on sites such as Trip Advisor and Booking.com.
  • Read all Business Insider Hotel Reviews here.

A note from your Insider Reviews travel editor: Coronavirus has interrupted travel on a global scale forcing travelers to cancel and reassess plans in the coming weeks and months. We understand that right now is a challenging time to plan travel. But when this time passes and things return to normal, we know you'll be eager to explore the world again.

Whenever that happens for you, and we know it will, we hope our travel content helps you make informed, useful, and inspiring choices on the best places and hotels to book. So whether you use our reviews now, bookmark them for the future, or simply need an escape from the news, we'll continue to share the world with you. In the meantime, we encourage all travelers to stay safe, follow guidelines from the CDC website, and take precautions.Advertisement

Brimming with history and culture, Washington, DC is a cultural powerhouse filled with iconic monuments, museums, houses of government, and trendy restaurants and bars. See The Declaration of Independence, learn if you have what it takes to become a spy, and grab a bite alongside the political elite - you can do it all in one day in DC.

DC also has an overwhelming number of hotels to meet every traveler's tastes, though it can be hard to narrow down the options.
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We've sorted through hundreds of properties and picked out the top hotels across the city based on past traveler reviews and rankings on Trip Advisor and Booking.com, as well as our own travel experience. Hotels range in starting price from $104 to $350, plus one ultra-luxury option you might want to consider if you have the extra budget.

Additionally, we looked for standouts in terms of design, amenities, and guest perks, with ratings of 8.5 and above on Booking.com, and 4 out of 5-stars on Trip Advisor. Properties range from hip micro-hotels to wellness-focused retreats and storied hotels that embrace their history. All starting prices are based on time of publishing, and subject to change.

Traveling elsewhere? Read our list of the best hotels in other popular cities:

Read on for the best hotels in Washington, DC, sorted by price from low to high.

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Hotel Hive

Hotel Hive
Book Hotel Hive starting at $104 per night

Room sizes are limited at this micro hotel, but there's certainly plenty of character. Smaller rooms also mean cheaper prices, which is why it's such a hit with budget-conscious travelers. Most rooms start at 125 square feet with bunk bed options, and even the largest rooms max out at just 250 square feet. Despite the lack of legroom, rooms are intelligently designed to maximize the area with small desks, beds raised to fit suitcases beneath them, and nightstands that double as safes.

Exposed brick walls and small nods to the hotel's buzzy name, like hexagon lights, are found throughout the property. Get out of your room and make friends at The Hive Bar, which includes a cozy nook with a working fireplace, or save time for the rooftop that's open seasonally. The outdoor courtyard offers another area to relax or enjoy a slice of pizza from the on-site local pizza restaurant.

The hotel is well located within easy walking distance of The White House, the National Mall, and other top DC attractions.

Trip Advisor Ranking: 2 of 153

Booking.com Rating: 8.9 out of 10

Pros: A budget-friendly micro-hotel ideally situated near DC's top draws. The National Monument and museums are just a short walk away.

Cons: Rooms start at just 125 square feet and there are minimal on-site amenities so it's not a good option if you want to spend a lot of time on-site.

Moxy Washington, DC Downtown

Moxy Washington, DC Downtown
Book Moxy Washington, DC Downtown starting at $111 per night

The funky design at the Moxy is so hip, it's almost hard to find a place to rest your eyes between all the knick-knacks littered throughout the lobby. Pillows boast phrases like "Pizza Never Lies," an old horse kiddie ride stands proudly in the corner, and an American flag made out of blue jeans adorns the back wall. It's a bold offering from Moxy, which is Marriott Bonvoy's boutique but affordable collection of hotels.

The rooms also feature unique art, cute pillows with fun messages, and leather headboards. Bunk rooms are available for groups and budget travelers, and standard rooms are small but designed for function with pegs instead of closets with drawers and mini desks. There's a grab-and-go kitchen area but no true dining option on-site.

A small gym is the only real amenity but the downtown location means you probably won't spend a ton of time on property anyway.

Trip Advisor Ranking: 21 of 153

Booking.com Rating: 8.9 out of 10

Pros: A funky, hip spot that's well priced for the downtown location, with the opportunity to earn and use Marriott Bonvoy points.

Cons: Rooms are small and there are hardly any on-site amenities so Moxy DC is best for travelers not looking to spend tons of time in their room.

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Eaton DC

Eaton DC
Book Eaton DC starting at $153 per night

The free-flowing, bohemian vibe showcased at Eaton DC feels fresh and whimsical in a city dotted with hotels known for being far more stuffy and traditional. There's a selection of art, records, and books in every guest room; and rainbow-colored bed scarfs, bright rugs with geometric patterns, and mosaic-tiled showers make rooms feel warm and inviting.

The downtown hotel places a strong emphasis on new-age wellness practices too, with free community classes such as meditation and sensory experiences available to guests. The on-site restaurant uses locally-sourced ingredients, and the coffee shop features third-wave coffee and detox juices. The plant-filled, rooftop music venue, Wild Days, is also a cool spot to catch a live concert or dance with the DJ.

Trip Advisor Ranking: 8 of 153

Booking.com Rating: 9.1 out of 10

Pros: A home for creatives that strives to be a relaxing urban retreat through a boho-chic design aesthetic, with wellness-minded community offerings.

Cons: The new-age vibe won't be a fit for everyone, so know what you're getting yourself into ahead of time.

The LINE DC

The LINE DC
Book The LINE DC starting at $154 per night

Built inside a 110-year old neoclassical church, the LINE wows with design that effortlessly blends the building's historic roots with new modern comfort and amenities. Old church organ pipes were reimagined into a chandelier, and guest rooms feature old radios alongside modern media hubs.

Like other LINE hotels, an emphasis is placed on community engagement, and the hotel houses the Adams Morgan Community Center, which is an incubator space for artists and nonprofits, and also hosts a monthly Drag Queen Story Hour. More so, a dollar per night from every reservation goes towards No Kid Hungry.

The on-site bar and restaurant scene is exceptional, overseen by James Beard Award winners and nominees. The nearby Adams Morgan area is notorious for its raucous bar scene, so there's plenty of nightlife options, and the hotel is also right by the zoo. However, getting around the city isn't as easy since there's no close metro stop.

Trip Advisor Ranking: 30 of 153

Booking.com Rating: 8.9 out of 10

Pros: A hip hotel housed in a neoclassical church where old and new seamlessly blend in unique ways. Plus, socially conscious travelers will appreciate the emphasis on supporting local communities.

Cons: Adams Morgan's nightlife scene can get rowdy, and there isn't a metro stop nearby, which makes getting around the city challenging.

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InterContinental The Willard Washington, DC

InterContinental The Willard Washington, DC
Book InterContinental The Willard Washington, DC starting at $165 per night

You'll be in good company at this historic property across the street from The White House that dates back to 1816, and counts past guests such as Abraham Lincoln, Martin Luther King Jr. (who even edited his famous "I Have a Dream Speech" in the lobby!), and the Dalai Lama, among others. At the gallery off the lobby, guests can peruse photos, historical artifacts, and learn about the timeline of the hotel's history and renovation.

Standard rooms are elegant with blue and gold detailing, and Premium rooms face Pennsylvania Avenue with views of the Washington Monument. Premium Suites are incredibly spacious, starting at 1,250 square feet, and the Oval Suite is even molded after the style of the Oval Office. Suites can be connected with guest rooms for large groups and families.

Breakfast is best enjoyed on Cafe du Parc's terrace on Pennsylvania Avenue under the signature blue umbrellas. And if you grab a cocktail at the famous Round Robin Bar you might just catch a sighting of some of Washington's most political elite.

Trip Advisor Ranking: 7 of 153

Booking.com Rating: 9.3 out of 10

Pros: Just steps from The White House, this hotel dates back over 200 years and has housed famous guests from Martin Luther King Jr. to the Dalai Lama.

Cons: Prices vary dramatically here and can rise to the mid-$300s during the busiest seasons.

Kimpton George Hotel

Kimpton George Hotel
Book Kimpton George Hotel starting at $179 per night

A boutique hotel on Capitol Hill, the rooms at Kimpton George Hotel pay homage to surroundings with design details such as wallpaper that replicates the Declaration of Independence. Additionally, horse statues act as lamps, and brass buttons on pillows are reminiscent of Revolutionary War uniforms.

Like other Kimpton hotels, all rooms come with a yoga mat, and guests enjoy perks such as social wine hour and custom-designed PUBLIC bike rentals. There's only one on-site restaurant, Bistro Bis, which serves French cuisine. It's expensive but run by James Beard Award-winning Chef Jeffrey Buben.

Trip Advisor Ranking: 53 of 153

Booking.com Rating: 8.5 out of 10

Pros: Conveniently located on Capitol Hill with fun design details that firmly root you in DC and signature Kimpton perks that guests love

Cons: The amenities are pretty basic and there's only one (expensive) restaurant and no spa.

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Thompson Washington DC

Thompson Washington DC
Book Thompson Washington DC starting at $179 per night

The new Thompson Washington DC comes from the Hyatt brand, but feels more like an independent boutique hotel thanks to stately decor that subtly points to DC's colonial and maritime past with details referencing old ship's cabins. The location in Navy Yard places guests in one of DC's trendiest up-and-coming neighborhoods with newly opened restaurants, bars, and boutiques. The National Mall isn't close, but Smithsonian museums and the Anacostia River Trail are. The latter provides an excellent biking path for fresh air.

Baseball fans should catch a game at Nationals Park, which is a mere 8-minute walk away. Some rooms even have views of the stadium, while others face the Anacostia River. Spacious rooms have calming gray and blue color palettes with plenty of light thanks to the oversized windows.

The on-site restaurant features Italian food with an emphasis on seafood. There are two bars, but the best by far is the Anchovy Social, a sprawling rooftop spot with 360-degree views of the river and the city.

Trip Advisor Ranking: 111 of 153

Booking.com Rating: Not yet rated

Pros: A brand new hotel in one of the city's trendiest, up-and-coming neighborhoods with river and baseball stadium views from most rooms.

Cons: While the location is ideal for a baseball game, it's far from the National Mall and downtown area.

The Watergate Hotel

The Watergate Hotel
Book The Watergate Hotel starting at $246 per night

The Watergate's past is no secret, in fact, it's one of its draws, fully embraced in a recent multi-million dollar renovation. New cheeky touches include a Scandal Room decked out with items such as newspaper headline clippings, a tape recorder, and binoculars.

Situated on the Potomac River next to Georgetown, many rooms come with balconies, leather chairs and couches, small wooden desks, and marble bathrooms. Large premium suites boast wraparound balconies and exceptional river views and standard guest rooms can also be connected.

Top of the Gate, the seasonal rooftop bar also features panoramic city views, while The Next Whiskey Bar walls of over 2,500 whiskey bottles. The on-site restaurant is a favorite among guests and locals, especially for brunch. The spa is a relaxing retreat and there's also an indoor heated pool.

Trip Advisor Ranking: 47 of 153

Booking.com Rating: 8.7 out of 10

Pros: The notorious hotel embraces its past while still feeling sleek and fresh. The rooftop bar impresses with sweeping city views and an indoor pool makes for a nice amenity.

Cons: The bar and roof draw a lively crowd and noise can carry to rooms nearby.

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The Hay-Adams

The Hay-Adams
Book The Hay-Adams starting at $339 per night

One of DC's most iconic luxury properties, the hotel is named for the original residents of the two houses that once stood on this site — John Hay, the secretary to President Abraham Lincoln, and Henry Adams, a direct descendant of Presidents John Adams and John Quincy Adams.

The Hay-Adams exudes regal elegance in line with such lofty predecessors with stately columns and Italian Renaissance-style decor. Gray and bronze flower-patterned curtains trim the windows and headboards in guest rooms, alongside classic, cream-colored armchairs and deep couches. Rooms overlook Lafayette Park, The White House, or Saint John's Church.

Breakfast, lunch, and dinner are served at The Lafayette, a refined space with french doors, large chandeliers, and pillow-covered couches. A trendier vibe is found at Off the Record, the hotel's all red bar that's famously lined with caricatures of prominent political figures.

Hay-Adams is within walking distance of the National Mall, the National Museum of African American History and Culture, Dupont Circle, and The National Portrait Gallery.

Trip Advisor Ranking: 6 of 153

Booking.com Rating: 9.2 out of 10

Pros: A well-located and refined luxury hotel that embraces its original heritage and is less than a 5-minute walk from the White House.

Cons: The hotel's style is on the stuffy side and might not appeal to those looking for a hipper scene.

Riggs Washington DC

Riggs Washington DC
Book Riggs Washington DC starting at $339 per night

Named for the former Riggs National Bank building in which it now operates, this brand new hotel is an exciting addition to the Penn Quarter. Rainbow-hued velvet details punctuate grand interiors alongside preserved original bank architecture.

In guest rooms, bright, watercolor-esque wallpaper matches the headboards, and velvet, pastel pink curtains and pillows add a dose of whimsy, while minibars are fashioned after old safes. Four of the suites are named for former First Ladies, and each comes with its own bold color palette of pink, turquoise, canary yellow, or burgundy and gold.

At Cafe Riggs, there is a similarly bold approach to color along with Corinthian columns. The Silver Lyon speakeasy bar is a chic and cozy spot to grab a craft cocktail in the original vault.

Trip Advisor Ranking: 112 of 153

Booking.com Rating: 9.4 out of 10

Pros: The highly Instagrammable decor plays off the original bank interiors and the hotel is whimsical while still feeling chic.

Cons: Rooms are on the smaller side unless you opt for a suite, which can be pricey.

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Four Seasons Washington, DC

Four Seasons Washington, DC
Book the Four Seasons Washington DC starting at $656

The Four Seasons is definitely expensive, but for those set on luxury, you likely won't find finer in the city. The Four Seasons brand is a beacon when it comes to high-end service, classic design, and five-star pampering, and this property does an impeccable job delivering on all fronts.

Tucked at the bottom of a picturesque street, the Four Seasons offers a covetable address amid Georgetown's tree-lined cobblestone streets lined with historic townhouses, designer boutiques, coffee shops, and restaurants.

The property itself, however, makes a strong case for staying put with an expansive art collection that includes over 1,500 pieces, rivaling even some of the top museums in the area.

The fitness center is an astounding three stories high and includes a large saltwater pool, as well as a sumptuous spa. Expect to rub elbows with the city's political celebrities that stay here, and the on-site restaurant Seasons is well-known as a place where diplomats and executives go for power breakfasts.

Trip Advisor Ranking: 4 of 153

Booking.com Rating: 9.4 out of 10

Pros: A luxury retreat that makes you feel like a Washington A-lister, with excellent amenities and a great location.

Cons: The Four Seasons is expensive in a city with plenty of other hotels to consider that are equally high-end and cheaper.